16 January 2014

Classic Cream Scones - No Butter, No Milk, No Egg


Classic cream scones, with heavy cream (also called double cream or whipping cream) replacing the butter and milk, are incredibly light and airy. Since you don't have to spend time working the butter into the flour, these scones come together quickly.

Scones have infinite variations, which works well for me because when I want a scone, I want it now! If I have buttermilk and an egg on hand, I like to make these Scones. If I have gluten-free friends in for tea, I make these Gluten-Free Scones.


The ideal time to make these classic cream scones is after I'm made my Homemade Clotted Cream, which leaves you with a cup of cream that can't be whipped but is perfect in any recipe calling for cream.

Whenever I go out for afternoon tea, there are always two scones, one plain and one with dried fruit. I'm listing the fruit in the recipe, but today I made them without. Last time I made them with dried blueberries and a bit of Meyer lemon zest, other times with dried cranberries and orange zest.


My husband likes it when I brush the tops with a little milk or cream and sprinkle on some coarse organic sugar mixed with lemon or orange zest. How do you like your scones?

Update 12/07/16: For how to throw an afternoon tea party and a roundup of afternoon tea recipes, see Afternoon Tea Party Tips.

Classic Cream Scones - No Butter, No Milk, No Egg


(Makes 12 scones)

1 2/3 dip-and-sweep cups (8.33 ounces/236 grams) unbleached all-purpose flour
3 to 4 tablespoons (1.25 to 1.625 ounces/33 to 46 grams) sugar
2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
Zest of one orange or Meyer lemon
1/2 cup (2.5 ounces/71 grams) currants or other chopped dried fruit
1 cup (8 fluid ounces/236 ml) heavy cream
1 teaspoon vanilla
Optional: Zest of one orange or Meyer lemon mixed with 1 tablespoon coarse sugar to sprinkle on top

1 Preheat oven to 450F/230C/Gas8. In medium bowl whisk together the flour, sugar, baking powder and salt. Stir in orange zest and dried fruit to coat and separate.


2 Make a well in the center of the flour; pour in the cream and vanilla. Combine with just a few stirs with a fork. With one hand, press dough against sides of bowl, gathering up the loose flour and bringing the dough together. Cut dough into two equal pieces.

3 Line a large baking sheet with parchment and sprinkle two 5-inch circles lightly with flour. Place the two pieces of dough onto the two floured circles on the parchment and gently pat the dough, dusting with flour as needed, into two 5-inch rounds.


4 Cut each round into 6 wedges, dipping your knife or bench scraper in flour between cuts. Pull the wedges out and space them an inch or two apart. Brush the tops with a little milk, cream or melted butter; sprinkle with zest/sugar mixture, if you like. Bake for about 13 minutes, or until golden brown.

Note: To reheat room temperature scones, wrap loosely in foil and heat at 300F/150C/Gas2 for 10 minutes.

36 comments:

Olympe de la Tour D'Auvergne said...

Lovely and classic indeed, thanks for sharing!

Jean | Delightful Repast said...

Thanks so much! It's been a while since you've commented!

Jenn S said...

These look wonderful, Jean. I still have never attempted to make scones... don't know why exactly, as I love them. This recipe seems like the one I should start with :)

Jean | Delightful Repast said...

Jenn, thanks! And, yes, do make this recipe first; you can't miss with it.

Susan J Meyerott, M.S. said...

Okay, Jean--I'm going to treat my Scone-loving husband to a Delightful Repast Scone. I have never been a scone fan but my hubby always orders them when we're out. Won't he be surprised when he comes home to some of his favorite treats!

I will put walnuts and dried apricots in them--a winning combination. And I have to say, zest of meyer lemon makes all baked goods better!

Angie Schneider said...

They sound and look incredible, Jean.

Thomas "Sully" Sullivan said...

Butter? No butter? Butter makes it better. My minimalist bread consumption, as a dietary element, is made easier by dry breads. With the possible exception of a sourdough biscuit, I just have no taste buds for breads that aren’t sponges for something inclusive in the making. Butter is one of those inclusive and redeeming aspects for me. If it chews like Matzo, it needs to be soaked in something besides one’s own spit. Yes, I grew up liking PBJ sandwiches made with nutritionally useless Wonder bread simply because you could roll a slice up into a moist ball – not that I ever did, but it was THAT moist. Admittedly, scones are a flat-out mystery to me; but the fact that they rhyme with stones is not lost… Just sayin’.

Jean | Delightful Repast said...

Sue, let me know how he likes them. Also, you might make my other scone (with butter, buttermilk and egg) for him, too, for comparison. Wish I had some walnuts and dried apricots in the house right now! Mmm.

Jean | Delightful Repast said...

Angie, thanks!

Jean | Delightful Repast said...

Sully, did you miss the part about "light and airy"? These are neither dry nor stone-like. And you could always slather on some butter and jam! (I'd love to tie you up and make you eat a lot of different foods!) :D

Lindsey @ American Heritage Cooking said...

Your scones look sensational! How tragic not to have tasted a delicious, moist scone (Sully)! I absolutely adore scones, but I have never tried them without butter, milk or eggs! Craziness!

