Kinako Black Sesame Shortbread Cookies

Kinako Black Sesame Shortbread Cookies
Kinako Black Sesame Shortbread Cookies

When you imagine the perfect biscuits/cookies to serve with tea, what kind of biscuits do you think of?

I think of Walkers Shortbread. They are really quite magical. They are buttery, crumbly and have the perfect blend of sweetness and saltiness. All that makes them so so addictive that you can’t just have one. And the simplicity of it makes me appreciate it even more. Shortbread cookies are made with just four ingredients: butter, sugar, flour and salt.

Kinako, which is roasted soybean flour, and black sesame powder, which is ground up toasted black sesame seeds, have a subtle and delicate nutty flavor. The flour/powder itself is very light which makes it very easy to add them to bakes. They are especially perfect for bakes that call for a powdery crumbliness– like shortbread– that requires light and fine ingredients like powdered sugar to sweeten it instead of something like granulated sugar.

This is a nutty twist on those traditional shortbread cookies. These cookies are buttery, nutty, toasty and they just melt in your mouth. Pair with tea: hojicha for some extra toasty flavor or with Earl Grey to cut some of the richness with it’s floraley-citrusey notes.

Kinako Black Sesame Shortbread Cookies

Simple buttery, nutty melt-in-you-mouth biscuits. Pairs perfectly with tea. #bliss
Total Time30 minutes
Course: Dessert, Snack
Keyword: cookies, pastry


  • 140 g unsalted butter salted ok; room temperature
  • 50 g fine sugar* not powder!
  • 150 g all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 tsp kosher salt omit if using salted butter
  • 15 g kinako (soybean flour)
  • 15 g black sesame powder**


  • Cream together butter and sugar. Add salt and all purpose flour until you get a crumbly mixture. Divide into two bowls, about 170g each.
  • In one bowl, mix in kinako. In the other, the black sesame powder
  • Gather the kinako dough and pack it in your hands. It will be crumbly at first but will start holding its shape. Do the same with the back sesame dough.
  • Preheat oven to 350F. Line a baking sheet with parchment or a baking mat
  • Roll out the kinako and the sesame dough into a rectangular log, about 1.5" tall and about 1.5" wide. Press the two logs together for a dimension that is 1.5" tall and 3" wide. Using a rolling pin, gently roll the top of the logs to fuze the dough together and even out the top. Use a knife and slice 1/4" pieces and placing them flat on a baking mat or parchment paper. Repeat until done. Then using a fork, make holes on the face of the shortbreads.
  • Bake for 10 minutes or until the edges are just turning brown. Remove and let cool on the baking sheet for 15 minutes before transferring to a cooling rack.


*fine sugar

If you do not have fine sugar, you can put regular sugar into a blender and blend it up!

**Making black sesame seed powder from seeds:

Toast equal amount of sesame seeds in a dry skillet until fragrant. Let cool and blitz it into a powder in a blender or in a mortar. 

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