Whipped Shortbread Cookies


Whipped shortbread cookies are the perfect light and fluffy holiday treat to enjoy during the Christmas season. With only a few simple ingredients like butter, flour, and confectioners’ sugar, you can whip up a batch of these melt-in-your-mouth cookies in no time.

Should I Use Salted or Unsalted Butter?

For the best flavor, go with a high-quality salted butter for these cookies. The salt enhances the sweetness and really allows the butteriness to shine through with every delicate bite. Using margarine instead of butter can result in a more dense and greasy cookie, so stick to the good stuff! The butter should be softened to room temperature before creaming.

Why Does Chilling the Dough Matter?

Chilling the scooped cookie dough balls until they are very firm is a critical step to ensure the signature light, airy texture of whipped shortbread. The chilled dough keeps its shape better during baking. Without thorough chilling first, the cookies are likely to spread too much and you’ll lose that lovely height. For speedy chilling, pop the balls into the freezer on a tray until hard.

What If My Shortbread Cookies Spread Too Much?

If your diligently-chilled cookies still spread out too thin, there are a few possible culprits. Too much butter or not enough flour can cause runny dough and spread. An oven temperature that’s too high can also lead to spreading. Try lowering the temp by 25 degrees next time. And be sure to measure the flour properly – don’t scoop it out of the bag packed, use a scale or fluff it first before spooning into a measuring cup.

Should I Add In Flavorings or Toppings?

While the simple flavor of butter is perfect all on its own, you can customize these cookies by mixing in extracts like vanilla, almond, orange or mint into the creamed butter. Topping the piping dollops of dough with cute sprinkles or pressing them with a fork before baking gives a signature look. And the options don’t stop once they come out of the oven warm…top with melted chocolate, Hershey’s kisses, jams, or even candy canes!

Preparation Time: 10 minutes Cooking Time: 20 minutes Chill Time: 2 hours Total Time: 30 minutes Type: Dessert Cuisine: American Yield: 36 Cookies Calories per Serving: 66 kcal

Equipment Needed:

  • Mixer (Hand or Stand)
  • Baking Tray lined with Parchment Paper


  • Salted Butter (1 ½ Cups), Room Temperature
  • All-Purpose Flour (2 ¼ Cups)
  • Confectioners’ Sugar (¾ Cup)
  • Cornstarch (¾ Cup)
  • Optional Flavorings/Toppings:
    • Pure Vanilla/Lemon/Orange Extract (2 teaspoons)
    • Sprinkles (¼ Cup), Non-Pareils Preferred


  1. Beat butter and confectioners’ sugar in a large bowl for 3-4 minutes for a light texture. Add flavorings here if desired.
  2. Gently mix in sifted flour and cornstarch until just combined.
  3. Form 36 equal-sized cookie balls. Arrange on a flour-coated plate or pre-lined baking tray. Flatten tops slightly with a fork dipped in cornstarch/flour and add sprinkles.
  4. Chill the dough balls for 2 hours in the fridge or until firm. To speed up, use the freezer.
  5. Preheat oven to 300°F. Bake chilled dough balls for 19-20 minutes or until set.
  6. Let cookies cool on the tray.

Storing Tips:

  • Store in an airtight container at room temperature for up to a week.
  • Refrigerate for extended shelf life (up to an additional week). Warm to room temperature before serving.
  • Freeze unbaked balls or baked cookies for longer storage. No thawing needed for unbaked balls; add an extra minute to baking time.

Flavor Enhancement:

  • For a richer taste, top cookies with melted chocolate, Hershey’s Kisses, or Candy Cane Kisses. Freeze the candies before topping to prevent melting.
  • Add a cherry or fill a dent in the cookie with jam before baking for a fruity twist.

This Shortbread Cookie recipe, with its adjustable sweetness and customizable flavors, is perfect for any occasion. Enjoy baking these delightful treats!