Cookies & Cups > Recipes > Cookies > Chai Shortbread

Chai Shortbread

Chai Shortbread is a delicious twist on a classic cookie. Tea and spices give this cookie recipe its unique flavor, with the rich, buttery, sweet crisp of traditional shortbread. 

If you love shortbread make sure to try my classic 3 Ingredient Shortbread Recipe!

Buttery and Spiced Chai Shortbread Cookies

This Chai Shortbread recipe is a holiday favorite. The buttery shortbread is paired with all the chai spices, and you can even drizzle or dip them in white chocolate to mimic the sweet milk in a Chai Tea Latte! This is a simple cookie recipe that really stands out on a cookie platter!

What is Chai?

in the States we all know Chai as a type of tea that has cozy flavors including cinnamon, ginger, cardamom, and cloves. But in Hindi the word “chai” literally translates to tea. So basically when you order a Chai Tea at the coffee shop, you are actually ordering a “tea tea”. And what you are having your barista make is actually the standard way to prepare tea in India! 

stack of chai shortbread cookies

Chai Shortbread Ingredients:

  • Butter at room temperature. I really like to use a European butter for shortbread. It feels a bit more special, and it has a higher fat content really makes this cookies rich and decadent. 
  • Pure vanilla extract
  • Granulated sugar. You could also use light brown sugar if you love the flavor brown sugar adds!
  • Black tea. I just opened up a few tea bags we had and used the tea from the bag. If you have whole leaf tea you will want to make sure it’s ground up. 
  • Pumpkin pie spice. I find that using pumpkin spice in this recipe is a shortcut way to get most of the chai spices added! You can make homemade pumpkin pie spice if you don’t have it prepackaged: 1 tablespoon ground cinnamon + 3/4 teaspoon ground ginger + 3/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg + 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves.
  • Ground ginger
  • Allspice
  • Cardamom 
  • Kosher salt
  • All purpose flour

Garnishes:

You can make these cookies more festive if you would like with some simple garnishes. Here are a few ideas:

  • White chocolate. I melt some white chocolate and dip about a quarter of the cookie. I like the little tough of white chocolate at the edge! You can also drizzle the white chocolate as well.
  • Semi-sweet or dark chocolate. If you don’t like white chocolate, go ahead and use dark!
  • Cinnamon Sugar. I like to sprinkle a little cinnamon sugar on the melted chocolate. It looks pretty and gives it a nice little sparkle.
  • Sprinkles. Add some festive sprinkles onto the the melted chocolate to make them pretty.
  • Coarse sugar. A little coarse sugar or turbinado sugar is a fun addition as well!

How to Make Chai Shortbread

  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside.
  2. Mix: In the bowl of your stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, mix the butter, granulated sugar, vanilla, tea, pumpkin spice, ginger, allspice, cardamom, and kosher salt on medium speed for 2 minutes. 
  3. Turn the mixer to low and add in the flour, mixing until just combined.
  4. Cut Out: Transfer dough to a lightly floured surface. Using a rolling pin, roll it out to 1/3- inch in thickness. Using a small (2- inch) round cookie cutter. 
  5. Place cookies on prepared baking sheet 1- inch apart. The cookies don’t spread when baking. 
  6. Bake: Bake for 8 – 10 minutes, or until lightly golden at the edge.
  7. Allow the cookies for cool for 5 minutes on the baking sheet and then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely. 
  8. Optional garnish: Dip the cookies into melted white chocolate, or drizzle white chocolate on top. Sprinkle the white chocolate lightly with cinnamon sugar or sprinkles.

What Is the Secret To Good Shortbread?

  • Quality ingredients. Since shortbread at the base level really is only a combination of butter, sugar, and flour the flavors really fine through, so make sure to use quality!
  • Don’t overwork the shortbread. The less you work the dough, the more tender the cookie will be!
  • use butter that is room temperature not melted. Melted butter will also result in a more crunchy, dense cookie, not a tender, crumbly cookie.
  • Too much sugar will make your shortbread chewy!
chai shortbread dipped in white chocolate and sprinkled with cinnamon sugar

Can You Freeze Homemade Shortbread?

