Lemon Myrtle and Wattleseed Shortbread

Lemon Myrtle and Wattleseed Shortbread

I hope you enjoyed the previous story about our great Australian Outback. I’m sure it was easy to see how much I enjoy our amazing country.  Something I have discovered through my travels is that Australia has a taste of it’s own.

Lemon Myrtle and Wattleseed SHortbread

Lemon Myrtle and Wattleseed Shortbread

This might not be immediately obvious if you’re eating in cities, but when you are eating closer to the land you discover people using our native Australian bush tucker foods. These are foods with such a unique flavour profile I immediately associated them with the Australian bush.

To help you experience the Australian flavour I have developed a Lemon Myrtle & Wattleseed Shortbread.  I think these little cookies captures what I consider to be a uniquely Australian taste.

Wattleseed Shortbread Cookies

Wattleseed Shortbread Cookies

Have you ever stood in the bush when your hiking and taken a deep inward breath.  You can smell the Eucalyptus trees and a distinctly Aussie combination of aroma’s. When I eat a Lilly Pilly, Midyim berry or other native fruit, it tastes like our Native Australian foods have absorbed these aroma’s  and have incorporated into their favour profile.

I want to introduce you to two Australian Native foods which I have paired in this Lemon Myrtle and Wattleseed Shortbread recipe.


Ground Wattleseed

Ground Wattleseed

Wattleseed is the edible seeds from our native wattle trees.  The seed is has always been eaten by aboriginals as it is a valuable source of protein, carbohydrate and most vitamins and minerals.  Wattleseed has a low glycemic index and is 30% fibre. The seeds is roasted and then milled which releases the most amazing aroma.

If you can imagine a gorgeous combination of hazelnut, chocolate and coffee you will start to understand the value of this aromatic seed in cooking. I also like using wattleseed for the unique texture the ingredient provides to a recipe. The seed is milled, and usually purchased as ground wattleseed but it still has quite a course texture.  Wattleseed can be further milled into a flour for bread making.

Lemon Myrtle

Lemon Myrtle Leaves

Lemon Myrtle Leaves

I love the Lemon Myrtle tree and it’s native to the Coffs Harbour area! The tree grows up to three metres tall and when you break off the leaves and rub them in your hands you will immediately notice the most intense lemon aroma.

I have had Lemon Myrtle growing since the day my dad first put a dried leaf in my cup of tea. This herb has so many uses and imparts more than just the presumed lemon flavour.  It has the true Australian flavour with an unusual combination of lemon and Eucalyptus which works perfectly together. I use ground Lemon Myrtle with salt, pepper and garlic on fish for a lovely Australian fish recipe.

Wattleseed Shortbread Christmas Giving Pin

Wattleseed Shortbread Christmas Giving Pin

For todays Lemon Myrtle & Wattleseed Shortbread I picked 6 Lemon Myrtles leaves straight from the tree. It’s easier to buy Lemon Myrtle pre dried and ground, so don’t think you need a tree to make this recipe.

Dried Ground Lemon Myrtle

Dried Ground Lemon Myrtle

My process to get the leaves ready for use, was to put the leaves in the dehydrator for 3-4 hours until they were crisp.  I then use a mortar and pestle to make a fine powder. If you could smell this process you would be in love with this tree too.

Wattleseed Shortbread

Wattleseed Shortbread

So with out further ado I give you this unique Australian Bush Tukka Shortbread.

Lemon Myrtle and Wattleseed Shortbread


  • 225gm butter
  • 115gm caster sugar
  • 6 ground lemon myrtle leaves (1 tsp)
  • 3 tsp ground wattleseed
  • 340gm plain flour
  • 2 Tbs caster sugar (to decorate tops of shortbread)


  1. Place 1/2 the wattleseed in a mortar and pestle and give it an extra grinding to release aroma and reduce the coarseness of the product.
  2. In an electric mixer cream the butter and sugar until pale and fluffy.
  3. Add all the ground wattleseed and the ground lemon myrtle to the butter mixture. Mix until combined.
  4. On a slow setting add the flour to the butter. Allow the flour to combine fully.
  5. Wrap the cookie dough in plastic wrap and refrigerate until the dough is firm. Approximate 2-3 hours.
  6. Line two cookie trays with baking paper.
  7. Preheat the oven to 150 degrees celsius or 300 Fahrenheit This is a cool oven.
  8. Place a piece of plastic film on the bench and lightly dust with flour.
  9. Place the cookie dough on the plastic wrap and top with another layer of plastic.
  10. Roll the cookie dough out to the desired thickness between the wrap.
  11. Remove the top plastic wrap and cut cookies.
  12. These are very delicate shortbread cookies to the bottom layer of wrap will help you to transfer each cookie one at a time to the baking tray.
  13. Repeat the process until all the dough is finished.
  14. Bake for 20 -25minutes or until golden.
  15. Remove the cookies from the oven but allow them to cool on the tray.

