A considerable difference between shortbread and butter cookies is the baking method and what this means for flavor. Shortbread aficionados are adamant that shortbread be baked low and slow, preserving its light color to the end. You want that additional sugar in a butter cookie to caramelize a bit, however, so it is baked at a higher temperature.
- Shortbread cookie dough also mixes up soft and supple, but requires a long chill before baking.
- These shaping differences also give the cookies different textures. Spritz cookies are baked straight away, with no additional rolling or chilling, giving them a more tender crumb.
- Shortbread, on the other hand, develop a crisp snap, thanks to gluten produced during the rolling and shaping steps.
“You can take most spritz cookie and shortbread recipes and side by side the only difference in ingredients is a single egg.”