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Masi Samoa on a cooling rack.

Masi Samoa ~ Coconut Shortbread Cookies

Masi Samoa are flaky, buttery, coconut shortbread biscuits or cookies from Samoa. These are easy to prepare, not very sweet and just perfect to have with some tea or coffee.
Course Snack
Cuisine Samoan
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 25 minutes
Servings 8
Calories 240kcal
Author Usha Rao


  • 2 mixing bowls
  • Hand held mixer or a stand mixer or a whisk
  • Rolling Pin
  • Pizza cutter or a knife
  • Baking tray or a cookie sheet
  • Parchment or baking sheet paper


  • 4 ½ tablespoon Butter Vegan butter also works.
  • cup Granulated Sugar
  • 1 Large Egg
  • 100 ml Coconut Milk, approximately ½ cup Use full fat or reduced fat, freshly extracted or canned.
  • ½ teaspoon Vanilla Extract
  • 2 cup All-Purpose Flour
  • ½ tablespoon Baking Powder this 1 ½ tsp
  • Dash of Salt


  • Preheat the oven to 350 F. Line a baking tray with a parchment or baking sheet paper.
  • In a bowl mix together flour, baking powder and salt with a spoon or a whisk or sift it. Keep aside until needed.
  • A large bowl, beat together butter and sugar until soft and creamy.
  • To the creamy mixture add an egg and beat until incorporated.
  • Then add coconut milk, vanilla essence and mix well.
  • Gradually add flour, mix until wet and dry ingredients are mixed, and soft dough forms. I used my hand held mixer until this step. You can use a whisk or a wooden spoon also.
  • The dough will be very sticky and might not form a nice dough with the mixer. Lightly flour a board or countertop and gently knead the dough. Since the dough is sticky, add more flour as needed but do not add too much flour.
  • Knead for few minutes to form a soft dough. Lightly sprinkle flour on the rolling surface and roll the dough into ¼” thick square or a circle.
  • Cut the rolled dough into 2 - 1 ½” squares and transfer to a lined baking sheet. Cookies will not expand in size/width when baking but will increase in height and rise. So you need not leave space for expanding.
  • Gather all the scrapes and roll it again and cut it into squares. Repeat the step until you do not have enough scapes. It is easy to cut the squares with a pizza cutter than with a knife. If using a knife, dip it in flour to stop the dough from sticking to knife.
  • This time I got 32 pieces. This time rolled dough was slightly thicker than ¼". I got 32 pieces. Usually I get 40-45 pieces. It all depends on the thickness of the rolled dough and size you cut it into. Second, my square are of all sizes as I am terrible at cutting into equal size.
  • Bake in pre-heated oven for 22 – 25 minutes until golden brown.
  • When cooled, cookies should be hard and not soft. For softer cookies, bake a few minutes less. I prefer slightly soft cookies, so I bake for 22 minutes. The cookies in the photos are slightly thicker than ¼". Baked for 23 minutes.
  • Transfer squares to a cooling rack and cool completely. Store cooled cookies in an air tight container.


  • Yield - Number cookies depends on the size of each cookie. For smaller and thinner cookies, this recipe yields 40-45 pieces.  For the thickness and size you see in the photos, recipe yields 32-34 pieces. 
  • Coconut Milk - Use freshly extracted coconut milk or canned coconut milk. Use full fat coconut milk for best results but reduced fat also works fine.
  • Bake Time - Masi means biscuit and hard and flaky. Since I like soft biscuits, I bake them soft, hence calling them cookies.
  • Nutrition - Values mentioned below are approximate values.


Serving: 4pieces | Calories: 240kcal | Carbohydrates: 33g | Protein: 4g | Fat: 10g | Saturated Fat: 7g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 2g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 37mg | Sodium: 146mg | Potassium: 76mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 9g | Vitamin A: 226IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 56mg | Iron: 2mg