White Shortbread Cookies with Just 5 Ingredients (Eggless)
Soft, crisp cookies that melt in the mouth is what these white shortbread cookies are all about. So delicious that making extras is highly recommended. They are simple, easy and effortless to make taking no more than 15 minutes. Also, you don’t need to chill the dough or use any special equipment.
This is an old classic recipe that I have been making for years. As a kid, I loved them. Now, my kids love them too. Ziv and I often enjoy these for an afternoon tea. My in-laws love them so much I often make some when I visit them over the weekend. They make a great tea time treat, as well as a perfect holiday gift during the season. Because they are so white, they take color beautifully too. During the holidays I color them in red and green and add them to the cookie jar for holiday gifts. I also make these as chocolate shortbread cookies. Can you imagine getting a jar of these in red, green, white and chocolate? So pretty!
About this recipe – white shortbread cookies (Save/Pin)
These are made with cornstarch and white butter which keep them white. Hence I named them white shortbread cookies. They are light and airy and very easy to overeat.
These white shortbread cookies are naturally eggless and super easy to make. You don’t need any planning, chilling or special equipment. A simple bowl and spatula will do the job. Also, the use of powdered sugar makes creaming even easier. The fact that you don’t need to chill the dough means you can make a batch of 32 cookies in 20 minutes or less. Often, I will make two half batches, these and the chocolate shortbread cookies. Then we have two flavors so everyone gets what they want.
Also, it’s great to have them ready in the cookie jar when kids come over because they don’t have eggs or nuts. Therefore, you don’t have to worry about eggs and nut allergies.
Let’s talk ingredients and substitutes (Save/Pin)
- Butter – It’s best to use white butter for this recipe so the dough is white (see in the video). White butter can be easily found in supermarkets these days. Also, I prefer unsalted butter over salted. And yet, if salted butter is all you have – go ahead and use it.
- Powdered sugar – This helps with a nice creamy texture and melt in the mouth, smooth not a grainy texture. You can use the same amount of regular sugar just make sure you cream it a bit longer until it’s almost dissolved.
- Cornstarch – That crisp melt in the mouth sensation you get with shortbread cookies usually comes from adding a starch such as rice flour or cornstarch. Because they really soak up all the moisture in there. If you can’t find cornstarch, you can use an equal amount of rice flour instead.
- Vanilla – Normally, you can use regular vanilla extract. And yet, since we want to keep the dough as white as possible using clear vanilla would help. If you don’t have clear vanilla another great flavor to use with these cookies is rose extract.
Useful Tips and Tools
- I’m not a slave to mixers. And yet, when you need some good creaming I have to insist that you use the K-Mix or Kitchen Aid.
- A good baking tray is always important. So, try using a light colored baking tray. Another option is to line the baking tray with parchment paper.
- If you aren’t going to fill or decorate these cookies a regular rolling pin will work just fine. And yet, a cookie rolling pin has the side spacers that will also help you with rolling. So all your cookies are leveled and bake evenly.
- Also, it is really important to cool cookies completely on all sides as soon as they come out of the oven. So, take them off the baking tray to prevent them from cooking further and place them on a cooking rack so they air circulates on all sides. This prevents steam from going back into the cookie, thus, keeping them crispy not soggy.
- Always bake cookies on the center rack of your oven. And if you have more than one tray simply bake them one at a time. You can bake two trays at the same time, and yet this can lead to some of the cookies in the bottom tray spreading too much. Also, you can rotate the trays during the baking. This is helpful with some cookies.
- Most cookies usually bake between 10 to 12 minutes. Since cookies bake quickly they can also get over-baked. This is due to our tendency to get distracted at the last minute. Hence, my solution is a kitchen timer that is always set to 10 minutes. I turn it on as soon as I place the cookies in the oven. This has saved me many cookies since my kids always keep me busy.
How to Make White Shortbread Cookies with Just 5 Ingredients (Save/Pin)
- Preheat the oven to 170 C/340 F.
- Cream butter for a minute then adds the powdered sugar.
- Add the vanilla (or rose) extract.
- Next, add the flour and cornstarch – combine well.
- If the dough is too dry add a teaspoon or two of water.
- Divide the dough – first half then half again – and so on until you have 32 cookies.
- Roll each piece into a ball and flatten with the palm of your hand.
- Dap the cookie lightly into granulated sugar.
- Place on a cookie sheet.
- Bake for about 10 to 12 minutes at 170 C / 340 F.
Frequently asked questions
Most cookies are best in the first few days of baking. However, shortbread cookies do have a longer shelflife. These cookies will keep well at room temperature for about 2 weeks. You can also freeze them for up to 3 months.
The cornstarch in these cookies gives use that crumble or pastry-like mouth-feel making it light and airy. If you don’t have cornstarch you can also use rice flour.
I like to control the amount of salt in my baking recipes so I always use unsalted butter but if you only have butter with salt, use it. But, make sure to omit salt in the recipes.
Shortbread cookies have a good shelf life as a dough as well as cookies. The dough, if wrapped well, can usually stay in the fridge for 5 to 6 days before rolling and baking. And you can even cover the cookies and place them on a parchment-lined tray, wrapped well with cling wrap, for about 3 to 4 days.
You certainly can. I wanted to keep these cookies white so I omitted any color from the spices.
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White Shortbread Cookies Recipe – Just 5 ingredients (Eggless)Print Pin Rate
- 228 grams (8.04 oz) Unsalted butter
- 100 grams (0.5 cups) Powdered sugar
- 220 grams (1.76 cups) All purpose flour / plain flour
- 40 grams (0.31 cups) Cornstarch
- 1 tsp (1 tsp) Vanilla extract (try clear vanilla)
- 50 grams (0.25 cups) Fine granulated sugar (for coating)
- Preheat the oven to 170 C/340 F.
- Cream butter for a minute then add the powdered sugar.
- Add the vanilla or (rose) flavoring.
- Next, add the flour and cornstarch – combine well until you form a dough.
- Tip: if the dough is too dry add one or two tsp of water.
- Divide dough into four and each into another four.
Continue to divide until you have 32 pieces.
- Roll each piece of dough into a ball and flatten on the parm of your hand.
- Gently dap the flat cookie into granulated sugar.
- Place on a cookie sheet.
- Bake for about 10 to 12 minutes.
- Cool on a cookie rack completely before you store in a cookie jar.
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