Shortbread is one of those cookies that is made to freeze! Well, not literally…but they freeze absolutely beautifully. They are a sturdy cookie recipe, so you don’t have to worry about a fragile cookie, or precious packaging. Store shortbread airtight in the refrigerator for up to 30 days for best freshness.

Love Shortbread? Here Are Few More Recipes:

Print
clock clock iconcutlery cutlery iconflag flag iconfolder folder iconinstagram instagram iconpinterest pinterest iconfacebook facebook iconprint print iconsquares squares iconheart heart iconheart solid heart solid icon
Chai Shortbread on a cooling rack half dipped in white chocolate

Chai Shortbread

  • Author: Shelly
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 10 minutes
  • Total Time: 25 minutes
  • Yield: 30 cookies 1x
  • Category: Cookies
  • Method: Oven
  • Cuisine: Dessert

Description

This spiced shortbread recipe is perfect with a cup of tea!


Ingredients

Scale
  • 1 cup butter, room temperature
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 2/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 teaspoons ground black the leaves
  • 2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice
  • 2 teaspoons ground ginger
  • 1/2 teaspoon allspice
  • 1/2 teaspoon cardamom 
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 2 cups all purpose flour
  • optional – white chocolate for dipping and cinnamon sugar to sprinkle.

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside.
  2. In the bowl of your stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, mix the butter, granulated sugar, vanilla, tea, pumpkin spice, ginger, allspice, cardamom, and kosher salt on medium speed for 2 minutes. 
  3. Turn the mixer to low and add in the flour, mixing until just combined.
  4. Transfer dough to a lightly floured surface. Using a rolling pin, roll it out to 1/3- inch in thickness. Using a small (2- inch) round cookie cutter. 
  5. Place cookies on prepared baking sheet 1- inch apart. The cookies don’t spread when baking. 
  6. Bake for 8 – 10 minutes, or until lightly golden at the edge.
  7. Allow the cookies for cool for 5 minutes on the baking sheet and then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely. 
  8. Optional garnish – dip cookies into melted white chocolate, or drizzle white chocolate on top. Sprinkle the white chocolate lightly with cinnamon sugar or sprinkles.

Notes

Store airtight for up to 7 days.

Freeze airtight for up to 30 days for best freshness

Keywords: cookies and cups, shortbread recipe, shortbread cookies, cookie recipe, chai, christmas cookies

Want To Save This Recipe?

Find more recipes like this:

PIN for later:

Chai Shortbread Pinterest Image

Rate this recipe and share a comment

Your email address will not be published.

Recipe rating

I accept the Privacy Policy

11 comments on “Chai Shortbread”

  1. Was very excited about these. They smelled so good when I was mixing up the dough. I do want to try them again and play with some of the spice amount. I felt the clove was overpowering. I did have a little bit of spread so I will refrigerate them a little before baking.

  2. These are delicious! Everyone that tried them love them. Thanks so much for sharing.

  3. They were really tasty but mine spread quite a bit. I chilled before baking. How did you get your so uniform!?

    1. I’m sorry to hear your spread! I have tested this recipe multiple times and have never had any issue of spreading, even without chilling. Not sure what could have happened except not enough flour, or the butter was too soft!

  4. Emily Stratton

    These look like a perfect holiday treat! Could they be made in a shortbread pan? If so, should the recipe be altered at all? Thanks!

  5. What a disappointment. These cookies don’t spread? They spread like crazy. The cookies have a great flavor but they are literally paper thin wafers. I followed the recipe to a T.

    1. Hi Debbie, sorry your cookies spread to be paper thin wafers, I have never had that experience in the many times I have made these cookies.

  6. Megan Orsini

    I cannot wait to make these…. mind you, I’ve just completed my list of 31 cookies for Christmas and they are all in the freezer- but I can’t pass this up -Question though: do you think this would be good with Browned Butter? I mean, it’s one of the best flavors mixing with another best flavor, right?!?
    Or do you think it would overwhelm the Chai? TIA

Scroll to Top