Viennese Whirls are like a fancier cousin to melting moments. Buttery shortbread dough is piped into a whirl shape and then sandwiched together with buttercream and jam.
Viennese Whirls Ingredients
- Unsalted butter: the butter forms a significant part of the buttery shortbread and buttercream in this recipe. If you can, use a high quality butter!
- Salted butter: it is okay to use salted butter if that is all you have, however it may reduce the sweetness of the final cookie.
- Icing sugar/powdered sugar
- Vanilla essence OR vanilla extract: adds a delicious sweet and fragrant flavour to these delicate cookies. Try and use a "true" vanilla essence or extract, rather than an alcohol-based vanilla.
- Plain / all-purpose flour
- Corn starch / cornflour: gives the shortbread an irresistible melt-in-your-mouth texture.
How to Make Viennese Whirls
While these delicious cookies may look daunting, they are simple to make! The whirl shape is created with a wide star-tip piping nozzle (any variation will work). If you don't have a piping bag (or don't have the time!) you can roll the dough into small balls and flatten them with a fork. You will still get a cute pattern and a tasty cookie!
Assembling the cookies is a very easy process:
- Place all buttercream ingredients into a bowl.
- Beat until very pale and creamy.
- Pipe or spread a tablespoon buttercream onto one shortbread.
- Spread one teaspoon jam on a second shortbread. Tip: try and match up shortbread by size so the cookies look even!
And there you will have a perfect cookies!
Viennese Whirls Variations
Variations of the cookie can include different flavours of pastry or buttercream filling, such as chocolate or another flavour of jam. Some variations may also include additional ingredients such as nuts or chocolate chips in the pastry dough.
Another variation is the shape, instead of the traditional round shape, can be shaped into a lattice pattern or different shapes like heart or stars.
For the Cookies
- 250 g unsalted butter, at room temperature
- ¾ cup (105 g) icing sugar / powdered sugar
- 1 teaspoon (5 g) vanilla extract
- 1 ½ cups (225 g) plain / all-purpose flour
- ½ cup (68 g) corn starch / cornflour
For the Filling
- 125 g (4.5 oz / ½ cup) unsalted butter, at room temperature
- 1 ½ cups (210 g) icing sugar / powdered sugar
- ½ teaspoon (3 g) vanilla extract
- 1 tablespoon (20 mL) milk, plus more as needed
- ¼ cup (87 g) raspberry or strawberry jam
For the Cookies
- Preheat the oven to 180C/355F (standard) or 160C/340F (fan-forced/convection). Grease and line two large baking trays with baking paper.
- In the large bowl of an electric stand mixer (or using a hand-held mixer), add butter, sugar and vanilla. Beat together on medium speed for 2 minutes or until very pale and fluffy.
- Sift over the flour and cornflour. Use the paddle attachment of your mixer (or a wooden spoon) to stir the mixture together until a very soft dough forms.
- Prepare a large piping bag with a star-tipped nozzle. Scrape approximately ⅓ of the dough into the piping bag (do not over-fill) and twist the top of the bag to secure.
- On the prepared baking trays, pipe a small spiral. Tip: start from the outside of the spiral and work your way inward, then pull the piping bag upward to create the 'tip' of the whirl.
- Repeat steps 4 and 5 until all the whirls have been piped. Bake for 10 minutes or until no raw dough is visible and/or the whirls are very lightly golden around the edges. Allow to cool completely.
For the Filling and Assembly
- In the large bowl of an electric stand mixer (or using a hand-held mixer), add butter, sugar, vanilla and milk. Beat together on medium speed for 3-5 minutes or until pale and creamy.
- Choose two cookie of a similar size. Spread 1 teaspoon of strawberry jam onto one cookie. Spread or pipe buttercream onto the other cookie. Sandwich together. Repeat for all cookies.
- You can refrigerate the cookies to firmly set the buttercream, or else keep in an airtight container in cool, dry place.
- Please note that my recipes are measured in metric cups and spoons which are larger than US cups and spoons. Most recipes will be fine if measured in US cups and spoons, but please use the weight (grams) measurement for the most accurate result.
- Keep the cookies in an air-tight container for up to 5 days. Refrigerate if you live in a warm environment.
Tips & Substitutions
- Unsalted butter: you can also use salted butter, although note that this may reduce the sweetness of the cookies.
- Icing sugar / powdered sugar: do NOT use white sugar. To make your own powdered sugar, blend white sugar in a bullet blender for 30 seconds or until very fine.
- You can use whichever flavour of jam you prefer, such as apricot or blueberry.
- If you don't have a piping bag, you can roll the dough into small balls and then press down gently with a fork.
- Make sure cookies are completely cool before piping buttercream and spreading jam.
Nutrition Information:Serving Size: 1 Whirl
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 279Total Fat: 17gSaturated Fat: 10.5gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 5.6gCholesterol: 44.8mgSodium: 4.8mgCarbohydrates: 30.3gFiber: 0.3gSugar: 18.3gProtein: 1.3g