Nana Recipe Wednesday–Meltaway Shortbread

by Sarah on September 28, 2011

The family used to drive cross-country in the summers, to visit the relatives in the Midwest, stopping at popular roadside attractions like Wall Drug.  By the looks of it, they really got into the character of cross-country drivers, as they all appear to be dressed as gas-station attendants.  Matching family jumpsuits.  Now there’s a look.

None of which has to do with cookies, which is what I made for you.  I’ve had this recipe card sitting out for months, mainly because it was all ingredients that are always in the house, and also it’s a simple one to prepare.  Since I’m still in recovery mode I decided now is the time…for meltaway shortbread.

6 ingredients total.  Flour, sugar, powdered sugar, shortening, butter and coconut.  You can’t omit the coconut on this one.  If you don’t like coconut then perhaps this isn’t the recipe for you.  Though I don’t think the flavor is prominent–it’s more of a texture thing.

Cream together all the ingredients except powdered sugar.  The dough will be pretty wet, but don’t worry about it.

Split the dough in two, then roll it into logs.  Wrap it up in waxed paper and freeze until it’s chilled enough to slice.  Nana said 1-1/2 hours, but I went and took a nap for about 3 hours and it was fine.

Slice into discs, about 1/3″ thick.

Put onto an ungreased baking sheet (I recommend using a Silpat or parchment paper) and bake at 375* for 20 minutes, or until light brown (18 minutes on convection).

Cool completely.  Then sift some powdered sugar over the top.  Meltaway is a good descriptor for these cookies–they are very delicate and just melt in your mouth!

Thanks Nana!  This one’s a keeper.

Nana's Meltaway Shortbread


  • 1/2 cup butter (1 stick)
  • 1/2 cup shortening
  • 3 Tbsp granulated sugar
  • 2 cups flour
  • 1 cup flaked coconut
  • powdered sugar, for dusting


  • Preheat oven to 375*.
  • Cream together all ingredients except powdered sugar with a mixer. Divide dough in two pieces. Roll each piece into a log and wrap with waxed paper. Chill until firm enough to slice. (1-1/2 hrs in the freezer)
  • Slice into round and place on an ungreased baking sheet. Bake for about 20 minutes, or until the cookies are a very light brown. Let cool completely on a rack.
  • Sift powdered sugar over the top of cookies before serving.

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