The History of Walker’s Shortbread: 125 Years of Tradition

The History of Walker’s Shortbread: 125 Years of Tradition

Posted on May 31st 2023

This month marks a major milestone for Walker’s: 125 years since our story began! As we proudly celebrate this momentous achievement, let’s reminisce at what brought us here and look forward to our continued success.

Walkers 125years Seal

How it all began

In 1898, twenty-one-year-old Joseph Walker opened his own bakery in Speyside, Scotland, with a loan of £50 and the ambition to bake “The world’s finest shortbread.”

Within Joseph’s first year of being in business and dedicating all his spare time to his endeavor, he perfected his shortbread recipe using the simple ingredients of flour, pure creamery butter, sugar, and salt. This recipe gave the world a shortbread with an unparalleled all-butter taste and crumbly texture. Among some of Joseph’s first few shortbread products were his  Shortbread Fingers and Shortbread Petticoat Tails, both of which are still baked today for many to enjoy.

Image of a worker at Walker's

His recipe soon became a widespread favorite as locals flocked to his bakery to try his shortbread, with some traveling longer distances to do so. As word of mouth continued to spread and the demand for his shortbread increased, Joseph expanded his bakery, moving to a larger Speyside location. He also acquired a horse and cart so his shortbread could be delivered to greater distances.

Over the years, Walker’s business continued to grow, and so did his family. When the 1930’s came around, two of his sons, James and Joseph, joined the company and ever since, Walker’s has remained a family-run business with a mission to bake the best and showcase Scotland at its finest.

You can read more about the amazing history of Walker’s here.


Throughout the years, the Walker family has remained committed to protecting the core elements of what always made their shortbread so beloved.

In a time when competitors were using margarine instead of butter, Joseph Walker didn’t give in and sincerely believed people still appreciated the care that went into making a superior product as Walker's shortbread. This is why, to this day, Walker’s continues to use the same ingredients, giving people all-butter shortbread of quality they’ll appreciate with every bite.

While the Walker family modernized many of their shortbread-making methods, added additional products, and exported shortbread all over the world, every Walker’s product is still baked in small batches, with the same recipes created by Joseph Walker 125 years ago.

Along with using the same recipe, the Walker family continues to bake with ingredients of only the finest quality. In fact, the family opened a factory in Elgin, Scotland, only under the condition that the finest ingredients would also be used there. Additionally, Joseph Walker’s personal signature is marked on every pack to confirm that each Walker’s product is still made to his same high standards with only the best ingredients obtainable.

So although Walker’s has changed in some ways over 125 years, what customers love about our brand will always remain true: excellent shortbread baked in Scotland to the same, timeless recipe with simple, high-quality ingredients.


With this year being our 125th, we felt it was a perfect opportunity to update the Walker’s brand to not only emphasize pride in our heritage, but to also create a stronger association with the Walker family.
Walker's Logo

Like our products, our new logo has been created by hand, getting redrawn from an original workmarque found in the Walker’s archives. And with our new logo comes the addition of an apostrophe to emphasize that we are a proud family-run company and strengthen the link to our founder, Joseph Walker.

Another new addition to our logo is the inclusion of our home, the village of Speyside, where our shortbread was created 125 years ago. Why? Because there are no shortcuts to showcasing Scotland at its finest.


While honoring and protecting what’s always made our shortbread special and an essential role in our success, it’s also very important for Walker’s to note that the last 125 years would never have been possible without our loyal customers and employees. Thank you all for your amazing support over the years!

And here’s to 125 more years!