Prep: 15 mins Cook: 20 mins - 25 mins Plus chilling


Makes 24 slices
This rich home-baked treat is a real crowd-pleaser

Nutrition and extra info

  • Freezable

Nutrition: per slice

  • kcal188
  • fat11g
  • saturates7g
  • carbs23g
  • sugars9g
  • fibre0g
  • protein2g
  • salt0.2g
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  • 300g butter, softened



    Butter is made when lactic-acid producing bacteria are added to cream and churned to make an…

  • 140g golden caster sugar, plus 4 tbsp
  • 300g plain flour
  • 140g rice flour


  1. Place the butter and 140g sugar in a food processor and whizz until smooth. Tip in both the flours and a pinch of salt, then whizz until mixture comes together.

  2. Using your hands, roughly spread the mixture out in a 20 x 30 x 4cm baking tray. Cover with cling film and smooth over until there are no wrinkles. Place in the fridge, uncooked, for at least 30 mins and up to 2 days.

  3. Heat oven to 180C/160C fan/gas 4. Remove cling film, then lightly mark the shortbread all over with a fork. Sprinkle with the remaining sugar, then bake for 20-25 mins. Leave to cool in the tin, then cut into 24 thin slices. Shortbread will keep in an airtight container for up to 1 week.

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Comments, questions and tips

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Comments (67)

majorkritz's picture

look's great. i'm looking forward to making these for mothers day.

good-food-girl's picture

Hello all,
Is ground rice the same thing as rice flour? I can't find rice flour but have ground rice.
Thank you :)

Barrybarfly's picture

Gorgeous! I plan to try putting some chocolate chips in next time too!

Barrybarfly's picture

Gorgeous! I plan to try running some chocolate chips into the mix next time too!

PHinch94's picture

For those without a food processor, I just rubbed the ingredients together using cold rather than warmed butter.

The cooking time is good, and as I can't find any rice flour I use polenta/cornmeal with good results instead. A winner, lovely and crumbly!

Sr1light's picture

Absolutely delicious - and the timing comments are correct. There's no way this cooks in such a short time, mine was in for a total of 55 minutes. I guess if you decided to roll it out and make biscuits it wouldn't take as long however it is soooo worth the wait. It is slightly cakey but also moist and crumbly. Great with a cuppa or served on the side with strawberries and ice cream. Halve the sugar topping (it's sweet enough) and put it on around 15 mins before it's ready to come out the oven.

IrishFlavia's picture

I think this recipe is a bit too time consuming. Left my mix overnight and as I was rolling mine out to cut out stars (for xmas), the mix was much too dry and crumbly so I had to add some melted butter. The shortbread tasted good, but think I'll revert to the simpler all-in-one method next time, which in my opinion is just as good.

lulubee's picture

Great recipe, even though I mis-read and forgot to put the cling film on in the fridge! I also allowed an extra 10 mins in the oven as it seemed a bit pale. Allowed to cool completely, and it's fab, crispy on the outside with a denser 'bite' towards the middle - exactly like shortbread should be. To the poster who doesn't have a food processor, mix the butter/sugar until pale and creamy, then add the flours. It won't ball together, but after a while looks like very large breadcrumbs and at this stage it's fine to press into the tin (which I lined with foil for an easier removal job.)

jcr's picture

Please explain method for those of us who don't have a food processor to 'whizz' things in!

happytrudes's picture

I have just tried this recipe and took it out of oven about five mins ago. I too had to bake this for much longer than the recipe suggests, I had to give it 40 mins in the end and it's still a bit doughy in the middle. I am waiting for it to cool to see if it crisps up a bit. The warm piece I just ate was delicious but doughy so hoping it will be better when cool. Tasted delicious though.

emilycraig14's picture

I like my shortbread crunchy whereas this recipe makes them more 'cake like' .

Luxforstep's picture

Just made this - tasty recipe, but not quite enough butter since the dough was really flaky. I had to add in oil (I'd run out of butter completely) to enable the dough to become a bit more cohesive. I also shaped the dough using cookie cutters, and then refrigerated it for 20 minutes before cooking for about 12 mins in the oven. Would recommend, but only if you're a (relatively) experienced baker.

On a side note, i don't have a food processor so I had to rub the butter, sugar and flour in by hand.

Yestennis's picture

It's the first time I've made short bread from anything other than the normal recipe book I use for short bread and all I can say is " thank goodness " this is just the best recipe for short bread you will find . It's so easy and the results are sooooo tasty !!!! This is the only recipe I will use for shortbread from now on !!

allielovetocook's picture

The addition of Rice Flour really does put the "Short" into this Shortbread. My family all think this recipe is fantastic, but when I made some to take to my elderly parents recently I knew it was going to get a tough mark .. my Father's favourite thing in the world must be Shortbread biscuits - he gets through tins of them each year. This recipe earned a "Superb" comment from both my parents which means it's just about perfect! It's very sweet, but is the lightest, flakiest Shortbread i've ever made. Thanks again BBC Good Food!! ..

allielovetocook's picture

Oooohhhhhh ... this is gooooood shortbread. Could tell it was light-textured going into the tin and made sure to handle it as little as possible. Now almost cooled I've dug out the first piece simply to ensure that it releases successfully from the tin .. and the piece fell in my mouth! Very, very yummy. Is very sweet, melt in the mouth shortbread. My family are going to loooove this! Thank you BBC Good Food!

didichick's picture

Moreish... made some with chocolate chip but is better on its own. Everyone hounded me for more of these. Oh the power! wa ha ha! ;)

sabrinaduck's picture

Baked this with my 3 year old yesterday. We didn't use a food processor to mix the dough. We used our hands, pinching and squeezing the ingredients until they resembled breadcrumbs. We then tip the dough in the pan, press it gently and smoothen the surface with cling film, and then refrigerate for 30 minutes. I baked it for 30 minutes, and left to cool. The shortbread is really nice, buttery, not so sweet, and crumbly. I think you should wait for the shortbread to cool down before you eat it. Too doughy otherwise.

india_quinn's picture

I didn't use a mixer, but softened the butter in the microwave first, genuinely think the shortbread tasted better for it! delicious:-)

grannygill54's picture

Best recipe I've ever tried for shortbread - turns out so buttery but with a nice bite - it's well worth a try.

luciana's picture

Wonderful recipe. So easy to follow. Highly recommended


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Tips (1)

bhanacharaid's picture

Im going to wave my credentials here. As a Scot who is always asked to make shortbread as it is usually excellent -this is my family recipe, though I make it in half the quantity at a time because...
THE SECRET OF TRULY EXCELLENT SHORTBREAD IS...forget the food processor. Use the above ingredients, first weigh out and mix all the dry ingredients then add soft, room temperature butter in a block. Then-using a kneading motion, work the dry ingredients into the block of butter. It's not hard, just counter-intuitive to those sure they ought to crumble it together. Go on kneading until all the dry has been worked in and further knead until the ball is smooth. I never fanny about with cling film and fridges... I use a victoria sandwich tin with a removable base. grease it then lightly dust with flour, work the dough in until it evenly fills the tin, prick it all over with a fork, cut ut into 8 pieces across the diagonal then cook -yes, for a shade longer than it says here, until the top is firm and the sides just drawn away slightly from the tin. You will have to cut the lines again when it has cooled a little, but you now have traditional 'Petticoat Tails' - named, one legend has it, after the fashions of Mary Queen of Scots French maids.