Chef John’s Rosemary Shortbread Cookies

Chef John’s Rosemary Shortbread Cookies While rosemary may seem like a strange addition to at first glance, it works so perfectly in these shortbread cookies that I’d argue they’re actually better than the original. There’s something so interesting about how the subtle hit of resinous herb works with this sweet, buttery cookie.


Original recipe yields 16 servings
The ingredient list now reflects the servings specified

Ingredient Checklist

Time Details

    PREP : 15 mins

    COOK : 50 mins

    TOTAL : 10 mins

    SERVING : 16

    YIELD : 32 cookies

  • Preheat oven to 300 degrees F (150 degrees C). Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

  • Place cold butter, sugar, rosemary, salt, and vanilla extract in bowl. Combine with the back of a spatula or spoon, slowly incorporating ingredients together until butter has softened somewhat and ingredients come together.

  • Pour flour into bowl with butter mixture. Flour your hands to then incorporate flour into the butter, using fingertips and rubbing mixture together until flour-y crumbs become buttery crumbs, 1 to 2 minutes. Press mixture together into a dough ball.

  • Transfer dough to lightly floured work surface. Press dough into a disk, then into a 1/2-inch thick rectangle. Cover with a piece of plastic wrap. Flatten dough to 1/4-inch thick using a flat pan or rolling pin. Reshape into a rectangle.

  • Cut dough lengthwise into 5 even strips about 1 inch wide, trimming extra dough if necessary. Cut each strip into 6 evenly sized squares. (You can roll out scraps to form more cookies if necessary). Transfer cookies to prepared baking sheet. Sprinkle each cookie with about a pinch of sugar. Using a fork, poke 4 rows of holes into each cookie.

  • Bake in preheated oven until golden brown, about 50 minutes.

  • Cool cookies 10 minutes on sheet; transfer cookies to rack to cool completely.

Per Serving: 192 calories; protein 1.9g; carbohydrates 20.5g; fat 11.5g; cholesterol 30.1mg; sodium 121.9mg. The bake time given is just a guide. It depends on the shape and thickness of your cookies, so be sure to start checking them at around 40 to 45 minutes. You can pull them as soon as they turn golden, but that depends on how mild a flavor you want.