Homemade Petits-Beurre Recipe | French Butter Cookies

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My husband and I took our kids on the most magical Christmas adventure back in 2019. We had just moved to Wisconsin from North Carolina, our house had been struck by lightning and caught fire – so we couldn’t live there and we wanted to do something special to salvage our crappy year…so we planned a trip to Germany, France, Austria and England. And I’m here to tell you, it was the most magical place to spend Christmas!

Strasbourg, France | Gathered In The Kitchen
Here we are in Strasbourg, France

One of my most favorite things we did while we were there was eat so many kinds of foods!! I was literally like a little kid in a candy shop with larger-than-life Disney eyes gawking at all of the marvelous creations they made!

I didn’t want to leave Europe, nor did I want to leave all of those delicious foods and desserts behind! So, to continue living in the amazing magical Christmas adventure, I bought several cookbooks, all in foreign languages, along with various baking tools, so I could create recipes back home any time I wanted.

Handcrafted Cookie Presses at the Christmas Market in Strasbourg, France | Gathered In The Kitchen
Handcrafted Cookie Presses at the Christmas Market in Strasbourg, France

With the upcoming holidays, I was feeling festive and wanted to bake some amazing cookies for my family to enjoy. I pulled out one of my French cookbooks, written in German, and got busy translating! (Thanks Google Translate!)

Cookbook: Below is a photo of the cookbook that I purchased, translated, the title is: Sweet Specialities from Alsace. (Alsace is a region of France).

Sweet Specialities from Alsace region of France cookbook | Gathered In The Kitchen

I scanned through the photos of all of the delicacies and decided upon Petits-Beurre, aka butter cookies or biscuits. In America, we would refer to these cookies as sweet butter cookies. I would definitely describe them as a combination between a shortbread cookie and a sugar cookie.

Homemade Petits-Beurre Recipe | French Butter Cookie recipe | Gathered In The Kitchen

Ingredients

  • flour
  • baking powder
  • powdered sugar
  • eggs
  • vanilla bean
  • salt

Tools & Supplies

I want to take a moment to go over the different tools that I used to make these cookies, as many of these tools I would highly recommend investing in before making these cookies.

  • rolling pin – after the dough is made and chilled, you need to roll it out using a rolling pin
  • cookie cutter – I like to use decorative edged circle and square cookie cutters to create beautiful edges to my cookies. My mom actually bought me these sets and I love them! Here are the easy shopping links for circle cutters and square cutters
  • cookie press – I purchased these in France and Germany, however, you can purchase these similar cookie presses
  • pastry cutter – this is a handheld stainless steel tool that is typically used to combine butter with flour. Here is the pastry cutter I use
  • digital kitchen scale – with this recipe being in grams, it is best to use a digital kitchen scale to measure out your ingredients as it is very difficult to calculate the translation. Be sure to buy a digital kitchen scale that measures grams
  • parchment paperparchment paper not only protects your pan, but it also helps provide even heating when baking cookies. It helps prevent your light colored cookies from turning too brown on the bottoms.
  • pastry brush – this is used to brush the egg yolk on the top of the unbaked cookies. I like to use a silicone pastry brush for easy clean up

Measurements

As I mentioned above, using a digital scale is pretty much a must when making recipes that are in metric measurements. For example, this butter cooke recipe calls for 250 grams of flour. 250 grams of flour converts to 1.06 cups. I’m not a math expert, but measuring out .06 cups sounds super hard! Plus, all flours, sugars, etc weigh different amounts, so, it’s simply best to use a digital scale and follow the recipe the way it was written.

Let’s Make The Cookies Together!

In a large mixing bowl, beat the egg with the sugar.

Add in scraped vanilla bean and a pinch of salt. Whisk.

In another bowl, sift together flour and baking powder.

Using a pastry cutter, combine flour and butter.

Add the egg with the sugar. Add to the flour mixture and work the dough into a homogeneous mixture.

When the dough is combined, wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 1-2 hours.

Remove from refrigerator and roll dough out to 4mm thickness (a little under 1/4″ thick).

Homemade Petits-Beurre Recipe | French Butter Cookies recipe | Gathered In The Kitchen

Cut the dough with different cutters and place on a parchment paper lined baking sheet.

Homemade Petits-Beurre Recipe | French Butter Cookies recipe | Gathered In The Kitchen
Homemade Petits-Beurre Recipe | French Butter Cookies recipe | Gathered In The Kitchen
Homemade Petits-Beurre Recipe | French Butter Cookies recipe | Gathered In The Kitchen

In a small bowl, which 1 egg yolk. Using a pastry brush, brush the egg yolk on the cookie. Let dry. Brush again with the egg and bake in a 350°F oven for 10-15 minutes.

Homemade Petits-Beurre Recipe | French Butter Cookies recipe | Gathered In The Kitchen

Serve and enjoy with family and friends!

Homemade Petits-Beurre Recipe | French Butter Cookies recipe | Gathered In The Kitchen
Homemade Petits-Beurre Recipe | French Butter Cookie recipe | Gathered In The Kitchen

These cookies were fabulous! To describe them in American terms, I would call them similar to combination of a shortbread cookie and a sugar cookie. I actually baked my first round of cookies without the egg yolk wash (I forgot to add it!) and those cookies turned out similar to a sugar cookie. When I added the egg yolk, as the recipe calls for, they were more buttery like and a tad more fluffy. I preferred it with the egg yolk, while my husband liked the non-egg yolk ones better! To each their own!

Homemade Petits-Beurre Recipe | French Butter Cookies recipe | Gathered In The Kitchen

Homemade Petits-Beurre Recipe | French Butter Cookies Recipe

Homemade Petits-Beurre Recipe | French Butter Cookie recipe | Gathered In The Kitchen

Homemade Petits-Beurre Recipe | French Butter Cookies Recipe

Stephanie | Gathered In The Kitchen
A buttery cookie from France! This recipe uses metric measurements. It is best to use a digital kitchen scale rather than converting the measurements into the Imperial system.
5 from 5 vote
Prep Time 2 hrs
Course Dessert
Cuisine French
Servings 24 cookies
Calories 68 kcal

Ingredients
  

Other Ingredients

  • 1 egg for brushing

Instructions
 

  • In a large mixing bowl, beat the egg with the sugar.
  • Add in scraped vanilla bean and a pinch of salt. Whisk.
  • In another bowl, sift together flour and baking powder.
  • Using a pastry cutter, combine flour and butter.
  • Add the egg with the sugar. Add to the flour mixture and work the dough into a homogeneous mixture.
  • When the dough is combined, wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 1-2 hours.
  • Remove from refrigerator and roll dough out to 4mm thickness (a little under 1/4″ thick).
  • Cut the dough with different cutters and place on a parchment paper lined baking sheet.
  • In a small bowl, which 1 egg yolk. Using a pastry brush, brush the egg yolk on the cookie. Let dry. Brush again with the egg and bake in a 350°F oven for 10-15 minutes.
  • Serve and enjoy with family and friends!

Nutrition

Calories: 68kcalCarbohydrates: 14gProtein: 2gFat: 1gSaturated Fat: 0.3gPolyunsaturated Fat: 0.1gMonounsaturated Fat: 0.2gTrans Fat: 0.002gCholesterol: 14mgSodium: 25mgPotassium: 25mgFiber: 0.3gSugar: 5gVitamin A: 30IUCalcium: 18mgIron: 1mg
Keyword christmas cookies, cookies,
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

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One Comment

  1. Pinned and saved!! These look and sound amazing!!

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