M&M Shortbread Cookies Recipe (2024)

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This shortbread is simple to prepare, and it will be a beautiful and delicious addition to any holiday cookie plate!

Putting a recipe on bags of baking supplies is really one of the more genius marketing strategies out there. It gets me every. single. time. At least in one way or another, they always get me.

Have you seen the bags of Christmas M&M Minis? I think there might be a recipe for sugar cookies on there. I’m pretty sure that’s what it is. I’ve never actually looked at the exact recipe though, because I get totally sidetracked by the tiny little illustration of the cookie… which looks like shortbread to me.

So I have been dreaming about M&M shortbread for weeks, and finally decided to make a batch for the Great Food Blogger Cookie Swap. And they did not disappoint! I managed to stop at eating just one cookie, but I don’t think I’m going to stop dreaming about them any time soon…

The Great Food Blogger Cookie Swap is as cool as it sounds. Basically, gazillions (okay, 576 to be exact) of bloggers agree to send a batch of cookies out to three bloggers. This arrangement it totally Secret-Santa-style, so you have no idea who drew your name until a box of cookies shows up at your door!

I’ve participated in it for the past 3 years, and it’s always a blast. The cookies are delicious, but I think it’s even more fun to have a small personal connection with a few of the other bloggers out there!

To top everything off, The Great Food Blogger Cookie Swap raised over $4,400 for Cookies for Kids’ Cancer!! What a fun experience this cookie swap is each year. I’m so grateful to have been a part of it!

The base for this shortbread recipe came from one of my very favorite bloggers, Kristen who blogs at Dine and Dish.

M&M Shortbread Cookie Tips

  • The dough can be made ahead of time and stored in the fridge for up to 3 days, or in the freezer for up to 2 months.
  • If the dough is too crumbly, add a little more butter. If it’s too sticky, add a little more flour.
  • I like to use a silicone baking mat or parchment paper to roll out my dough on. This way, there’s no need to flour the surface and the cookies don’t stick.
  • The cookies can also be baked on a greased baking sheet, but they may not be as pretty.
  • Store in an airtight container for up to 5 days.

M&M Shortbread Cookie FAQ

What kind of M&Ms can be used?

Any type of M&Ms will work in this recipe. I used the Christmas Mini M&Ms, but regular sized M&Ms or even peanut butter M&Ms would be delicious!

Can these cookies be frozen?

Yes, these cookies can be frozen. They will keep in the freezer for up to 2 months.

Do I have to use a stand mixer?

A stand mixer is not necessary, but it will make the job a lot easier. You can use a hand mixer or mix by hand with a spoon.

Can I use a different type of candy melts?

You can use any color of candy melts that you would like. I used chocolate candy melts, but white, silver, or any other color would be beautiful!

Can I use a different type of cookie cutter?

Yes, you can use any type of cookie cutter that you would like. I recommend a star-shaped cookie cutter, but any shape would be cute!

M&M Shortbread Cookies are a delicious and easy addition to any holiday cookie plate! These cookies are simple to prepare, and they will be a beautiful and delicious addition to any holiday party! The dough can be made ahead of time and stored in the fridge or freezer, making these cookies the perfect make-ahead dessert!

M&M Shortbread Cookies Recipe (4)

M&M Shortbread Cookies

Yield: 12


  • 1/2 cup powdered sugar
  • 1 cup butter, softened
  • 2 cups flour
  • optional: 1-2 tablespoons water
  • 1/2 cup M&M minis
  • optional: 1/2 cup chocolate candy melts for drizzle


  1. Preheat oven to 350ºF.
  2. Beat together the butter and powdered sugar (a stand mixer is great for this, as the powdered sugar will make quite a mess if you're using a hand mixer).
  3. Slowly add the flour (about a half cup at a time), mixing a bit in between each addition.
  4. The mixture will look crumbly at first, but the dough will come together after a few minutes. If needed, add water (one teaspoon at a time) to help dough form. I ended up adding 1 tbsp + 1 tsp. However, beware of adding to much. This dough should not be sticky.
  5. Gently mix in the M&Ms with a spatula or wooden spoon.
  6. Turn dough onto a lightly floured silicone baking mat or parchment paper and roll out to a 1/4" thick rectangle. Using the parchment or baking mat, life the dough onto a baking sheet (leave the parchment or silicone mat as the lining). Cut dough into 12 rectangles.
  7. Bake for 20-25 minutes until edges begin to turn a light golden brown.
  8. Let cool completely. on a wire rack.
  9. Drizzle the melting candy over top and sprinkle with additional M&Ms if desired.

Don’t miss a bite!

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M&M Shortbread Cookies Recipe (5)

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M&M Shortbread Cookies Recipe (2024)
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