Almond Shortbread Bars

A pan of almond blondies with a slice removed

Almond Shortbread Bars ~ an easy shortbread dessert recipe infused with a homemade almond paste, and topped with a to-die-for sweet almond glaze that gets poured right over the  hot pan…are you drooling yet?

A pan of almond shortbread bars topped with an almond glaze

My love for almond desserts is only equaled by my love for lemon deserts. Chocolate, coffee, pumpkin, and rhubarb are in the running too, but almond is sort of in a category of its own. The way it lingers on the palate is so lovely.

I’ve layered that lingering almond flavor into these shortbread bars in a few ways ~ I made a homemade almond paste, used almond extract, and topped it with a sweet almond glaze. When it comes to almond I don’t skimp!

an almond shortbread bar on a plate with fork

These bars have a lovely buttery melt in your mouth texture, and the sweet glaze gives them a real pop. I guarantee they’ll be a hit with whomever you deign to share them with. (The 9×13 pan makes enough for you to bring and save a little bit back for yourself.)

Holding an almond shortbread bar with a plate and napkin

Make these almond shortbread bars ahead!

I think these bars actually tasted even better the next day, so don’t hesitate to make them ahead of time.

After cooling completely, keep them in the pan on the counter and cover loosely with foil. When I know I’m going to make a dessert like this ahead I don’t cut it up, that way it doesn’t have a chance to dry out.

Of course the chef has permission to do a taste test, as always 🙂

A pan of almond blondies with a slice removed

There’s something about pouring a hot glaze or frosting over a hot pan, I just love it. In this case a simple glaze of butter, cream, sugar, and almond extract and almonds is poured straight over the warm from the oven shortbread.

Note: I don’t recommend skipping the glaze for this recipe, I think the shortbread needs the added touch of sweetness and moisture that the glaze provides.

a pan of almond shortbread bars glazed, in the pan

I don’t want to give all the glory to the glaze, after all, I made a homemade almond paste (so easy!) to go in this shortbread and it was pretty amazing too. We almond fanatics need to know all the tricks to infuse layer upon layer of almond flavor.

See the full instructions for how to make homemade almond paste here.

Tasting an almond shortbread bar

So there you have it, I know what I’ll be bringing next time I’m asked to provide ‘something sweet’.

tvfgi recommends: non-stick 9×13 Pan

USA Pan Bakeware Rectangular Cake Pan, 9 x 13 inch, Nonstick & Quick Release Coating, Made in the USA from Aluminized Steel

USA makes a whole line of bakeware and I’m slowly replacing all my pans. This pan bakes and cleans up like a dream.


A stack of almond shortbread bars on a white plate

More almond dessert recipes from the archives ~

Reader Rave ~

“This was a hit at my house and at work! I made the almond paste per your recipe then these almond shortbread bars. Took the remainder to work and when I came home, my husband asked me what I did with the cake! We can’t possibly have the whole thing, but I promised I would make it again.”  ~ Debbie

A pan of almond blondies with a slice removed
3.96 from 183 votes

Almond Shortbread Bars

Almond Shortbread Bars ~ melt in your mouth shortbread infused with a homemade almond paste, and topped with a to-die-for sweet almond glaze.
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Yield 20 servings
Author Sue Moran


  • 9x13 baking pan


  • 1 cup or 227 grams butter at room temperature
  • 3/4 cup or 166 grams granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup or 128 grams almond paste at room temperature
  • 1 large egg at room temperature
  • 1 tsp almond extract
  • 2 cups or 295 grams all purpose flour


  • 1/2 cup or 114 grams unsalted butter
  • 1/4 cup or 60 grams heavy cream
  • 2 and 1/2 to 3 cups or 300 to 375 grams confectioner's sugar sifted
  • 1 tsp almond extract
  • 1/2 cup or 55 grams sliced almonds


  • Preheat oven to 350F Lightly butter and flour a 9x13 baking pan.
  • Cream the butter and sugar together until light and fluffy, about 3 to 4 minutes, scraping down the sides of the bowl as necessary.
  • Add the egg, almond paste, and extract, and beat until well combined. Make sure to smooth out any lumps of almond paste.
  • Add the flour and gently mix until just blended and no dry flour remains. Don't over mix.
  • Spread the dough out evenly in the baking pan with an offset spatula. It will take a minute or two to get it spread and level. I like to drop chunks of the batter all over the bottom of the pan before I start to try to spread it out.
  • Bake for 25 to 30 minutes, just until set and starting to turn golden along the edges of the pan. Don't over bake, as you want your shortbread to be tender. Check the pan on the early side.
  • Cool on a rack for 10 minutes before glazing.
  • To make the glaze, heat the butter and cream in a medium saucepan until the butter melts. Stir in the sugar and extract, and whisk until the glaze is smooth. If it seems too thin, add a bit more sugar, and if it seems too thick, add a touch more cream. Stir in the sliced almonds and pour over the warm shortbread. Ease the glaze to all the edges with an offset spatula, working quickly.
  • Let the pan cool before slicing.
The nutritional information for recipes on this site is provided as a courtesy and although tries to provide accurate nutritional information, these figures are only estimates.

