These maple sugar shortbread cookies literally melt in your mouth! It’s both flavoured with and topped with fine, pure maple sugar, for a lovely snacking cookie.

maple sugar shortbread on platter

These delicious maple sugar shortbread are absolutely what to do with maple sugar! The texture of these shortbread is melt in your mouth perfect.

Ingredients and Substitutions

Maple Sugar – maple sugar isn’t always the easiest thing to find, but I do know that Bulk Barn here in Canada carries it. There really isn’t a substitute here. You can’t use maple syrup or maple extract as it is liquid. The only substitute that will work is white sugar (or maybe brown sugar), but then it wouldn’t be a maple cookie.

Rice Flour – rice flour is what gives these shortbread cookies a great crispy texture, so I highly recommend it. It’s easy to fine at most grocery stores these days.

Unsalted Butter – this recipes specifies unsalted butter, because unsalted butter is generally fresher butter. You could use salted butter if that’s all you have on hand, but you’ll want to reduce the added salt by about 1/2 teaspoon, as noted in the Recipe Card. In either case, use a good quality butter, as butter is such a main ingredient in these cookies.

Cook’s Notes

You don’t need to let the butter cool completely to room temperature. It should definitely not be used hot, but it’s ok if there is a very tiny bit of warmth in it.

I have included a range of salt to add to the shortbread. I (personally) find 1/2 tsp. not quite salty enough, so I use 3/4 tsp. with the unsalted butter. Your taste may vary. Probably best to start with 1/2 tsp. and see. Also note that if you use salted butter with this recipe, you will want to reduce the added salt by 1/4-1/2 tsp.


Maple Sugar Shortbread Cookies

Making ahead, storing and freezing

Shortbread cookies are ones that actually get better and develop more flavour as they age. Freshly baked, they are lovely, but as they sit, they really develop a depth of flavour, so don’t hesitate to pop these in a cookie tin and enjoy them over a couple of weeks. So don’t hesitate to make ahead. Store in a cookie tin or airtight container.

These shortbread cookies will also freeze well.

maple sugar shortbread on platter

Get the Recipe: Maple Sugar Shortbread

Delicious, easy, melt in your mouth maple sugar shortbread cookies that are both flavoured and topped with pure maple sugar.
5 stars from 2 ratings
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 45 minutes
Yield: 24 cookies


  • 2 cups all-purpose flour, spooned and levelled
  • 1/4 cup rice flour
  • 1/4 cup fine maple sugar, plus more for topping *See Note 1 below
  • 1/2 - 3/4 teaspoon fine salt, if using salted butter reduce to 1/4-1/2 tsp.
  • 1 cup unsalted butter, melted and cooled to lukewarm


  • Heat oven to 350F. Line an 8-inch square pan with parchment paper, leaving extra at two opposite sides for lifting out.
  • In a bowl, whisk together the all-purpose and rice flours, the maple sugar and salt. Stir in the melted and cooled butter and stir to combine. Mixture will be moist, sand-like. Press dough evenly in to the bottom of the prepared pan. Bake until golden brown and set, 30-35 minutes. Remove to a cooling rack but while still warm, sprinkle evenly with additional maple sugar and slice, then allow to cool completely before removing from pan.


Note 1: If your maple sugar is not fine, run through food processor
Cuisine: American, Canadian
Course: Snack
Serving: 1serving, Calories: 112kcal, Carbohydrates: 9g, Protein: 1g, Fat: 7g, Saturated Fat: 4g, Cholesterol: 20mg, Sodium: 1mg, Potassium: 13mg, Vitamin A: 235IU, Calcium: 4mg, Iron: 0.5mg
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