Blueberry Scones: American makeover for a British classic

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Have you ever made scones?

If so, you realize an American-style scone is simply a gussied-up biscuit.

More sugar. More fat. And certainly more add-ins – like dried cherries, and chocolate chips, and pecans…

More is just enough. It’s the American way!

Traditional British scones (like this recipe from Theodora Fitzgibbon’s 1968 classic, A Taste of Ireland), can be plain as plain can be.

And lest you’re wondering about the non sequitur recipe headnotes, they’re referring to the accompanying picture – apparently a dandy at the spa enjoying his scone.

Still, American and British scones have a few things in common.

First, they’re tender/crumbly. Think ultra-chewy bagel; now take a 180° turn, and you have the scone’s classic texture.

Second, they’re easy to make. Mix. Drop. Bake.

Third, they’re a civilized and elegant accompaniment to tea.

And fourth, they’re a wonderful vehicle for all kinds of add-ons (if you’re a Brit), or add-ins (if you’re a Yank).

The Londoner may serve hot scones with a bowl of clotted cream and some homemade lemon curd on the side.

The American? Into the dough go white chocolate chips and dried cherries, macadamia nuts and pineapple chunks, fresh raspberries and almonds and chocolate chunks and…

Cinnamon-Cappuccino-Pecan Scones, anyone?

The following scone recipe isn’t particularly over-the-top – at least for Americans.

Sugar for sweetness, eggs for richness, almond and lemon for flavor – plus blueberries for interest – are the only real aberrations from a true British scone.

Change is good, right?

As the French would say, vive la difference!

Preheat the oven to 375°F. Lightly grease a baking sheet, or line it with parchment.

Did you know that by clicking anywhere on this block of pictures, you can blow them up to full size? Go ahead, give it a try; it’ll work for any of our gridded photos.

Whisk together the following:

2 cups (8 1/2 ounces) King Arthur Unbleached All-Purpose Flour*
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1 tablespoon baking powder

*Substitute 1 cup King Arthur White Whole Wheat Flour for 1 cup of the all-purpose flour, if desired.

Add 6 tablespoons cold butter and work it into the dry ingredients until the mixture is unevenly crumbly; use your fingers, a pastry blender, or an electric mixer.

Stir in 1 cup (about 5 ounces, about half a pint) of fresh blueberries.

Stir together the following:

2 large eggs, beaten
1/4 cup (2 ounces) vanilla or plain yogurt, regular or low-fat; nonfat will make a tougher scone
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 tablespoon grated lemon peel (or 1/4 teaspoon lemon oil)
1/2 teaspoon almond extract

Add to the dry ingredients and stir very gently, just until combined. The dough will be quite stiff (like cookie dough), though it shouldn’t seem dry.

Use a muffin scoop or 1/4-cup measure to scoop the dough onto the prepared sheet in scant 1/4-cupfuls, leaving about 2″ between each.

Brush each ball of dough with a bit of milk or cream, and sprinkle with coarse white sparkling sugar, if desired. The sugar adds really delightful crunch and a nicely sweet finish.

Bake the scones for 20 to 24 minutes, or until lightly browned and a cake tester inserted into a scone comes out dry.

Remove from the oven, and serve warm.

A dollop of jam is never amiss.

Want to make these scones in your scone pan? Simply pat the dough into the greased wells of the pan, and bake as directed.

Store any leftover scones airtight at room temperature for several days; freeze for longer storage.

To reheat, wrap loosely in aluminum foil, and bake in a preheated 350°F oven for about 8 to 10 minutes.

Read, bake, and review (please) our recipe for Blueberry Scones.

Print just the recipe.

PJ Hamel
About

PJ Hamel was born in Wisconsin, grew up in New England, and graduated from Brown University. She was a journalist in Massachusetts and Maine before joining the King Arthur Flour Company in 1990, where she's been ever since. Author or co-author of three King Arthur ...

comments

  1. gaitedgirl

    This is too funny. Our minds must have been connected PJ because I just made blueberry scones on Sunday! Mine didn’t look nearly as pretty as yours. I jokingly call them “the world’s ugliest scones”. My best friend told me they looked like a Swedish scone-esque sweetbread that she saw on a Jamie Oliver show once. They were a big hit with the family, despite their appearance. I made my a little sweeter by using a heaping 1/4 c. of sugar and regular milk instead of yogurt.

