Christmas Shortbread Cookies

4.86 from 14 votes

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These Christmas Shortbread Cookies are so easy and delicious! Fill the middle with anything from strawberry jam to Nutella! Enjoy!

shortbread cookies

There once was a lady named June. June was friends with my Mom and made amazing shortbread cookies.

Once day, my Mom asked June for the recipe. June said “ok” and my family has been making this ever since.

Since I can remember, my Mom has been making this recipe for Christmas every year. She made it for my teachers at school. She made it for Christmas parties. She made it for cookie exchanges. She made it because we would request it. Why? Because everyone who tried this angelic shortbread cookie recipe loves it and then proceeds to ask for June’s recipe.

So, I decided to share this recipe for June’s shortbread today because it’s a fool-proof recipe with 4 main ingredients that will blow.your.minds. Who knew shortbread could be so delicious? Not this girl. But I grew up eating this for 29+ years, soooo all shortbread cookies in comparison can’t hold its own.

Even my husband who HATES shortbread cookies loves {and will eat all of} this shortbread. It’s probably a 50 year old tried and true family favorite recipe that you too can make and enjoy with the ones you love.

Here’s how to make it:

shortbread cookies

Stir very soft, room-temperature butter together with vanilla, sugar and flour. If you’re using unsalted butter, add in 1/2 teaspoon salt. After a quick mix with a hand-mixer, it’ll look like this isn’t much of a dough at all; just crumbles. NEVER FEAR!

shortbread cookies

If you grab a handful and squeeze it together, it should stay put.

shortbread cookies

Now, form the dough into 4 even, skinny logs the length of your cookie sheets. I use parchment paper, but that’s totally optional.

shortbread cookies

Using your finger, push an indentation down the center of each log to create a valley.

shortbread cookie recipe

Once all these logs are formed, bake 12-15 minutes at 325 degrees. Mine were done right at 14 minutes.

shortbread cookie recipe

They will spread a little, but that’s totally normal! Let these cool completely.

shortbread cookie recipe

Now comes the fun part!! Fill each log with whatever you like. I used strawberry jam because that is what I had, but I’ve used peach preserves, blackberry jam and even nutella before. It’s all delish.


And then if you feel so inclined, drizzle over an easy icing made from powdered sugar, milk and vanilla.


I like to let the icing set up a little bit before slicing into pieces, but that is totally optional. These are pretty addicting, so I won’t judge if you happen to snarf one or two of these logs immediately.

Enjoy this little taste of home from me to you!! Merry Christmas, friends!

a plate of christmas shortbread cookies
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4.86 from 14 votes

Christmas Shortbread Cookies

These Christmas Shortbread Cookies are so easy and delicious! Fill the middle with anything from strawberry jam to nutella! Enjoy!
servings 60 pieces
Prep Time 45 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 1 hour



  • 2/3 cup jam preserves or nutella



  • Preheat oven to 325 degrees.
  • Line baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside.
    christmas shortbread cookie ingredients
  • In a large bowl, mix butter, sugar, vanilla and flour together until incorporated. Dough should hold its shape when squeezed together. Divide dough into 4 equal portions and form into logs down the length of the cookie sheet. Press your finger into the center to create an indent all down each log. Bake 12-15 minutes. Cool completely.
    baked shortbread on a baking sheet
  • Fill each log with jam.
    christmas shortbread cookies with jam
  • Mix all ingredients together for the icing until its the constancy of white school glue. Drizzle over each log generously. Cut into diagonal pieces once icing has set for 20 minutes or so.
    shortbread cookies diagonally cut



Calories: 65kcal | Carbohydrates: 8g | Fat: 3g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 8mg | Sodium: 28mg | Potassium: 8mg | Sugar: 4g | Vitamin A: 95IU | Vitamin C: 0.3mg | Calcium: 2mg | Iron: 0.2mg
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Keyword: cookies, shortbread cookies
Other christmas cookie recipes you might like:

No Bake Cookies

Soft & Chewy Gingerdoodle Sandwich Cookies

Chocolate Mint Truffle Cookies

Decorated Christmas Sugar Cookie Bars

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Recipe Rating

50 Responses
  1. Melissa

    5 stars
    Holy smokes these are GOOD! Melt in your mouth shortbread perfectly paired with jam. This has been on my list to make for a long time and I’m glad I finally got to it. So worth it!

  2. Lisa

    5 stars
    They were delicious. I baked one batch for work using strawberry preserves and baking another one, as I type, for my neighbors using raspberry. This is a keeper.

  3. Lisa Czerw

    3 stars
    These were ok. I made exactly as described except i cooked the jam. The tast was great but they spread a lot larger and took very long to cook.

  4. Betty Jo

    5 stars
    Made these today with my homemade Christmas jam for a Christmas open house we are attending. I don’t know if they are going to make it there! They are delicious! Thanks for the easy yet awesome recipe!

  5. Kim

    5 stars
    I want to try making these. I’m pretty sure I made these years ago in my home ec class, and then I went and made them at home … and my family devoured them!

  6. Shirley

    5 stars
    I made these for Christmas. I used strawberry, raspberry, Carmel (with sea salt) and a local candy shop sells orange hot fudge. I put orange zest and orange juice in glaze for fudge. They were delicious.

  7. Cindy

    I tried making these but the dough wouldn’t stay together to form into logs. I even added more butter but they kept crumbling. Any advice. A total fail to do with my nine-year-old. 😔

  8. Lori Oglesby

    5 stars
    Love this recipe! Thanks for sharing! Looking forward to making these cookies again this Christmas! They have been a hit with friends and family as well as at our church cookie walk.

  9. 50 Christmas Cookie Recipes | Lauren's Latest

    […] June’s Shortbread–shortbread log cookies filled with jam. The epitome of easy Christmas Cookies! […]

  10. Theresa McInerney

    5 stars
    These are addicting! I made them for a get together with friends. I also used 4 different fillings- blackberry, apricot, strawberry rhubarb, and nutella! So so good 🙂

  11. Liesel

    5 stars
    ooh, I’ve had these many times when Shayna has made them and they are heavenly! Thanks for the recipe, now I don’t have to bug your sister for it. 🙂

  12. Laura Adams

    I’ve been making this exact recipe for 30 years, with a different name: Raspberry Ribbons. The only difference is that you put the preserves in before baking, then ice when cool, and cut into 1″ bars. They make gorgeous cookies for neighbor Christmas gifts.

  13. Jeanelle

    5 stars
    I made these today and besides being so quick and easy to make, they are simply delicious! Thanks so much for sharing this recipe.

    1. Lori

      I measure flour by spooning it into the measuring cups then leveling the top with a straight edge knife. I used a stand mixer. They are absolutely delicious but would love them to look like yours!!!

  14. Chels

    I love how simple this is. I hate shortbread, but Josh adores it. I think I’ll have to make him this and then he will love me forever and ever!

  15. Nancy Turner

    I like the way strawberry jam sets in thumbprint cookies when it is baked. Do you think it is preferable (necessary) to add the jam to these shortbread cookies after baking? These cookies look lovely!

    1. Lori

      I had alot of difficulty rolling these thin enough because they just wanted to crumble. I ended up laying them out short ways, they of course got very wide. What did I do wrong here? The taste is good but they crumble.

        1. Lori

          I measure flour by spooning it into the measuring cups then leveling the top with a straight edge knife. I used a stand mixer. They are absolutely delicious but would love them to look like yours!!!