5 from 2 votes
Prep Time
25 mins
Cook Time
15 mins
Chill Time
2 hrs
Total Time
2 hrs 40 mins

Holiday baking at my house is in full swing. We are baking dozens of these shortbread cookies to give away to friends, family, teachers and coworkers. I love this time of the year when the weather outside is cold, but it's nice and cozy inside. We wear our pajamas most of the day while playing christmas tunes and making the house smell great while baking. There is nothing better than the combination of butter, flour and sugar to make these easy cookies. But I figured why not elevate them a bit and make three different flavors this year, every bite will be special.

Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Author: Lena Gladstone
Basic Shortbread Cookie Dough
  • 3 3/4 cups all purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup rice flour
  • 3/4 tsp sea salt
  • 2 cups room temperature unsalted butter
  • 1 1/4 cup unsifted confectioner's sugar
  • 1/2 cup sugar for rolling dough
Lemon - Thyme Flavor
  • 1 tbsp fresh thyme, chopped
  • 1 tbsp lemon zest
Dark Chocolate - Cherry Flavor
  • 1/2 cup finely shaved chocolate (I used 60% dark chocolate bar)
  • 1/2 cup chopped dried dark bing cherries
Cardamom - Orange - Pistachio Flavor
  • 1 heaping tsp ground cardamom
  • 1 tbsp orange zest
  • 1/4 cup pistachios, roughly chopped
  • 1/4 cup or more pistachios, more finely chopped, for rolling edges of cookie
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

  2. In a bowl, combine both flours and salt. Set aside.

  3. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the butter on medium to high speed for 30 seconds. Add the confectioner's sugar. Beat until combined.

  4. Beat in as much of the flour mixture as you can with the mixer. Use a wooden spoon to stir in any remaining flour mixture.

  5. On a lightly floured surface, knead the dough into a long log, cut into three equal pieces.

  6. Add the add ons for each flavor to each section and knead it together to combine. Roll into a log and wrap in plastic wrap or waxed paper. Chill for 2 to 24 hours or until firm.

  7. Cut roll into ΒΌ-inch slices. For the pistachio flavor, roll each cookie edge in the finely chopped pistachios.

  8. Place slices 2 inches apart on ungreased cookie sheet. Bake in preheated oven for about 10-15 minutes, or until edges are lightly browned. Transfer cookies to a wire rack and let cool.

  9. Stack 5 cookies together and wrap in twine or ribbon, add a sprig of thyme and give as a gift or enjoy at home.