    Reply
  2. fran16250

    PJ
    I will never understand why you sell scones in a mix! To me they are one of the quickest easiest treats in the baking world. Cranberry orange is a favorite at our house. Your post reminds me that I had a request recently for scones so I’d better get to it. Thanks for including the receipe along with the the offer for the mixes.

    Reply
  3. Mary

    My go to scone recipe is the one my Irish grandmother used, and it’s always been consistent and versatile. It calls for combining 1 1/2 cups flour, 2 tsp baking powder & 1/2 tsp salt in a bowl, and then cutting in 1/4 cup butter. Then I beat 1 egg in a small bowl, adding 1/2 cup buttermilk and then combining the wet and dry ingredients until just moistened, a sticky dough. Turn it out on floured board, dust it, fold it once, dust it again, then fold it, and then either shape it into a round and cut wedges or spoon out onto a pan as drop scones.

    Since finding Kate’s buttermilk, these scones are even better, including the rise, though I leave out the salt in the recipe as it doesn’t need it. I’ve used raisins, and other dried fruit, as well as spices, ham and cheese (leaving out the sugar for savory scones), but never fresh berries. I’ll have to try them with the smaller, wild blueberries, they sound wonderful. My family’s favorite way of eating them, is split in half and toasted in the toaster oven until golden, with butter and jam or honey.

    Mary, thanks for sharing your family recipe with all of us. It sounds like you’re a long-time scone baker and aficionado! PJH

    Reply
  4. lloyd

    This recipe calls for 2 cups flour or 8 1/2 oz. I have always considered 2 cups to equal 10 oz What’s the truth? I always use a scale for measuring ingredients, but I like that you used both kins together in this recipe as it’s always easier to use the one I am more comfortable with.

    The truth is, Lloyd, if you measure flour by dipping your cup into the canister and leveling it off, your flour will weigh about 5 ounces per cup. If you stir the flour, then sprinkle it into the measuring cup and level it off, as we do here in the test kitchen (check out our “how to measure flour” video) – your flour will weigh 4 1/4 ounces per cup. Either is fine – you just have to know which method the recipe writer used, if you’re not weighing your ingredients.

    Reply
  5. littlechef

    I also made these over the weekend and added heavy cream instead of the yogurt that you added and I use a large tablespoon instead of the scoop.

    All good – I’m sure these were delicious! PJH

    Reply
  6. Becky in Greensboro

    These look wonderful! I agree with fran16250, these are too easy to bother with a mix.

    I don’t have blueberries, yogurt, or almond extract, but this would be a fantastic way to use up the left-over dried cherries from Christmas baking. I’ll substitute buttermilk powder for the yogurt, and vanilla for the almond, and it should be pretty good. If there isn’t a full cup of cherries, I’ll fill it out with milk chocolate chips.

    I always chuckle at how so many bakers don’t precisely follow the recipe. I usually need to make adjustments for North Carolina climate. It’s more humid and ingredients tend to behave a little differently. The plethora of hints and notes on the KAF website make adjustments a snap.

    Reply
  7. mumpy

    have to laugh at becky’s comment about how we all seem to fiddle with the recipes….guilty as charged!…made these with buttermilk and frozen berries stirred in right before baking…just wonderful…i may not tell anyone i made them…just hide them away and nibble till they’re gone!

    Now, now, sharing is a good thing… especially with something as tasty as these scones! :) PJH

    Reply
  8. Rstrst

    Where did the crepe cake recipe go? I went and bought all the ingredients, and now the recipe is gone?

    Sorry, that one went up ahead of schedule, so we had to pull it back. It will return on 2/28. That is the plan. Frank @ KAF.