Now that you ask, I am craving a sinful pumpkin score...or maybe orange.

Jean | Delightful Repast said...

Thanks, Lindsey! I think my favorite scones have orange zest and tiny currants.

Denise at Tea in England said...

These sound and look just super, Jean. I do love a good scone. Don't know if you've ever tried, but I also like to slice leftover scones and lightly toast them in the toaster. My kids used to love them this way.

Jean | Delightful Repast said...

Denise, thank you! I'm sure I'd love them reheated in the toaster like that, if only I ever had any left over!

Thomas "Sully" Sullivan said...

Help, help!...I’ve dug myself a pit and I’m being sconed by Jeani and Lindsey! Well, OK, I stand corrected. Moist scones sound delicious! (Now will someone please untie me?)

Jean | Delightful Repast said...

Okay, Sully, you have shown adequate remorse and willingness to eat good food, so you can now be released!

Unknown said...

My grandma used to make biscuit like "dumplings" (as she called them) with cream only. They had such a silky texture. I like this because it's clearly not a "biscuit" either. Many scone recipes I see seem too much like biscuits. GREG

Jean | Delightful Repast said...

Thanks, Greg! Yes, my scones are definitely different from my biscuits. But why did you have to remind me of dumplings?! Now I'm craving them!

Amy at love made my home said...

Wow Jean, these are so easy to make!! Fantastic. I love the idea of the add ins too. xx

Jean | Delightful Repast said...

Thanks, Amy! Isn't it wonderful when easy and good go together?!

Pauline Wiles said...

Love that I don't have to get butter all over my fingers. I'm saving this one to try.

Jean | Delightful Repast said...

Pauline, thank you! I'll be curious to hear how you like them.

Arti said...

I'm always in the mood for tea and scones. Also, love the high tea. I'm in Calgary, Alberta, Canada, not a particularly English place for high teas though. You have a delightful blog here. I'm sure I'll stop by for more. BTW, any madeleines? After reading Proust, I have tea and madeleines in my mind all the time. :) Thanks for stopping by Ripple Effects. Let's chat again when the next episode of Downton airs.

Jean | Delightful Repast said...

Arti, thank you so much! No, I've never blogged about madeleines. Usually stick to English and Southern food, but have thought madeleines would fit right in really. I'll add it to my list.

Blackberry Lane said...

What an interesting recipe. I wish you were here to help polish the silver. There's over 100 pieces and my fingers are getting sore!!!

Jean | Delightful Repast said...

And I would! Together we could whip out 100 pieces, in two sets, with a finger rest and tea break in between!

Katya said...

I did a savoury version because I wanted to serve these with dinner, and they turned out fantastic, soft and light. This is an excellent, super-easy recipe and it turned out to be as easily adaptable as I hoped!

To make these into cheese-y garlic and rosemary scones, I left out the sugar and doubled the salt. Then, I added some garlic powder, ground rosemary, pepper, parsley, and some finely diced hard, strong cheese. Some of them got topped with extra cheese and chili flakes and the others I left plain. They turned out excellent. They got a little browner on top than I planned, but I grabbed them from the oven before they burned! :)

Jean | DelightfulRepast.com said...

Katya, thanks! That sounds wonderful, especially with the extra cheese and chili flakes. Glad you caught them before they burned!

Anonymous said...

Love the scones! But the bottom burned a lot. The second time I made it, I shorten the time. The bottom still came out burnt, but not as much and the top didn't come out golden brown.

Jean | DelightfulRepast.com said...

Anonymous, I'm glad you like the scones. It sounds like your oven might run a little too high. Maybe you can try turning it down by 25 to 50 degrees and see what happens. Also, baking sheets are different. Did you use parchment paper on the baking sheet? That (or a Silpat) has a bit of an insulating effect. Let's figure this out!

Anonymous said...

Hi, I lower the temp 25 degree. They came out really nice. Thank you!

Jean | DelightfulRepast.com said...

Oh good! I thought that would probably take care of the problem. Many people's ovens run hotter than indicated. If you have a gas stove, I've heard you can call the gas company and someone will come out and calibrate it free of charge.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the tip about the gas company, but my oven is electric. I will pass the info to other that might have that problem. Thanks again, about to make these delicious scones again.

Jean | DelightfulRepast.com said...

I'm not sure if the electric company has the same free service or if you would have to pay someone, but I'd definitely look into it. So glad you're enjoying the scones!

Jan Kirschbaum said...

Normally I make scones which are healthy but lack both great texture and tastiness. These hit the point between bakery fattening and home made healthy really well. I used dates for my fruit, and the low side of the sugar. Instead of wedges I did 12 rounds, which gives me evener portion control. The cream really gave them great texture. And so simple. Great recipe!

Jean | DelightfulRepast.com said...

Jan, I'm so glad you liked them! I always use the lesser amount of sugar, too. I made them a couple weeks ago after making clotted cream. To make a half pint of clotted cream, you start with a pint. Then when you skim off the clotted cream, you have a cup of cream to be used in a recipe.

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