Lemon Shortbread Cookie, Off the Beaten Path Style!

With the rainy winter season in full effect here in wine country, we wanted to throw a little brightness in everyone's life with our absolute favorite lemon shortbread cookie recipe on National Shortbread Day! This little cookie is sure to brighten your day :-)

In wine country right now the Meyer Lemon is very much in season too, so for a super fresh California seasonal twist, why not prepare it with a Meyer Lemon instead!

Without further ado - here is the recipe!

Iced Lemon Shortbread Cookies


  • 2 cups flour

  • 1/4 cup corn starch

  • 1/4 teaspoon salt

  • zest of 2 large organic lemons

  • 2 sticks of butter, room temperature

  • 1/2 cup powdered sugar/confectioner's sugar

  • 1/2 teaspoon Madagascar Bourbon Vanilla Bean Paste*

  • 1/4 teaspoon lemon extract


  • 1 cup powdered sugar/confectioner's sugar

  • water (in small amounts until you reach your desired consistency

  • 1 large organic lemon

  • powdered sugar for dusting, optional!


  • medium bowl

  • sifter

  • zester

  • stand mixer with paddle mixer

  • spatula

  • cookie sheets

  • saran wrap


  • In a medium bowl, sift together the flour, cornstarch and salt; set aside.

  • Wash, dry and zest 2 large lemons.

  • In your stand mixer fit with the paddle attachment, beat the butter and powdered sugar for a few minutes until fluffy.

  • Reduce speed to low, and add lemon extract, lemon zest & vanilla bean paste.

  • Wipe down the sides of the bowl with a spatula + the beater then continue to beat until everything is well blended.

  • Keep the mixer on the low setting and slowly add in 1/2 cup dry flour mixture at a time until completely blended in.

  • Once all your flour mixture is incorporated in the blender, turn it off, scrape the sides with the spatula, and then run for 30 more seconds on low.

  • Cover the mixer bowl's top with saran wrap and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes to cool dough prior to forming it to be sliced. Don't leave it in too long, or it will be harder to remove from the bowl.

  • Grab your saran wrap and layout a long piece, take the dough from the mixer bowl and form it into a long roll. Wrap the saran wrap around the dough and begin to roll it to form a long roll that's about 10 inches long (if you want larger cookies - why not! - you can make the dough shorter and rounder. Try to shape the dough into a rounded square shape with the saran wrap.

  • Put the formed dough back in the refrigerator for an additional 30 minutes to an hour.

  • Preheat your oven to 325 degrees F.

  • Remove the dough from the fridge, and slice into 1/2 inch even cookie sections (you will want your cookies to cook evenly so try and keep them as close to the same size as possible).

  • Place the sliced cookies on a non-stick cookie sheet and then move to another location for icing!

  • For the icing, put the powdered sugar in a small bowl and slowly add a teaspoon of water at a time combining with a fork until you get a nice consistency of icing - we find that around 2-3 teaspoons is plenty! Put the icing in a pastry bag (or Ziploc bag!) with a really thin tip. Drizzle the cookies with the icing, quickly zest a bit of lemon over the freshly iced cookies and dust them with powdered sugar - enjoy!

This recipe can make about 30 cookies depending on how long you roll your dough!

*Feel free to substitute vanilla extract for this ingredient (although we find it adds a delicious layer of flavor)!

This recipe was inspired and adapted by Swanky Recipes: http://www.swankyrecipes.com/lemon-shortbread-cookies.html

Please tell us how you like this recipe! It's one of our favorites! We love featuring it on our dessert bars :-)

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