Nankhatai | Eggless Shortbread Cookies

Nankhatai is an Eggless Indian Shortbread Cookie made with flour, butter, powdered sugar, cardamom, and nuts.

Nankhatai | Eggless Shortbread Cookies

My mom always bought us Indian cookies from the desi grocery store – Punjabi Jeera Biscuits, Atta Biscuits, Nankhatai, and how can anyone forget the classic Parle-G biscuits?

These cookies pair beautifully with masala chai, hence why they’re a favorite for most Indian households – we love our chai. What I love about Indian cookies is they’re light and not loaded with sugar.

What are Nankhatai Cookies?

Nankhatai cookies are buttery with a hint of cardamom and simply delicious. My version of Nankhatai is made with a touch of rosewater and almond flour, and thus making them Rose Almond Nankhatai Cookies.

The rosewater and cardamom combo is a classic pairing when it comes to Indian desserts. Enjoy them with a cup of tea.

Nankhatai | Eggless Shortbread Cookies
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Why You’ll Love Nankhatai Cookies

  • They’re buttery eggless shortbread cookies
  • Made with simple ingredients
  • Easy to prepare
  • Flavored with cardamom and rose water
  • They’re perfect with a cup of tea
  • Pretty cookies for any event – Diwali, Bridal Shower, Baby Shower, Mother’s Day


  • All-Purpose Flour – A cup of all-purpose flour or white flour is needed for this recipe.
  • Almond Flour – Traditionally speaking, almond flour is not used for Nankhatai, but I love the nutty flavor of this flour.
  • Salt – A pinch of salt brings out the flavor of this cookie.
  • Baking Soda
  • Cardamom Powder
  • Butter – You can use ghee or butter for this recipe, but I prefer the flavor of butter to ghee.
  • Rose Extract – I used this rose water extract – a little bit goes a long way.
  • Powdered Sugar – You will need powdered sugar, not cane sugar for this recipe.
  • Ghee – Just a teaspoon of ghee is needed to bind the dough.
  • Pistachios & Almonds – Chop the nuts and add them to the cookie just prior to baking.
Nankhatai | Eggless Shortbread Cookies

How to make Nankhatai Cookies recipe

Prepare Nankhatai cookie batter

1. In a medium bowl, combine the dry ingredients – flour, almond flour, salt, baking soda, and cardamom powder. Mix and set aside.

2. In a large bowl, add room-temperature butter.

3. Cream the butter until light and fluffy.

4. Add powdered sugar and rose water. Blend the mixture until light and creamy.

Nankhatai | Eggless Shortbread Cookies

5. Now add the dry ingredients to the butter mixture in 2 batches. Using an electric mixer, mix until all the ingredients are well incorporated.

6. This is what you should have – the result will be a crumbly mixture.

7. Now using your hands, form a dough. This should only take about 1-2 minutes.

8. Cover with plastic wrap and place in the fridge for 30 minutes.

Eggless Indian Shortbread Cookies

Form Nankhatai cookie dough balls

9. In the meantime, chop the almonds and pistachios.

10. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Once the mixture is out of the fridge, add a teaspoon of ghee and knead the dough for a minute.

Nankhatai | Eggless Shortbread Cookies

11. Now using a mini-scoop, you’ll need 1 ½ mini-scoops to form the cookie dough balls.

12. Roll them up and place them on a greased baking sheet tray.

13. Using a sharp knife, form a kris cross pattern on each cookie.

14. Top each cookie ball with the chopped nut mixture. Place into the oven for 22 minutes at 350 degrees. Do NOT overbake these.

Nankhatai form cookie dough balls

15. Out of the oven. The cookies will still be soft to the touch, but they will cool and harden. Enjoy with a cup of tea.

Nankhatai cookies freshly baked


  • Almond Flour – instead of almond flour, you may substitute chickpea flour (besan).
  • Pistachios / Almonds – if you have a nut allergy, simply omit nuts, including almond flour.
  • Butter – if you’d like a richer cookie or prefer the taste of ghee, use ghee in place of butter.


Store Nankhatai cookies in a cookie jar or a pyrex dish. They keep well for up to 5 days outside the fridge during the cooler months.

Pro Tip

-> Make sure the butter is at room temperature before making these cookies.
-> Do NOT overbake these cookies.


How can I make Nankhatai cookies vegan?

Simply use vegan butter in this recipe.

Can I substitute rose water with rose extract?

Absolutely not!

Rose extract is very concentrated – a little bit goes a long way, whereas rose water is more diluted.

By using rose water instead of rose extract, you will throw off the consistency of these cookies as you will need about 2 teaspoon of rose water (I haven’t tested this). Please use rose extract which you can find on amazon.

Are almond flour and almond meal interchangeable?

Yes. You will most likely find almond meal that is the same as almond flour. You can use either one.

Eggless Indian Shortbread Cookies

More Eggless Desserts

Nankhatai | Eggless Indian Shortbread Cookies


Author: Nisha

Course Dessert

Cuisine Indian

Servings 11 cookies

Calories 179 kcal


Calories: 179kcalCarbohydrates: 16gProtein: 3gFat: 12gSaturated Fat: 6gCholesterol: 23mgSodium: 76mgPotassium: 29mgFiber: 1gSugar: 6gVitamin A: 261IUVitamin C: 0.1mgCalcium: 18mgIron: 1mg

Keyword Cookies, Eggless Dessert, Nankhatai

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