Sissy’s Shortbread Cookies

This shortbread cookie comes from my Aunt Elizabeth, who I have always called Sissy. I promise I’m not a shortbread addict, but this time of year makes me crave these cookies. Although my grandmother’s cookies are my favorites, these cookies are my dad’s favorites. These also come together a lot easier for me. I think the challenge of my grandmother’s cookies is a sort of rite of passage, but these cookies come together very quickly and easily. Again, I use the mixer, but I’m lazy that way.

One of the helpful hints with this recipe is to use powdered sugar to roll out the dough. This way the cookies get sweeter and not drier! My aunt’s cookies always have red and white flowers, but I can never add enough food coloring to get a good red, hence the pinkish flowers above!

I use a 1.5″ round cutter and it makes over 8 dozen cookies. As a side note, if you make these with margarine, they’re completely egg and dairy free, so they’re great for allergies.

Sissy’s Shortbread Cookies


  • 2 c. butter/margarine, softened
  • 1 c. powdered sugar minus 1 Tbsp.
  • 1 Tbsp. brown sugar
  • 4 c. flour



  1. Cream the butter and the sugars.
  2. Add the flour and mix until the dough comes together.
  3. Chill the dough for at least 20 minutes.
  4. Roll out dough to a quarter inch thickness and cut into shapes.
  5. Bake in a 300 degree oven for twenty minutes, or until edges start to brown.


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  1. Thank you so much for this recipe! I’ve been looking for a good shortbread cookie recipe that uses margarine.

  2. These are Jason’s favs too!

  3. these are so pretty! it is hard to get a good red. i think the only way to get it is to buy the wilton’s christmas red food coloring. i think it’s about $1.20 with a 40% off coupon. oh, and extract is way cheaper (esp. with the 40%) at michael’s than the grocery store – just a tip i thought i’d pass along!

  4. I’m going tohave to try the Christmas food coloring. I usually have no luck with red. I love to use my 40% off coupons in the baking aisle as well!