Shortbread heart cookies are a simple and delicious way to say “I love you” this Valentine’s Day. Flavored with vanilla bean paste, the dough comes together in less than five minutes and rolls out easily after a quick rest in the refrigerator. Most importantly, the hearts hold shape in the oven, making this my go-to cutout cookie recipe.
Topped with a drizzle of chocolate and a sprinkle of toffee bits, this is the year to swap out the sugar cookie for rich pure butter shortbread.
- 3/4 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 1 tsp vanilla bean paste (or extract)
- 1/8 tsp salt
- 1 3/4 cups flour
- 1 Tbsp sugar (for sprinkling)
- 1/2 cup semisweet chocolate chips
- 1/4 cup toffee bits
- Beat butter and sugar in a large mixer bowl at medium speed until combined; add vanilla bean paste and salt and beat until incorporated. Scrape down bowl as needed. Reduce speed to low and mix in flour just until incorporated and dough begins to come together in large pieces. Scrape dough out onto a piece of plastic wrap, shape into a disk and wrap well. Chill dough in the refrigerator until firm, about 30 minutes.
- Preheat oven to 350°F and line two baking sheets with silicone mats or parchment paper. Roll out dough to slightly less than 1/4-inch thick on a lightly floured board. Use a floured 3-inch heart cutter to cut out hearts. Gather scraps to re-roll, punching out more hearts. Place hearts on baking sheets, sprinkle with sugar, and chill for 20 minutes in the refrigerator.
- Bake, rotating pans halfway through, for 14 to 15 minutes, until lightly golden and edges are set. Cool for 5 minutes on baking sheets, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely. For the topping, place chocolate chips in a microwave safe bowl and heat chocolate in 30 second intervals, stirring after each interval until melted and smooth (about 1 1/2 minutes). Transfer melted chocolate to a small piping bag and drizzle over cookies. Sprinkle cookies with toffee bits and let chocolate set before serving.