Almond Shortbread Cookies

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Simple, buttery Almond Shortbread Cookies made with just 6 ingredients – no oil, gluten, or refined sugar. The perfect easy Christmas (or anytime) cookie!


It is December. Pumpkin things are out. Cookies are in. And I am READY FOR IT.

Admittedly I did get a jumpstart on holiday cookie-ing with these snickerdoodles. But they were healthy and designed for breakfast, doesn’t count. Now it’s officially time for sweet and buttery, break out the cookie cutters, dip in dark chocolate, real deal cookie baking.

Sugar cookies or shortbread? Personally I think there’s a place at the holidays for both. Sugar cookies are softer and more delicate, yummy on their own but designed to be decorated with colorful glazes and candy sprinkles. Whereas shortbread is snappier and more sophisticated, best eaten plain or with a simple chocolate coating to show off those scalloped edges.

In my house growing up the tradition was always sugar cookies of every shape with every color of frosting piped on to make bells and trees and reindeer and ornaments. Those days spent in the kitchen with my mom and sister are some of my best holiday memories, and stand out much more than any gifts.

These days I love making healthier versions of my favorite holiday cookies, so I can have all the fun times with family but skip the stomachache from eating too much dough and frosting. Last year I recreated my favorite sugar cookies, so this year it was time to tackle shortbread. And yes, this recipe will work for cutting into festive shapes and decorating with frosting and sprinkles too!

I was worried when I set out to develop this recipe that I wouldn’t be able to get the proper shortbread cookie SNAP without oil or refined sugar. Chewy is easy, but crispy vegan cookies can be tricky. Well was I ever wrong…

These Almond Shortbread Cookies are golden on the outside and crispy all the way through. Snappy when you bite in, and stay snappy for days if you store them properly. Not dry or crumbly. Not made with any grains or oil. Not not the easiest cookie you will make all season – six ingredients, one bowl, 10 minutes to bake!

You will need:

  • almond flour
  • coconut flour
  • maple syrup (naturally sweetened christmas cookies ftw!)
  • coconut butter
  • almond extract
  • salt

And that’s it. Crazy, right?

The almond + coconut flour combo makes them moist but not too moist, crunchy but not too crumbly. And there is only a quarter cup of maple syrup for the whole batch (18-20 cookies), so that counts as healthier if you ask me. I don’t recommend swapping the coconut butter for anything else, but if you must cashew butter (same amount) or coconut oil (a little less) would be your best alternatives.

With such a simple lineup, most of the flavor comes from the almond extract. You know that magical little bottle of liquid that smells like happiness and marzipan, and makes everything taste faintly reminiscent of wedding cake. I used Nielsen-Massey’s Pure Almond Extract for these cookies, because I trust the quality of their extracts and flavors. The flavor is strong and the ingredient list is short – made with just alcohol, pure bitter almond oil, and water. All Nielsen-Massey products are all natural, GMO-free, certified gluten-free, and allergy friendly too.

And even though this recipe calls for just a teaspoon of almond extract, if you love the flavor as much as I do a little extra won’t hurt.

These cookies are better make a double batch GOOD. Bake now and again for Christmas GOOD. Only share with your very favorite people GOOD. And the perfect way to kick off your holiday cookie baking GOOD.

If you give these Almond Shortbread Cookies a try, I want to see! Tag me @feastingonfruit and @nielsenmassey on Instagram, and follow Nielsen-Massey on Facebook and Pinterest for more recipe inspiration.


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Almond Shortbread Cookies

4.8 from 9 reviews

  • Author: Natalie
  • Prep Time: 00:15
  • Cook Time: 00:10
  • Total Time: 25 minutes
  • Yield: 18 cookies 1x
  • Category: cookies
  • Method: baking
  • Cuisine: american

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Simple, buttery Almond Shortbread Cookies made with just 6 ingredients – no oil, gluten, or refined sugar. The perfect easy Christmas (or anytime) cookie!



  • 1 cup (110g) almond flour
  • 1/3 cup (40g) coconut flour
  • 1/4 cup (80g) maple syrup
  • 1/3 cup (80g) coconut butter*
  • 1 tsp Nielsen-Massey Pure Almond Extract
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • Optional: 1/2 cup (120g) melted dark chocolate chips for dipping


  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F.
  2. Whisk together the coconut butter, maple syrup, and almond extract.
  3. Add the coconut flour, almond flour, and salt. Mix/knead to form a moist ball of dough.
  4. Roll out to 1/4 inch thickness. Cut into circles (using a cookie cutter or a mason jar lid works too!) and transfer to a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.
  5. Bake for 10 minutes at 350°F or until golden around the edges.
  6. Remove from the oven and cool. They are delicious warm, but if you are going to dip them in chocolate I recommend letting them cool completely first.
  7. Keep leftovers in the refrigerator in an airtight container for up to a week.


* Coconut butter is really best here, but if you have so substitute I’d recommend runny cashew butter (same 1/3 cup) or coconut oil (reduce to 1/4 cup).


  • Serving Size: 1 cookie
  • Calories: 104
  • Sugar: 5g
  • Fat: 7g
  • Saturated Fat: 2g
  • Carbohydrates: 9g
  • Fiber: 2g
  • Protein: 3g

Keywords: christmas, paleo, vegan, baking, holiday, gluten free, easy, recipe, dessert

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