How To Make Festive Holiday Shortbread Cookies

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These festive holiday shortbread cookes are amazing!

The holidays are that time of the year when we embrace spending time with family and enjoying many traditions. One of the holiday endeavors I embark on every year is baking cookies. I have to admit I’m not much of a baker. Somehow I find baking a bit too precise and if you mess up on just one ingredient the whole recipe can be ruined. I usually prefer recipes that don’t require baking such as my other favorite Faworki Polish dessert. Check out the recipe here. But when I do attempt to bake, I always look for super easy recipes that don’t have too many difficult steps or ingredients. This is why I love this recipe for festive holiday shortbread cookies. Not only they taste amazing but also they’re fairly easy to make. And on top of that they require just a few easy ingredients most of us already have in our pantry.

These festive holiday shortbread cookies are so gorgeous and yummy. Even though I usually advocate healthy eating I do believe in a little indulgence once in a while. And the holidays are the perfect occasion to treat yourself and not worry too much about the sugar or calories. After all we work hard all year long so why not reward ourselves at this festive time and treat our loved ones to some extra TLC. So here’s the recipe for you to try out and enjoy.

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How To Make Festive Holiday Shortbread Cookies

These festive holiday shortbread cookes are amazing!


2 cups (260 grams) all-purpose flour

1/4 teaspoon (2 grams) salt

1 cup (2 sticks – 226 grams) unsalted butter, room temperature

1/2 cup (60 grams) powdered (confectioners or icing) sugar

1 teaspoon (4 grams) pure vanilla extract

For Chocolate Dipped Shortbreads:

6 ounces (180 grams) semi sweet or bittersweet chocolate chips or finely chopped chocolate


Using an electric mixer or hand held mixer beat the butter until smooth and creamy (about 1 minute). Slowly add the sugar and beat until smooth (about 2 minutes). Then beat in the vanilla extract. Once incorporated gently stir in the flour until it’s well incorporated.

These festive holiday shortbread cookes are amazing!

How To Make Festive Holiday Shortbread Cookies

Gather up the dough and flatten it into a disk shape. Wrap it in a plastic wrap and chill for at least an hour or until it feels firm.

These festive holiday shortbread cookes are amazing!

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (177 degrees C) with the rack in the middle of the oven. Line one or two baking sheets with parchment paper. On a lightly floured surface roll out the dough into a 1/4 inch (.6 cm) thick circle. A word of warning the dough can be a bit temperamental and crumble easily. Don’t get discouraged by this. Just keep kneading the dough in your hands until it becomes a soft ball. Then sprinkle some flour on it periodically as well as on the rolling pin. This ensures that the dough doesn’t stick to the rolling pin or the surface. Cut the pieces out using a lightly floured cookie cutter into any desired shapes.

These festive holiday shortbread cookes are amazing!

These festive holiday shortbread cookes are amazing!

Place the cookies on the prepared baking sheets and refrigerate for at least 15 minutes. This will firm up the dough so the cookies will keep their shape when baking. Bake for 8 – 15 minutes or until cookies are very lightly browned. If unsure of the doneness of the cookies insert a stick to see if it comes out clean. Cool the cookies on a wire rack.

These festive holiday shortbread cookes are amazing!

These festive shortbread cookies with keep in an airtight container for about a week or so or they can be frozen. This recipe makes about 20 festive holiday shortbread cookies.

These festive holiday shortbread cookes are amazing!

If Using Chocolate Dipping

Melt about 90 grams (3 oz.) of the chocolate chips or finely chopped chocolate in a heatproof bowl placed over a saucepan of simmering water. Keep adding more chocolate and stir until it all melts.

These festive holiday shortbread cookes are amazing!

Once all the chocolate has melted and looks nice, smooth and glossy remove it from the heat. Take one cookie at a time and dip in the melted chocolate. Place the chocolate covered cookies on a parchment lined baking sheet. Refrigerate until the chocolate has hardened.

These festive holiday shortbread cookes are amazing!

These festive holiday shortbread cookes are amazing!

These festive holiday shortbread cookes are amazing!

Chocolate Bark

Usually when I make these chocolate dipped cookies I end up with some left over melted chocolate. So instead of getting rid of it or eating it all I came up with a great use for it. What you can make with the left over chocolate is a tasty chocolate bark. Simply spread the melted chocolate on a parchment paper and sprinkle with any ingredients you might like. I typically use slivered almonds, walnuts or pistachio nuts. Then I sprinkle the bark with my favorite spices; paprika for that extra spice, cinnamon and cardamon for that unique flavor. But you can use a variety of other ingredients such as other nuts and your go-to spices. Go ahead and have fun with it.

