Ina Garten’s shortbread cookies

Recipe: Ina Garten’s shortbread cookies

Wow guests at your Halloween party with this spooky treat.

Cassandra Schultz: In a 2008 episode called Impromptu Dinner, Ina made shortbread cookies dipped in chocolate. That same year we launched Cassandra’s Kitchen, and the shortbread cutter used in this recipe was one of the first items for sale in our shop. This cookie cutter comes up a lot, and with Halloween approaching, I thought it would be fun to make the cookies and decorate them with sprinkles and eyeballs. 

Ina Garten’s shortbread cookies


3/4 pound unsalted butter at room temperature

1 cup sugar, plus extra for sprinkling

1 teaspoon Nielsen Massey Madagascar Pure Vanilla Extract

3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

1/4 teaspoon salt

6-7 ounces semisweet chocolate, finely chopped

Sprinkles and edible candy eyeballs


[1] Heat oven to 350 degrees. [2] In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, mix together the butter and 1 cup of sugar until they are just combined. Add the vanilla. In a medium bowl, sift the flour and salt together, then add them to the butter-and-sugar mixture. Mix on low speed until the dough starts to come together. Dump it onto a surface dusted with flour, and shape it into a flat disk. Wrap in plastic wrap and chill for 30 minutes. [3] Roll the dough 1/2-inch thick and cut with a 3×1-inch finger-shaped cutter. Place the cookies on an ungreased sheet pan and sprinkle with sugar. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes, until the edges begin to brown. Allow to cool to room temperature. [4] Place the cookies on a sheet pan lined with parchment paper when they are cool. Put 3 ounces of the chocolate in a glass bowl and microwave on high power for 30 seconds. (Don’t trust your microwave timer; time it with your watch.) Stir with a wooden spoon. Continue to heat and stir in 30-second increments until the chocolate is just melted. Add the remaining chocolate and allow it to sit at room temperature, stirring often, until it’s completely smooth. Stir vigorously until the chocolate is smooth and slightly cooled; stirring makes it glossier. [5] Drizzle 1/2 of each cookie with just enough chocolate to decorate as pictured.

Melted chocolate with cookie, sprinkles and candy eyeballs
Semisweet chocolate, with its balanced blend of sweet and rich cacao flavors,
is highly versatile and can be used in a variety of desserts, sauces and syrups.

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