Combining matcha, shortbread, and rich dark chocolate is a match made in heaven. That's why I have taken my classic buttery shortbread recipe and created this decadent matcha chocolate version! These cookies look gorgeous and taste even better, perfect for boxing up and give to friends and loved ones.
I recently baked a MASSIVE batch of these matcha cookies to send out to my community, and they were thoroughly enjoyed by all. I'm so excited to finally share the recipe with you!
Why this Recipe Works
Shortbread cookies are so popular because they're easy to make, and have a simple, sweet flavor profile. All you need is some sugar, butter, and flour to make shortbread. Their simplicity also means you can easily add other flavors (like matcha) to shortbread without altering the base flavor.
Shortbread cookie dough is made with either granulated or powdered sugar. This recipe uses both, which achieves the perfect balance of chewiness and melt-in-your-mouth softness.
Matcha has an earthy, slightly bitter flavor profile which pairs excellently with sweet, richer flavors like butter and sugar. Matcha shortbread is sweet with a delicate hint of matcha woven in, making for a light, tasty cookie.
Dipping them in dark chocolate adds a bite of rich bitterness to cut through the flaky, buttery cookie. Matcha and dark chocolate is something of an obsession for me, and I use this flavor combo all the time.
Ingredients & Substitutions
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granulated sugar - this sugar provides the chewiness in the recipe.
powdered sugar - this sugar provides the melt-in-your-mouth texture in the recipe.
butter - use unsalted butter and add your own salt for consistency. Butter should be at room temperature so it creams together well with the sugars.
matcha - use culinary grade matcha powder for this recipe. Make sure to find a brand that does not contain any additional ingredients. Here is a matcha I like on Amazon, and here is the brand of Matcha I usually use.
dark chocolate - dark chocolate tastes really good with the matcha, but you can use white chocolate and it tastes equally good
How to Make this Recipe
You can make these cookies with or without the dark chocolate glaze, and they are delicious both ways.
Matcha Shortbread Cookies
First, cream together the butter and types of sugar until light and fluffy. You can do this with a hand mixer or stand mixer.
Gradually add in the dry ingredients: 2 cups flour, 1.5 tbsp matcha powder (culinary grade), and ¼ teaspoon salt. It's not required to mix the ingredients in a bowl in advance, but you can if you'd like. Mix the dry ingredients until incorporated well.
Next, divide the dough in half. Form each half into an 8-inch log. Wrap in parchment paper, wax paper, or plastic. Refrigerate for at least 6 hours and up to 24 hours.
Preheat the oven to 350F. In the meantime, slice each lot into ¼-inch discs. Place 1-inch apart on ungreased baking sheets or silicone baking mats.
Note: Refrigerate the cookies until the oven is preheated. If the butter isn't solid when the cookies go into the oven, the edges of the cookies will spread.
Bake the cookies for 11-13 minutes, until the edges begin to turn light brown. Cool for 1 minute on the baking sheet. Then transfer to a wire rack.
Store in an airtight container at room temperature for 3 days, in the refrigerator for 1 week, or in the freezer for up to 3 months.
Dark Chocolate Dip
Melt the dark chocolate chips with 1 teaspoon of coconut oil over a bain-marie. You could also melt the chocolate chips with coconut oil in the microwave. Do this by microwaving for 15 seconds at a time, stirring well in between, until fully melted.
Note: You can use white chocolate in place of the dark chocolate and mix in 1 ½ tablespoons of culinary grade matcha powder to transform this recipe into a double matcha version. See this post for detailed instructions on the matcha white chocolate dip.
Prepare a sheet pan with a silicone baking mat or parchment paper on the bottom, or you can use a wire rack. Dip the cookies up to half-way in the melted dark chocolate and place them on the sheet pan to harden. Refrigerate for 15 minutes. Now, enjoy some tasty cookies!
Note: Before the chocolate hardens, you can give the cookies a light sprinkle of sea salt. Once the chocolate sets, it will be too late for the salt to stick.
Matcha Chocolate Dipped Shortbread FAQs
You must use at least culinary grade matcha for this recipe. There's no need to use any higher grade, like ceremonial grade. It won't result in a better flavor. Keep your ceremonial grade matcha for tea.
A bain-marie is used to slowly melt things by suspending a bowl over boiling hot water. The heat from the steam does the job of melting the item in the bowl without burning the it, the way it might in the microwave on a high heat. This is particularly useful for chocolate, which can burn quickly.
Chilling the batter before baking helps because it prevents the dough from spreading too much when baked, making a neat and tidy cookie.
Everyone is different, and loves their shortbread somewhere on the spectrum of melt-in-your-mouth to chewy. The thing that determines this is the type of sugar you use. If you use only powdered sugar, you will get the most melt-in-your-mouth cookies. If you use granulated sugar, you will get a chewy shortbread. This recipe meets right in the middle.
More Matcha Treats
If you are a matcha-love and want to infuse more matcha into your treats, cookies, or tea time, here are some of my favorite recipes for you.
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Matcha Shortbread Cookies Dipped in Dark Chocolate
Matcha Shortbread Cookies
- 1 cup unsalted butter room temperature
- ¼ cup granulated sugar
- ¼ cup powdered sugar
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- 1.5 tablespoon culinary grade matcha powder
Matcha or Dark Chocolate Dip
- 1 cup white or dark chocolate chips use white chocolate if you would like them to be green
- 1 ½ tablespoon culinary grade matcha powder
- 1 teaspoon coconut oil
- sea salt optional
Matcha Shortbread Cookies
- Cream together the butter and both sugars until light and fluffy.
- Gradually add in the dry ingredients: 2 cups flour, 1 ½ tablespoons matcha powder, and ¼ teaspoon salt. Mix well.
- Divide the dough in half. Form each half into an 8-inch log. Wrap in parchment paper, wax paper, or plastic. Refrigerate for at least 6 hours and up to 24 hours.
- Preheat the oven to 350F.
- Slice each lot into ¼-inch discs. Place 1-inch apart on ungreased baking sheets or silicone baking mats.
- Bake for 11-13 minutes, until the edges begin to lightly brown.
- Cool for 1 minute on the baking sheet. Then transfer to a wire rack.
- Store in an airtight container at room temperature for 3 days, in the refrigerator for 1 week, or in the freezer for up to 3 months.
Matcha or Dark Chocolate Dip
- Melt the chocolate chips with 1 teaspoon of coconut oil over a bain-marie*.
- Optional: Once melted, add the matcha powder to the melted white (or dark) chocolate and mix well to incorporate. Use white chocolate if you would like them to be green.
- Prepare a sheet pan with a silicone baking mat or parchment paper, or use a wire rack. Dip the cookies up to half-way in the melted chocolate and place them on the sheet pan. Refrigerate for 15 minutes. Enjoy!
Can I make this ahead of time and freeze it?
Yes, you can store them baked in an airtight container at room temperature for 3 days, in the refrigerator for 1 week, or in the freezer for up to 3 months. OR you can roll and cut the dough, then refrigerate overnight or freeze for up to 3 months. Defrost in the refrigerator overnight.