If you’re looking for a unique, delicious cookie recipe, look no further than this lemon basil shortbread! It’s buttery, crisp, bright, and absolutely packed with flavor from freeze-dried basil and lemon zest. A delicious cookie for summer, or a fun addition to your holiday cookie repertoire.
To flavor these shortbread cookies, we use Litehouse® Freeze-Dried Basil and plenty of lemon zest. To evenly incorporate the flavor, we pulse the zest and basil with sugar, which flavors the sugar and makes it easy to add to both the cookie dough as well as the top of each cookie.
Litehouse® Freeze-Dried Basil is perfect in this recipe. Its bright color looks lovely in these cookies. It adds a delicate herbaceous flavor that cuts through the butter and the sugar and pairs perfectly with acidic lemon juice. These cookies would also be great with another freeze-dried herb like mint or thyme! And no – the flavor is not overpowering. It’s just enough herb flavor to make the cookie a bit more interesting than your standard shortbread!
Lemon zest is the key ingredient in these cookies. It adds a much more intense flavor than lemon juice, so don’t skimp on it! We use a microplane grater to zest our lemons.
When it comes to the remaining cookie ingredients, they’re pretty standard for shortbread. Bob’s Red Mill® All Purpose Flour is our go-to for any baked good, and especially cookies. It always produces perfectly crisp cookies with a soft, melt-in-your-mouth interior. So good!
Butter is of course another key ingredient for shortbread. Make sure your butter is softened to room temperature before using, otherwise you’ll have a hard time getting it to incorporate evenly with the other ingredients.
You can make these lemon basil shortbread cookies into just about any shape. We use a circular cookie cutter, but feel free to use any shape you’d like! You can also slice into simple rectangles if preferred.
Either way, be sure to top off each cookie with a generous sprinkle of lemon basil sugar before baking. It makes for the most delicious crispy topping and adds an extra punch of flavor!