Recipe: Spiced Up Shortbread

Shortbread is my favourite cookie. Citrus-scented, chocolate-dipped or plain, I love every rendition I’ve ever had. These are slightly spiced up with cinnamon, but perfect to decorate with sprinkles and share with a 3 ½ year old boy.


  • 1 ½ cups all-purpose flour
  • ½ cup cornstarch
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/8 teaspoon freshly ground nutmeg
  • ¼ teaspoon salt1 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
  • ½ cup icing (powdered) sugar
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract



1. In a bowl whisk the flour, cornstarch, salt, cinnamon and nutmeg.

2. In the bowl of an electric mixer (or with a hand mixer), cream the butter until smooth. Add the sugar and beat until smooth (about 2 minutes). Add the vanilla extract and beat to incorporate.

3. Gently stir in the dry ingredients until just incorporated. Flatten dough into a disk shape, wrap in plastic wrap, and chill the for about an hour.

4. Preheat oven to 350 F with the rack in the middle of the oven. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper.

5. On a lightly floured surface roll out the dough to about ¼-inch thickness. Cut into shapes using lightly floured cookie cutter. Carefully place the cookies on the prepared baking sheets and place in the refrigerator for about 15 minutes (firms the dough so they will keep their shape when baked).

6. Bake for about 6 minutes, then remove tray from oven and replace with uncooked cookies. Sprinkle cookies with decorations as you like. After another 6 minutes, repeat with 2nd tray, baking 1st tray for an additional 4 – 6 minutes, or until cookies are lightly brown. Cool on rack.

Makes about 20 shortbread cookies. Just enough for a herd of brachiosauruses trampling in for tea.