Recipe for Lime Meltaway Cookies

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Josh’s favorite treats are all lime based. When I saw Martha’s recipe for Lime Meltaways, I knew I had to make them for my hubby!

Sometimes Martha’s recipes annoy me because I think she tries on purpose to make things difficult. But not this one, the recipe was easy breezy! There were few ingredients and they were all basic.

Josh helped me out and rolled the dough into logs. He is good at it:) You have to chill the logs for at least an hour before baking. So this is a great cookie to make ahead of time…or have in the freezer!

After slicing and baking, you roll them in powdered sugar. This makes the cookies oh so pretty…and they really do melt in your mouth! Josh gave them his stamp of approval so I am calling this baking adventure a success!

Lime Meltaways
Martha Stewart

12 tablespoons (1 ½ sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
1 cup confectioners’ sugar
Grated zest of 2 limes (I used 2 ½)
2 tablespoons freshly squezzed lime juice
1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
1 ¾ cups, plus 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons cornstarch
¼ teaspoon salt

1. In the bowl of an electric mixer with the whisk attachment, cream butter and ⅓ cup of the confectioner’s sugar until fluffy. Add lime zest, juice, and vanilla; beat until fluffy.
2. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, cornstarch, and salt. Add to butter mixture, and beat on low speed until combined.
3. Between two 8 by 12 inch pieces of parchment paper, roll dough into two 1 1/4-inch diameter logs. Chill at least one hour.
4. Heat oven to 350 degrees. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper. Place remaining 2/3 cup sugar in a resealable plastic bag. Remove parchment from logs; slice dough into 1/8-inch thick rounds. Place rounds on baking sheets, spaced 1 inch apart.
5. Bake cookies until barely golden, about 15 minutes. Transfer cookies to a wire rack to cool slightly 8 to 10 minutes. While still warm, place cookies in the sugar-filled bag; toss to coat. Bake or freeze remaining dough. Store baked cookies in an airtight container for up to 2 weeks.

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I'm Maria and my husband is Josh. We share a love of cooking, baking, and entertaining. We enjoy creating recipes that are simple, fresh, and family friendly. We love sitting around the table with good food, good conversation, and good friends and family! Our kitchen is always open!
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  1. Love your website, but hate these cookies! I made them today for St. Patrick’s but they were bitter and tasted terrible — even with all the powdered sugar. What could have happened??

    1. Sorry you didn’t like the cookies. Were your limes bad? I’ve never had them taste bitter. Sorry!

  2. Did you overlook adding the 1/3 cup sugar? It’s not listed in the ingredients list; but it is mentioned in the first step of the directions.

    1. You add 1/3 cup of the confectioner’s sugar with the butter. I updated the recipe so it is more clear. Thanks!

  3. I made these before, and found they have tobe stored in tin for at least a week to mellow and then they are fantastic!

  4. Re: the person whose cookies ended up bitter. Most likely, you got too much of the lime pith (white part) when grating the zest. You have to be very, very careful when grating zest to ONLY get the outermost green (or yellow, for lemons), as the pith is quite bitter and will impart that bitterness to anything it is added to. That is the only thing I can think of that would give you that result.

    I have made these. They are good, however, not quite sweet enough for me. I increased the powedered sugar in the recipe to 1/2 cup (and yes, I DO know that shortbread isn’t normally super sweet and I prefer my desserts NOT sweet enough to curl my teeth). That being said, even after coating in powdered sugar, it wasn’t sweet enough, so I incr the sugar in the recipe. I also added about 1/4 cup finely minced basil, which makes a super nice flavor combo. The texture is nice – very smooth, light & they do “meltaway.” I didn’t notice the “cornstarchy” taste some folks have complained about with this recipe.

  5. Made these today using limes, I have until now always used glut of lemons. However I took advice of Kelly T and upped the amount of icing (confectioners) sugar and cookies came out incredibly good. Next time I will try adding the basil too, as have lots growing in garden.
    I have converted the butter and flour to grams for future use as much easier to measure out as we don’t refer to butter by sticks and I find the flour measurement too fiddly in cups + tablespoons when 265 gms flour is so much quicker.
    All in all a very good reliable recipe.

  6. Not very good. The powder sugar doesn’t make the cookies very sweet. They weren’t very “limey” when made to the recipe. I had to add and extra tablespoon of lime juice to get just a hint of lime flavor. The dough was too dry. Even with the extra lime juice, I still had to wet my hands to get it moist enough to stick together. Without the powdered sugar on them, they have almost no flavor at all. They end up tasting like a powdered sugar sugar cookie. I also ended up with a little bad after taste. I assume that’s from the extra lime juice. All in all, would not make these again.

  7. My cookies were on point when it came to taste. They only bad thing is that they looked nothing like the photo when they came out of my oven. I had to call them ” lime crisps”. I still used them because the lime flavor is awesome. My dough spread out super thin and the edges got super brown. I followed these directions. Not sure why mine look nothing like the picture. I will say I did salvage them and I just changed the name to “lime crisps”. A for flavor, F for ease of recipe and look of cookie. Sorry, I’m not usually a Negative Nelly!