These gluten free lavender shortbread cookies are so buttery, sweet, and delicious! The lavender flavor is bright yet not overpowering, making these perfect for Spring.
I have to say, I've always been intrigued by the idea of baking with lavender. I mean, that's one of my favorite things about baking and developing recipes for this site -- the experimentation! It's so fun to try new things. So when I got my hands on lavender extract paste, I knew a lavender shortbread recipe was in the cards.
I'm also a sucker for buttery shortbread cookies, so I decided to base this lavender cookie recipe on my slice and bake shortbread cookies. The resulting cookies are sweet, like a classic sugar cookie, but with that extra hint of floral flavor.
What Does Lavender Taste Like?
You may be familiar with lavender as a scent or an essential oil. You may even know that, from an aromatherapy standpoint, lavender can be calming and is used often before bed to help promote a good night's sleep.
But if you've never had dessert made with lavender, you might be wondering what it tastes like. It's definitely a strong flavor, so a little goes a long way. Lavender lends a wonderful floral flavor to baked goods, but only if done correctly.
If a recipe relies too heavily on lavender as the star ingredient, it will likely be too overpowering and might even taste soapy. Luckily, the lavender flavor in these shortbread cookies is complemented nicely by the vanilla -- I find that the two balance each other out perfectly here.
How To Bake With Lavender...
If you've never baked with lavender, you might have a lot of questions. There a few different ways to incorporate lavender into your baked goods. Many recipes will call for dried lavender, but I wasn't sure how I felt about incorporating that into my cookie dough (texture-wise).
For this recipe, we're using lavender extract paste, which is similar to traditional extract except it's more concentrated. That just means we're using less of it than we would extract, because we don't want the flavor to be too overpowering. See my recipe notes about how to substitute lavender extract, if necessary.
One important thing to note: lavender extract/paste is NOT the same thing as lavender oil. Make sure you are using culinary lavender, which is made for baking/cooking.
Why You'll Love These Lavender Shortbread Cookies...
- As I mentioned before, the flavor is subtle. These really do taste more like buttery sugar cookies, but then you get little hints of bright and floral flavor.
- This lavender cookie recipe honestly couldn't be easier. We're talking 6 ingredients.
- These are a great treat for an Easter brunch, or with afternoon tea on Mother's Day. There's just something so Spring-like about them!
What You'll Need...
How To Make...
To make my gluten free lavender cookies, we'll start by creaming the butter with the sugar and salt. We're using a whole cup of butter (2 sticks) because shortbread cookies need to be buttery! That's what makes them delicious, in my opinion.
Once that's smooth and creamy, mix in the vanilla extract and lavender extract paste. Finally, add the flour in and beat on low speed until you have a soft cookie dough.
Transfer the cookie dough onto a piece of plastic wrap and use your hands to form it into a log shape. Wrap up the dough tightly and roll to get a perfect log. Twist the ends of the plastic wrap and pop into the refrigerator to chill for at least 2 hours.
This step is important, not only because it will keep the cookies from spreading while baking, but it helps all of the great flavor really soak into the dough.
After chilling, unwrap and slice the cookie dough into ½ inch discs. Bake on 350ºF for around 20 minutes.
Lavender Shortbread Ingredient Substitutions...
- I haven't tested it, but you should be able to make these lavender shortbread cookies vegan by substituting your favorite non-dairy butter.
- If you have trouble finding lavender extract paste, you can use lavender extract instead. Keep in mind that the paste is more concentrated, so while the recipe calls for ½ teaspoon paste, I recommend using 1 teaspoon if you are using extract.
Did you make my lavender shortbread cookies? Leave me a comment below or tag me on Instagram @justastastyblog and #justastastyblog!
Lavender Shortbread Cookies - Gluten Free, Eggless
- 1 cup (226g) unsalted butter room temperature
- ½ cup (100g) granulated sugar
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- ½ teaspoon lavender paste
- 2 cups (296g) gluten free flour blend
- Using a hand mixer or a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream the butter with the sugar and salt.
- Add the vanilla extract and lavender paste and beat to combine. Add the flour and mix on low speed until dough forms.
- Transfer dough onto a piece of plastic wrap and roll into a log, twisting the ends so that it's tightly wrapped. Chill in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours.
- Preheat oven to 350°F and line a couple of baking sheets with parchment paper. Set aside.
- Remove dough from the refrigerator, unwrap, and slice into ½ inch rounds. Arrange cookies on prepared baking sheets, a couple of inches apart, and bake for 18-20 minutes. Allow cookies to cool on baking sheet for 10 minutes, then transfer to a cooling rack to cool completely.
- If you prefer to use lavender extract rather than paste, increase the amount to 1 tsp. The paste is more concentrated than the extract, so a little bit goes a long way.