Updated: Nov 15, 2020
Simple, sweet, easy, and requires no tools! For tips and to bake-along live, just follow along with the video.
Prep: 30 minutes
Bake: 10 minutes
Total time: 45 minutes
(the first three ingredients will be divided in half)
1 cup butter (2 sticks), cold and cubed
1 cup powdered sugar
2 cups + 2 T all-purpose flour (or any flour you have on hand)
1 or 2 T cocoa powder
Pinch of salt
Optional: citrus zest, vanilla powder, granulated sugar, egg wash, sprinkles (!) I missed you last Sunday but hope everyone had a peaceful Easter!
Combine 1/2 cup of powdered sugar, 1 cup + 1 T all purpose flour, and a pinch of salt in a bowl, whisking to combine. If you're adding in any vanilla powder, zest, spice, espresso, etc. add it here!
Add in the cold, cubed butter and massage into the dough until it reaches a sandy texture (see 7:30 in the video).
Pour mixture onto the the counter and, using the heel of your hand, smear the sandy mixture into the counter and away from you. Do this with the entirety of the dough 3-4 times until a ball of dough forms (see 8:50 in the video).
Once the dough comes together, form it into a disk and quarter it.
I highly recommend you start the video and form each of these with me! Start at 12:15 and I'll show you how to form each of the below cookies.
Take one quarter and press it together into a long cylinder. Take the second quarter and press it into a long rectangular box. Set the two last quarters aside (see 12:15 in the video).
Put dough into refrigerator while you repeat steps 1 - 4, adding in the cocoa powder in step one to make cocoa shortbread.
When you are not working with a dough leave it in the fridge to rest.
To make checkerboard shortbread: remove the two rectangular doughs from the refrigerator and quarter them both so you have eight equal, small rectangles. Put one cocoa and one vanilla on the bottom, stacking the opposite flavors onto the top (creating a "checkerboard" when looking at the side of the dough).
To make a marble shortbread: take one vanilla and one chocolate dough that you set aside and small them together into a long cylinder piece of dough ( a log). Put in fridge to rest.
To make a swirl shortbread: roll the last two remaining balls of dough until thin. Layer one on top of the other and roll upwards to create a swirl.
Cut all of the dough logs cross-wise to make small shortbread cookies.
Bake for 8-12 minutes until the edges are just turning golden brown.