Buttery and nutty, with a hint of sweet maple, these hazelnut shortbread cookies are delightful and will melt in your mouth. They a perfect for enjoying with a cozy cup of tea or coffee, or wrapping up to give as a special treat to friends and family.
What's more, they are so easy to make! This is now one of my go-to cookies for the autumn season. I think you're going to love them as much as I do.
How to make hazelnut shortbread cookies
First of all, you need to prepare your hazelnuts. You might be able to buy them toasted and ground, but it's super easy to prepare them yourself. Check out my post on how to toast and peel hazelnuts.
Follow those steps, then simply throw them into a food processor and grind them into small pieces. Set the ground hazelnuts aside for now.
Sift the powdered sugar into a small bowl, and sift the flour and salt into another small bowl. Set them aside.
Next, beat the room temperature unsalted butter with the vanilla until it's nice and fluffy. I did this in my stand mixer with a paddle attachment, but you could do it by hand or with a hand mixer as well.
Add the sugar in with the butter while mixing on slow speed. Scrape the sides of the bowl down with a rubber spatula as needed. Mix in the vanilla, then slowly add in the flour/salt and mix until just combined (don't overmix).
Stir in the ground hazelnuts until they are spread evenly throughout the dough, being careful to not overmix.
On a lightly floured surface, roll or press the dough into two equal cylinders, about an inch or so in diameter.
Wrap each of them well in plastic wrap. You can use the wrap to help you press the crumbly dough together into the correct shape. Try to get the cylinders to be as round as possible. Place them in the fridge until they are firm, at least a couple hours.
Preheat your oven to 350°F / 177°C. Carefully cut the chilled and firm cookie dough cylinders into slices about a half-inch thick. I got fifteen cookies from each roll, for a total of thirty cookies.
Place the cookies on a parchment paper covered baking sheet. These cookies do not spread much so you do not need to leave massive space between them, but give them enough room to breath. Bake the cookies for ten minutes without letting them get to the point of browning.
The cookies will be very soft and delicate when they first come out of the oven, so allow them to cool on the baking sheet for five minutes before transferring them to a cooling rack to cool the rest of the way. The cookies should be completely cooled before adding the glaze.
The maple glaze
Because I wanted to dip these cookies, I used a small bowl with tall sides to mix the glaze in. Start by sifting the powdered sugar into the bowl. This will help to keep your glaze smooth and lump-free.
Next, whisk in the melted butter (not too hot) and maple syrup. It will turn into a thick frosting at this point.
To thin this out into a lovely glaze consistency, whisk in water an eighth-teaspoon at a time until you get a nice, glossy glaze that's still thick enough to cling to the cookies. If you accidentally add too much water, you can thicken it again with more powdered sugar.
Dip the cooled cookies halfway into the glaze.
Then wipe the underside of the cookie on the side of the bowl to remove any excess glaze. This helps to prevent any extra glaze from pooling around the cookie too much while it sets.
Place the dipped cookies on some parchment paper and give them time to let the glaze set.
Given time, the glaze will be firm and dry to the touch, and the cookies will be able to be stacked together. Put some in a little box with a decorative ribbon to give this tasty treat as a charming gift. Or, be a little selfish and keep them all for yourself. No one will blame you 😉
Shortbread cookies last for a long time - up to a month! But because of the glaze on these cookies, I recommend storing them in an airtight container for up to two weeks.
The texture of these cookies is fantastic - they truly melt-in-your mouth. It's very difficult to eat just one. I started my morning by having a couple of these with a hot cup of coffee. Such a blissful way to start the day. I hope you love these as much as I do.Print
Melt-in-your-mouth buttery, hazelnut shortbread cookies dipped in a sweet maple glaze. These autumn cookies are simply delicious.
Hazelnut Shortbread Cookies:
10 tablespoons (142 g) unsalted butter, room temperature
½ cup (65 g) powdered sugar
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 ½ cups (225 g) all-purpose flour
½ teaspoon salt
½ cup (60 g) ground, toasted hazelnuts
½ cup (65 g) powdered sugar
2 tablespoons maple syrup
1 tablespoon (14.2 g) butter, room temperature
Hazelnut Shortbread Cookies:
Sift the flour and salt into a small bowl, and sift the powdered sugar into another small bowl. Set aside.
Beat room temperature butter with vanilla until light and fluffy. I used a stand mixer with a paddle attachment on medium speed for about four minutes, however, you can also do this by hand or with a hand mixer. Reduce your mixer speed to slow and add in the sifted powdered sugar. Mix together well, scraping down the sides of the bowl with a rubber spatula as needed. Mix in vanilla extract.
Slowly add in the sifted flour and salt mixture, again scraping down the bowl as needed. Mix until just incorporated, being very careful to not overmix. Stir in the ground hazelnuts until evenly spread throughout the dough (don't overmix). The dough will be very crumbly.
On a lightly floured surface, roll or press the dough into two equal cylinders, about 1" or so in diameter. Wrap each well in plastic wrap. Use the wrap to help you squeeze the crumbly dough into the correct shape. Try to get the cylinders to be as round as possible. Place them in the fridge until firm, at least a couple hours.
Preheat oven to 350°F / 177°C. Carefully cut the cookie dough cylinders into slices about ½" thick. I got 15 cookies from each, for a total of 30 cookies. Place cookie slices on a parchment paper covered baking sheet. They won't spread too much, but leave some space between them. Bake for 10 minutes without letting them get to the point that they start to brown.
Let cookies cool on baking sheet for 5 minutes before transferring to a cooling rack to cool the rest of the way. The cookies should be completely cooled before adding glaze.
Ideally, for dipping purposes, mix the glaze in a small bowl with tall sides. Sift the powdered sugar into the bowl to help make your glaze smooth.
Whisk in the melted butter (not too hot) and maple syrup. Then thin to a nice glaze consistency by whisking in water, just ⅛ tsp at a time. It should be glossy and smooth. If you accidentally make the glaze too thin, you can thicken it again by adding more powdered sugar.
Dip the cooled hazelnut shortbread cookies halfway into the glaze. Wipe the bottom of the cookie on the side of the bowl to remove excess glaze (otherwise the extra glaze will pool around the cookie as it sets). Set the dipped cookies on parchment paper until the glaze has set and becomes firm and dry to the touch.
Store these cookies in an airtight container for up to two weeks.
These cookies can be frozen, but I recommend not adding the glaze until after they have been thawed.
Keywords: hazelnut shortbread cookies, shortbread cookies