Make these almond shortbread bars your own ~

  • Try a good quality gluten free baking mix instead of all purpose flour


Thanks for pinning!

almond shortbread bars pin


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    Leave a Reply

    Please rate this recipe!

  • Reply
    September 8, 2021 at 10:11 am

    5 stars
    This was so yummy and pretty easy to make! I read comments about the marzipan being difficult to incorporate into the batter so I beat the almond paste with the egg first, then added it to the beaten sugar/butter mixture. This produced a beautifully smooth and airy batter that bakes up nice and tender. I love this recipe!

    • Reply
      Sue Moran
      September 8, 2021 at 11:39 am

      So happy you loved this Michelle, thanks for taking the time to let us know 🙂

  • Reply
    July 10, 2021 at 5:10 pm

    5 stars
    I made these using your homemade almond paste, and omg, they are incredible! I think I’ll add it to my Christmas baking line up. In the almond paste, I used a combination of blanched almonds, slivered almonds and a little bit of almond flour to use what I had on hand and it came out perfect, I’ll use the rest in croissants! I made the dough as written but my glaze was quite thick after 2 cups of sugar. I used a tablespoon each of heavy cream and milk. I ran out of almond extract so ended up mixing in some of the almond paste into the glaze and it is perfect. Thanks so much for the recipe!

    • Reply
      Sue Moran
      July 10, 2021 at 6:17 pm

      Almond croissants are my ultimate weakness…

  • Reply
    Paul Mitchell
    March 7, 2021 at 5:16 pm

    5 stars
    Fantastic. Exceeded expectations; some struggles mixing but the end result was unbelievable better than dreamed of
    Made exactly to your specifications

  • Reply
    [email protected]
    January 19, 2021 at 5:48 pm

    ?Miss Sue .. I haVe made these serval times now .. mY FAM s new favorite.. thank u .. a few friends haVe asked for the recipe.. I read recipes & cookbooks like other people read a novel.. I really believe ur recipe iS much better than most because u like i use almond paste and almond extract.. some recipe call for extract only.. I have also add a little almond liquor to mine .. thank u thank u for sharing ?

    • Reply
      Sue Moran
      January 19, 2021 at 6:36 pm

      The almond liqueur is genius Maryann, glad to meet a fellow almond lover…:)

  • Reply
    December 9, 2020 at 5:02 pm

    Hi, this recipe looks incredible. Do you think these almond bars would freeze well?

    • Reply
      December 9, 2020 at 5:26 pm

      Yes, they’d freeze great, just be sure to let them cool completely, wrap in plastic, and then wrap in foil.

  • Reply
    July 10, 2020 at 5:05 pm

    5 stars
    Can you substitute the all purpose flour with almond flour? I have to make these now! Another almond addict.

    • Reply
      July 10, 2020 at 8:37 pm


  • Reply
    Elizabeth Dodson
    June 8, 2020 at 8:43 am

    Calories, please!

  • Reply
    Anne Marie
    March 8, 2020 at 7:37 am

    5 stars
    This is an amazing recipe! Toasted the almonds for the top-a MUST! I also used SOLO brand pure almond paste-comes in an 8-ounce box. It is soft and blends in beautifully. (I didn’t have time to make my own and thought I’d try it). Thank you for this incredible recipe!!! ??

    • Reply
      March 8, 2020 at 9:08 am

      Glad you enjoyed these Anne Marie, almond flavor is so addictive!

  • Reply
    November 10, 2019 at 3:07 pm

    5 stars
    I’ve made this a few times now and they are delicious and very, very rich. My only frustration is that I’ve used almond paste from the store and it is incredibly hard to get it to mix in smoothly with the butter/sugar. No matter what I do there are big lumps and I spend way too much time trying to get rid of them. I’ve done a bit of research and found that one method is to combine the almond paste and the sugar in a food processor and this will help get the paste into smaller chunks. I plan to try that next time.

    • Reply
      November 10, 2019 at 3:40 pm

      Great tip Bev, thanks!

      • Reply
        Annette Cook
        July 20, 2020 at 10:11 am

        You can also freeze the almond paste and grate it.

  • Reply
    October 18, 2019 at 7:08 am

    What do you think about toasting the almonds before putting in the glaze?

