Try these shortbread cookies with a fun twist - matcha powder! These Matcha Shortbread Cookies are buttery and delicious, vibrant green, and have a wonderful unique flavour thanks to the matcha powder.
Do all of the green foods at St. Patrick's Day weird you out a little bit? I mean, I get it, it's about getting into the spirit of things, but must we really dye our beer green? I remember my local coffee shop used to put green food colouring in their milk and foam up some real funky looking green lattes.
Let me assure you the only green beverage I'll be consuming this St. Patrick's Day is a matcha latte, all beautifully and naturally green.
If you're looking for something that's naturally green and delicious to nibble on, let me introduce you to my second-favourite shortbread cookie of all time (my first favourite is my mom's brown sugar shortbread recipe, which we only make at Christmas time), Matcha Shortbread Cookies. They're easy to make, they're vibrant green, and they're delightful to eat.
Hey Nutrition Lady, what's the deal with matcha anyways?
Folks, I'm glad you asked. Matcha is a traditional Japanese green tea, which is consumed in whole leaf form. With regular tea you steep it and strain out the leaves, but matcha is top-quality green tea leaves which have been stone ground into a super fine powder.
It’s packed with antioxidants, including L-theanine, which is known to have a relaxing and calming effect on both body and mind. And, in addition to being great as a drink, matcha makes a damn fine shortbread cookie.
There are lots of different qualities of matcha available on the market. For my matcha lattes I opt for a ceremonial grade, which is pretty much the best you can get - but also the most expensive.
Since we're baking with it here it's not necessary to use top-quality stuff, and if you use a lot of matcha in non-tea applications such as this Mango Matcha Green Tea Smoothie and baking, you may want to invest in some lower-quality matcha for that purpose.
But if you, like me, can't be bothered to get a second bag, you certainly can use the best of the best in these matcha shortbread cookies.
These matcha shortbread cookies are super simple to make. It's a matter of creaming some butter and powdered sugar together with a bit of matcha powder, some all-purpose flour, and a pinch of salt. After a quick chill in the fridge, they'll ready to roll out.
Here you've got a couple of choices. You can roll them out and use cookie cutters to cut them into cute shapes - these heart shapes were the closest thing I had to a four-leaf clover - or you can form the dough into a log while it's still soft, chill that, and then simply slice the log. The latter option is probably a bit easier, and if you're not preoccupied with your cookies coming out cute, it might be your best bet.
Other recipes you might enjoy:
Matcha Shortbread Cookies
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 Tablespoons matcha powder
- ½ teaspoon fine grain salt
- ¾ cup powdered sugar
- 1 cup unsalted butter room temperature
- In a medium-sized bowl, sift the flour, matcha powder, and salt together.
- Using an electric mixer, cream the butter and powdered sugar together until light and fluffy.
- Add the flour mixture, and mix together on low speed until combined. The mixture will be crumbly, but should hold together if you squeeze it in your hand.
- Lightly dust your counter top with flour, and turn the matcha short bread out of the bowl.
- Gather into a flat disc (if you're rolling and cutting) or form into a log (if you're slicing). Wrap with plastic wrap, and place in the fridge to chill for at least 30 minutes.
- When you're ready to bake, preheat the oven to 325°F / 170°C. Line two large baking sheets with parchment paper.
- Roll the chilled dough to ¼-inch thick, and use cookie cutters to cut into shapes. Alternatively, slice the log into ¼-inch slices.
- Transfer the cookies to the prepared baking sheets, and place into the pre-heated oven.
- Bake for 10-15 minutes (depending on the size of your cookies) until they are just beginning to turn brown around the edges.
- Transfer to a wire wrack to cool completely, and serve with a nice cup of tea.
- Note: nutrition calculations are an estimate only
- If you want to prepare the cookies in advance, they can be kept in an airtight container for one week, or in the freezer for about one month.
- Dough can be chilled overnight, just let it come to room temperature for about an hour before rolling.