The Famous 3 Ingredient Shortbread Recipe

The famous 3 ingredient shortbread recipe is the easiest shortbread you’ll ever make… all you need is butter, plain flour and icing sugar!

Christmas shortbread made from 3 ingredients.

What do you think is better… a delicious Christmas recipe or a super simple 3 ingredient recipe?? Well there’s no need to choose, because our famous shortbread recipe is perfect for Christmas AND you only need 3 ingredients!!!

A stack of star shaped Christmas shortbread cookies.

The Famous 3 Ingredient Shortbread Recipe

If you’re after the easiest and most basic shortbread recipe ever (that still melts in your mouth and tastes AMAZING)… this is the recipe for you! All you need is:

  • butter
  • plain flour
  • icing sugar

….. 1,2,3…. so easy!

*please scroll to the full recipe card at the bottom for ingredient quantities and the method

The ingredients for 3 ingredient shortbread - plain flour, icing sugar and butter.

How To Make Shortbread With 3 Ingredients

  • Start off by beating the butter until it’s pale and creamy.

Hand-held electric beaters mixing butter.

Creamed butter in a mixing bowl.

  • Slowly add in the sifted icing sugar and beat through. Add the sifted plain flour and mix with the beaters on low.

Shortbread made from 3 ingredients in a mixing bowl.

Creamed shortbread mixture in a mixing bowl.

  • Gently knead and roll the mixture on a floured board or bench and then cut into shapes using cookie cutters. Bake until ever so slightly golden.

Shortbread cookies sprinkled with icing sugar.

Tips For Making Shortbread:

  • sift the icing sugar and plain flour
  • don’t overwork the dough
  • chill the dough before cooking
  • don’t overcook the shortbread – it should only just have a light tinge of colour once cooked

A shortbread star on a black and gold plate sprinkled with icing sugar.

How To Store Shortbread

Once cooled, shortbread cookies can be stored at room temperature for up to 1 week. Alternatively, the uncooked dough can be rolled into a ball, wrapped in plastic wrap and frozen for up to 1 month. 

 

More Homemade Christmas Gift Recipes

Our 3 ingredient shortbread makes the perfect Christmas gift! But if you’re after even more homemade Christmas recipe inspiration, click here to check out these delicious Christmas food gifts…

A collage of Christmas homemade food gifts.

FAQ

Can you make shortbread without rice flour?

Absolutely! Our 3 ingredient shortbread recipe is made from plain flour, icing sugar and butter.. that’s it!

Can I make this shortbread recipe in my Thermomix?

Of course! All of our recipes can be made either conventionally or in a Thermomix. 

Can this recipe be used to cut shapes out of the dough?

Yes! This shortbread recipe is perfect for cutting out Christmas shapes!

Can the 3 ingredient shortbread be given as a gift?

This recipe makes the perfect Christmas gift! Simply pop it into a glass jar or cellophane bag, seal it up and give it to a friend, neighbour or work colleague. 

 

VIDEO: HOW TO MAKE THE FAMOUS 3 INGREDIENT SHORTBREAD RECIPE

 

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Our 3 ingredient shortbread recipe is the easiest shortbread you'll ever make... all you need is butter, plain flour and icing sugar!

3 Ingredient Shortbread Recipe

Our 3 ingredient shortbread recipe is the easiest shortbread you'll ever make... all you need is butter, plain flour and icing sugar!
3.75 from 4 votes
Print Pin Rate
Course: sweets
Cuisine: Biscuits/Cookies, Christmas
Keyword: 3 ingredient shortbread
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Chilling time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 55 minutes
Servings: 35 cookies
Calories: 123kcal

Ingredients

  • 340 g (3 sticks) butter
  • 130 g (1 cup) icing sugar
  • 375 g (3 cups) plain flour

Instructions

Conventional Method

  • Preheat oven to 160 degrees celsius (fan-forced). Line two large flat baking trays with baking paper and set aside. 
  • Beat the butter in a large bowl using an electric mixer on medium until smooth (approximately 30 seconds). 
  • Slowly add the icing sugar and continue mixing until well combined. Scrape down the sides of the bowl. 
  • Add the flour and mix on low speed until combined (please note that the mixture will be crumbly at this stage). 
  • Gently knead the dough into a ball (but don't overwork it) and place into the fridge for 30 minutes to chill. Roll out to 1/2-1 cm thick. Use cookie cutters to cut the dough shapes out. 
  • Place the shapes onto the prepared trays and bake for 12-15 minutes or until only just very lightly golden (do not overcook). 
  • Allow to cool on the trays for 10 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely. 

Thermomix Method

  • Preheat oven to 160 degrees celsius (fan-forced). Line two large flat baking trays with baking paper and set aside. 
  • Place the icing sugar into the Thermomix bowl and mix on Speed 8, 10 seconds. Scrape down the sides of the bowl and add the butter and plain flour. Mix on Speed 6, 10-15 seconds and then on Interval/Knead function for 1 minute.
  • Gently knead the dough into a ball (but don't overwork it) and place into the fridge for 30 minutes to chill. Roll out to 1/2-1 cm thick. Use cookie cutters to cut the dough shapes out.
  • Use cookie cutters to cut the dough shapes out. 
  • Place the shapes onto the prepared trays and bake for 12-15 minutes or until only just very lightly golden (do not overcook). 
  • Allow to cool on the trays for 10 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely. 

Notes

RECIPE NOTES
Equipment - you can either use hand-held beaters, a stand mixer or a Thermomix for this recipe. 
Sifting - sift the icing sugar and plain flour to remove any lumps.
Mixing -  don’t overwork the dough, instead it should be gently folded together. 
Chilling - chill the dough before cooking to avoid spreading when baked. 
Testing the cookies - don’t overcook the shortbread cookies – they should only just have a light tinge of colour once cooked.
Storage - Once cooled, shortbread cookies can be stored at room temperature for up to 1 week. Alternatively, the uncooked dough can be rolled into a ball, wrapped in plastic wrap and frozen for up to 1 month. 

Nutrition

Calories: 123kcal | Carbohydrates: 12g | Protein: 1g | Fat: 8g | Saturated Fat: 5g | Cholesterol: 21mg | Sodium: 70mg | Potassium: 14mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 4g | Vitamin A: 245IU | Calcium: 4mg | Iron: 0.5mg
Did you try this recipe?Mention @BakePlaySmileBlog or tag #BakePlaySmile!

 

 

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