Vegan Shortbread Cookies

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5 from 93 votes
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These vegan shortbread cookies need just 3 ingredients to make and are perfectly buttery and rich! Ready in minutes and perfect for the holiday season.

vegan shortbread cookies

When the holiday season rolls around, my favorite cookies to make are vegan Christmas cookies, classic chocolate chip cookies, and easy vegan shortbread cookies.

Why this recipe works

  • 3 ingredients. All you need is vegan butter, powdered sugar, and flour!
  • Quick to make. Just 5 minutes of prep is needed and around 12 minutes in the oven. 
  • Easily made gluten-free. Simply swap out the flour for a gluten-free blend and these work for celiacs. 

The texture of these cookies is exactly what you want in any good shortbread- Thick and rich, that melts and crumbles in your mouth. The flavor is pleasantly sweet and buttery, without being overpowering.

Ingredients needed

As mentioned earlier, this recipe needs just three basic pantry staple ingredients. Here is what you’ll need:

  • Vegan butter. Be sure to use plant-based butter from a block, not from a spread. You want the butter to be soft, but not melted. 
  • Powdered sugar. Also known as confectioners’ sugar, using powdered sugar gives the cookies a lighter and smooth texture. 
  • All-purpose flour. Either plain flour or gluten-free flour. If you use the latter, be sure that the flour contains xanthan gum, otherwise, the cookies will be gummy. 

How to make vegan shortbread cookies

In a large mixing bowl, mix together your softened butter and powdered sugar, until combined. Gently fold in your flour, until combined. Finally, using your hands, form the dough into a smooth ball, kneading if required.

Now, form 12-16 balls of dough and place them on a lined baking sheet. Press down on each ball into a cookie shape and if desired, use a cookie press for some fun pattern. Bake the cookies for 12-15 minutes, until they begin to go golden around the sides. 

vegan shortbread

Tips to make the best recipe

  • If you don’t have powdered sugar or superfine sugar, you can quickly make your own. Add white sugar to a blender and blend it very well, until a powdery texture remains. 
  • Avoid using vegan margarine, as the shortbread will become grainy and have an odd aftertaste.
  • Do not overbake the shortbread. The cookies continue to cook as they are cooling down. Once they are beginning to go golden around the edges, they are done. 
  • Customize this shortbread with other flavors, like lavender, lemon, and chocolate chip.

Storage instructions

To store: Shortbread cookies can be stored at room temperature, in a sealable container or ziplock bag. They will remain fresh for up to 2 weeks. 

To freeze: Place cookies in a ziplock bag and store them in the freezer for up to 6 months. 

shortbread cookies

More vegan cookies to try

Frequently asked questions

Can I bake these as Scottish shortbread? 

Scottish shortbread refers to the shortbread being made as ‘fingers’ or in a rectangular shape instead of cookies. I grew up eating Walker’s shortbread, which comes as fingerstyle cookies.

Transfer the shortbread dough to an 8 x 8-inch square pan. Gently use a knife to slice lengthways once, and 6 times on the other side (to have 12 fingers). 

Bake the shortbread for an extra 10 minutes, or until they begin to go golden around the sides. 

What can I use in shortbread instead of butter?

If you can’t find vegan butter, you can use a good quality vegan margarine.

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vegan shortbread cookies

Vegan Shortbread Cookies With 3 Ingredients | Bakes In 12 Minutes

5 from 93 votes
These vegan shortbread cookies are thick, rich, and buttery cookies made with just 3 ingredients! Ready in 12 minutes and so easy to make.
Servings: 12 Cookies
Prep: 5 mins
Cook: 12 mins
Total: 17 mins

Ingredients  

Instructions 

  • Preheat the oven to 180C/350F. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper.
  • In a large mixing bowl, mix together your softened butter with powdered sugar, until completely combined. Then, gently fold in the flour and mix very well, until a thick dough remains. Push the dough together to form a smooth ball.
  • Using your hands, form 12 balls of dough and place on the lined sheet. Press down on each one into a cookie shape, and if desired, use a cookie stamp to form a pattern.
  • Bake the cookies for 15-17 minutes, or until the edges begin to go golden brown. Remove from the oven and allow cookies to cool on the sheet completely.

Notes

TO STORE: Shortbread cookies can be stored at room temperature, in a sealable container or ziplock bag. They will remain fresh for up to 2 weeks. 
TO FREEZE: Place cookies in a ziplock bag and store in the freezer for up to 6 months. 

Nutrition

Serving: 1CookieCalories: 93kcalCarbohydrates: 11gProtein: 1gFat: 6gSodium: 61mgPotassium: 11mgFiber: 1gVitamin A: 360IUCalcium: 2mgIron: 1mgNET CARBS: 10g
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Author: Arman
Tried this recipe?Give us a shout at @thebigmansworld or tag #thebigmansworld!

Disclosure: This post may contain affiliate links. I may earn a small commission for my endorsement, recommendation, testimonial, and/or link to any products or services from this website.

Arman Liew

I’m a two time cookbook author, photographer, and writer, and passionate about creating easy and healthier recipes. I believe you don’t need to be experienced in the kitchen to make good food using simple ingredients that most importantly, taste delicious.

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