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Lemon scone with lemon icing dripping around it.
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4.42 from 12 votes

Soft Lemon Cream Scones

These Soft Lemon Cream Scones are perfectly tender and bursting with bright lemon flavor! Drizzle with a sweet and tangy lemon icing for an easy breakfast or brunch that’s perfect for any occasion.
Prep Time20 mins
Cook Time18 mins
Total Time38 mins
Course: Breakfast, Brunch
Cuisine: American
Servings: 16 scones
Calories: 307kcal

Ingredients

Lemon Scones

  • 3 cups flour
  • cups sugar
  • 4 tsp baking powder
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • 2 sticks butter cut into ½ tbsp cubes and very cold
  • 1 large egg
  • ¾ cup heavy cream (plus more if needed) very cold
  • tbsp lemon zest from about 2 lemons
  • 1 tsp vanilla

Lemon Icing

  • cups powdered sugar
  • ¼ cup half and half or heavy cream
  • 1 lemon zested
  • ¼ tsp vanilla

Instructions

  • Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper.
  • In the bowl of a stand mixer, whisk the flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt. This will not work with hand beaters, but can be done in a food processor instead of a stand mixer.
  • Add very cold butter to the flour mixture and mix on medium-low (or pulse if using food processor) until the mixture becomes fine crumbs.
  • In a separate small bowl combine the egg, cream, vanilla, and lemon zest. Add to the flour mixture and mix on low (or pulse) until the dough comes together, adding more cream 1 tbsp at a time if needed, until it is moist and mostly holds together (see picture).
  • Turn the dough onto a lightly floured surface and knead 4-5 times. Then use your hands to pat into a rectangle ½ inch thick. It should be roughly 11 inches long and 8 inches wide.
  • Using a sharp knife or bench scraper, cut the scones into 16 triangles. First cut the dough in half lengthwise, then in half widthwise. Cut each of the 4 sections into 4 triangles (see picture).
  • Place on prepared sheet pans and bake for 15-18 minutes, or until lightly golden on the bottom and the tops look dry.
  • While the scones are baking, combine the glaze ingredients in a bowl.
  • Once finished baking, allow scones to cool for 5-10 minutes on the sheet pan. Then place on a cooling rack. Once cool, drizzle with glaze and serve.

Notes

Tips & Tricks
  • To keep the scones soft and tender, avoid overmixing and overworking. You want to handle the dough gently to keep that flaky texture. 
  • Use very cold butter and cream. This will help the dough rise and make the scones fluffy. 
  • Last, to avoid dry scones make sure not to overbake them. They should be nice and golden on the bottom and the tops will look dry. They will continue cooking slightly on the sheet pan while cooling. 
  • To make circle scones instead of triangles, use a biscuit cutter. For mini lemon scones, just cut the triangles to the desired size and adjust the baking time as needed. (When deciding size, note that they will puff and rise larger than the size you cut them.)
 
Make Ahead Instructions
You can make these ahead and store in the fridge for up to a day before baking. In our experience they lose their shape more when baking after refrigeration, but they still taste amazing! When you store them, make sure to keep them well covered in plastic wrap to prevent them from drying out.
 
Freezing Instructions
Scones are best when served fresh, but the freezer will preserve them pretty well too! Make sure to cool fully and serve without the glaze if possible. Keep for 3-4 months, then thaw at room temperature and add fresh glaze.

Nutrition

Serving: 1scone | Calories: 307kcal | Carbohydrates: 37g | Protein: 3g | Fat: 17g | Saturated Fat: 10g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 59mg | Sodium: 254mg | Potassium: 57mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 18g | Vitamin A: 549IU | Vitamin C: 4mg | Calcium: 81mg | Iron: 1mg