Perfectly Spiced Chai Shortbread

Chai Shortbread rectangular shaped spiced shortbread cookies.

Chai Shortbread are buttery slice and bake cookies flavoured with black tea leaves and Chai spice. The recipe makes two logs of dough that will keep in the fridge or freezer until you have time to bake them. 

Itching to get your Christmas baking on? I just love sweet treats of all kinds! Check out these Rockin’ Bailey’s Thumbprint Cookies, accented with just a ‘nip’ of Bailey’s Irish Cream (the flavour of the holidays!) or, bake up a few boxes of Ancho Chili Chocolate Cookies for your cookie swap. 

Chai Shortbread a block of spiced shortbread dough being cut into slices.

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Chai Shortbread

Who can resist these buttery, crumbly delicately spiced shortbread cookies? Certainly no one in this family. If you love shortbread you will too!

These cookies are very simple to make and stash away in the freezer for when visitors drop by. They use simple ingredients (and a bit of butter) found in most pantries.

Ingredients List

  • flour
  • confectioner’s (icing) sugar
  • salt
  • butter
  • vanilla extract
  • loose leaf chai

While this recipe uses Loose Leaf Chai, you may use a chai spice mixture instead (with or without the tea).

Get a Jump on that Christmas Baking

I like to think of these Chai Shortbread as a gateway Christmas cookie. Once you bake up a batch of these, the Christmas baking spirit really takes over.

I love all sorts of ‘slice and bake’ cookies because you can mix up the dough and keep it in the freezer for three months! This means you can start Christmas baking in October!

Chai Shortbread ectangular shaped spiced shortbread cookies.

Additionally, shortbread also tastes better a few days after baking. The flavours really just settle right into the dough.

Shortbread ALWAYS tastes better with a little age. If you can, make the cookies a couple of days before the big event and you will be rewarded with great flavour.

How to Make Chai Shortbread

Begin making Chai Shortbread by processing the loose chai with the flour in a food processor. The idea is to chop it as finely as possible. Once the flour nice and airy, the shortbread will have amazing texture!

Add the rest of the ingredients (salt, sugar, vanilla extract, and butter) to the processor bowl and pulse until a dough forms.

Remove the dough and roll into a log of roughly 6cm (2½ inches) in diameter. Wrap it in plastic wrap then refrigerate for at least 30 minutes.

How to Bake Chai Shortbread

You can bake this dough from from frozen or directly out of the fridge. Just preheat the oven to 375 F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

Slice the log into 24 cookies of equal width. Bake for 10-12 minutes or just until the edges begin to turn golden.

Creating New Memories with Chai Shortbread

Shortbread is another Christmas staple in our family and it always will be. When I bake it I always end up reminiscing about how my late Grandma Leaderhouse loved baking, especially anything with a lot of butter.

She made the best shortbread and always made sure to make a batch to give to my dad at Christmas. He really looked forward to having his own little treats all to himself.

This year, I’m having a difficult time figuring out what my dad would like for Christmas but now I think the answer is right here. Don’t you?

Chai Shortbread PIN image of rectangular shaped spiced shortbread cookies.

If you make these Chai Shortbread, please be sure to leave a comment and/or give this recipe a rating! Be sure to follow me on Facebook and Pinterest for my latest recipes. Also, if you do make this recipe, please tag me on Instagram, I’d love to see what you guys are making! Thank you so much for reading my blog.

Yield: 24

Perfectly Spiced Chai Shortbread

Chai Shortbread rectangular shaped spiced shortbread cookies.

Chai Shortbread are buttery cookies flavoured with black tea leaves and Chai spice. The recipe makes two logs of dough that will keep in the fridge or freezer until you have time to bake them.

