Learn how simple and elegant it is to make these tender cranberry orange glazed scones. Fluffy on the inside and lightly crisp texture on the outside. The combination of tart cranberries and the lower sugar content makes these scones a delicious treat with your morning coffee or as an afternoon snack.
- All-purpose flour
- Both granulated white sugar for the scones and powdered confectioners sugar for the glaze.
- Baking Powder add the rise to the scones.
- Butter adds flavor, flakiness, crisp edges to the chilled and cut into cubes
- Frozen Cranberries or dried can be used.
- Orange juice, use fresh squeezed orange juice with orange zest or a bottled juice is okay.
- Vanilla Extract
- Greek plain yogurt is the secret to these fluffy scones.
- Use whole or reduced fat Milk, the milk should be cold.
How to Make Fluffy Scones
Preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit and place oven rack in the middle.
In a large measuring cup sift together the flour, sugar, baking soda, and salt. Add the butter and use the tines of a fork to mix until the flour has a coarse texture.
In a small glass mix the yogurt, 1 tablespoon of orange juice, and milk. Add to the flour mixture, and using a rubber spatula mix until a dough ball begins to form, about 30 seconds. Fold in the cranberries.
Turn the dough onto a lightly floured pastry board, or parchment-lined cutting board and knead for 5-10 seconds forming it into a ball. The dough will be sticky. Shape the dough into a disc about 6 inches in diameter and about 3/4 inches thick.
Cut the dough into 4 even pieces. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and transfer the wedges to the prepared baking sheet and chill in the refrigerator for about 15 or twenty minutes before baking.
Bake for 18-20 minutes until they begin to brown. Test by inserting a cake tester or toothpick into the middle of the scone, if it comes out clean the scones are ready.
Remove from oven and cool for at least 10 minutes before serving.
Ingredients for the Orange Glaze
- orange juice add the orange flavoring and you can use either fresh squeezed or bottled.
- vanilla extract is another layer of flavor to your scones.
- confectioners (powdered) sugar creates a sweet and smooth glaze.
How to make the glaze for the scones
While the scones cool, whisk together sugar, orange juice, and vanilla extract in a small measuring cup. Drizzle and divide the orange glaze lightly over the top of each cooled scone.
- The frozen cranberries cook up beautifully in this recipe, however you can use equal amount of fresh cranberries. If using fresh chop the up a bit before adding to the batter
- You can substitute equal amounts of cream for the yogurt and milk.
- For a festive glaze make a combination of powdered sugar, dark rum, and vanilla extract.
- Sprinkle with turbinado sugar and leave the glaze off the scones. Turbinado sugar with a subtle caramel flavor.
Tips for Making Perfect Scones
- The wet ingredients such as butter and milk should be cold, and is essential for achieving a light and flaky texture in scones.
- Over mixing the dough can lead to tough and dense scones. Mix the ingredients just until they come together and form a cohesive dough. Avoid excessive stirring or kneading.
- Use a light touch: When handling the dough, use a light touch. This helps prevent the development of gluten and ensures tender scones. Pat the dough gently and avoid pressing it down too firmly.
- If you’re adding fruits, chocolate chips, or other ingredients to your scones, fold them in gently at the end. Be careful not to overmix or crush the add-ins, as this can affect the texture of the scones.
- Bake on parchment paper: Place your scones on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. This prevents sticking and helps with even browning.
- Before baking, brush the tops of the scones with a beaten egg or cream. This adds a beautiful shine and helps them develop a golden brown color.
How to Freeze Unbaked Scones
I like to make a small batch and freeze two for baking later. Follow these steps to freeze unbaked scones:
- Prepare the scone dough according to your preferred recipe.
- Shape the dough into individual scones, as you would if you were ready to bake them.
- Place the shaped scones on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper or a silicone mat. Make sure they are not touching each other.
- Put the baking sheet with the scones into the freezer and allow them to freeze until solid, which typically takes a few hours.