    The blog will be back 2/28 – but in the meantime, here’s the recipe: Chocolate Crepe Cake. Enjoy – PJH

    Reply
  9. freddie846

    Just ordered the several scone mixes. Can’t wait to try these,as I love all the other products I’ve ordered!!!

    Freddie, our scone mixes are fabulous – I’m sure you’ll be pleased… PJH

    Reply
  10. Toshamer

    Question for Mary who kindly shared her Irish Grandmother’s scone recipe: You mentioned that you leave out the sugar when making savory scones. How much do you use when making sweet scones? I love trying family heirloom recipes. Thanks for sharing yours!

    Just in case Mary doesn’t see this, the amount of sugar depends on the amount of flour, and how much other sweet stuff you might add. If your scones are going to be packed with chocolate chips and cherries or lots of dried fruit, you can add about 3 tablespoons sugar. if they’re plain, you’d probably want to add about 1/3 to 1/2 cup for a mildly sweet scone. This would be for a recipe using 2 1/2 to 3 cups flour. Hope this helps – PJH

    Reply
  11. johnhutch1

    Mixes are for wimps! Actually I started making scones & biscuits with mixes & went on from there. I’m a southern biscuit man & my wife, Irish, is a scone lady. It works out.

    Reply
  12. Mary

    I can’t believe I’d forgotten to type in the amount of sugar for non savory scones, for the amount listed in my grandmother’s recipe, you add 1 Tbsp of sugar to the dry ingredients. The amounts are small, because the scones are intended to eat the day they’re made, and if we needed more for a particular occasion, doubling or tripling the recipe isn’t a problem. Sorry about that.

    Reply
  13. Shar

    I just made these and the dough was incredibly dry and crumbly(i.e., not like “cookie dough”). Can’t figure out what I did wrong. Seemed as though the dry/wet ratio was a little off with not enough wet? Maybe 1/4 cup of yogurt isn’t enough?

    Sorry to hear of the difficulty. Maybe too much flour? Here is how we measure: http://www.kingarthurflour.com/recipe/measuring-flour.html If you “dip” the flour directly from the bag, you’ll have about 20% too much. Frank @ KAF.

    Reply
  14. Rhonda

    I have a bag of dried blueberries. Could they be used in this recipe? Simply soak 3/4 cup dried blueberries in warm water for 10-15 minutes before making the scones. Drain, lightly squeeze to remove excess moisture, and add them with the wet ingredients. That should help their texture; although your scones won’t be studded with juicy berries, they should be filled with blueberry taste! -Kim@KAF

    Reply
  15. hailey

    I’m curious if these would work with old fashioned oats instead of the with wheat flour….trying to eat healthy these days. Perhaps using more yogurt to counter the dryness? I’m even considering greek yogurt! Thoughts anyone?

    Reply
    1. MaryJane Robbins

      HI Hailey,
      Keep in mind that oats don’t have any gluten, so they can’t offer anything in the way of structure like flour does. You can experiment with different amounts of oat flour but you’ll still need regular flour for the bulk of your structure. ~ MJ

  16. Elizabeth Macpherson

    this is so funny you saying ‘blueberry scones’ are English. I am from England, and so think of blueberries as American! I do love blueberries, albeit they are expensive here & have made various muffins (USA not UK) etc And am still trying to get the perfect ‘cake’? I have used 3 recipes on numerous occasions & will pass them on if you want. I will try this recipe, but, please, albeit I am getting used to your ‘cup’ measurements, & I know ‘ounces’ – but grams are easier ;). ..in addition, the pics don’t look anything like English Scones. Sorry x

    Reply
    1. PJ Hamel , post author

      You’re right, Elizabeth – the blueberries are definitely an American variation, as is all the other “stuff” we tend to add here, how rich we make them, the shape, etc. As for measuring, when you look at any recipe on our site, simply toggle to the grams feature at the top of the ingredients – everything will appear in grams. Now, what’s your definition of the perfect cake? Maybe our hotline bakers can help. Give them a call, 855-371-2253 – and good luck on the quest! PJH

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