There are some recipes that are just timeless classics and to me, none are more timeless than (gluten free) shortbread cookies, especially at Christmas time. Prior to finding out I was gluten intolerant, it was always tradition to buy a box of Walkers Shortbread, well OK, there may have been more than one box! But once I went gluten free I thought, well easy! I can just make them myself again just with different flour. But oh how wrong I was! It took a lot of trial and error, but I am finally happy to report I have nailed the melt-in-your-mouth gluten free shortbread cookies!
Every year I have tried to perfect the classic gluten free shortbread and every year I have failed. Well, until now that is.
In the 5+ years of being gluten free I have never found a shortbread cookie that worked perfectly. I’m serious! Sure they might taste OK, but my cute cookie cutters never held their shape once cooked and no matter what I tried they wouldn’t not spread. Not to mention it was so hard to find an easy recipe that actually melted in your mouth. If you’re an avid baker like me, then you’ll know exactly what I’m talking about.
It’s been a lot of trial and error I can tell you. But finally I found a fairly simple recipe that works beautifully and all you need is this flour blend to pull it off. I’ll be honest, I don’t always like making up my own gluten free flour blends as it can be an awful lot of work. But for this, it’s totally worth it. The other key here, and this makes the most difference in almost any cookie you convert to gluten free, is to chill it. Yup, that’s right. If you haven’t chilled your cookie dough’s before, you’ll definitely start now. It can be a little time invasive but again, completely worth it when you pull perfect gluten free shortbread from the oven!
To chill your dough thoroughly all you need to do is roll it out to approx 1/2cm thick on a piece of baking paper and pop it into the fridge for 1 hour. After it’s set hard, remove from the fridge and start cutting out your shapes. Transfer them to a prepared baking tray and pop them straight back into the fridge for another 1 hour. To bake, simply preheat your oven and once hot transfer your trays of cold cookies to the oven. Wollah. Perfect gluten free shortbread cookies that keep their shape!
Stamp It. Stamp It Good!
My absolute favourite part about baking Christmas shortbread is getting to pull out my The Cookie Stamp Co stamp. If you haven’t seen these bad boys before, head over now and order one for Christmas! They have the most gorgeous collection of cookie stamps that can be personalized for you and they work like a charm. Not to mention their new range of Christmas stamps have just been released. I want one in every design…. but let’s just not tell my husband about that huh!
These gorgeous stamps totally elevate my shortbread! And they make the best presents for pretty much everybody. All I do is mix up a batch of my stamped gluten free shortbread, gluten free gingerbread and mum’s rum balls and pop them in some pretty boxes and bags. Christmas shopping done! How easy is that.
So whether you’re a true cookie connoisseur or just someone that really loves shortbread, you need to try this recipe today. Trust me, the extra chilling of the dough is completely worth it when you’re enjoying that perfect melt-in-your-mouth moment.
Only one question remains….
will you baking my Gluten Free Shortbread for a gift or keeping it all for yourself?!
Melt-In-Your-Mouth Gluten Free Shortbread
- 200 grams Salted Butter room temperature
- 1/2 cup Icing Sugar
- 1 3/4 cups All Purpose Gluten Free Flour *see notes below for recipe*
- 1/4 cup White Rice Flour
- In a large bowl pop your room temperature butter (that has been roughly cubed) followed by the icing sugar. Using an electric hand beater, cream until all the sugar has been dissolved and it has turned a beautiful light colour.
- Add in the 1/4 cup of rice flour and 1/2 a cup of the All Purpose Gluten free flour at a time and mix thoroughly to combine.
- It may become a little bit harder to work with so feel free to get in there with your hands! Now add the remainder of the flour 1/4 cup at a time, ensuring each addition is mixed in well.
- Once your dough comes together to form a ball, transfer it to a large piece of grease proof paper. Sprinkle a tiny bit of flour over the top and roll out to approximately 5mm thick, turning it over gently as you go. Slide the whole lot onto a baking tray and pop straight into the fridge for 1 hour to chill.
- Once cold and firm remove the tray from the fridge. Dust your stamp or cookie cutter thoroughly with flour and tap to remove any excess before stamping across your entire sheet of dough. You may find it quite hard to start with, so press firmly but evenly.
- Cut out the entire sheet of dough, transferring the cookies to another prepared baking tray gently as you go. Re-roll your cookie dough (which will be softer now) and roll out and continue cutting out your cookies until no dough remains. The shortbread won't spread in the oven so you can place them quite closely together.
- Now pop them, tray and all, back into the fridge for another hour. This is key with shortbread and gingerbread alike, especially if you like detailed cookie patterns, as it will chill the butter and help your cookies set.
- When you're ready to bake heat your oven to 180º Celsius and transfer the cookie trays straight from the fridge to the oven and bake for 10 minutes or until the edge of your shortbread very lightly starts to turn brown.
- Remove from the oven and allow to cool for 5 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool fully.
- Enjoy as they are or add an extra dash of Christmas cheer and decorate with coloured royal icing, or for an even more decadent biscuit, dip half in melted dark chocolate!!