If you love the combination of sweet and salty, you’ll love these salted caramel shortbread cookies. These cookies are so simple to make. They start with a simple shortbread, baked to perfection. Then they’re topped with delicious creamy caramel, sprinkled with some coarse sea salt, and drizzled with chocolate. It’s a perfect flavor combination for fall all the way through winter.
When you’re mixing up shortbread, it won’t mix up into a cohesive mass like most cookie doughs do. It stays pretty crumbly. But that’s okay! It’s just the nature of it. All you need to do is work it by had a little. Squeeze and press it together, then carefully roll it out and you’ll have a nice cohesive cookie ready to bake.
A little tip I use every single time I roll out cookie dough. I like my cookies to all be the exact same thickness, not only so they look good, but also because they’ll all bake evenly. I’ve had these 1/4-inch square dowels for many, many years. I also have 1/8-inch ones, but I don’t use those nearly as often. So, what I do is I take my two square dowels and place one on each side of my dough. I then roll the dough out until my rolling pin hits the dowels. This way every cookie is the same thickness.
Salted Caramel Shortbread Cookies
1 1/2 cups butter, softened
3/4 cup sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
- In the bowl of your electric mixer, beat butter until creamy. Add sugar and vanilla and beat until light and fluffy.
- Add flour and mix until just incorporated.
- Your dough may not be a cohesive mass at this point. Don’t worry. Just work it with your hands and it will come together. Shortbread dough is crumbly, but presses together nicely.
- Place half of the dough between two sheets of parchment paper and roll out until it’s 1/4-inch thick. With a 2 1/2-inch round cookie cutter, cut out as many cookies as you can and place them on an ungreased baking sheet. Press the remaining dough back into a mass and roll out again. Repeat until you have used all the dough.
- Bake for 12-14 minutes or until just starting to brown. Transfer to a baking rack and allow to cool completely.
- Using a kitchen scale, weigh out 26 ounces of Peter’s caramel.
- In a microwave safe bowl, melt the caramel and milk on high for 2-3 minutes, stirring every 30 seconds until it’s melted and smooth.
- Add 1-2 teaspoons of caramel to each cookie, then sprinkle with coarse sea salt.
- In another microwave safe bowl, melt the chocolate and butter on high for 1-2 minutes, stirring every 30 seconds, until melted and smooth. Drizzle over the cookies.
I like to ensure an even thickness when I roll out cookie dough by rolling the dough between two 1/4-inch square dowels.