Yiayia’s Kourabiethes (Grandma’s Greek Shortbread)

By Efrosini Costa

Yiayia’s Kourabiethes (Grandma’s Greek Shortbread)

Yiayia’s Kourabiethes (Grandma’s Greek Shortbread). These delicious buttery biscuits contain a hint of vanilla and ouzo and are the perfect way to celebrate Greek Easter! Smothered in mounds of white icing sugar they are the perfect afternoon treat.

These delicious buttery biscuits contain a hint of vanilla and ouzo. Smothered in mounds of white icing sugar they are the perfect treat for a greek-inspired easter menu.

This is my grandmother Athanasia’s recipe, which was handed down to her, and which she brought across when she migrated to Australia in 1950.

Every year, in the lead up to Easter, three generations of women gather in her small kitchen to create these delicious biscuits for their families.

They are best enjoyed with a traditional greek coffe or a refreshing glass of ouzo over ice , if you’re so inclined. Careful the icing sugar goodness means they can be messy to eat!


1 250g block of unsalted butter

1 cup white sugar

1 tsp (or more depending taste) vanilla extract or essence

1 espresso cup of ouzo

1 cup plain flour

icing sugar to dust over biscuits


Prepare oven to 180.

Beat butter with sugar until it turns a pale creamy colour, which looks almost white.

Add vanilla and ouzo to the mixture and beat well.

Add a little flour at a time using a sieve, always alternating between adding flour and mixing. You should have rough dough now that is soft to the touch but still moldable in your hands.

Take the dough mixture and knead into a ball – being careful not to over knead.

Grab a tablespoon of the dough and squash into your palm, alternating between each hand to the other until you have a round oval shape. Pinch ends of the dough to create a half moon. This is the traditional shape but you could also have fun experimenting with other shapes too.

Place half moons with space between them, onto baking trays. Please note: Butter and oil are not needed to grease the trays as biscuits have a lot of butter in them and wont stick.

Bake in the over at 180 for about 20-30 mins or until the biscuits puff up and turn a lovely rose brown colour. Make sure you keep your eye on them as they can easily colour too quickly or burn if you’re not careful.

Remove the biscuits from the trays gently and place flat on aluminium foil on your table or bench. Sift ample amounts of icing sugar on top of the biscuits while hot, this will ensure you’re icing sugar sticks and doesn’t fall off. Be generous they should be completely covered – some of the sugar will fall off as you move them as well.

When biscuits are cool, place them in a rectangular tupperware container. Do not overlap the biscuits because they will break or lose their sugar.


Print Recipe


Let us keep you up to date with our weekly MiNDFOOD e-newsletters which include the weekly menu plan, health and news updates or tempt your taste buds with the MiNDFOOD Daily Recipe. 

Member Login