Key Lime Cactus Cookies


It’s Friday, and I’m back with a recipe for Key Lime Cactus Cookies. I made them because of a bunch of random things.

Last summer when one of my friends got married, his aunt made lime cookies (along with many other varieties) for the wedding. Initially I thought, “Eww, I’m not eating a lime cookie!” Then I tasted one and proceeded to eat about a dozen more. I’ve been thinking about those cookies ever since.

Key Lime Cactus Cookies | Inspired by Charm

Secondly, when I was working on some guides and collections for eBay recently (You can check them out / follow along here.), I came across a cactus cookie cutter. (I ended up ordering my cookie cutter on Amazon.)

So, as a result of craving a lime cookie, finding this cute cookie cutter, and wanting to be around anything that reminds me of sunshine, I made these adorable Key Lime Cactus Cookies.

Key Lime Cactus Cookies | Inspired by Charm

Plus, I finally got to use these little key limes. I think they are what make these cookies. Compared to a regular lime, the flavor of a key lime is a bit softer and sweeter.

I love how the cookies turned out. The flavor is on point, and they are super cute. However, getting there wasn’t the easiest process. Also, if you’re having a stressful day and are looking to unwind with a little baking, do NOT make these cookies. Just enjoy a glass of wine or another libation.

Key Lime Cactus Cookies | Inspired by Charm

Let me explain. The base of these cookies is shortbread, so they tend to be a bit more fragile than a regular sugar cookie. Throw in a cookie cutter that creates some fairly narrow pieces on said cookie and you’re bound to have some cookie breakage.

To combat that, make sure your dough is a bit thicker when you roll it out. I recommend 1/5-1/4-inch thick. Second, give your cookies about a minute to cool on the baking sheet before moving them. Then, when you do remove them, do it slowly. Finally, let them cool completely before moving them around. OR, save yourself all of this trouble by just skipping the cactus cookie cutter and making them round.

Key Lime Cactus Cookies | Inspired by Charm

Who am I kidding? The cactus shape is part of the appeal of these cookies. They are definitely makeable, I’m just offering a word of caution. The recipe is a solid one. It was the cookie cutter that created the issue for me.

Also, to keep my icing on fleek, I decided to pipe it on. This created crisp lines of icing around the cookie. You can just as easily spoon the icing on and cover the entire top of the cookie. I think that would look great.

key lime icing

So that’s my cookie story for today. Hopefully, my trials will save you a lot of frustration. As you can see, though, the cookies turned out beautifully. They were just what I imagined.

Key Lime Cactus Cookies | Inspired by Charm

Let’s get baking.

Key Lime Cactus Cookies | Inspired by Charm

Key Lime Cactus Cookies

Makes about 2 dozen cookies

Here's what you will need:

1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup powdered sugar
1/2 cup cornstarch
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 1/2 sticks (1 1/4 cup) unsalted butter, softened
1 tablespoon key lime juice, freshly squeezed
2 teaspoons key lime zest, freshly grated

2 1/2 cups powdered sugar
2 teaspoons key lime zest, freshly grated
5-6 tablespoons key lime juice, freshly squeezed

Begin by combining the flour, powdered sugar, cornstarch, and salt in a bowl. Set aside.

With an electric mixer, beat the butter until creamy. Add the flour mixture, key lime juice, and key lime zest. Beat at a low speed until the dough forms.

Shape the dough into two flat discs. Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate for about an hour.

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F.

On a lightly floured surface, roll out the dough so that it's 1/5-1/4-inch thick. (Note: This dough tends to be a bit fragile. If you're using a cookie cutter with narrow parts, like this cactus, those areas will be weak with a tendency to break. A thicker cookie will help prevent this.)

Place the cookies on an ungreased cookie sheet. Bake 9-11 minutes or until the edges just start to brown. Cool at least 1 minute on the cookie sheet. Then carefully move the cookies to a cooling rack to cool completely.

For the glaze, in a large bowl combine the powdered sugar and lime zest. Gradually whisk in enough lime juice for the desired consistency for glazing. Spoon or pipe the glaze on top of the cookies. Top each cookie with sprinkles immediately after icing to ensure they stick. Let stand until the glaze has hardened.



Key Lime Cactus Cookies | Inspired by Charm

I’m pretty sure I want all of my cookies to be in cactus shape from now on. What’s the strangest cookie cutter you’ve used? Or what cookie cutter would you like to see created?

Disclosure: This blog post may contain affiliate links as part of the Amazon Services LLC Associate Programs and other affiliate services. This means that receives a small commission by linking to and other sites at no cost to the readers.

Posted By at 12:45 PM
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  • Ben at

    This is a mediocre shortbread recipe pretending to be good for cookie cutters. Dough comes out as mostly creamy butter, and even after an hour in the fridge it turned right back to a gooey mess. Cookie cutters were impossible to use, and just cutting into squares with a butter knife was extremely difficult. If youโ€™re looking to cut into shapes go with a different recipe. Seems like Iโ€™m the only comment that actually made them.

    • Michael Wurm, Jr. at

      Thanks for the info Ben. As I mentioned in the post, this is a bit tricky with cookie cutters. It requires a lot of patience. With that being said, the dough should still be workable. I’m not sure what happened with it for you. So sorry you had troubles.

      xo Michael

  • Annie Murray at

    This may be a dumb question, but you could freeze these, yes? Can’t wait to make them!

  • debbie tettaton at

    Will be making these for jimmybuffet parrothead party for sure!! You are awesome

    • Michael Wurm, Jr. at

      Um, can I come? Haha! YOU are awesome! Thanks Debbie!

      xo Michael

  • Robbie at

    These look fantastic! I may try them them and sub out the traditional flour for coconut ๐Ÿ˜‰ So inspiring!

  • Beth Holt at

    These look amazing! I love all of your tips for making the baking process somewhat easier on us. Thank you!

  • Candice at

    The cookies look yummy and I will definitely use this recipe. I didn’t have cookie cutters and needed one for a recipe so I used my dogs homemade treat cutter. Yes, that was me passing around a tray of red and green dog bones at the Christmas party.

  • Connie at

    Cookies look delish!
    However, on my iPad, the link to the collections on eBay doesn’t work ๐Ÿ™

    • Michael Wurm, Jr. at

      Connie – thanks for letting me know! The links are fixed. ๐Ÿ™‚

      xo Michael

  • Arli at

    I made cookies in the shape of spiders! Talk about fragile legs. Never again!
    The lime cookies look delish; I just might make them in a dimple, round shape.

    • Arli at

      *simple, not dimple!

  • Sue at

    These look perfect! Definitely worth the effort (or maybe cursing in the kitchen?) that went into making them! I have a really cute set of marine life cookie cutters I got on Amazon, but other than that I have boring Xmas ones. These cactus cutters are pretty cute.

  • Mia at

    M – not sure why you’d second guess a lime cookie!

    These look amazing!

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