Shortbread Cookies With Jam (Split-Second Cookies)

Split-Second Cookies are buttery and tender shortbread cookies with jam. They are so soft and buttery they melt in your mouth. Not only are they absolutely delicious, they are so simple to make.

Shortbread Cookies With Jam
(Split-Second Cookies)

There are many varieties of recipes for shortbread cookies with jam. I think this one is so wonderful because they are just so simple to make, look beautiful and taste just right. My cousin shared this recipe with me many years ago, and we have been making it ever since. They are called Split-Second Cookies. I imagine it’s because of how easy they are to make.

During the weeks before Christmas, the smell of baking cookies wafts through most houses, there are cookie exchange parties and lots of treats in offices.  Even families that hardly ever bake during the rest of the year, find themselves congregating in the kitchen and pulling out the butter, flour and eggs. We’ve all seen the sappy commercials and cheesy Christmas movies with a grandma in the kitchen baking with her grandkids and all the other similar scenes. It’s so predictable, but gives you a cozy, warm feeling anyway:). I’m such a sucker for corny things like that.

They are the best tender, buttery cookies and the tart jam complements them perfectly. If I only had to make one type of cookie, this is the one I would choose. (If you want to make soft cut out sugar cookies, check out this recipe. They are great to make with kids.)

Watch the Video of How To Make Split Second Cookies, Shortbread Cookies With Jam


  • butter, softened to room temperature
  • granulated sugar
  • egg, room temperature
  • vanilla extract
    • you can also use almond extract instead of the vanilla
  • all-purpose flour
    • I haven’t tested this recipe with any other type of flours. I use unbleached all purpose flour.
  • baking powder
  • salt
    • a little bit of salt is a must in cookies:).
  • raspberry jelly/jam or preserves
    • you can use most any other jam instead. I like using strawberry jam too.
Ingredients For Shortbread Cookies With Jam
Split Second Cookies

How to Make Shortbread Cookies With Jam

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper for easier cleanup later, or you can just use an ungreased cookie sheet.
  2. Cream the butter and sugar until pale yellow and fluffy, about 5 minutes.
  3. Add the egg and vanilla, mixing to combine.
  4. Mix the flour, baking powder and salt in a medium bowl, then add to the bater, just until the flour is incorporated.
  5. Shape the dough and fill with jam.
    • Divide the batter into 4 pieces.
    • Roll each of the 4 pieces into a log, then flatten into a 12″ x 3/4″ rectangle.
    • Make an indentation in the center of each log.
    • Fill the center with 2 Tablespoons of jam.
    • Repeat with the 3 remaining portions of cookie dough.
  6. Bake the cookies.
    • Bake the cookies for 15 minutes, just until the edges are lightly golden.
    • Cool the cookies for about 5 minutes, then cut them on a diagonal into 3/4 inch pieces, while still warm.
    • You will have 55-65 cookies.
Step by step tutorial for shortbread cookies with jam in the center, sliced into pieces.

Helpful Tips For the Best Shortbread Cookies With Jam

How to make shortbread cookies really soft and tender?

1. Use room temperature butter and egg. If they are too cold, you won’t be able to whip them up well. If the egg is too cold and you add it to the creamed butter and sugar, it will curdle and look like buttermilk.
2. Don’t overmix the cookie dough. After adding the flour, don’t mix the batter too long, or the cookies will be tough.

How to prevent shortbread cookies from spreading too much in the oven?

Make sure to use room temperature ingredients. The butter shouldn’t be too cold or too melted. Sometimes, the cookies will not only spread too much and be flat when baking, but the butter will leak.

How Long Should You Bake the Cookies?

It’s so important to make sure you don’t over bake these cookies, or they won’t be tender. I usually bake them for 15 minutes only. You might want to start checking them at 10-12 minutes. The cookies should still be light in color, NOT golden brown, and should just start to get golden around the bottom edges only. (I baked some for 17 minutes, and they were already overcooked.)

How To Prep Ahead and Store Shortbread Cookies:

Make the cookie dough in advance and store in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. Warm at room temperature for about 15 minutes before shaping.
Store the baked cookies at room temperature, covered lightly so as not too break them, for 3-5 days. However, the cookies are best the first 1-2 days.

Can You Freeze the Cookies?

Yes. You can freeze the cookie dough up to 3 months, wrapped really well. Thaw before shaping and baking.
You can also freeze the baked cookies. However, since the cookies are really tender, don’t stack too many of them on top of each other or they will break easily.

Split Second Cookies
Shortbread cookies with jam

Shortbread Cookies With Jam (Split-Second Cookies)

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5 from 4 reviews

Split Second Cookies are shortbread cookies with jam. They are tender and buttery, usually with raspberry jam in the center. They are so soft, they just melt in your mouth. Not only are they so tasty, but they are one of the easiest cookies to make.

