Simple Scones

Simple Scones

USA WEEKEND columnist Pam Anderson 0

"Make a holiday breakfast -- or afternoon tea -- really special with these sweet bakery treats."

Ingredients {{adjustedServings}} servings 319 cals

Serving size has been adjusted!

Original recipe yields 8 servings



Amount per serving ({{servings}} total)

  • Calories:
  • 319 kcal
  • 16%
  • Fat:
  • 15.5 g
  • 24%
  • Carbs:
  • 41.1g
  • 13%
  • Protein:
  • 4.9 g
  • 10%
  • Cholesterol:
  • 60 mg
  • 20%
  • Sodium:
  • 249 mg
  • 10%

Based on a 2,000 calorie diet

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  1. Adjust oven rack to lower-middle position and preheat oven to 400 degrees.
  2. In a medium bowl, mix flour, 1/3 cup sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Grate butter into flour mixture on the large holes of a box grater; use your fingers to work in butter (mixture should resemble coarse meal), then stir in raisins.
  3. In a small bowl, whisk sour cream and egg until smooth.
  4. Using a fork, stir sour cream mixture into flour mixture until large dough clumps form. Use your hands to press the dough against the bowl into a ball. (The dough will be sticky in places, and there may not seem to be enough liquid at first, but as you press, the dough will come together.)
  5. Place on a lightly floured surface and pat into a 7- to 8-inch circle about 3/4-inch thick. Sprinkle with remaining 1 tsp. of sugar. Use a sharp knife to cut into 8 triangles; place on a cookie sheet (preferably lined with parchment paper), about 1 inch apart. Bake until golden, about 15 to 17 minutes. Cool for 5 minutes and serve warm or at room temperature.
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  • Cranberry-Orange Scones
  • Follow the recipe for Simple Scones, adding a generous teaspoon of finely grated orange rind (zest) to the dry ingredients and substituting dried cranberries for the raisins.
  • Lemon-Blueberry Scones
  • Follow the recipe for Simple Scones, adding a generous teaspoon of finely grated lemon rind (zest) to the dry ingredients and substituting dried blueberries for the raisins.
  • Cherry-Almond Scones
  • Follow the recipe for Simple Scones, adding 1/2 tsp. almond extract to the sour cream mixture and substituting dried cherries for the raisins.
  • Copyright 2006 USA WEEKEND and columnist Pam Anderson. All rights reserved.
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Reviews 1538

  1. 1909 Ratings


I wouldn't recommend them if you do not have a food processor since making them as here described seems to be a lot of work. But with a food processor just mix dry ingredients and frozen butter (cut in pieces) in processor, process it a few seconds until well blended, add wet ingredients and pulse it until well blended, add raisins or any other fruits or chips you like, just pulse it a couple of times to mix, take the batter out, pat it flat and cut your scones. The batter needs to be well mixed but do not try to get it smooth – scones are supposed to look crumbly. Easy but so delicious! I omitted the raisins and added butter scotch chips instead - they were a hit. But I'm sure I will try a lot of different add-ons in the future. Great recipe!


I mixed these up using my food processor and the results were fantastic... and so easy.. put flour and dry ingredients in first... spin the butter around til it flakes... then add the sour cream, eggs and dried fruit..til it forms a ball... then proceed with the recipe as written. I tried both apricots and cranberries... and the results were fantastic... So easy... and much easier than grating the butter.. and the handmixing... (I broke my right arm on November 3rd.. so handmixing anything is out for awhile.. makes holiday cooking inconvenient)... These could get to be addictive!!

Tara Lazar

What a wonderful scone recipe. These turned out just slightly moist and not dried-out like other recipes I have tried. The addition of the orange zest and cranberries gave them a delicious, subtle sweet flavor. Like another reviewer suggested, I made these in the food processor so the dough came together very well, very quickly. But sticky is an understatement! Be sure you generously flour your work surface, hands, and knife when shaping and cutting these scones. This is the best scone recipe I've tried and it's a definite make-again and again! Update 11/12/07: I have made these scones no less than two dozen times and they are consistently a big hit with everyone, adults and children alike. I will never consider another recipe for scones, this one is the absolute best.