Whipped Shortbread Cookies are so easy to make with just 5 ingredients and taste amazing! Light and tender cookies that melt in your mouth and can be easily decorated for Christmas. A great recipe to double or triple for the holidays and definitely one of our favorite Christmas cookies!
This post is sponsored by Challenge Dairy.
These Whipped ShortbreadCookies are so easy to make and are an absolute must make for the holidays although they are so good, we make them all year round. This easy Whipped Shortbread cookie recipe produces perfectly tender, bite sized cookies that melt in your mouth. Decorating them with colorful sprinkles make these cookies so festive and fun!
We often double or triple the recipe (see the recipe card below) when we’re making them for Christmas. These cookies are always a favorite and go fast!
What are Whipped Shortbread Cookies?
Whipped Shortbread Cookies are similar to shortbread cookies in texture except they are even lighter and less dense thanks to the extensive whipping of the butter, which, is of course, where these cookies get their name. These cookies are on the small side and are super soft and delicate. So delicate in fact that they just melt in your mouth!
Whipped Shortbread has a couple surprise ingredients: powdered sugar and corn starch. These ingredients play a vital role in the texture and tenderness of these cookies and should not be substituted.
Why I Love These Cookies
I tend to gravitate more towards the ooey, gooey, soft and chewy cookies for the most part but these Whipped Shortbread Cookies are the exact opposite of that and manage to make it onto my Christmas baking list every year. They are in a word, sensational.
- Lightly sweetened, so tender and light, with just the right amount of almond (or vanilla) flavoring to keep it interesting.
- They are incredibly simple to make with just five basic ingredients.
- This recipe can easily be doubled or tripled. I rarely make just one batch of these cookies so we almost always double the recipe – especially for the holidays.
- Melt in your mouth good. So light and crumbly, these cookies just melt in your mouth.
- Quick and easily customizable. Check out my variations to try below for ideas beyond sprinkles.
- Provide decorating opportunities for little ones. These cookies are so simple to make and even more fun to decorate with the kiddos.
More Christmas Cookies To Try
- Cookie Empanadas
- Reindeer Cookie Bars
- Almond Joy Cookies
- Mint Chocolate Chip Snowball Cookies
- Holiday Dipped Peppermint Oreos
- Peppermint Shortbread Cookies
What You’ll Need
This recipe comes together very quickly and easily however make sure you consider that the dough needs to chill for 2 hours when planning. As always, you can find the full printable recipe in the recipe card at the end of this post. Let’s take a quick look at what you’ll need for this recipe:
- salted butter – I used salted butter for this recipe to keep things simple. If you have unsalted butter on hand, use that plus a quarter teaspoon of salt in the recipe.
- powdered sugar – make sure to measure correctly. The powdered sugar should be spooned and leveled.
- almond extract – vanilla extract can be used as well. I like the almond flavor plus it keeps these cookies almost pure white.
- all purpose flour – again, make sure the flour is spooned and leveled for correct measurement.
- corn starch – this is what gives the cookies their crumbly, tenderness. Make sure the corn starch is spooned and leveled.
I used Challenge Butter in this recipe. I’ve been using Challenge Butter my whole life and trust their products. I know the quality is outstanding and use it for all my recipes. Made with 100% real cream, it’s my butter of choice!
How To Make Whipped Shortbread Cookies
Thees cookies come together in three simple steps, let’s take a look:
Making The Cookie Dough
- Whip the butter and sugar together until light and fluffy. This is where the “whipped” comes from in the name.
- Add in the almond extract and then the flour and corn starch.
- Cover and chill for 2 hours to allow the flavors to meld and the butter to harden so the cookies bake up perfectly tall and fluffy and don’t flatten out while baking.
- Scoop out cookie dough and roll into one inch balls.
Flatten with the tines of a fork and add sprinkles.
- Bake and then let cool before storing.
- Cookies are very fragile when warm so be careful when moving.
Cooled cookies can be store at room temperature in an airtight container for up to 1 week.
To Freeze Baked Cookies: Let cookies cool completely then transfer to an airtight, freezer safe container, with parchment paper between layers. Cookies can be frozen for up to 2 months.
