If you’ve got 15 minutes, that’s all it takes to stir up a batch of this Ridiculously Easy Chocolate Chip Shortbread. It’s sweet, buttery and, in addition to being ridiculously easy, it’s also ridiculously delicious!
This Ridiculously Easy Chocolate Chip Shortbread recipe had kind of highfalutin beginnings but that didn’t last long. It started out with a fabulous-looking chocolate chip shortbread recipe I found on the New York Times Cooking website. I planned to try out the recipe, however, when I read the directions (and a lot of the reviews) it seemed a lot fussier than what I had time for. See what you think…
First of all, the recipe required a mixer and mixing the butter and sugar for a minimum of 3-5 minutes (6-8 if you were using a hand mixer). Then you had to knead the dough a bit on the counter to incorporate the flour. Next, the recipe directed to divide the dough in half and roll it into logs. After a chill in the refrigerator for 2 hours, you brush the logs with beaten egg, then roll them in crunchy sugar. Whew! I was getting a little tired even reading the instructions; but there was more.
The next step was: “Using a serrated knife, carefully slice each log into ½-inch-thick rounds (if you hit a chocolate chunk, slowly saw back and forth through the chocolate). If the cookies break or fall apart, just press them back together — the dough is very forgiving.” Yikes! That was it. Call me lazy, it’s fine, but all that was a little too much for 24 small round cookies in my mind.
BUT, I loved the idea of chocolate chip shortbread and decided that a delicious recipe could be achieved a lot quicker and with a lot less effort. It’s taken a few batches but, here you go! Ridiculously Easy Chocolate Chip Shortbread!
How do I love thee? Let me count the ways…
Imagine layers upon layers of crisp, buttery shortbread, studded with sweet, melt-in-your-mouth mini chocolate chips and topped with crunchy sugar and a scatter of flaky sea salt. That’s the scoop with these shortbread wedges and the fact that you can stir up these delightful treats in less than 15 minutes with one bowl and no mixer… well, that just seals the deal!
What is this ridiculously easy business all about?
If you’re a regular here at The Café, just go ahead and skip to the next section as you know all about our Ridiculously Easy recipes. But we have lots of new readers every day so let me take a minute to explain.
We have a special category of recipes titled Ridiculously Easy. These recipes have to follow specific guidelines which you can read more about in this post, but my nutshell definition of Ridiculously Easy recipes is: “Recipes that make you look like a kitchen rock star with minimal effort on your part.”
Like that idea? Join the club! Warning though, it gets addicting!
Simple, everyday ingredients
You probably have most of the ingredients for this Easy Chocolate Chip Shortbread in your pantry or refrigerator. You’ll need butter, granulated sugar, brown sugar, flour, cornstarch, vanilla and salt. Oh, and some mini chocolate chips.
Just be sure to start with nice soft butter as you won’t be using a mixer to stir up these treats. If you forget to take the butter out of the refrigerator, no problem. Just check out the tips below on how to soften butter without having to wait for hours.
So fun for gifting
This Ridiculously Easy Chocolate Chip Shortbread is a wonderful way to brighten someone’s day so we’re including a pretty free printable gift label PDF. If you’re interested, just leave us a comment down in the comment section at the bottom of this post. We’ll be happy to send you the PDFs in two different sizes along with instructions on how to print and use them.
We love tucking the cookies in one of these cute little gift boxes and attaching the label for a beautiful presentation. Who wouldn’t be thrilled to find a gift like this in their mailbox, on their desk or perhaps waiting on their front step?
Need a dessert or a sweet treat but don’t have much time to fuss? This Ridiculously Easy Chocolate Chip Shortbread is sure to become one of those recipes you make again and again because it’s SO delicious and SO easy. Or should I say ridiculously delicious and ridiculously easy?!
Cafe Tips for making this Easy Chocolate Chip Shortbread
- Because this recipe doesn’t require a mixer, the butter needs to be nice and soft. You can let the butter sit out at room temperature, but if the air is chilly in your house, it won’t get soft enough. Here are some easy ways to soften butter:
- You can soften the butter in the microwave on power level 10%. It works like magic! You’ll need to experiment a bit with your microwave though, as they’re all different. Start with 1 minute. Add 20 to 30-second increments until you learn how long your microwave will take to get the butter nice and soft, but not melted.
