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Scottish Shortbread Recipe
by Marlin Rinehart

Scottish Shortbread

This is the most famous cookie of Scotland. It’s a must to use pure butter. Traditionally, shortbread contains no other flavor. I’ve been making this recipe since 1970 when I got the recipe in Edinburgh, Scotland. The addition of a small amount of rice flour gives a firmness and crunchiness to the cookie. Most American recipes for shortbread substitute cornstarch for rice flour resulting with a less crunching cookie.

Rating: 4.4/5
Avg. 4.4/5 9 votes
Prep time: United Kingdom British
Cook time: Servings: 40 cookies


  • 1¼ cups flour
  • ¼ cup rice flour (Obtain at oriental grocery or in the oriental aisle of large supermarkets. It usually is packaged in small plastic bags.)
  • ¼ cup granulated sugar
  • 1¼ sticks (10 tablespoons) pure butter, salted (not unsalted)


  1. Sift or whisk dry ingredients into a bowl. Cut butter into pieces and add. With hands knead into a firm dough resembling clay. [The preceding can also be done in a food processor with ease.]
  2. Place on a floured board and roll 3/8 to 1/3-inch thick. Either cut with a small 2-inch round cookie cutter or cut with a sharp knife into small triangles or finger shapes. Place on an ungreased cookie sheet. Prick each cookie three times with a toothpick or with a fork and sprinkle sugar over the tops. Bake at 375° F. until edges turn faintly tan. DO NOT ALLOW COOKIES TO BROWN. Remove from oven, and while hot, sprinkle tops with more granulated sugar, if desired. Cool and store in an airtight container at room temperature.