Recipe: Jam Shortbread

I love this recipe because it's not only really tasty but unbelievably simple. I love the old-fashioned cookies and treats that I imagine my great grandmas may've baked occasionally, and these fall into that category. Something about baking nostalgic, traditional, meaningful recipes is always wonderful, but during the holidays it's an extra-special feeling to me. We make these with homemade jam. A really good jam that you love is key to this recipe. I love making jam, especially raspberry, and even more than that, I love eating jam! As I said, my favorite is raspberry, but I also love apricot, and really, any jam is a great jam in my opinion. This is a fun way to enjoy jam in the colder months. 


  • 10 tablespoons real butter, at room temperature 
  • 1/3 cup powdered sugar 
  • 1 1/3 cup white flour 
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract 
  • Tiny pinch of sea salt optional 
  • 1 tablespoon water Jam (your favorite kind, I love homemade red raspberry) 


  1. Mix butter, powdered sugar, flour, vanilla and sea salt until the mixture resembles small crumbs, kind of like when making a pie pastry. 
  2. Take 2 tablespoons of the mixture of crumbs to reserve for later. 
  3. Add 1/2 tablespoon of water slowly to the rest of the dough and blend. The dough should come together without being at all sticky. You may need to add a tiny bit more water, but even a very little bit goes a very long way. 
  4.  On a sheet of parchment paper, press the dough out. You want it to be relatively thin, but you don't want any holes in it. Then, carefully spread jam over the top. If your jam is very thick it may help to microwave it first. I use about 4 Tablespoons of jam, but use as much or as little as you please. 
  5. Sprinkle reserved crumbs over the top of the jam. 
  6. Bake at 375 for 20 minutes. You want the edges to begin browning but you don't want to overcook this. You're looking for the just-barely-golden-edging look. Allow to cool completely before cutting into pieces- I like to make pizza-like triangles, because that's what Bean loves.

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