Orange shortbread

When life gives you oranges, why not turn them into a delicious treat? Orange shortbread cookies are a delightful twist on the classic shortbread, infusing the rich, buttery flavour of the traditional cookie with the zesty brightness of oranges. In this blog post, we’ll explore the magic of orange shortbread, its refreshing history, and share a recipe that will bring a burst of citrus sunshine to your kitchen.

The Appeal of Orange Shortbread

Orange shortbread cookies are the embodiment of a perfect marriage between the comforting and the refreshing. While classic shortbread is renowned for its simplicity, featuring butter, sugar, and flour, the addition of fresh orange zest and juice transforms these cookies into a citrusy delight.

What makes orange shortbread truly special is its versatility. It’s equally suitable for a cosy winter afternoon by the fireplace as it is for a summery picnic in the park. The aroma of freshly grated orange zest and the tangy burst of citrus flavour make these cookies a delightful treat all year round.

Ingredients for Orange Shortbread Cookies:

For your batch of Orange Shortbread Cookies, you’ll need:

  • 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • Zest of 2 oranges
  • 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed orange juice
  • A pinch of salt
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract (optional)


  1. Preheat Your Oven: Begin by preheating your oven to 325°F (160°C). Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone baking mat.
  2. Cream the Butter and Sugar: In a large mixing bowl, cream together the softened butter and granulated sugar until the mixture is light and fluffy. This typically takes about 2-3 minutes of mixing with an electric mixer.
  3. Add Flavour: Incorporate the freshly grated orange zest, orange juice, and pure vanilla extract (if using) into the creamed butter and sugar. Mix until well combined.
  4. Incorporate Dry Ingredients: Gradually add the all-purpose flour and a pinch of salt to the mixture. Mix until the dough just comes together. Be careful not to overmix; you want a crumbly, sandy texture.
  5. Shape the Dough: Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and gently knead it a few times until it forms a cohesive ball.
  6. Form the Cookies: Roll out the dough to about 1/2 inch (1.27 cm) thickness. Use cookie cutters to cut out your desired shapes or simply cut the dough into squares or rectangles.
  7. Bake to Perfection: Place the cookies on the prepared baking sheet and bake in the preheated oven for approximately 15-18 minutes, or until the edges become slightly firm and they no longer look wet on top.
  8. Cool and Enjoy: Remove the Orange Shortbread Cookies from the oven and let them cool on the baking sheet for a few minutes before transferring them to a wire rack to cool completely.

Orange shortbread cookies are a delightful twist on a classic favourite, infusing the essence of citrus into every bite. These cookies capture the essence of a sunny day and bring a burst of fresh flavour to your palate.

So, gather your oranges and get ready to create a batch of these citrusy delights. Share the joy of Orange Shortbread Cookies with friends and family, and savour the refreshing taste and aroma of oranges in every bite. Whether enjoyed as an afternoon snack or a sweet ending to a meal, these cookies are sure to brighten your day with a touch of citrus sunshine.