- Another technique I often use to soften butter is to put it in the microwave for a few hours with the light on. To keep the light on in the microwave I put a folded paper towel in the door.
- Boil a cup of water in the microwave for 3-4 minutes and get things nice and steamy. Leave the water cup in the microwave, add the butter and close the door. The warmth from the steamy water will help to quickly soften the butter.
- Cutting the butter into small pieces helps it soften quicker.
- Place the hard butter on a small plate. Fill a bowl with hot water. Wait 5 minutes then discard the water. Put the warm bowl over the butter.
- Put the butter in the oven with the light turned on. This will take a few hours.
- The fastest way to soften butter is to put cold butter in the microwave for 10 seconds. Turn it to the opposite side and microwave for another 10 seconds. It might be ready at this point, but if it’s not completely soft, add one or two more 5-second stints.
- This Ridiculously Easy Chocolate Chip Shortbread is heavenly when it comes out of the oven but because it’s quite thick, it won’t be crisp all the way through. I like to turn off the oven when the shortbread is done baking, let it cool in the pan for 20 minutes then flip it out onto a cutting board and cut it into 12 wedges. I transfer the wedges to a sheet pan and pop the pan back into the oven until it’s completely cooled down. Voila! Deliciously crisp shortbread, all the way through!
- I’ve found that it’s much easier to press the dough into the pan if I dip my fingers in flour from time to time.
- You can use a 9-inch cake pan or a 9-10-inch tart pan with a removable bottom. I love using the tart pan as it makes such a pretty presentation (like the shortbread pictured in the post).
- If you use a 9-inch cake pan, be sure to spray the pan well with baking spray and line it with a circle of parchment paper so it will be easy to remove from the pan. I love these pre-cut circles of parchment. They save lots of time and fuss.
Thought for the day:
Some trust in chariots
and some in horses,
but we trust in the name of the LORD our God.
They are brought to their knees and fall,
but we rise up and stand firm.
What we’re listening to for inspiration:
If you enjoyed this recipe, please come back and leave a star rating and review! It’s so helpful to other readers to hear your results, adaptations and ideas for variations.
If you've got 15 minutes, that's all it takes to stir up a batch of this Ridiculously Easy Chocolate Chip Shortbread. It's sweet, buttery and, in addition to being ridiculously easy, it's also ridiculously delicious!
- 1 cup very soft butter
- ⅓ cup light brown sugar
- ¼ cup granulated sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- ½ teaspoon kosher salt
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 tablespoons corn starch
- 1 cup mini chocolate chips
- 1 tablespoon sanding sugar Demerara, Turbinado or regular granulated sugar
Preheat the oven to 350. Generously spray a 9-inch round cake pan or a tart pan (9 or 10 inches) with a removable bottom with baking spray. If using a cake pan, line the bottom with a circle of parchment paper. Set aside. If using a tart pan, line a sheet pan with foil and set it aside.
Combine soft butter, sugars, vanilla and salt in a medium-large bowl. Stir for about 30 seconds until nice and creamy.
Add the flour and cornstarch. Stir with a sturdy spatula or wooden spoon until all of the flour is incorporated and the dough starts to come together. Stir in the chocolate chips and mix until the chips are evenly incorporated.
Press the dough firmly into the prepared pan to create an even surface. If the dough is sticking to your fingers, dip your hand in flour from time to time. Sprinkle with the Demerara sugar.
If using a tart pan with a removable bottom, place it on the prepared sheet pan (sometimes a little butter may leak out) and place the sheet pan on the center oven rack. If using a round cake pan, place it right on the center rack. Bake for 25-35 minutes until nicely golden brown. Check frequently towards the end of baking time. You want it to be a pretty golden brown but not overbaked.
Turn off the oven and allow the shortbread to cool on a cooling rack for 20 minutes in the pan. Invert the shortbread onto a flat plate. Place another plate on top and invert again so the sugared side is up.
Slide the shortbread onto a cutting board and sprinkle with a bit more sugar, if desired. Cut it into 12 wedges
You can enjoy the shortbread right away but for really crispy shortbread, transfer the wedges to a sheet pan and place in the oven (still turned off). Allow the shortbread to cool completely in the oven then store in an airtight container.
See Café Tips above in the post for more detailed instructions and tips.