How to Make Walker's Scottish Shortbread Recipe at Home (2023)


Learn how to make traditional Walker's Scottish Shortbread Cookies at home and enjoy rich, crumbly cookies perfect for dunking and the holidays!

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So in Ireland around the holidays, it's really common to get a box of walk or Scottish cookies.

I've really found memories of it growing after buttery they're delicious.

They have lovely Tartan pack, but I'm far away from home and I wanted to recreate that iconic cookie for the holiday season.

So here they are the exact same cookie, but better because they're made from scratch they're absolutely delicious.

Here's the recipe first things.

First, that's preheat, oven to 350 degrees, Fahrenheit or 180 degrees.


Then, what we're going to do is take our 8 by 8 inch pan.

This is great for shortbread and brownie making.

So we probably all have one of these and then I'm going to show you my little Nifty trick we're going to get a paper butter wrapper now.

This is what we do, rather than throw it in the bin.

We are going to use this to grease our pan.

I do this with all of my baking and it's great because you don't need to get a pastry brush.

You don't need to dirty your hands.

You get to reuse something again before it goes in the bin.

So it's like the perfect solution and then we are going to line it.

It's a little bit of parchment paper because we want to be able to get those cookies out of there.


So now, let's get stuck into our recipe here.

I have my food processor.

It's really good to make this on a food processor because it makes life so much easier.

You don't have to touch it.

However, you can do it by hand if you don't have a food processor, that's totally fine.

Let's start adding in our ingredients here, I have some all-purpose flour and it goes a little bit of granulated sugar salt super important to lift the flavor and then some rolled oats so funny enough.

I've never made shortbread using oats before I, never really knew it was a thing, but it's very traditional in Scottish shortbread and it does add a lovely texture to it.

I just recommend that you use rolled oats uh, just definitely not steel cut oats because those won't work.

So there we go everything in here pop on your hat and then we're just going to blend this off until everything gets really lovely and fine, the sugar breaks down and also the oats.

So this has been blending for around 45 seconds a minute or so, and this is what we're looking for.

If you put your hands in there, you can feel that the oats are nice and fine they're still a bit lumpy.

That's totally fine they're not going to blend down completely, but it's just like this.

So that's ready to go now.

Let's talk about our butter, the most important ingredient when it comes to shortbread, because it's half butter, the reason that shortbread is called shortbread is because there's so much fat in it, and it makes it short just like pastry and things like that short crust pastry.

It means there's just loads of fashion.

It makes it short and short means crumbly and Flaky and absolutely delicious.

So butter butter has to be softened, so leave this out overnight or pop it into the microwave very gently.

So my recommendation for butter is use really good quality and European.

If you can, because it has more fat and more flavor pop your lid back on and we're going to blend this up until it all forms one dough.

Okay, just takes a few seconds.

You can actually start to hear it come together, and this is what it looks like it'll get in one big Clump.

Just as it does that stop the machine, we don't need this to keep on blending and blending.

So this is lovely nice soft texture, but not too soft, because we are so prepared.

I have my pan here and we have our dough then into our Pan Once.

Your dough is in your pan.

You can either use your hand or a spatula and just go in nice and swiftly just flatten it out as evenly as you can I've been doing this for years and I still don't get it exactly.

Even so, it does take a bit of practice.

Okay, so now for the scoring to give them that iconic Walker shortbread, look so here's what we're going to do we're going to take a knife and we are going to cut our pan into four and I.

Want you to cut right down through the cookie you want to get nice and deep, because they're going to bake and that line is going to disappear a little bit so the deeper you get, the more that line will stay.

It will also make them much easier to cut later and they won't break up on you now we're going to cut those squares in half just like that and then cut those in half again.

So what you do is you end up with actually 16 cookies, eight on top eight on the bottom, we're going to go in with our fork and we're going to give them those dots, because we love the shortbread with the dots we're just going to do a few little bricks and make that nice shape lovely.

This is such a fast cookie to make and such a few ingredients as well.

