Hazelnut Shortbread

For all my American friends: Happy Thanksgiving!

The squirrels have devoured every single hazelnut in our garden again, but I don’t really mind. I like to see their acrobatics in the bushes and trees, although this year they have been rather sneaky and I’ve hardly seen them!

When I saw a squirrel cookie cutter recently, I knew it would be perfect for this hazelnut shortbread.

This shortbread has that wonderful crisp buttery flavour with an added extra – hazelnutty nuttiness! I also love the slight salty note in shortbread, and this recipe  has that too. In fact I would give it 10 out of 10 for flavour, crunch and appearance, and the consistency was also ideal for rolling out. Just for fun I stuck a few of them together with Nutella – yummy!

Hazelnut Shortbread

For about 60 cookies, you will need:

  • 300g (10.5 oz) salted butter
  • 200g (7 oz) granulated sugar
  • 400g (3 1/4 cups) plain flour
  • 40g (1/2 cup) ground hazelnuts
  • pinch of salt
  • 1 tsp cocoa powder
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • Nutella for filling (optional)

Beat butter and sugar together until soft and creamy. Sift in the flour, salt, cocoa powder and nuts. I used a large wooden spoon to blend these in, and then my (cold!) hands to bring it together into a ball. Trying not to handle it too much, wrap it in clingfilm and chill it for at least 45 minutes… the longer the better.

Remove from the fridge and divide; put half back in the fridge. Now roll out your dough on a well-floured surface to about 1/2 cm thickness and cut out shapes with a cookie cutter. Lay on greaseproof paper on a tray that will fit in your fridge – you need to keep these cold till baking. Repeat with the second half of the dough (or freeze it for a rainy day, which is what I did!) and then chill these too, for at least 15 minutes.

Now you can preheat your oven to 200°C/400°F. Bake the shortbread for 10-15 minutes – watch them the last few minutes as they brown very quickly – you want them to be “golden” brown! Place on a cooling rack. Once cool you can make sandwich cookies by spreading a little Nutella on half of them and placing another cookie on top. Nutella goes well with the hazelnut flavour of the shortbread, and I like them both with and without.

These are going on my Christmas Cookie list – using a festive cookie cutter of course!


Link for conversion tables:


39 thoughts on “Hazelnut Shortbread

  1. Yes how appropriate!
    I grow so much here just for the wildlife
    I would cut down my Apple tree which never seems to produce many apples maybe I need 2 trees 😦 duh lol
    I have the Pear tree that has hundreds of pears each year but if they start to hit the ground I have yellow jackets everywhere.

    They are here because of the bees and the HUMMINGBIRDS boy do they love the succession of flowering trees here for them to feed from and not just sugar water.

    They are so much fun to watch but dislike when they chew through roof to join me at a Poker Game 🙂


    Enjoy your Thursday and think of us over indulging here in the states lol not me lol Weight Watchwers gave us each a plate so we could work out what we would eat first so we are not scared to show up next Tuesday for weigh in 🙂 I will load my with veggies and some Turkey and go for a walk with our friends children 🙂 and the dogs as it will be 40 to 50 degrees F

  2. Our squirrels are getting a bit too fearless… They don’t hide; they’ll come right up to us and beg for food like our dog! And I’m sure the squirrels would beg even more for your cookies; they look delicious!

  3. love cookies- can not eat many )allergic to cane sugar. Might try beet sugar to see if that will work. The receipe reads as delicious. The photos that you posted of the cookies are extra good. Thank you for a wonderful receipe.

  4. Pingback: Lemon Rings | Words and Herbs

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