These Brown Butter Shortbread are crisp and buttery with dark chocolate + flaky sea salt on top. These gluten free & refined sugar free cookies melt in your mouth and make the perfect addition to your holiday cookie tray!
Hi friend! Coming at you on a Tuesday, a little off schedule but with something exciting to share – it’s officially holiday cookie season, and today marks the start of #HolidayCookieParty2016!
A few weeks back, my friend Rebecca from Displaced Housewife asked if I wanted to join a cookie exchange between a bunch of other bloggers/Instagrammers. Uh, receiving cookies in the mail from one of the people’s whose treats I drool over on the daily? YES, please.
She gathered an incredibly impressive group of bloggers that I, frankly, feel quite flattered to be a part of. However…there was a little bit of a mishap. Rebecca messaged me, I enthusiastically agreed, and she said she’d email out details.
I forgot all about it until I received cookies in the mail and panicked, because I had sent no cookies. We realized the email got sent to the wrong address, so I hadn’t been any receiving updates! 😩 So I’m a little behind, and I feel so bad that Erin over at Cloudy Kitchen hasn’t gotten her cookies yet, but they’re on their merry way and hopefully she’ll enjoy them :)
Now back to those cookies I received. I was the lucky recipient of Cornmeal & Cherry Shortbread Cookies dipped in white chocolate from Brett over at Fig & Bleu. Holy cow you guys, you’re going to want to try them. SO crisp and flavorful and absolutely delicious. I brought them to my sister’s birthday lunch and they were gone within 5 minutes – my family obsessed over them, as did I.
So for my cookies, I took a bit of inspiration from Brett’s present and went the shortbread route. These Brown Butter Shortbread are one of my favorite holiday cookie recipes, and I’ve been wanting to make a gluten-free and refined sugar-free version to share with you. Thankfully, this version turned out perfectly.
In fact, I couldn’t even really tell the difference between this one and the traditional recipe. The combination of almond flour and coconut flour creates a wonderful crisp and sandy shortbread texture. But, of course, the real star of this shortbread is the brown butter.
Brown butter is made from cooking butter low and slow on the stove, whisking as it bubbles until the milk solids get toasty brown. It’s one of my favorite things on the planet, and I’m still curious as to why a brown butter scented candle doesn’t exist. The warm, nutty flavor from the brown butter makes the flavor of these shortbread pretty irresistible.
A thin layer of dark chocolate is spread on top, along with a sprinkle of flaky sea salt. These brown butter shortbread are simple, elegant, and more importantly – delicious. They’d be a fabulous addition to any holiday cookie platters you’re making, or to bring to a cookie exchange.
Whichever cookies you make this holiday season, join the cookie baking festivities by tagging your cookie posts with #holidaycookieparty2016 and check out the hashtag to see all the delicious treats everyone has been sharing! You can see all the posts from the other bloggers participating in the cookie exchange below. Happy cookie baking!!
Holiday Cookie Exchange 2016
Remember to #bakerita and #holidaycookieparty2016 if you try the recipe!
Brown Butter Shortbread (Gluten Free + Refined Sugar Free)
Lightly grease a 9½" round fluted tart pan or a 14"x5" rectangle tart with a removable bottom. If you don’t have a pan with a removable bottom you could line a 8" or 9" square cake pan with aluminum foil, leaving an overhang of foil on two opposite sides so you can easily lift the shortbread out of the pan.
In a small saucepan over medium melt the butter and continue to cook until it caramelizes and emits a nutty, butterscotch aroma. You will notice brown flecks in the bottom of the pan as the butter deepens in color. Be careful not to burn the butter. Remove from the heat.
In a medium bowl, whisk the melted butter with the coconut sugar, vanilla extract and salt. Add the almond and coconut flours and mix until incorporated. Spread the dough evenly in the prepared pan. Cover with plastic wrap and let stand for at least 2 hours or up to overnight - the dough should feel hard to the touch. Do not refrigerate.
When ready to bake, preheat oven to 300°F. If your pan has a removable bottom, place on a baking sheet before baking. Bake for 30-35 minutes, or until the shortbread is golden brown.
Let cool completely. Melt dark chocolate in the microwave and spread evenly on the shortbread. Sprinkle with fleur de sel. Refrigerate until hard, and then cut and serve!
This recipe is adapted from my Brown Butter Shortbread recipe.