It's perfect when you're busy around the holidays.

Let's get these guys straight into the oven, Baker shortbreads at 350 degrees, Fahrenheit, 108 degrees, Celsius for roughly 35 to 40 minutes the secret with shortbread.

Is we don't want to get it too Brown? Actually, just a light golden brown is absolutely perfect.

The shortbread smells delicious, but let me tell you what's supposed to look like you see this lovely light golden brown like it's been kind of sun-kissed.

This is what we're going for.

We don't want to get these a deep golden brown at all and, as you see the indentations we made here, they do disappear when they bake.

That's why we want to make sure we get them nice and deep.

So we can still see our lines and we can still see the fork marks and everything.

So this is perfect I'm going to let these cool down in the tin for around 20 minutes half an hour or so then we're going to cut them up once the shortbread is cooled down.

Take a nice big knife and cut into those indentations that we made earlier I recommend cutting up your shortbread, while the dough is still a little warm because it'll be easier to cut these look great, but they are screaming to be put into a Fest of tin wow.

These look fantastic and you know what, in my opinion, even better than the Walker Scottish shortbread.

The majority of this cookie is butter.

They are crumbly they're a little bit salty.

They are so delicious see.

This is what I remember from Christmases in Ireland all those years ago.

Really buttery has this lovely kind of iconic flavor and also a little bit of a nicer texture with the oats in there.

How lovely would it be to get a big tin of these on the holidays, open it up and see homemade shortbread, just for you what a treat so here's the great news I have tons more holiday, cookie recipes just for you, so stick around and check them out.


What are the ingredients in Walker's Shortbread? ›

As it always has been, our shortbread is made using only four ingredients: flour, pure creamery butter, sugar and salt. We are proud to say that our products contain absolutely no artificial flavorings, colorings or preservatives.

What makes Walkers shortbread so good? ›

The World's Finest…

Today, Walkers Shortbread only ever uses fine creamery butter from grass fed cows, and never compromises by baking its shortbread with anything else.

What is the secret to making shortbread? ›

For great shortbread, regardless of your chosen recipe:
  • Sift the flour before mixing to help remove lumps.
  • Avoid over-mixing the dough.
  • Score the surface for even baking without bubbles or cracks.
  • Chill the shaped dough thoroughly before baking.
  • Cut the shortbread while it is still warm, for smooth, even slices.

What is traditional Scottish shortbread made from? ›

Shortbread or shortie is a traditional Scottish biscuit usually made from one part white sugar, two parts butter, and three to four parts plain wheat flour. Unlike many other biscuits and baked goods, shortbread does not contain any leavening, such as baking powder or baking soda.

What is the difference between Scottish shortbread and shortbread? ›

What is the difference between English shortbread and Scottish shortbread? Scottish shortbread cookies are made simply with sugar, butter, and flour. Other shortbread styles incorporate leavening like baking powder and baking soda, making them crisp instead of crumbly like a traditional Scottish shortbread.

What's the difference between Scottish and normal shortbread? ›

Unlike Walkers shortbread cookies where the main ingredient is butter, Scottish cookies may contain vegetable shortening or a blend of butter and vegetable shortening. Therefore, the Scottish cookies have a distinctly different texture (crisper, firmer and crunchier) and flavor.

What are common mistakes when making shortbread? ›

According to Edelman, there are some common mistakes home bakers make, including:
  1. Overmixing the dough and making it too tough to work with.
  2. Adding too much flour to the countertop when rolling the dough, causing the dough to dry up.
  3. Not adding enough coarse sugar to the top of the sugar cookies.
Dec 3, 2020

What is the world's finest shortbread? ›

It's not without reason that Walkers is known as The World's Finest Shortbread. Our traditional pure butter shortbread fingers are baked to perfection, and the sweet, delicious buttery taste is unlike any other. And why not enjoy The World's Finest Shortbread with the world's finest views?

