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How to Make a Shortbread Crust

This buttery shortbread crust makes a delicious bed for a wide variety of sweet fillings, from bittersweet chocolate custard to lemon curd to fresh berries with a dollop of whipped cream. 

How to Make a Shortbread Crust for Practically Anything | Umami Girl

How to Make a Shortbread Crust for Practically Anything | Umami Girl

Just a quick post today to introduce you to my favorite shortbread crust. It’s buttery and gently sweet and somewhere between flaky and crumbly. It comes from our longtime fave bittersweet chocolate tart, but it works equally well with lots of other sweet fillings. Including a filling I like to call Dumping All The Berries In There And Also Maybe Some Whipped Cream On Top.

How to Make a Shortbread Crust for Practically Anything | Umami Girl

I think it’s pretty obvious that a crust like this would be equally appropriate at any time of year, but for whatever reason Easter and tarts go together in my head. I love that you can choose to fill this shell with something complicated and homemade or something simple and not homemade at all (see berries and whipped cream, above, or Nutella and banana slices, you name it).

How to Make a Shortbread Crust for Practically Anything | Umami Girl

The only real keys to this recipe are to throw in the towel on mixing when the dough is just beginning to hold together, and then to just kinda go for it like the nasty woman that you are when you roll it out. If it rips a little, patch it and be on your way. As you can see from the photos, it doesn’t have to be perfect to be good.

Not a bad lesson for a Monday, actually.

That’s all for today. Talk to you soon.

Carolyn xx

Shortbread Crust Recipe

Preparation 00:60 Cook Time 00:15 Total Time 0:15
Serves 12     adjust servings


  • 12 tablespoons cold butter, diced
  • 2/3 cup powdered sugar
  • 2 egg yolks
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour, spooned and leveled


Place the butter, powdered sugar and egg yolks in the bowl of a food processor fitted with the blade. Pulse until combined but still speckled with butter. Add the flour and run the machine just until the dough comes together when you pinch it between your fingers (see photo above). Turn dough out onto a large piece of parchment, knead a few times to bring it all together, and pat it into a disc shape. Wrap well in parchment and chill for about half an hour.

Preheat the oven to 350°F. Remove dough from the fridge and let it rest on the counter for 15 minutes. Sprinkle a bit of flour on your work surface, and roll out the dough with a rolling pin to an approximately 12-inch circle. Transfer the dough very carefully to a 10-inch tart pan, pressing on the dough lightly so it sits snugly against the bottom and sides of the pan. Prick the bottom of the shell all over with a fork. Place a piece of parchment paper over the shell, making sure to cover the edges. Spread plenty of dried beans over the parchment, covering the whole bottom of the tart shell. Bake for 15 minutes this way, then remove the parchment and beans and return the shell to the oven for an additional 10 minutes. Remove from the oven and let cool for at least 10 minutes before filling.


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How to Make a Shortbread Crust for Practically Anything | Umami Girl


Hi there, I'm Carolyn, and I'm delighted you're here. I'm a NYC-area food, travel, yoga, coffee, wine, running, music making and book obsessive with a great family and a love for sharing it all with you. Grab a drink and come on in. Learn more.