    • Reply
      October 18, 2019 at 7:58 am

      I think you can never go wrong toasting nuts 🙂

  • Reply
    September 24, 2019 at 10:33 am

    This one is a keeper. Now I”m going to have to try the gingerbread shortbread with the nutmeg glaze I found in your archives!

  • Reply
    August 21, 2019 at 10:03 am

    The house smells amazing! They look fantastic and I know they will taste great!

    • Reply
      August 21, 2019 at 10:32 am

      I can just imagine 🙂

  • Reply
    July 22, 2019 at 12:42 pm

    When I read home made almond paste I was expecting a recipe for the almond paste too. Do you have one?

  • Reply
    Donna Morgan
    May 31, 2019 at 4:27 pm

    I plan on trying these out on our Celtic Society soon. I am normally a baker at the local university, so I bake for several hundred students a day. This looks like a good recipe for them, of course I will have to multiply it several times. What other recipes so you have that make work out for very large groups?

    • Reply
      May 31, 2019 at 8:02 pm

      Gosh, I’ll have to give that some thought Donna, I normally formulate my recipes on a pretty small scale compared to your needs!

  • Reply
    May 24, 2019 at 11:55 am

    5 stars
    This was a hit! At my house and at work. I made the almond paste per your recipe then these almond shortbread bars. Took the remainder to work and when I came home, my husband asked me what I did with the cake! We can’t possibly have the whole thing, but I promised I would make it again.

    • Reply
      May 24, 2019 at 12:20 pm

      Even though I work mostly at home, I love the idea of the perfect ‘bring to the office’ type of sweet treat. Glad these were a hit!

    • Reply
      October 19, 2020 at 8:26 pm

      5 stars
      These almond shortbread bars are an almond fanatics dream come true! I made these bars as the recipe stated except for I didn’t have almond paste on hand but I could finally do something with the random can of almond pastry filling collecting dust in the pantry, Needless to say, they still turned out fantastic. I will certainly make it again with almond paste. Thanks for sharing!

  • Reply
    May 21, 2019 at 9:07 am

    5 stars
    I saw your recipe and had to try these bars as I am an almond lover also. They were Sooooo good. Rich and buttery, not too sweet with lots of almond flavor. Big hit with my coworkers Thank you for sharing it.

  • Reply
    May 19, 2019 at 10:11 am

    Does the glaze set so that cut bars can be stacked on a platter or serving dish without sticking together?

    • Reply
      May 19, 2019 at 10:36 am

      Eventually, yes, but not as quickly as a regular simple galze, because this one contains butter and cream. I would tend to serve it not stacked.

  • Reply
    May 18, 2019 at 3:47 pm

    Those sound amazing! I love shortbread and almond too 🙂 Oh yeah! I’m pinning these to try soon.

  • Reply
    May 18, 2019 at 2:35 am

    5 stars
    Thank you for this recipe. My family is crazy for almonds and this recipe is our favorite.

    • Reply
      May 18, 2019 at 7:56 am

      We almond lovers have to stick together, I’ll keep the almond dessert recipes coming 😉

  • Reply
    Irish Chef
    May 15, 2019 at 9:09 am

    ‘Tis a wonderous thing to see your recipes written in gram measurements, as well as cups, for us with european
    measuring devices. Thank you, Sue. And slaínte !

    • Reply
      May 15, 2019 at 9:59 am

      I’m trying! I got enough requests that I’m going to try to do it for my baking recipes…glad it helps!

  • Reply
    joan nass
    May 15, 2019 at 8:53 am

    Looks so yummy. What can you use in the glaze instead of heavy cream?
    Looking forward to making my own almond paste. (I also love marzipan, do you have a recipe)?
    Keep up the good work. Joan

    • Reply
      May 15, 2019 at 8:56 am

      You can use whole milk for the glaze, and yes, great idea, I should post a recipe for marzipan!

  • Reply
    John / Kitchen Riffs
    May 15, 2019 at 7:43 am

    Yup, best thing about being the chef is all the tasting. 🙂 Love shortbread and these bars looks wonderful. Thanks!

    • Reply
      May 15, 2019 at 8:20 am

      Yes! And these bars just kept getting better…too bad for my diet 😉

  • Reply
    May 15, 2019 at 5:21 am

    They look absolutely wonderful with that glaze!

    • Reply
      May 15, 2019 at 7:28 am

      The glaze is everything, Angie 🙂

  • Reply
    Tricia | Saving Room for Dessert
    May 15, 2019 at 3:12 am

    This is my kind of dessert! I’m with you in the almond dessert obsession – some of the best ever. This recipe is fantastic and I can’t wait to try it!

    • Reply
      May 15, 2019 at 7:28 am

      I can’t figure out what it is about almond flavor, it’s in a class by itself, yum!

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