  • Author: Olga’s Flavor Factory
  • Prep Time: 30 minutes
  • Cook Time: 30 minutes
  • Total Time: 1 hour
  • Yield: 60 cookies 1x
  • Category: Dessert


  • 3/4 cup butter (softened to room temperature)
  • 2/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 egg (room temperature)
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 2 cups all purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup raspberry jam/jelly or preserves (or any kind of jam that you like)


  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Line 2 cookie sheets with parchment paper for easier cleanup later, or you can just use an ungreased cookie sheet.
  2. Cream the butter and sugar together in a large bowl until light and fluffy using a standing mixer with a paddle attachment or a hand mixer. 
  3. Add the egg and vanilla. Mix to combine.
  4. In a medium bowl, mix the flour, baking powder and salt. Add to the butter mixture and mix just until combined. Do not over mix.
  5. Divide the batter into 4 pieces. Roll each portion of dough into a log, then flatten and shape the log into a 12″ X 3/4″ rectangle.  
  6. Make an indentation in the center of the rectangle. Fill the center with about 2 Tablespoons of jam. I usually use seedless raspberry jam, but any jam will work in this recipe.
  7. Repeat with the remaining 3 portions of dough. Place 2 sections of shaped and filled rectangles on each cookie sheet.  
  8. Bake in the preheated oven for 15-20 minutes, just until the edges are lightly golden. (Most ovens will only need 15 minutes. Do not overbake.)
  9. Cool the cookies for about 5 minutes and then cut them on a diagonal into 3/4 inch pieces while still warm. 
  10. Store the cookies at room temperature, covered lightly after 1 day, for 3-5 days, but they are best the first few days. 

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  • Lesya

    Made these tonight. Perfect for a last minute company! For people that do not like too sweet, can use red currant jam. Thank you, Olga, for the recipe!

  • alena

    I use this recipe to make sugar cookies with my girls, except i also add almond extract:) i will definitely make it with jam, sounds really good:) and perfect for the gift baskets:) thank you Olga

  • Marina

    Oh my these look so delicious, I want them now…lol too bad its time for bed so they’ll have to wait for tomorrow :(. Hah thanks so much Olga.

    • olgak7

      I have the same problem – I usually start looking at gorgeous pictures of yummy food at night and then start craving it:). I hope you enjoy the cookies, Marina.

  • Yelena

    These are soooo super delicious!! Reminds me of cookies Costco used to sell. My husband told me not to make these unless I want him to get fat. He literally Ate half plate the cookies at once.Thanks so much for the recipe 🙂

  • Ilona

    Hi Olga,
    Just wanted to stop by and tell you that these cookies are amazing. I baked them a couple hours ago and my husband and I are enjoying them with a cup of tea. I’ve been using your website for a year now and everything that I make is delicious! I made the volcano cake for Christmas and couldn’t @stop eating it:) thank you for everything! You are amazing and blessings through the rest of your pregnancy!

  • Di

    Hi Olga, thank you for this awsome recipe! I just took them out of the oven and they are delicious! My house smells amazing too 🙂

  • Olga

    Oh they absolutely delicious! Thank you so much Olga!
    Was wondering for the next time I make them….to make double batch and freeze unbaked cookies. So it’s even easier haha .
    Have you tried that method? Did it work?
    Thnx a lot dear! Blessings to your growing family 🙂

    • olgak7

      I think it would work, Olga.
      I’ve never done it myself with these particular cookies, but I have frozen many other cookie doughs with great success.

  • Tzivia

    Hello olya darlin made these cookies on Sunday experimented with three different flavors of jam preserves apricot (my favorite) raspberry and strawberry they came out a bit crumbly but nevertheless regardless they are so yummy and delish love how the butter and the fruity jams preserves compliment each other definitely am gonna be making these again thanx so much for sharing this recipe cheers

  • Christine

    Could you please clarify how many cookies this recipe makes.
    The instructions say the yield is 60 cookies.
    The instructions say to divide the dough into 4 pieces/logs, however, the photos show 2 logs…each cut in to 30 cookies for a total yield of 60 cookies.

  • Shelley sandoval

    Hi Olga,
    I want to make this recipe of split-second cookies but I don’t understand how the dough is done. Do you have a video or maybe someone on this blog can explain it too me. I get the roll into a log but I’m lost after that.
    Thank you, shelley

  • Gloria

    I make the thumbprint cookies, same ingredients as yours. Problem I have is the jam boils and gets thin and runny. I’m thinking the logs would be easier and no running? Have you had issues like this? I don’t put a lot of jam in the hole. I think I’ll try the logs instead maybe this will fix my problem. Thank you for your recipe, your way could be the best way.

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