- Once the scones are frozen, transfer them into a freezer-safe container or a Ziploc bag. Label the container with the date and the type of scones.
- Place the container back in the freezer.
When you’re ready to bake the scones, there’s no need to thaw them beforehand. Simply preheat your oven, take out the desired number of frozen scones from the freezer, and arrange them on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Allow them to thaw at room temperature for about 10-15 minutes while the oven preheats. Then, bake them according to your recipe’s instructions, adding a few extra minutes to account for the frozen state.
By freezing unbaked scones, you can enjoy freshly baked treats whenever you want without going through the entire preparation process each time.
Equipment used to make the scones
Many small batch recipes are simpler and easier to make without the aid of a mixer.
- My 4 cup measuring cup is perfect for preparing batters and mixing ingredients that need to be poured.
- A sifter can be an alternative to whisking dry ingredient and evenly distributes the ingredients.
- The rubber spatula is perfect for scraping the dough and when working with sticky ingredients it doesn’t stick as much.
- A sharp chefs knife is essential in any kitchen. My Victronix Chefs knife is the best affordable option and is as good as many more expensive knives.
- My oven is small and I cook mainly small batch recipes so the 1/4 sheet baking pan from USA Pan fits perfect in small conventional oven as well as my countertop convection oven.
- Parchment paper makes clean up easy and prevent sticking.
- Using a pastry fork to cut in flour is easy when working with small batch recipes.
I’m a big fan of quick bread scone recipes, try my easy drop scones .
Scones are traditionally meant to have a tender and crumbly texture rather than being dry or moist. They should not be overly dry or crumbly, but they shouldn’t be excessively moist or doughy either. A well-made scone strikes a balance between being slightly dry and crumbly on the outside while still maintaining a moist and tender interior.
American scones tend to have a denser and heavier texture compared to British scones. American scones often resemble a sweet, rich, and crumbly quick bread or biscuit.. British scones, on the other hand, have a lighter and more delicate texture. They are typically flaky, buttery, and slightly crumbly.
Cranberry Orange Scones
- 1 cup all purpose flour
- 2 tablespoons granulated white sugar
- 1 ½ teaspoons baking powder
- 3 tablespoons salted butter chilled and cut into cubes
- ¼ cup frozen cranberries fresh or dried can also be used.
- 1 tablespoon orange juice fresh squeezed or bottled
- ¼ cup Greek plain yogurt
- ¼ cup milk
- 1 tablespoon orange juice
- 2 drops of vanilla extract
- 4 tablespoons confectioners powdered sugar
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit and place oven rack in the middle.
- In a large measuring cup sift together the flour, sugar, baking soda, and salt.
- Add the butter and use the tines of a fork to mix until flour has coarse texture.
- In a small glass mix the yogurt, 1 tablespoon of orange juice and milk. Add to the flour mixture,and using a rubber spatula mix until a dough ball begins to form, about 30 seconds. Fold in the cranberries.
- Turn the dough onto a lightly floured pastry board, or parchment lined cutting board and knead for 5-10 seconds forming into a ball. The dough will be sticky.
- Shape the dough into a disc about 6 inches in diameter and about 3/4 inches thick.
- Cut the dough into 4 even pieces.
- Transfer the wedges to a parchment lined baking sheet and refrigerat to chill the unbaked scones for about 15 or 20 minutes.
- Bake for 18-20 minutes until they begin to brown. Test by inserting a cake tester or toothpick into the middle of the scone, if comes out clean the scones are ready.
- Remove from oven and cool for at least 10 minutes before serving.
- While the scones cool, whisking together sugar, orange juice, and vanilla extract in a small measuring cup.
- Drizzle and divide the orange glaze lightly over the top of each cooled scone.
- The wet ingredients should be cold, and is essential for achieving a light and flaky texture in scones.
- Mix the ingredients just until they come together and form a cohesive dough. Don’t over mix.
- Gently fold in extras like fruit or chocolate chips.
- Place your scones on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper to prevent sticking.