These lavender cookies are your favorite shortbread cookies with a delightful hint of lavender flavor. The recipe is very easy, the cookies melt-in-your-mouth, you’ll only need one bowl for easy clean up, and they are done in less than 30 minutes.
(If you love the sweet and floral aroma of lavender, you’ll enjoy this homemade lavender ice cream. You don’t even need an ice cream machine to make it.)
My obsession with baking with lavender began when we visited a lavender farm many years ago. Not only was the place magical, they made all kinds of lavender treats too.
There were soaps and lotions, of course.
But there was also ice cream, lemonade, tea, sugar cookies, white chocolate, and more.
The first recipe I perfected was lavender ice cream. I make it almost every summer.
There are more lavender recipes in the works but for now, this wonderful lavender shortbread cookies recipe is up next.
Let’s get to it.
I know you might be wary to make anything with lavender because soap, right? But done right, they’re the most delicate and delightful treats.
And these lavender cookies (or to be all fancy — lavender tea cookies or lavender butter cookies) are the best place to start the adventure.
- Easy to make. This recipe is simple and straightforward. There’s no need to chill the dough and no kneading is required.
- Egg-free. If you’re ever in need of a cookie recipe that doesn’t have eggs, this is it!
- 1-bowl recipe. What’s more, you’ll only need one bowl, which makes clean up that much easier and quicker.
- Done in 20 minutes. Speaking of quick, these cookies are done in 20 minutes.
- Delicious. Most important of all, they taste good! Unique, exquisite, sophisticated. Nobody would ever suspect they’re a breeze to make. Perfect for afternoon tea (like these tea party cupcakes), your Christmas cookie tray, bridal and baby showers, Easter, and more.
(Looking for a truly unique way to make cookies? Try these air fryer sugar cookies!)
How to make
Making these cookies is similar to how you would make classic shortbread cookies.
For the ingredients, you’ll need pantry staples like all purpose flour, granulated sugar, unsalted butter, and vanilla extract. Please note:
- Confectioner’s sugar — in some places, also called powdered sugar or icing sugar.
- Rice flour — we need rice flour and not glutinous rice flour or sweet rice flour.
- Dried lavender — make sure you use culinary grade dried lavender.
I like using my stand mixer to make these but you can use a handheld electric mixer as well.
I also bake these cookies in an 8×8 inch pan instead of a cookie or baking sheet.
Other things you’ll need include tools you already have in your kitchen like measuring cups and spoons, a fine mesh sieve and a knife or bench scraper.
First, preheat oven to 375F. Grease an 8×8 inch baking pan and set aside.
(1) In a large bowl using an electric hand mixer or using a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat butter on medium high speed.
(2) Beat until light and fluffy (about 3 minutes).
(3) Add confectioner’s sugar, granulated sugar, vanilla extract and lavender.
(4) Continue beating until fluffy (another 3 minutes). You’ll want to start slow and work your way up to medium speed. Remember to scrape the bottom and sides of your bowl with a spatula.
(5) Sift all-purpose flour, rice flour and salt directly into your bowl.
(6) Stir until evenly blended.
(7) Transfer cookie dough into your prepared pan and firmly and evenly press the dough onto the bottom using your fingers.
(8) To prevent your lavender cookies from puffing up and to allow them to cook evenly, dock the dough with a skewer or a small fork. Dock the dough evenly, at about 1-inch intervals.
Bake for 20 minutes or until the edges turn a light brown. Do not over bake, the cookies are meant to be pale and light.
And remember that the cook time is a guide as all ovens are different so check on your cookies right before the 20-minute mark.
Allow to cool in the pan for 10 minutes then cut into rectangles or squares or triangles, up to you!
Baking tips for success
Isn’t this recipe so simple and straightforward? Here are a few more things to keep in mind for a perfect batch every time.
- Use quality butter. For butter-based recipes like this, I always try and spring for the best butter I can find. You will be able to tell in the final product.
- Beat butter thoroughly. And make sure to beat it thoroughly before adding the sugar. This ensures you get light, melt-in-your-mouth, soft cookies.