Prep Time 45 minutes
Cook Time 12 minutes
Total Time 57 minutes


  • 2 cups flour
  • 3 tbsp loose leaf chai
  • ½ tsp salt
  • ¾ cup icing sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature


    1. Add the flour and tea leaves to a food processor and process until the tea is ground and spotted throughout the flour.
    2. Add the salt, icing sugar, vanilla extract and butter and pulse until a dough forms.
    3. Remove from the food processor and roll into a log of roughly 6cm (2½ inches) in diameter and wrap in plastic wrap. Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes.
    4. Preheat oven to 190 celsius (375 Fahrenheit) and line a cookie sheet with baking paper.
    5. Slice the dough into 24 cookies and bake for 12 minutes or until the edges begin to golden.
    6. Cool on the baking tray before transferring to a rack to cool completely.

Nutrition Information:



Serving Size:


Amount Per Serving: Calories: 56Total Fat: 1gSaturated Fat: 0gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 0gCholesterol: 1mgSodium: 53mgCarbohydrates: 11gFiber: 0gSugar: 3gProtein: 1g

Nutritional calculation was provided by Nutritionix and is an estimation only. For special diets or medical issues please use your preferred calculator.

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  1. Erin

    Can I make these with the chai from a teabag, or should I go out and get some loose leaf and use my food Processor?


    1. Bernice Hill

      Hi Erin. I prefer loose leaf tea, however you could use bags of tea depending on their age. I would add a touch of cinnamon, a few smashed cardamom pods, and a very little amount of freshly ground pepper to the dough if using tea bags.

  2. Vanessa

    Thanks for sharing! How far ahead of time can I make them?


    1. Bernice Hill

      Oh gosh. I’ve done them up to a month in advance. They freeze really well.

  3. Suzanne

    This looks so good! What a fun flavor twist on this kind of cookie for wintertime!


    1. Bernice Hill

      Thank you Suzanne. They’re so delicious, especially dipped into tea or hot chocolate.

  4. Nancie

    Do these spread? Thinking of using them instead of traditional sugar cookies …~ nancie


    1. Bernice Hill

      Not sure as I’ve never taken the time to roll them out. At the very least, chill them before you cut them out and maybe after too.

  5. Patsy

    Does “icing sugar” mean confectioners sugar ( also called Powdered Sugar by some)? For shortbreads, I’ve always used regular granulated sugar.


  6. njones

    Is there a way to make them without a food processor? I’m sure I can grind the chai tea fine enough for the recipe.


    1. Bernice Hill

      oh for sure, go right ahead. I’m sure they’ll be fine.

  7. Amy

    Wow these look so great—I can’t wait to try. A chai shortbread sounds absolutely amazing!


    1. Bernice Hill

      Thanks for stopping by Amy, please let me know if you do try them. They are one of my favourites!

  8. thefoodblognet

    These look so good, Bernice! I made Chai Shortbread this year too, but I used brown sugar. Next time I think I’ll try them with icing sugar, like you did. The Chai flavour probably shines better.


    1. dishnthekitchen

      I love brown sugar shortbread! I have a recipe post for them too but I wasn’t able to get them as tasty as my friend’s Brown Sugar shortbread. I must ask her for the recipe.

  9. Sarah Gray

    this is basically my dream holiday cookie. So good!


    1. dishnthekitchen

      ahhhh, yes. Add a cup of hot frothy chai and you’re in business!

  10. Nicole | Culinary Cool

    Like Grandma Leaderhouse. I too enjoy baking with lotsa buttah! Doesn’t everyone love shortbread?! These are getting added to my list of must-bakes.


    1. dishnthekitchen

      So this was a recipe from my first Christmas blogging. How do you like the photo rounding and filters? LOL

  11. ptpotts

    I love Chai! Imagine this with a chai latte from Starbucks…yum!


    1. dishnthekitchen

      yep, or any chai latte! Double Chai FTW!

  12. janet @ the taste space

    I could see why this is one of your favorite recipes. These sound incredible. Thanks for sharing 🙂


    1. dishnthekitchen

      mmm mmm mmm thank you Janet 🙂

  13. Tara

    Definitely making these with my mum this year!! love Chai everything! 🙂


  14. cathyandchucky

    Ooh I love these! I’ve been on the hunt for different types of shortbread and I do love a good Chai latte so here I can combine the two 😀 xox


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