Discover how to create delicious 3-ingredient shortbread cookies with this easy recipe. Perfect for quickly satisfying sweet cravings or impressing guests with a light, crumbly treat that pairs wonderfully with tea or coffee.

3 ingredient shortbread

Easy 3-Ingredient Shortbread Cookies Everyone Will Love

There is nothing quite like a delicious sweet treat to satisfy that sweet tooth craving, and these tasty shortbread cookies are a simple and quick recipe to make. With only three ingredients that you likely already have in your pantry and fridge, you can whip up a batch of this shortbread within the hour. Ideal if you have guests coming over.

They are super simple to make and taste amazing. The light and crumbly texture makes them the perfect biscuit to accompany a cup of tea or coffee. I love making these sweet treats because they are just so easy to make, and everyone loves them.

They are also the ideal recipe to expand upon with different flavors and ingredients, some of which I have shared later in this post. For now, here is everything you need to know to make these three-ingredient shortbread cookies.

shortbread cookies overhead shot

Why We Love These Shortbread Cookies

  • Quick and easy to make, whip up these cookies in under an hour.
  • Only uses a handful of simple ingredients.
  • Perfect for satisfying cravings or serving to guests.

Ingredients

shortbread cookie ingredients
  • Unsalted butter, softened
  • Sugar
  • Flour
  • Powdered sugar, to dust, optional

Substitutions and Additions

  • Add a different flavor to the cookie mixture. A little drizzle of vanilla extract, or even peppermint or lemon extract, will make delicious biscuits. 
  • Decorate the shortbread with icing. You could even decorate in different colors to suit a theme or occasion. 
  • Add some chocolate chips to the cookie mixture before baking. Or even sweets like smarties or M&Ms. 
  • Decorate with melted chocolate. Milk or white chocolate will work amazingly with these shortbread cookies. 

See the recipe card for full information on ingredients and quantities.

How to Make Shortbread Cookies

  1. Preheat the oven to 325 degrees. Grease a 9×9 baking dish (or a similar size) with non-stick cooking spray and set aside.
  2. Combine the softened butter and sugar in the bowl of a stand mixer. Cream for about 5 minutes, scraping down the sides often until the mixture is light in color and smooth. 
  3. Gradually add in the flour and continue to mix until combined. Again, scrape down the sides often. 
  4. Transfer the mix to the prepared baking dish, press it into the bottom of the pan, and spread it to the sides.  
  5. Bake in the preheated oven for 30-35 minutes or until the edges are slightly browned and the center is set.  
  6. Allow to cool slightly before cutting while still warm.  
  7. Allow to cool completely before serving.  Sprinkle with a dusting of powdered sugar, if desired. 
shortbread cookies process

Tips

  • Allowing them to cool a little before cutting will help you to get a uniformed appearance rather than them crumbling away when cutting them cold. 
  • A stand mixer makes light work of combining the 3 ingredients together. You can use a hand mixer or even do it by hand if you wish; it just may take a little longer.
  • Make sure the oven is preheated so the cookies bake evenly.  
  • This is a great recipe to get the kids involved in the kitchen. 

Serving Suggestions

I like to dust the cookies with some powdered sugar and enjoy them with a nice hot cup of tea. You can serve them as they are or even with some of the suggestions above by decorating them. 

shortbread cookie recipe

Storage

Shortbread cookies can be stored in an airtight container for up to 3 days. They can also be frozen for 3 months. Freeze them individually on a baking tray before transferring to a freezer bag for easy storage. 

Frequently Asked Questions

Sure! Just use your preferred brand of plant-based butter instead and then follow the recipe above. The texture may be a little different, but they will still taste great!

serving plate shortbread

Delicious Cookie Recipes

Looking for more cookie recipes for a treat? Here are some of my favorites!

More Fun Cookie Recipes

reindeer sugar cookies

Reindeer Sugar Cookies

13

Best Ever Chocolate Chip Cookie Recipe

buckeye cake mix cookies 1

Chocolate Peanut Butter Cookies

Oreo Brownie Mix Cookies Set 1 5

Oreo Brownie Mix Cookies

3 ingredient shortbread
5 from 1 vote

3-Ingredient Shortbread Cookies

Experience the joy of shortbread with our simple recipe. Only three readily available ingredients to make these tasty shortbread cookies.
Servings: 9 Squares
Calories: 282kcal
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 40 minutes

Ingredients
 

  • 1 cup unsalted butter softened
  • ½ cup sugar
  • 2 cups flour
  • Powdered sugar to dust, optional

Instructions
 

  • Preheat the oven to 325 degrees. Grease a 9×9 baking dish (or similar size) with non-stick cooking spray, set aside.
  • In the bowl of a stand mixer, combine the softened butter and sugar. Cream for about 5 minutes – scraping down the sides often until the mixture is light in colour and smooth.
    1 cup unsalted butter, ½ cup sugar
  • Gradually add in the flour and continue to mix until combined. Again, scrape down the sides often.
    2 cups flour
  • Transfer the mix to the prepared baking dish and press the mixture into the bottom of the pan and spread to the sides.
  • Bake in the preheated oven for 30-35 minutes or until the edges are slightly browned and the center is set.
  • Allow to cool slightly before cutting while still warm.
  • Allow to cool completely before serving. Sprinkle with a dusting of powdered sugar, if desired.
    Powdered sugar

Notes

Shortbread cookies can be stored in an airtight container for up to 3 days. They can also be frozen for 3 months. Freeze them individually on a baking tray before transferring them to a freezer bag for easy storage. 

Nutrition

Calories: 282kcal | Carbohydrates: 21g | Protein: 3g | Fat: 21g | Saturated Fat: 13g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 5g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 54mg | Sodium: 3mg | Potassium: 36mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 0.1g | Vitamin A: 630IU | Calcium: 10mg | Iron: 1mg

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, is intended to serve as an estimate only, and is provided for informational purposes. The accuracy of nutritional information is not guaranteed.

Course: Cookies

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