4-Ingredient Butter Shortbread: Fast & Easy

Here I show you how to make shortbread cookies. This recipe is easy, delicious and only needs ingredients.

Shortbread is a favourite cookie at any time of the year for many people. In Scotland, it is traditional to serve Shortbread at Hogmanay, which is the Scottish New Year’s Eve, and after a Robbie Burns dinner on January 25th.

Shortbread Cookies
Shortbread Cookies

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Jan. 5, 2021 by Deborah Esplin

Recipe For 4-Ingredient Butter Shortbread Cookies

Here is a link to download a PDF file of the recipe above Shortbread. Or see the ingredients and instructions below

Ingredients For 4-Ingredient Butter Shortbread Cookies

    • 227 grams (1 cup) Butter
    • 120 mL (1/2 cup) Powdered Sugar
    • 1.5 mL (1/4 tsp.) Salt
    • 475 mL (2 cups) sifted Flour
    • 2 9-inch round or square pans or baking sheet for cut cookies.
    • Oil or butter for greasing the pans, or
    • Cookie sheets & parchment paper or silicone baking mats

You can watch the video here on how to make Shortbread Cookies or see the instructions below.

How To Make 4-Ingredient Butter Shortbread Cookies

    1. Cream the butter until it is creamy and soft. Add the sugar and salt. Continue creaming until they are well mixed. Measure 2 cups of the flour then pass through a sifter or a sieve into a measuring cup until you have 2 cups of sifted flour. You may still have some flour left and that is fine. Mix until the flour is blended but do not overmix.
    2. You will know that the dough is ready when it is mixed and partially forms a ball. This will recipe will make two 9-inch pans or one 9-inch pan 10 to 12 cookies or 2 dozen cookies.
    3. Split the dough in half and put it in a greased round or square pan made of metal or glass. Press the dough down until it is evenly spread across the pan. Make little indentations with a fork or meat tenderizer. Then, for a round pan, run a knife through the dough to make 8 pie-shaped sections. For a square pan, run the knife through the dough to make 8 large or 16 small rectangular sections.
    4. To make cut cookies, put a little flour on your work table and place the round ball of dough on the flour. Roll it out to a thickness of 3mm, 1/8 inch, then cut into shapes. You can roll out the remaining dough 2 more times but not more than that.
    5. Bake at 325 F for 20 to 30 minutes, depending on the thickness of the dough.
    6. Cool on a cooling rack.

Note: If you roll out the dough more than 3 times, you risk having a dryer, tougher cookie.

This recipe is easy and delicious. And you can make it as pan or cut cookies, depending on the shape you want.

Cut cookies
Round pan with 8 pie-shaped pieces


Square pan with 12 pieces

Equipment Needed To Make 4-Ingredient Butter Shortbread

    • Mixing Bowl
    • Spoon
    • Rolling Pin
    • Fork or Meat Tenderizer
    • 9-inch Pans or Cookie Sheets
    • Silicone Baking Mats
    • Cooling Rack

Check out my Baking Essentials Kit for any tools that you might be missing. If you want to upgrade, all of these items are durable, practical, and easily washed. Check them out.

Tip: These cookies make a great gift.

Check out other recipes from The Daily Basil Blog.

I hope you enjoy these recipes and ideas. Leave me a comment and let me know what other recipes you would like me to share.

Cooking A Show Of Love


9 Replies to “4-Ingredient Butter Shortbread: Fast & Easy”

  1. Shortbread are my absolute favouriet! I didn’t get a chance to make them at Christmas so I think I’ll have to treat myself for my birthday this month. Delicious!

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