Shortbread cookies are great for the holidays—not too sweet, super easy to throw together, infinitely customizable, and perfect for nibbling alongside hot cocoa or tea by the fire. This recipe goes one step further, using almond flour to make gluten-free cookies that are light, crumbly, and buttery. It’s also even more foolproof than traditional shortbread: the lack of gluten means you can roll and re-roll your scraps as many times as you want, and each scrap-cobbled cookie will be just as tender as the first.

This recipe requires only four ingredients and about 20 minutes’ time from start to finish, so it’s great for a last-minute (homemade!) gift or snack option. I’ve added sprinkles to the recipe base, but you can customize your cookies with mini chocolate chips, lemon zest, almond extract, dried cranberries, and nuts, or by glazing them with icing sugar or dipping them in chocolate.

You will need:

2 C almond flour
6 Tbsp room-temp salted butter
½ C powdered sugar
1 tsp vanilla
Sprinkles or mix-ins, optional

Set your oven to 350F.

Add all of your ingredients except your mix-ins to a bowl. I like to cut the butter into cubes to make it easier to mix together. You can mix this with a mixer, but it’s easier for me just to rub it all together with clean hands. One fewer tool to clean!

Once the butter is thoroughly worked into the flour, everything should come together into a ball.

This is where you can add your mix-ins—I chose sprinkles. Then roll this ball between two sheets of parchment to about ¼” thick.

Trim off the edges of your rolled-out dough to make a rectangular shape, then cut into squares (or any shape you wish). Re-roll the scraps, trimming and cutting until you’re out of dough.

Carefully peel the cookie dough off of the parchment and place the squares onto a parchment-lined baking sheet at least a half inch apart (these cookies don’t spread much)

Bake for 10 minutes, or until the edges are just slightly starting to brown.

Let the cookies sit on the parchment-lined pan until cool (they will be very soft when they come out of the oven; after they sit for a few minutes they will start to harden up).

Finish them with a sprinkling of powdered sugar, a drizzle of glaze, a dunk in melted chocolate, or just leave them as they are, and enjoy!

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