Lemon Shortbread Cookies – Dessert for Two

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As if something reduce right into a coronary heart form might get any cuter, I embellish these Lemon Shortbread Cookies with a drizzle of tangy lemon icing and contemporary lemon zest. These are so cute for Valentine’s Day, Mom’s Day, or any time you want a springtime deal with!

Heart lemon shortbread cookies with lemon zest and a blue towel.

I have to confess I’ve spent most of my life skipping over shortbread. My Woman Scout cookies order by no means accommodates them. I’ll take a gooey pumpkin white chocolate chip cookies with crisp edges and melty chocolate any day over a boring shortbread cookie.

However then, I made my honey shortbread and have become speechless. I didn’t know of the magic that occurs within the oven to such easy elements like butter, sugar and flour. The caramelization of the sugar, and the comfortable, crumbly buttery texture is to not be missed. Sure, I lastly agree that shortbread cookies are their very own factor, and so they deserve their very own love. Do not miss my chocolate shortbread, whereas we’re right here.

My love of lemon has me including a lemon icing with contemporary lemon juice and further lemon zest to those lemon shortbread cookies earlier than serving. They’re a lemon lovers dream, and the cookie form might be something you want. I nearly at all times select hearts, as a result of my youngsters affiliate them with love, even when Valentine’s Day will not be close to.

Neatly arranged heart cookies with lemon zest and glaze.

How you can Make Lemon Shortbread Cookies

That is the perfect recipe for lemon shortbread cookies, as a result of I’m a real lemon lover, and so is my recipe tester! The icing and further lemon zest on prime is non-obligatory, but it surely actually brightens up the lemon taste.

Sure, this recipe actually solely has 5 elements, together with salt! Shortbread is supposed to be easy. It is vital to make use of the very best high quality butter right here, as a result of the flavour actually shines. I like that this recipe is totally egg-free, too! Listed below are all of my eggless recipes.

This lemon shortbread cookie dough doesn’t should be refrigerated in any respect to ensure that the dough to carry its form throughout baking. I additionally actually, actually advocate baking this recipe by weight, as a result of it is simple so as to add an excessive amount of flour with a cup measure. Nevertheless, in case your dough is overly dry, simply add just a few drops of lemon juice and beat till it comes collectively.

The Elements

Overhead image of flour, cut lemon, butter, and salt.
  • Butter. One cup (two sticks or 8 ounces) of high-quality unsalted butter. I like to make use of a European-style butter right here that may be very wealthy and flavorful. Nevertheless, common grocery retailer butter works simply as nicely on this recipe. When a recipe accommodates such few elements, the standard of every one actually shines. The butter must be left on the counter for about 2 hours to return to room temperature, but it surely must be overly comfortable. In the event you press it, a finger will create an indentation, but it surely won’t simply slide all over. It must be roughly 65-75 levels Fahrenheit (or, room temperature).
  • Powdered Sugar. One of many causes these lemon shortbread cookies are so comfortable and tender is the usage of powdered sugar as a substitute of granulated sugar. We are going to use powdered sugar (additionally generally known as confectioners’ sugar) within the dough and once more for the non-obligatory glaze.
  • Lemon. We want two complete lemons for this recipe, as a result of we’re utilizing a full tablespoon of lemon zest for the dough. We are going to use the additional lemon juice for the icing. I prefer to sprinkle on additional lemon zest for adorning the cookies.
  • Flour. All-purpose flour that has been measured by weight is my first selection for this recipe. In the event you do not want to bake with a scale, the easiest way to measure flour is to whisk it or fluff it, scoop it gently (by no means pack it into the cup), after which use a knife to degree it off.
  • Salt. If you wish to use salted butter, you’ll be able to omit the salt. In any other case, please don’t skip including salt to your lemon shortbread cookies. It balances the sweetness and tang of the lemon. All desserts want a small quantity of salt for taste stability.

The Directions

First, preheat the oven to 325-degrees Fahrenheit, and line two baking sheets with parchment paper (if the sheets aren’t non-stick). In a big bowl, slice the softened butter and add the powdered sugar.

Use an electrical mixer to beat the butter and sugar collectively till fluffy and lighter in colour, about 2 minutes. Then, add the one tablespoon of lemon zest and beat once more, simply to mix.

Sprinkle the flour and salt on prime of the dough within the bowl, and beat simply till you’ll be able to’t see the flour anymore. It may appear overly dry, however for those who squeeze a handful in your heat hand, it should clump collectively properly. If it appears manner too dry, add a ½ teaspoon of lemon juice and beat once more.

Collect half of the dough right into a ball, and place it on a floor that has been sprinkled with the additional powdered sugar. Use a rolling pin to roll it out to rather less than ½-inch thickness. Lemon shortbread cookies must be considerably thick. Use your favourite cookie cutter to make your shapes, collect the scraps, re-roll and repeat. Do the identical with the remaining half of the dough.

Place all your lemon shortbread cookies on a baking sheet. The cookies will not unfold a lot, so you’ll be able to match 18 cookies on every pan (relying on the form). Bake for 9 minutes, and take away from the oven when the perimeters of the cookies begin to flip a pale golden brown.

Whereas the cookies cool on the baking sheet utterly, whisk collectively the powdered sugar and contemporary lemon juice from the lemons you used for zest.

Whisk the lemon icing till clean with a whisk. Ensure no lumps of powdered sugar stay within the glaze.

Use a spoon to drizzle a small quantity of the lemon glaze over every cookie, and garnish with extra lemon zest, for those who like.


