Pistachio Shortbread Cookies ~ a classic buttery shortbread slice and bake cookie loaded with fresh pistachios. These easy cookies melt in your mouth!
Pistachio shortbread cookies are perfect holiday treats
I’m taking advantage of the surplus of nuts in the stores during the holidays to make lots of these buttery pistachio shortbread cookies loaded with freshly shelled nuts and a hint of vanilla. I used unsalted roasted pistachios packaged still in the shell, they’re fresher that way, and I used enough of them so that you can actually taste the pistachio flavor. Believe it or not, you can actually buy real Pistachio Extract for a more pronounced taste, and someday I may try that, but for me the vanilla and the nuts themselves make for a really subtle and unusual cookie. Depending on how thick you slice them, and precisely how long you cook them, they will either be crispy or buttery, it’s your call.
Tips for working with slice and bake dough
- Slice and bake cookies never turn out quite as perfectly round as roll out cookies, but they have a nicer texture, I think. They’re tender and crumbly, never tough.
- If you want to help insure that the log of dough stays round while it chills, you can wrap the log in a thick towel first.
- Make sure the dough is nice and cold, and use a sharp, serrated knife, I used a bread knife, and a gentle sawing motion to slice through the dough cleanly.
I keep a whole lineup of shortbread cookie dough logs in the freezer during the weeks leading up to Christmas
I can’t tell you how useful they are. We’re all about the easy cookies in the days leading up to the holidays and even though I always have lots of more complicated recipes on my to-do list, as the days before Christmas dwindle, I have to pare things down to the essentials. This is a rustic cookie you can really sink your teeth into, and about as easy as it gets…
A little stack of these cookies makes the perfect offering if you’re going visiting, or if people show up on your doorstep unexpectedly. Even after it’s baked, shortbread lasts a long time without going stale, so it’s really a holiday workhorse. I have lots of other shortbread cookie recipes on the blog, so check them out for more inspiration.
- Douglas Fir Shortbread Cookies
- New Fallen Snow Shortbread Cookies
- Maple Walnut Shortbread Cookies
- Double Dark Chocolate Chip Shortbread Cookies
Package your cookies in sturdy boxes for giving
I use decorative take-out style boxes for small cookie gifts, not only because they look great, but they’re sturdy so you don’t have to worry about crushing all your hard work. They’re small enough that you can make a nice gift out of just a few cookies. You can find them all over the place, mine are from Cost Plus.
Pistachio Shortbread Cookies
- 1 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
- 1/2 cup granulated sugar
- 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
- 1 3/4 cups all purpose flour
- 1/4 cup cornstarch
- 1 cup whole pistachios
- Cream the butter and the sugar together.
- Beat in the vanilla.
- Whisk together the flour and cornstarch. Blend them into the butter and sugar, until it forms a dough.
- Stir in the pistachios and make sure you get them well distributed in the dough.
- Turn the dough out onto a sheet of plastic wrap and form it into a log, about 9 or 10 inches long. Wrap it in the plastic and smooth it into a uniform smooth shape, twisting the ends to secure.
- Refrigerate the dough for at least 2 hours, or overnight.
- Preheat oven to 350F
- Slice the dough into 1/4 – 1/3 inch slices and place on a parchment or silpat lined baking sheet. Thinner slices will bake up crispier, and thicker ones will be more buttery and soft.
- Bake for about 10 minutes, maybe a little longer for thicker cookies. The cookies will still be pale and soft, but will firm up as they cool.
- Cool for 2 minutes on the baking sheet, then cool completely on a rack.
Questions and Reviews
My mom has been begging me to make her some pistachio cookies. Came across this recipie and wow these cookies are absolutely delicious! The buttery flavor of shortbread is perfect with the pistachios. I will defiantly be making this again.
Thanks Carly ~ if you get inspired you can try this same recipe with all kinds of different nuts.
These cookies are so good! I’ve been making them a lot over the last few months. I make them your way, without pistachios and i’ve tried with pecans – yum! I’m making them this week for a tea fundraiser but I’m going to try rolling the chilled dough to cut out teapot shapes and dip in chocolate. These are dangerous cookies to have around in my house!
I’m so glad I could make a shortbread cookie convert out of you! I love your teapot cookie idea, you should tag me with a photo on instagram…
could you rewrite the recipe in grams??? plsss
These pistachio cookies are my husband’s absolute favourite!! All other cookies have taken the back seat!
That’s so great!
Definitely your pistachio shortbread cookies are awesomeness! This is a great recipe Sue. It is very decadent, and the people in my office are happy today! Thx for sharing!
I made these for my Nona’s 87th birthday and they were a huge hit at the party. I used salted pistachios and arrowroot powder instead of cornstarch and they came out perfectly. I’m going to make these again this weekend. Thanks!
Wow, I’m honored to have been a part of that occasion, so cool! I can imagine the salted nuts added a nice flavor, I’ll try that.
Oops! Sweeties are candies in my neck of the woods. That I think might be a see through poly bag for candies in American speak.
Hi Sue, I love the idea of these cookies, and so, will prepare some for gifts. For how long will they keep if presented in a sweetie bag? Thanks in anticipation of a great reply. DQ
I’d say they’d keep up to a week, Donna ~ Happy Holidays <3
Thanks for the recipe, but I wouldn’t recommend setting the oven in the first step since the dough needs to be refrigerated for hours/overnight.
Good point Dan!
Hi Sue, I made these cookies just a few hours ago and they’re delicious. They took longer to bake for me, about 17 minutes, and I’m thinking it may have to do with the kind of baking trays we’re using.
At any rate, the cookies are quite good. I’m going to make the chocolate walnut shortbread next, and I’m really anxious to try the savory pistachio shortbread. When I do I’ll let you know how they turn out.
Love your site.
The baking trays could make a difference, Susan, and it could also be an issue with the oven temperature…it’s surprising how many ovens don’t cook at an accurate temperature, and even a small deviation can make a difference…although most of us get used to our particular ovens and compensate for them in lots of ways!