When making shortbread What must you not do? ›

If the butter is too hard, it won't easily incorporate into the shortbread mixture and that will result in overworked dough. Dough that has been overworked is a surefire way to get tough shortbread - something no shortbread should ever be.

What type of flour is best for shortbread? ›

what type of flour is best for shortbread? I recommend pastry flour. If you want light and flaky shortbread cookies you need to use pastry flour. Pastry flour is a lower-protein flour that produces lighter and flakier cookies than all-purpose flour.

Should butter be cold or soft for shortbread? ›

Fine Cooking explains that the butter should be at refrigerator temperature. While many cookie recipes call for softened butter or at room temperature, if your butter isn't cold when making shortbread, it's likely to turn out greasy or be difficult to roll out.

What butter is best for shortbread salted or unsalted? ›

Butter – You'll need salted butter that's at room temperature. It can take anywhere from 30 minutes to 1 hour to bring the butter to room temperature, so make sure you give yourself enough time. If you don't have salted butter, unsalted butter will also work, simply add about ¼ teaspoon of salt to the cookie dough.

What is the most famous Scottish shortbread? ›

Walker's Shortbread is a Scottish manufacturer of shortbread, biscuits, cookies and crackers. The company's well-known shortbread is baked in the Moray village of Aberlour, following a recipe developed by Joseph Walker in 1898.

Why is Scottish shortbread so good? ›

Nothing else is needed, no fancy ingredients, no flavor enhancers. The key to a good Scottish shortbread is the quality of the butter. That is what flavors the shortbread and the shortbread is only as good as the butter.

Is Walkers Shortbread made in Scotland? ›

Aberlour, in the North East of Scotland has been the home of Walkers Shortbread for over 100 years. Nestled in the valley of the river Spey famous for its fishing, hunting and whisky, the Walker family have been making shortbread here from an unchanged recipe since 1898.

Why do you put shortbread in the fridge before baking? ›

A short stay in the fridge will firm up the cookies and solidify the butter. This will help keep them from spreading too much. Also, it helps concentrate those flavors for your best ever shortbread.

What sugar do you use for shortbread? ›

  1. 300g Plain Flour.
  2. 200g Softened Butter.
  3. 100g Granulated Sugar.
  4. 1tsp Vanilla Extract.
Dec 23, 2018

Is butter or margarine better for shortbread? ›

Shortbread relies on really good-quality unsalted butter for its flavour, so don't skimp on this and never use margarine! The high butter (or shortening ) content helps to keep the gluten in the flour short and soft.

Why do you poke holes in shortbread? ›

Do you have to poke holes in shortbread cookies? Yes! Poking holes in the cookies helps the moisture escape and the heat distribute evenly throughout the cookie. It is key to getting their perfect dense, crumbly texture.

What are the different types of Scottish shortbread? ›

Shortbread is traditionally formed into one of three shapes: one large circle divided into segments (“Petticoat Tails”); individual round biscuits (“Shortbread Rounds”); or a thick rectangular slab cut into “fingers.”

Should shortbread be crunchy or soft? ›

Shortbread should always have a tender, melting texture, but be slightly crisp when you bite into it. It should not generally be damp or wet underneath. A classic shortbread recipe will also only have flour, butter and sugar as the ingredients (in a 3:2:1 ratio) and not egg, which could lead to excess moisture.

Should shortbread be cut before baking? ›

Immediately cut the shortbread, while it's warm; if you wait until it's cool, it won't cut easily. Using a pizza wheel or sharp knife, cut each round into 12 wedges. If you've baked squares, cut each square into four smaller squares, then cut each of those into thirds to make a total of 24 strips (12 per pan).

What happens if you put too much butter in shortbread? ›

Summarizing butter

Using too much butter will: Cause your cookie to spread out way too much during baking. Cause your cookie to brown.

Can you over mix shortbread cookies? ›

It's important to avoid over-mixing shortbread dough, which will develop gluten and make the finished product tough, not tender. To make sure that the flour mixes completely with little effort, sift the flour first to get out all of the lumps.

