Do you ever have recipes that come about as a result of a happy accident?
Well… these Christmas Light Shortbread Cookies were a very happy accident!
I was making our regular shortbread cookies for Christmas and decided I would add a few sprinkles of some holiday non pariels that I had leftover from another decorating project. But after I’d added the non pariels to the top a few of the cookies, I wasn’t liking how they looked.
I had lots of sprinkles in some areas and none in other areas. So I tried evening things out and ended up with cookies that looked like a toddler had gotten into the sprinkles.
I scooped those cookies off the baking sheet back into the dough, gave it a mix and then realized I should have scooped them into a separate bowl because now I had sprinkles scattered throughout the dough. Rather than stress about it, I decided what the heck and added some more of the non pariels.
That actually looked quite interesting!
So I scooped up all the cookies off the baking sheet, added them back to the bowl, gave it another mix, filled the cookie press and started over.
Christmas Lights Shortbread Cookies
1 c all purpose flour
1/2 c corn starch
1/2 c icing sugar
3/4 c of butter at room temperature
1 1/2 tbsp of red, green and white non pariels
Begin by creaming the butter in a medium mixing bowl until it’s light and fluffy.
Measure all the dry ingredients into a separate bowl.
Give the dry ingredients a stir with a dry whisk.
Or you can do what I do and run them through a shifter. This will make sure that there aren’t any lumps.
Add half of the dry ingredient mixture to the bowl with the creamed butter and mix.
Add the remaining dry mixture and beat until you have a smooth dough.
Add 1½ tablespoons of red, green and white non pariels to the bowl.
For this next step, you’re going to have to act fast.
After all… the non pariels are made of sugar so they are going to start to dissolve.
Once you’ve got the non pariels mixed in, get your cookie press filled and in action quickly. If you wait too long, you’ll end up with a cookie that looks like the one on the right, instead of the one on the left.
Don’t get me wrong… the one on the right is still pretty.
So don’t worry if you have little ones helping you man the cookie press. You’ll just end up with some that look like they have lights and some that have red and green swirls.
If you don’t have a cookie press you can pick them up at most department stores or any cooking supply store. I have one like this cookie press from Amazon.
It comes with discs in different shapes as well as decorating tips to use if you’re icing cookies or cakes.
I made trees and wreaths this year.
As you can see… I ended up with a mix of Christmas Light Shortbread Cookies and Red & Green Swirl Cookies in this batch I was taking photos of.
My next batch, I was much quicker with the cookie press!
Bake the cookies at 300ºF for 20 to 25 minutes or until very lightly golden brown around the edges.
Since each oven can be different… some ovens run a little hot and some run a little cooler… what I do is start checking at about 15 minutes.
Remove from the oven, allow to sit for 1 minutes on the baking sheet, then transfer to cooling racks until completely cool.
Store in an air tight container for up to a week or freeze and take them out to thaw as you need them.
If you like your shortbread cookies with nothing in or on them… just leave out the non pariels. You’ll have a shortbread cookie that is melt-in-your-mouth delicious!
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