These soft and buttery Lemon Lavender Shortbread Cookies are a piece of heaven! The floral and citrus flavors balance perfectly together for a beautiful spring cookie recipe.
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Lemon Lavender Shortbread Cookies
These lavender cookies are so fun and delicious!
Worried about them tasting like soap? The trick is to not use too much lavender.
And lemon is the perfect flavor pairing for this herbal flower. They are just SO pretty and yummy!
Cooking with Lavender
It is perfectly safe to use lavender in food such as these Lavender Shortbread Cookies.
The most important part is ensuring that the lavender you use is culinary grade. This means it is safe to eat and not grown with chemicals and pollutants that would make it unsafe to eat.
You can easily find this information on the lavender you are purchasing.
What do Lavender Cookies Taste Like?
Lavender has a very strong scent, as you have probably noticed!
A little will go a long way, so we do not need to use much in these Lemon Lavender Shortbread Cookies.
Use too much, and it will be similar to eating soap!
It is not nearly as strong as rose (if you have ever tried that).
Lavender tastes a little earthy and fresh. And is a perfect compliment to a bright citrus flavor like lemon.
Should you chill shortbread before baking?
If you are making round cookies, yes!
See more about this in the question below, but having the log chilled will make it much easier to cut and will also help prevent the cookies from spreading and the butter leaking out of the cookies because it is too warm.
If you are baking the cookies in a baking dish, as written in the instructions, then there is no need to chill first.
To make round cookies, simply follow instructions after making the dough for our Earl Grey Shortbread Cookie recipe.
Why did my shortbread cookies go flat?
The cookies could flatten from the butter melting too fast. This occurs if your oven is too hot.
If you know your oven runs hot, use a temperature slightly lower.
It is also important to make sure the dough is chilled and not too warm when you bake it which will help prevent the butter from melting and spreading too fast.
Also, do not put the cookies in the oven until it is done preheating. The heating process is a higher heat blast that will affect your cookies.
Cooking Tips for the Shortbread
Unlike most cookies, you are not trying to get a golden brown shortbread.
The shortbread should still be rather pale. Look for the very bottom edge of the cookie to just start turning a light golden brown. This is when you want to pull them out of the oven!
Try to not make the cookies too thick, because trying to get them cooked through without over cooking the outside is a little tricky.
If you do want them thicker, I recommend cooking them in one large piece in a baking dish. Use the same ingredients but instead of rolling into a log, follow the instructions for my Coffee Shortbread Recipe at step 5.
Soft or Crisp Cookies
I learned the magic of different sugars by accident one time when I was making my Cherry Limeade Tart.
If you want a crisp, firm cookie, use granulated sugar.
If you want a soft cookie, which is what this recipe makes, use powdered sugar.
They are a 1 for 1 substitution (same quantity regardless of sugar type), so simply use whichever sugar you want based on how crisp or soft you want the shortbread to be.
Glaze for Cookies
I just love to make my lemon glaze for these tea cookies.
The lemon is a perfect pairing to the lavender flavor, enhancing that hint of citrus, and reminding you of having a cup of tea in front of you.
When you add the glaze, you can either dunk the cookies or drizzle it on top. But regardless of how you use it, make sure the cookies are cool first! If the cookies are warm, the glaze will slide off.
- Preheat oven to 325°F with the rack in the middle position.
- Line an 8 or 9 inch square baking dish with parchment paper, with at least two edges hanging over the dish (this will make it much easier to remove the cookies later).
- In a food processor, add the flour, sugar, salt, and lemon zest. Pulse together a few times to mix.
- Add the butter chunks around the flour along with the lavender buds and lemon juice. Pulse again until the dough starts to come together. Do not over process. It should still look crumbly. The dough should stick together when squeezed. If too dry, add a little more water or lemon juice and briefly incorporate.
- Press the dough across the bottom of the baking dish in an even layer. Prick the dough all over with a fork.
- Bake until the cookies are just golden brown, approximately 35-40 minutes. (An 8 inch pan may take 5-10 minutes longer as the dough is thicker).
- Place the baking dish on a wire rack to cool. While still warm but not hot, remove the bars from the dish using the edges of the parchment paper. Cut into pieces (to get the triangles, cut the square into 3×3 squares first, then diagonally across the squares to get 18 triangles).
- If desired, dunk or drizzle with the lemon glaze. Sprinkle a couple lavender buds or lemon zest on top of the wet glaze to set. Store in an airtight container for up to two weeks.