What country makes the best shortbread? ›

Although shortbread is made in many countries it is perhaps most synonymous with Scotland and is often seen as the flagship of Scottish food. This is perhaps because whilst cakes and other butter biscuits are made around the world, the Scottish examples were judged to be the world's finest.

What is the best store bought shortbread biscuits? ›

Walkers Pure Butter Shortbread is perhaps the most popular store-bought brand—a title it certainly has merited. It is reliably crumbly and buttery, without being cloyingly sweet. The simplicity of these biscuits allows for tea-dunking, jam pairings, or even enjoying the biscuit on its own.

What does cornstarch do to shortbread? ›

The cornstarch is used to give these buttery treats a crispy, melt-in-the-mouth texture. It also helps prevent the cookies from becoming too crumbly and breaking apart.

Can you over knead shortbread dough? ›

Simply form the dough until it creates a ball, making sure not to over-knead or work it to much. Otherwise the shortbread will become tough and dense.

Why is shortbread difficult to make? ›

It can be difficult to consistently make good Shortbread, even using the same recipe. That's because shortbread's texture depends on your mood and the kitchen temperature. This very Sensitive Dough doesn't like to be handled too much.

Is powdered sugar or granulated sugar better for shortbread? ›

Powdered Sugar: I recommend using powdered sugar in place of granulated sugar in the dough, as it is less dense than granulated sugar and produces a lighter cookie.

Should you sift flour when making shortbread cookies? ›

However, sifting flour isn't a must for desserts that are chewy or crisp, like cookies. Sifting flour through a sieve or sifter helps break up clumps and aerates the ingredients. In the past, sifted flour also allowed for more accurate measuring results.

What flour does Martha Stewart use? ›

When it comes to Martha Stewart's cooking, she has one go-to brand that she "always" uses when she needs flour. According to the Chicago Tribune, Stewart is partial to King Arthur flour for all her baking needs, which is unbleached and all-natural. She even included it on her list of "12 favorite things."

How thick to roll shortbread? ›

Shortbread biscuits vary in thickness and shape, and here I've made quite thin ones - about ½cm thick. If you want to go for the traditional finger shape, you will need to roll them a bit thicker - about 1cm.

How do you keep shortbread moist? ›

Add vegetable oil or melted butter to combat a lack of fat.

This is a great option if you have shortbread cookie dough that's too dry. Add more liquid ingredients in small amounts. Milk, egg yolks or egg whites, vanilla extract or even a teaspoon of water can help moisten the dough to give you less crumbly cookies.

Should you refrigerate shortbread after baking? ›

It is imperative to store shortbread in a relatively oxygen-free environment and, ideally, in the refrigerator for optimal freshness. Always allow shortbread to fully cool before placing in storage, as the heat will create steam that results in a soggy biscuit.

Do you put eggs in shortbread? ›

Shortbread can be made with or without the egg yolks. In this recipe the egg yolks add flavor and give the cookie a more tender texture.

What happens to cookies when you use salted butter instead of unsalted? ›

Baking recipes typically call for unsalted butter because the amount of salt in salted butter varies depending on the brand – there is no “industry standard.” For example, if you use one brand of salted butter in a recipe, and we use another, our baked goods could end up tasting very different from one other.

What happens if you use salted butter instead of unsalted butter in cookies? ›

You may end up with a slightly saltier taste, but it's usually not going to ruin a batch. Secondly, if you're not wanting to throw your baking caution to the wind but do want to use salted butter, simply decrease the amount of extra salt you add by about 1/4 of a teaspoon.

Why is Walkers shortbread so good? ›

The World's Finest…

Today, Walkers Shortbread only ever uses fine creamery butter from grass fed cows, and never compromises by baking its shortbread with anything else.

What tartan is on Walker shortbread? ›

Walker's Shortbread Rounds, adorned with the Scottish thistle and packaged in our signature red tartan box, are baked in the heart of the Scottish Highlands to our founder's pure butter shortbread recipe which is 125 years old.