Are you wondering what these delicious shortbread cookies taste like?

Australian Wattleseed Shortbread Foodgawker

Australian Wattleseed Shortbread Foodgawker

The texture is exactly the same as when you make your favourite buttery shortbread.  The recipe produces a beautiful short cookie.  The wattleseed provides the same texture as rice flour in the shortbread, which is the reason it isn’t needed in the recipe. The wattleseed provides a slightly earthy flavour in the cookie. The lemon myrtle obviously gives a lemon flavour to the cookie, but with a very subtle Eucalyptus.  The total effect is very similar to a regular lemon shortbread but with a little taste of Australia.

Australian Native Shortbread

Australian Native Shortbread

Do you have a favourite Native Australian product you like to use?

Gourmet Getaways

About Julie


  1. Hi Julie, wattleseed sounds very interesting, I would love to make these cookies, I collect spices.

  2. Wonderful recipe celebrating our bush tucker Julie. We need to use more of these ingredients in our cooking! I grow my lemon myrtle in a pot to control the size.

    • Hehe, that would have been a smart idea Jem, I put in 4 lemon myrtle and 3 aniseed myrtle on a property the size of two house blocks!! That’s a lot of Myrtle in a small place!! Lucky I love it!

  3. I would love to try those wattleseed…sound really interesting. These cookies look fabulous!

  4. I was just thinking this morning that it’s about time I dug out my shortbread recipe as Christmas is approaching and shortbread is something I always make for us and as a gift. I haven’t made it with these Aussie ingredients. I do love lemon myrtle and it’s excellent on chicken. Your shortbread are so perfect! xx

    • Thank you so much Charlie! What a great idea giving them as Christmas treats to neighbours, I usually like to make shortbread for Christmas too but it never occurred to me to give Australian Shortbread!

  5. A gorgeous recipe… love wattleseed! xx

  6. These two ingredients are quintessential Australia to me. 🙂 I am really hoping to be able to grow both on our farm one day soon. 🙂

  7. mmm~ they look so good!! sometimes I forget the Australia has some really good produce being side tracked by the many foods we have on offer!

  8. Oh, I like anything that tastes like chocolate. Thanks for promoting native Aussie products- we don’t get too many posts on that subject. I’ve been cooking recently with salt bush, picked near my house in Adelaide- need to use salt in the recipe!

  9. I love wattleseeds in savoury cooking but I never thought about putting them in a cookie along with lemon myrtle. You win my heart with these!

  10. These are my two favourite native Australian spices! 😀 Great flavour combo Julie! 😀

  11. I have lemon myrtle at home and I shall ask my sister to bring me some wattleseed. I love the aroma of the lemon myrtle as well 🙂

    • It’s gorgeous Tandy! I never realized that when you grind the leaves they would be such a vibrant green. Very much like matcha powder to look at.

  12. You may have just created the coolest Australian nation cookie. I feel like I must have been living under some kind of rock as I have never heard of wattleseed but with your description I bet it is just delightful with the lemon myrtle and the crispness of the shortbread.

  13. These look and sound delightful. And so pretty. I rarely bake but am going to try these!

    A xxx

  14. Wow – you’ve introduced me to some new ingredients here and these cookies sound very lovely!

  15. These would make the perfect gift for Christmas. I just love the flavour blend, I confess I do not use any ‘native’ Australian flavours (unless vegemite counts…). Note to self to become more adventurous with my cooking in the New Year (you see I have given myself a few months leeway to begin…) – my kids have requested more Oz holidays – so perfect timing. xxx

  16. These sound delicious and I love the information on the ingredients 🙂

  17. Hey Julie,

    Thanks for sharing this beautiful recipe! The pictures look verry tasteful! I’m curious at the wattleseed! It sounds verry interesting. I had never heard of these ingredients!
    You have a nice blog! I think I’ll look for more over here 😉


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