To Freeze Cookie Dough: Form dough balls and then flash freeze on a parchment lined baking sheet for 30 minutes. Transfer balls to a freezer safe ziploc bag. Bake cookies frozen by adding 2 minutes to the bake time OR let thaw overnight in the fridge and then press with a fork and add sprinkles. Cookie dough can be frozen for up to 3 months.
Absolutely or the cookies will spread. Chilling the dough also allows the flavors to meld and the butter to firm up again. It’s an inconvenient but important step.
Yes! I’ve used orange and lemon as well as vanilla extract in this recipe, all with great results. I’ve been wanting to try peppermint and mint as well – I think that would be delicious for Christmas!
Traditionally, whipped shortbread cookies are decorate with nonpareils but I love to use all sorts of sprinkles for these cookies. To make things simple and festive, grab a sprinkle variety pack like this one and decorate away!
Absolutely not! We make these all year round and they are especially amazing on Valentine’s Day. Dip in dark chocolate and decorate with red sanding sugar or sprinkles. These cookies are so easy and delicious you’ll be making them all the time.
Either the dough wasn’t chilled long enough or there isn’t enough dry ingredients. To salvage the dough, let the dough soften and then try to work in a tablespoon or two of flour. You can also scoop the dough and roll it in a bit of flour before forming into a ball. Basically anyway that you can get a little more flour into the dough will help.
Variations To Try
These cookies are delicious on their own but wow are they easy to jazz up! Here are some yummy ideas:
- Thumbprint Cookies. Instead of pressing a fork onto the top of the cookies, make a small indentation and fill with your favorite jam flavor. We love apricot or raspberry preserves with these cookies!
- Dip In Chocolate. Cooled cookies can be dipped in white or dark chocolate for a more sophisticated and sweet version. Add some sprinkles to the chocolate after dipping for even more fun.
- Keep It Simple. Short on time? After rolling the dough into balls, just place on the cookie sheet and slightly flatten with your hand or the bottom of a glass. The cookies are simple and delicious!
More Cookie Recipes We Love
- Grinch Cookies
- Chocolate Crinkle Cookies
- Kolaczki (Polish Cookies)
- Peppermint Snowball Cookies
- Coconut Macaroons
- Ginger Molasses Cookies
- Peanut Butter Blossoms
- Almond Joy Cookies – Just 4 Ingredients!
- Cranberry Orange Shortbread Cookies
- Coconut Macaroon Blossoms
How To Make Whipped Shortbread Cookies
Whipped Shortbread Cookies
- ¾ cup butter softened, 12 tablespoons or 1 ½ sticks
- 6 tablespoons powdered sugar spooned and leveled (¼ cup PLUS 2 tablespoons)
- 1 teaspoon almond extract or vanilla extract
- 1 ⅓ cup all purpose flour spooned and leveled
- 6 tablespoons corn starch spooned and leveled, ¼ cup PLUS 2 tablespoons
- ¼ cups Christmas sprinkles nonpareils, Jimmies, etc.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer or a mixing bowl, beat the butter and powdered sugar together until light and fluffy, about 5 minutes for a stand mixer, 7 minutes for a hand mixer. You will notice the mixture getting very light in color.¾ cup butter, 6 tablespoons powdered sugar
- Beat in the almond extract until completely combined.1 teaspoon almond extract
- In a small bowl, whisk together the all purpose flour and corn starch. Mix into butter mixture in three separate additions, mixing just until combined each time.1 ⅓ cup all purpose flour, 6 tablespoons corn starch
- Transfer dough to an airtight container or bowl covered with plastic wrap and chill 2 hours.
- Preheat oven to 300°F. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone baking mat and set aside.
- Scoop chilled cookie dough and roll into 1 inch balls. Place on prepared baking sheet about 1 to 2 inches apart.
- Dip a fork into powdered sugar, corn starch or flour and gently press the tines of the fork onto the top of each cookie dough ball.
- Top each cookie with desired sprinkles or leave plain.
- Bake for 10 to 12 minutes. Bottoms of cookies should be very lightly golden brown. Let cookies rest on baking sheet before transferring to a cooling rack to cool completely. Cookies are very fragile when warm so be careful when moving.
- Store cookies in an airtight container at room temperature for up 1 week.