Why is it called Scottish shortbread? ›

The famous Scottish Queen Mary is often credited with the invention, or at least refinement of modern shortbread, as it was the cooks at her court who further improved it by taking influences from French cooking that developed at the court, and refining the biscuit using butter, flour and sugar as the main ingredients.

What is the secret to good shortbread? ›

Tips To Make the Best Shortbread Cookies
  • Choose High Quality Butter. No matter what brand of butter you buy, if it's real butter, you can rest assured that it's the best. ...
  • Keep Ingredients Simple. ...
  • Add Flavor. ...
  • Don't Overwork. ...
  • Shape Dough. ...
  • Chill Before Baking. ...
  • Bake Until Golden. ...
  • Add Finishing Touches.

How do Scottish people eat shortbread? ›

One of these items is shortbread. Breaking the biscuit over a bride's head is another old tradition that's still followed in some parts of Scotland today. Another is to eat the biscuit with cheese, especially during new year celebrations.

What is the difference between Irish and Scottish shortbread? ›

Irish shortbread, replaces some of the flour, with cornstarch and adds vanilla. It's slightly less grainy, than Scottish shortbread. I found this recipe at David Lebovitz site. His recipe called for sea salt, but I used table salt, and halved the amount.

What are the ingredients in Walker's shortbread? ›

As it always has been, our shortbread is made using only four ingredients: flour, pure creamery butter, sugar and salt. We are proud to say that our products contain absolutely no artificial flavorings, colorings or preservatives.

What is the shelf life of Walkers shortbread? ›

The best-before date listed on the tin of shortbread is about ten months from when it was purchased and the shortbread should be stored in a cool, dry place.

Does Walkers shortbread contain vanilla? ›

Walker's Vanilla Shortbread is a crumbly, melt in the mouth shortbread with an added hint of sweetness. Baked with natural vanilla flavouring, they smell as good as they taste.

Is Walkers Shortbread any good? ›

It's not without reason that Walkers is known as The World's Finest Shortbread. Our traditional pure butter shortbread fingers are baked to perfection, and the sweet, delicious buttery taste is unlike any other.

What are shortbread biscuits made from? ›

"Shortbread is a biscuit traditionally made from one part white sugar, two parts butter, and three parts flour. Other ingredients like ground rice or corn flour are sometimes added to alter the texture." That's right, there's a recipe ratio for shortbread!

Is Walkers shortbread vegan? ›

100% vegetarian; no animal fats are used in any of Walker's recipes.

What can I use instead of vanilla extract for shortbread? ›

It's an easy swap: Use vanilla powder as a 1:1 substitute for vanilla extract in any recipe (incorporate it with the rest of the dry ingredients).

Are all Walkers Shortbread made in Scotland? ›

Are all the products made in Scotland? Yes, everything is baked in the Scottish Highlands, either in our home village of Aberlour, or 16 miles away in a small town called Elgin.

What is shortbread called in America? ›

To most of the rest of the English-speaking world, a biscuit is what Americans would refer to as either a cookie or a cracker. Biscuits can be sweet (shortbread) or savory. They're baked in the oven, and they're crisp, not chewy.

Is Walkers shortbread from England? ›

A Taste of Scotland

We pride ourselves in baking the highest quality products to original family recipes, using only the finest ingredients possible to obtain, and take pride in situating ourselves in the beautiful landscape of Speyside in the Scottish Highlands.

What happened to Walkers shortbread? ›

Walker's restarted production on Monday 20 April, which has been met with overwhelming support from our staff. We had made the decision in March to close down Walker's production temporarily in order to review the Covid-19 situation and its safety implications for our employees.

Who owns Walkers shortbread cookies? ›

The company also operates a distribution subsidiary in the United States. Walkers remains 100 percent owned by the founding Walker family; James and Joseph Walker, grandsons of the founder, serve as co-managing directors.

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