On TV Tonight

  • 20:00 - Caribbean Food Made Easy - CARIBBEAN FOOD MADE EASY
  • 20:30 - Chinese Food Made Easy - Fast Food and Street Food
  • 21:00 - MasterChef - MasterChef

This recipe is classed as easy

Rating 3.51 / 5 (730 votes)

Prep time:
10 min, plus 30 mins chilling
Cook time:
20 min

James Martin's grandmother's easy shortbread recipe has a light, buttery taste


1. Dice the butter and put into a mixing bowl to soften a little. Sift over the flour, caster sugar, salt and vanilla extract. Rub together with your fingertips and form the mixture into a ball.

2. Lightly flour the work surface. Roll out the shortbread and cut into strips approximately 4cm wide and 10cm long. Lay the biscuits out on a greased baking sheet and prick the surfaces all over with a fork. Refrigerate for 30 minutes.

3. Preheat the oven to 180C/gas 4.

4. Sprinkle sugar over the shortbread then bake for 8 minutes, or until firm to the touch. Cool before removing from the baking sheet. Dust with caster sugar before serving with lemon posset.

Comments & Ratings

Rate this recipe by clicking on the stars.

You need to be logged in to comment on this recipe

Forgotten your password?
Resend activation

Login Register

Latest Comment


Just made them with my granddaughter and were really easy to do. Took about 12 minutes to cook but that might just be my oven. Lovely buttery taste, no good for the diet! Sue

SueD56812 SueD56812  Posted 13 Apr 2015 4:37 PM

watched James prepare this yesterday 21 Jan and the recipe contained cornfloour?

JuneR3220 JuneR3220  Posted 22 Jan 2015 3:12 PM

easy and delicious

nicky3472 nicky3472  Posted 25 Jan 2014 2:43 PM

@Sylvander, where's this recipe then... please..Smile

Big Cook Big Cook Posted 03 Oct 2013 7:18 PM

LOL... Wondered what ingredients "putinto" was

leanneG21961 leanneG21961 Posted 03 Apr 2013 12:18 PM

Born and Raised in Scotland ad the son of a Scottish Baker I must concede that this recipe defies the logic of shortbread. Would you like to have my World Class Recipe?

sylvander sylvander Posted 11 Mar 2013 1:09 AM

DianeK60689- my mixture also didn't want to stick together very well and made it difficult to make a ball, so I just added a tiny bit of water and it did the trick!

LucyH11814 LucyH11814 Posted 07 May 2012 2:21 PM

Fantastic recipe, producing light buttery biscuits. Used Icing sugar instead of Caster in the recipe making it even lighter. Thankyou Mr Martin

Amanda34 Amanda34 Posted 10 Feb 2012 11:51 AM

I'm a first time biscuit maker but this recipe was very easy and totally delicious! Can't wait to make some more!

DianeK60689 DianeK60689 Posted 17 Feb 2011 7:57 AM

i've made this a few times now and my shortbread always seems to spread n never keeps its shape. wot am i doin wrong. could i possibly be overhandling the mixture? wondered if i'd be better using a food processor??? please help

CES1981 CES1981 Posted 22 Oct 2010 7:32 PM

Very easy, I changed it slightly by adding a ginger syrup to the top and they were delicious, thankyou.

LisaP70372 LisaP70372 Posted 13 Sep 2010 9:35 PM

snowed off work so took the oppertunity to make this recipe, with the Lemon Posset, both items were very simple and yet so deliceous!! they work together like a dream, cant fail for the sweet lovers out there.

davidB76518 davidB76518 Posted 08 Jan 2010 2:34 PM

Easiest biscuits I've every made with my Son who loved getting his hands in the mix!! Would definately recommend using this recipe they turned out great and tasted that way too!

sarahM11911 sarahM11911 Posted 04 Oct 2009 9:18 PM

i have just made shirtbread for the first time.This recipe is so easy and it is to die for

stevie t1 stevie t1 Posted 07 Aug 2009 3:13 PM

My god - I can't believe how easy it was to make something so delicious!! Keep these amazing recipes coming JM!

TeMMeriSSa TeMMeriSSa Posted 05 Aug 2009 11:08 PM

My god - I can't believe how easy it was to make something so delicious!! Keep these amazing recipes coming JM!

TeMMeriSSa TeMMeriSSa Posted 05 Aug 2009 11:06 PM

i love james martin`s recipes....and james martin too...keep baking.

Anonymous Anonymous Posted 04 Jul 2009 2:52 PM

What is putinto and where is it in the ingredients?

Anonymous Anonymous Posted 21 Jun 2009 2:09 PM

This shortbread is fantastic take minutes to make and it taste so good. so easy managed to get it right first time.

michelleC53027 michelleC53027 Posted 21 Apr 2009 4:45 PM

I found this recipe quick and easy to make. I've used different recipes for shortbread, but this is the best one so far.

RachelW31044 RachelW31044 Posted 04 Apr 2009 9:00 AM

After my first comment, I have now made the shortbread several times and they are gorgeous. Goodness only knows where I where went wrong first time. These are the best.

stibbs stibbs Posted 15 Jan 2009 8:33 AM

Okay, I made these again and they were fantastic. Goodness only knows where I went wrong on first attempt, but well worth trying again, and again, and again....

stibbs stibbs Posted 12 Dec 2008 2:15 PM

i tried this tonight , followed all

lids lids Posted 07 Dec 2008 9:24 PM

I tried this today and despite having watched the programme and following the recipe to the letter, the mix was far too short to roll. Pressed into mould, but on turning out, it fell apart.

stibbs stibbs Posted 07 Dec 2008 2:22 PM

OMG THE MANS A GURU!!!!!!these are fantastic....made them today so simple and easy you are simply a master THANKS,
priya xxx

priyaJ1161 priyaJ1161 Posted 05 Dec 2008 3:40 PM