- Use the correct rice flour. When buying rice flour, pay attention to the label — make sure you’re not buying glutinous rice flour or sometimes called sweet rice flour (it will say right on the packaging). Rice flour is closer to wheat flour and yields a cake-like consistency. Glutinous rice flour yields a sticky and chewy texture used for dumplings or foods that don’t require much structure.
- Use culinary grade lavender. When buying lavender, make sure to ask if they are culinary-grade. Remember, lavender is used for things other than food. Dried culinary lavender (as opposed to ornamental lavender) is 100% safe for consumption. And it has the sweetest fragrance among all kinds of lavenders making it the best for cooking and baking.
- Dock the cookie dough properly. When you’re docking your dough, make sure you reach the bottom of the pan. I like using a small fork so I get multiple holes at once!
- Weigh ingredients. I always use a kitchen scale when baking. This results to more consistent results.
- Use an oven thermometer. Using an oven thermometer ensures you’re baking at the right temperature every time.
|Dough too sticky
|Butter too warm when used
|Place your cookie dough in the fridge for 10-15 minutes and try again
|Cookies are too crisp
|These cookies are supposed to be pale and light so avoid over-baking them. As soon as the edges turn a light brown, remove from heat and allow to cool.
|Overpowering lavender aroma
|Too much lavender
|Avoid adding too much, a little goes a long way.
|Very little lavender flavor
|Not crushed enough
|Crushing or chopping the lavender buds helps bring out their flavor. I suggest using a mortar and pestle or, if not available, chop them as finely as possible.
|Cookies taste too flour-y
|Too much flour added to dough
|I recommend weighing your flour for best results.
|Cookies are too dry
|In addition to adding too much flour, over-mixing the batter can also result to dry cookies. Combine only until evenly blended.
You can usually find culinary grade dried lavender in speciality baking shops. I buy mine from Amazon.
Personally, I don’t like getting chunks of lavender buds in my mouth. So I usually use a lavender infusion, like in my ice cream recipe.
I also crush or chop it as finely as possible, like in this recipe. Grinding works too.
Of course, to make things pretty you can sprinkle buds on top for garnish, just remove them later.
And remember, lavender has a pretty strong flavor so a little goes a long way.
I always use dried culinary grade lavender for baking.
If you’ve ever wondered about lavender essential oils, the ones used in diffusers or for massages, the answer is no. They’re not meant to be eaten so for baking or cooking, stick to dried lavender.
Fresh lavender work too, and I know other bakers use lavender extract, but I haven’t personally used those.
Stored in an airtight container and placed on the counter, lavender cookies should keep up to 2 weeks.
More treats for afternoon tea
If you’re planning an afternoon tea or a nice brunch, add these to your menu:
I’m working on more lavender recipes…which one would you like to see first?
- Preheat oven to 375F. Grease an 8×8 inch baking pan and set aside.
- In a large bowl using an electric hand mixer or using a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat butter on medium high speed until light and fluffy (about 3 minutes).
- Add confectioner’s sugar, granulated sugar, vanilla extract and lavender. Continue beating until fluffy (another 3 minutes). You’ll want to start slow and work your way up to medium speed. Remember to scrape the bottom and sides of your bowl with a spatula.
- Sift all-purpose flour, rice flour and salt directly into your bowl and stir until evenly blended.
- Transfer cookie dough into your prepared pan and firmly and evenly press the dough onto the bottom using your fingers.
- To prevent your lavender cookies from puffing up and to allow them to cook evenly, dock the dough with a skewer or a small fork. Dock the dough evenly, at about 1-inch intervals.
- Bake for 20 minutes or until the edges turn a light brown. Do not over bake, these cookies are meant to be pale and light. Remember that the cook time is a guide as all ovens are different so check on your cookies right before the 20-minute mark.
- Allow to cool in the pan for 10 minutes then cut into rectangles or squares or triangles, up to you!
- The yield/total number of cookies will depend on how big or small you slice them, and what shape you slice them into. The estimated nutritional info here is based on 24 rectangular cookies.
- The cookie dough will be slightly crumbly but fairly easy to handle. If it sticks to your fingers when pressing into the pan, wet fingers with a little water or dust with a little flour.
- In addition to docking, I also lightly score my dough with a bench scraper to serve as a guide to cutting later.
- See the post for more baking tips, FAQs, a troubleshooting guide and step-by-step photos.
Nutritional information are estimates only.