  • Coronary heart Cookie Cutter – I like this set of cookie cutters as a result of it accommodates 3 totally different sizes of hearts. I exploit the smallest coronary heart, by the way in which.
  • Hand-Mixer – I like this hand mixer.
  • Non-Stick Baking Sheets – I’ve lately began utilizing these cookie sheets which have traces or ridges on them that assist stop sticking. This cuts down on my use of parchment paper and silicone mats. If you do not have a nonstick cookie sheet, use a chunk of parchment paper. I additionally wish to point out that gentle coloured metallic cookie sheets are higher than darkish metallic. The darkish metallic bakes the cookies too shortly within the oven, and you’ll find yourself with burnt edges.
Stack of heart shaped treats with glaze and zest.

Suggestions for Lemon Shortbread Cookies:

Can shortbread cookies be frozen?

There are solely two instances these cookies might be frozen: as soon as the dough has been rolled out and reduce out into their last shapes. And two, after they’ve been baked. I completely don’t advise chilling or freezing shortbread dough earlier than it has been rolled out and reduce into shapes. Shortbread dough can turn out to be dry and crumbly when the butter turns into too chilly.

How lengthy do shortbread cookies keep contemporary?

After baking, I preserve these in an air-tight container for as much as 4 days at room temperature. You may retailer already baked cookies within the fridge for as much as 1 week. Past that, it is best to freeze already baked cookies in two layers of plastic wrap and a freezer storage bag. They may preserve within the freezer for as much as 3 months; defrost at room temperature.

Can shortbread cookie dough be refrigerated?

There are all types of recipe variations for shortbread, and a few really name for a chill time within the fridge to assist the dough adhere collectively. In my expertise, shortbread doughs which have been chilled turn out to be overly dry and crumbly. They’re an enormous ache to roll out as a result of they are going to crack across the edges. I like to recommend beginning this recipe with softened butter and making it all over to completion. You may refrigerate the cookies earlier than baking if they’ve already been rolled out and reduce out into shapes. Or, you’ll be able to refrigerate them after baking. However I don’t advocate making the dough and tossing within the fridge to roll out later. You may have a tough, dry dough that can require moisture or warmth to turn out to be roll-able once more. Do I sound like somebody who has been flustered with unhealthy shortbread recipes in my day or what?

Yield: 36

Lemon Shortbread Cookies

Heart lemon shortbread cookies with lemon zest and a blue towel.

Finest lemon shortbread cookies with no chill time!

Prep Time

Prepare dinner Time
9 minutes

Complete Time
39 minutes


  • 1 cup (8 ounces) unsalted butter, softened
  • ½ cup (50 grams) powdered sugar, plus additional for rolling
  • 1 tablespoon contemporary lemon zest (from 2 lemons)
  • 2 cups (240 grams) all-purpose flour, plus additional for pan
  • ½ teaspoon salt

Lemon Glaze

  • 2 tablespoons contemporary lemon juice (juice from 1 lemon)
  • 1 cup (100 grams) powdered sugar


  1. Preheat oven to 325-degrees F. Have prepared 2 baking sheets lined with parchment paper (or use non-stick ridged sheets).
  2. In a big bowl, add the butter and powdered sugar. Beat with an electrical mixer on medium-high velocity till fluffy, not less than 2 minutes.
  3. Add the lemon zest and beat once more.
  4. Sprinkle the flour and salt on prime of the butter combination, and beat simply till mixed.
  5. If the dough appears overly crumbly and dry, squeeze in just a few drops of lemon juice at a time till it comes collectively. In the event you make this recipe by weight, it must be high quality, however for those who scoop-and-level to measure, you would possibly by accident add an excessive amount of flour and the dough can be dry.
  6. Calmly mud a floor with the additional powdered sugar. Collect half of the dough right into a disk, and utilizing a rolling pin dusted with powdered sugar, roll out the dough to barely lower than ½-inch thickness. These cookies are considerably thick for the perfect texture.
  7. Use any cookie cutters you want to chop out shapes. Use a small spatula to maneuver the cookies to the sheet pan. Repeat with remaining half of dough till all the dough is used to make cookies. You’re going to get about 36 cookies, relying on the dimensions of your cookie cutter.
  8. Bake for 9 minutes, till the perimeters of the cookies simply begin to flip a really gentle golden brown. Control the cookie sheet on the underside rack, and in case your oven does not bake evenly, it’s possible you’ll must rotate the pans half-way via the baking time.
  9. Let the cookies cool utterly on the cookie sheets.
  10. Earlier than serving, whisk collectively the lemon juice and powdered sugar collectively till simply pour-able. Drizzle the lemon glaze over the cookies and serve.


Make-Forward: I don’t advocate making the dough forward of time and refrigerating, as a result of it turns into too dry and crumbly once you attempt to roll it out. You may refrigerate cookies which have already been rolled out and reduce out, although.

Storage: I preserve these in an air-tight container for as much as 4 days at room temperature. You may retailer already baked cookies within the fridge for as much as 1 week. Past that, it is best to freeze already baked cookies in two layers of plastic wrap and a freezer storage bag. They may preserve within the freezer for as much as 3 months; defrost at room temperature.

Vitamin Info:



Serving Dimension:


Quantity Per Serving:

Energy: 81Complete Fats: 1gSaturated Fats: 0gTrans Fats: 0gUnsaturated Fats: 0gLdl cholesterol: 2mgSodium: 64mgCarbohydrates: 17gFiber: 0gSugar: 6gProtein: 1g

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