Christmas is almost here! If you’re searching for a last-minute cookie recipe, you’ve come to the right place. Classic melt in your mouth shortbread comes together quickly and is guaranteed to be a hit with Santa (or on the family baking tray). A quick dip in white chocolate and a special sprinkle mix take them to the next level.
Soft Shortbread Cookies for Christmas
I’ve tried a lot of shortbread recipes over the years, and this one is my favourite. Once you try a cornstarch-based recipe, you won’t go back. The cornstarch ones give a much smoother texture and the dough is easier to work with than the traditional recipes with white sugar, flour, and butter.
Word to the wise–do not substitute margarine for butter. The recipe will not work. Ask me how I know. . . .
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I wanted to share a funny story with you about these shortbread cookies. If you don’t like stories, just skip to the end of the post for the recipe. Here it goes:
One year my family spent Christmas in Jamaica meeting our new in-laws. It was a wonderful, relaxing vacation, but I was missing North American Christmas just a bit. So we decided that we would make our new Jamaican family some of our favourite Christmas baking.
I wanted to make these shortbread cookies because 1. everyone loves shortbread. 2. The ingredients are really easy to find.
What I didn’t know, is that Jamaican butter is vastly different than what we are used to in North America. The increased humidity and high temperatures aren’t in this recipe’s favour either.
Melt in Your Mouth Shortbread Cookies. . . not Melt in the Cookie Sheet
As you might have guessed, the recipe was a total flop. Instead of the beautiful shortbread cookies you see in these pictures, I ended up with some sort of runny, melty mess that was NOT suitable to give to my new relatives.
I was so sad, so I put them in a bowl-of-shame and forgot about them. I’d just eat them later myself if I was craving something sweet.
The next day when family came to visit, someone put them out on the table for everyone to eat. I was mortified!!
I shouldn’t have been, because our new family loved them and ate every last one. They had never tasted anything like it and thought it was really good.
So take heart. Even if you somehow totally mess up this recipe in another country, your guests will still like these cookies.
Pretty up Shortbread with White Chocolate & Snowflake Sprinkles
So what makes these shortbread cookies even better? A quick dip in white chocolate and snowflake sprinkles.
Don’t worry about buying one of those expensive containers of winter-themed sprinkles. Go to your nearest bulk store and purchase snowflake sprinkles, coarse sugar, and those little shiny silver balls. I’m sure they have a proper name, but I have no idea what it is.
To warm up the chocolate, microwave for 30 seconds at a time until the pieces are mostly melted. Stir vigorously to melt the remaining pieces.
Dip half the cookie in the melted chocolate, then immediately dip in the sprinkle mixture. Set on a piece of wax paper to dry, and you’ll have beautiful, drool-worthy shortbread cookies in minutes.
- 1 cup corn starch,
- 1 cup icing sugar,
- 2 cups flour,
- 1 1/2 cups butter, softened
- 3/4 cup chocolate chips or white chocolate chips
- Sprinkles of your choice. I've used a mix of coarse sugar, white sprinkles, snowflakes and silver balls in the picture, but I also like the looks of crushed candy canes.
- Mix all ingredients, roll dough into little balls, and place on a cookie sheet. You can chill the dough for 30 minutes before to make the dough easier to work with, but if you don't have the time it will still work without chilling.
- Bake at 300 degrees Fahrenheit for 15 to 20 minutes. Cookies should have the barest hint of light brown at the edges. Makes 48 small cookies, or 24 larger ones
- Set out two small bowls--one for sprinkles and another for melted chocolate.
- Once the cookies have cooled, melt 3/4 cup of chocolate in the microwave, for 30 seconds at a time until it's smooth. Depending on the strengh of your microwave, it will be done in either 60 or 90 seconds. Do not heat for the whole duration at once, or the chocolate will clump together and be ruined. Stir between each set of 30 seconds.
- Dip half the shortbread in chocolate and immediately dunk in a bowl of sprinkles.
- Set on a sheet of wax or parchment paper to dry.
Looking for more Christmas baking to round out your tray? Try these options!