Then place the bark on a baking sheet and refrigerate until hardened. Afterwards break it up into pieces and store in an airtight container in the fridge.

Festive holiday chocolate bark

Festive holiday chocolate bark

Festive holiday chocolate bark

Festive holiday chocolate bark

Things You Will Need

Electric or Hand Mixer

Holiday Cookie Cutters

Rolling Pin

Parchment Paper

Baking Sheet

I hope you enjoy these festive holiday shortbread cookies and chocolate bark recipes. Do you like baking? What is your favorite dessert to make for the holidays? Share with me in the comments below. I’d love to know more about your holiday traditions.

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  1. Katchutravels (@Katchutravels) says:

    Hey Kasia. The cookies are looking so nice! I have never tried doing these at home, but it looks worth attempting. Your blog made me very comfortable to digest this and feel that this is something I should attempt for my son to make cookies like this.

    The chocolate bark pieces look like a work of art!

    1. thesavvydreamer says:

      Oh that is so sweet of you to say. That really makes me happy to hear that because of my recipe you might attempt to make these. I hope you do. Your son would love them. And the chocolate bark is even easier to make and it will be gone in a flash 🙂

  2. Brooke says:

    Ummm… YUM!

    I love chocolate bark. But these short bread cookies seem really simple and easy to do for a holiday party or gift basket!

    1. thesavvydreamer says:

      The chocolate bark just melts in your mouth. It’s sooo good. And these cookies are always a hit. You should definitely make them to give away. I’ve given them away as well.

  3. Lisa says:

    Your cookies are very photogenic! I always enjoy a good shortbread at Christmas time. I’ve never thought of what to do with the extra chocolate and the bark looks like a great idea to eat the chocolate later and feel less guilty, lol. No really, it looks very yummy;). Happy Holidays to you Kasia!!!

    1. thesavvydreamer says:

      Thanks so much Lisa. Shortbread cookies are always my favorites besides gingerbread cookies. If I didn’t dip them in chocolate I would have never gotten the idea to make the chocolate bark. I was looking for something to do with the left over chocolate and voila a perfect solution. And a tasty one. Happy Holidays Lisa ?

  4. joniamac says:

    Yum! The chocolate bark looks good. When are you sending me some? lol

    1. thesavvydreamer says:

      Ha ha ha Jonia, thanks. I wish I could send you some. It would melt on the way!!! Maybe when you come visit Toronto I’ll make you some 😉

  5. Niki says:

    Are those what americans call “sugar cookies”? I made a similar recipe last year and i loved it!! I will try yours this year and let you know!!

    1. thesavvydreamer says:

      Yes Niki, exactly these are sugar cookies. They’re not exactly healthy as all they consist of is butter, sugar and flour lol but who cares at this time of the year. I say bring them on. Hope you like this recipe.

  6. hertraveltherapy says:

    These look really delicious! I haven’t baked in sooo long, or even cooked properly really, and it makes me want to get back into the kitchen and create something. I hope that these biscuits can be enjoyed by all the people in your household and the loved ones in your life.

    1. thesavvydreamer says:

      Oh I hope you do get back into the kitchen and make something fabulous. I want to wish you and your family a very happy holidays ?!

  7. Tahnee says:

    I am 100% making some Christmas bark!! Thanks for the great ideas and have a very Merry Christmas xx

    1. thesavvydreamer says:

      Oh I’m not surprised. You’re so crafty Tahnee. Merry Christmas to you and your family 🙂

  8. Matt says:

    Mmmm, since I’ve moved to Spain it’s harder to fins shortbread, maybe I have to give it a go myself. Good tip about putting the cookie dough in the fridge before baking, many people skip this step, but essential for shaping! Also love the chocolate bark idea, it should be illegal to waste chocolate!

    1. thesavvydreamer says:

      Oh really Matt? I didn’t know that about Spain. Well, in that case it’s time for you to make some. I hope they turn out amazing. And I totally agree with you – chocolate should never be wasted lol!!!

  9. echoesofhervoice says:

    These look amazing! Thank you for sharing!

    1. thesavvydreamer says:

      You’re welcome and thank you.

  10. Cristine says:

    I love shortbread. It’s perfect as a sweet treat after a meal or just as a snack with coffee. Add a little jam with the chocolate for a decadent treat

    1. thesavvydreamer says:

      Oh yes, that sounds wonderful. I love it as a treat with coffee or tea too.

  11. megan beaver says:

    I love shortbread its the best. Great post!

    1. thesavvydreamer says:

      I do too. It’s so good. Thanks for checking out the recipe.

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