Biscuits/Cookies, Food, Recipes

Coconut Shortbread Cookies with Kaya Jam

If I need to whip up cookies in a flash, I always go back to my simple, 3 ingredient shortbread biscuit recipe. It only requires butter, sugar and flour, you can mix it by hand and it can be out of the oven and in your hot little hands in under 20 minutes!

Coconut Shortbread Cookies with Kaya Jam

You can roll the dough out and bake these plain, or fill and bake them. I’ve made these filled cookies before with Nutella, strawberry jam and salted caramel, and now I bring you my new favourite flavour… Kaya jam!


Kaya Jam is a spread made of coconut milk, sugar, eggs and pandan and is hugely popular in Southeast Asia. It’s rich and flavoursome, making it the perfect filling for these cookies. I also added a teaspoon of coconut essence to the biscuit dough to amp up the coconutty flavour.


These cookies are the perfect Asian twist to serve at your next morning tea – I served mine with English breakfast, but if you want to get authentic then consider offering ‘kopi’ (coffee) or ‘teh’ (tea) served with condensed milk. A decadent treat indeed!


Coconut Shortbread Cookies with Kaya Jam

5 from 1 vote
Print Pin Rate
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 20 minutes
Servings: 18
Author: Swah


  • 225 g butter softened
  • ½ cup caster sugar
  • 1 tsp coconut essence
  • cups plain flour
  • 200 g Kaya Jam


  • Preheat oven to 180°C. Line 2 baking trays with baking paper.
  • Cream the butter and sugar and beat until the mixture is light and fluffy. Add in the coconut essence and stir until mixed through.
  • Sift in the flour and bring the mixture together to form a dough (don't overbeat).
  • Roll the dough into balls and place them a few centimeters apart on a lined baking tray.
  • Gently flatten the balls out slightly with your hand. Using your thumb make a dent in the middle of each cookie (don't make a hole through to the bottom though!)
  • Fill each hole with Kaya Jam.
  • Bake for 15 minutes or until light golden brown.


Wondering where to buy kaya jam? Most good Asian grocery stores will stock it. If you’re Sydney-based, I know you can get it from the Thai Kee IGA Supermarket in Chinatown.


Need more baking ideas for Kaya? Try my Mini Coconut Cakes with Kaya Jam!


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  • Reply Lisa @ Chocolate Meets Strawberry June 2, 2016 at 5:10 pm

    I’ve never tried kaya jam but am keen to now! I love the look of that lovely green colour, and just the fact that it’s a little different from the usual fillings for thumbprint cookies too. I don’t shop at Asian grocery stores often (perhaps since nowadays the Asian section at the supermarket seems to always be getting bigger and better so I’m not finding the need to), but this sounds like something I should go out of my way to find! Yum! :)

    • Reply Swah June 8, 2016 at 5:23 pm

      You really should give it a try Lisa, soon you’ll be putting it on everything I promise!! ;)

  • Reply Evans June 13, 2016 at 5:26 pm

    So tasty! Will definitely try it out.

  • Reply Roni Filla February 15, 2017 at 10:41 am

    Just found your website, and am looking forward to trying your recipes. I will come back and review when I do. I am usually good about that, and giving credit where credit is due. This Coconut Shortbread Recipe, looks to be a good recipe for a basic shortbread cookie. I can use this for other Jam Flavors and with vanilla instead of the Coconut. I find that the American Coconut Extract tastes like soap…LOL never found it palatable. Love using dessicated coconut all the time for adding to different cookie recipes. Just not fond of the Extract. Thanks for sharing your recipes.

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