These Lemon Cranberry Scones studded with dried cranberries are topped with a lemon glaze; a perfect Sunday morning treat.
Lemon Cranberry Scones
Freshly baked scones and a hot cup of tea, is my idea of the perfect cozy Sunday morning. If you’re a scone lover like me, you may also enjoy these blueberry scones and these chocolate chip scones!
These scones are great right out of the oven, the lemon zest and lemon glaze are a must here! If you don’t like to buy buttermilk, you can use the powdered buttermilk which lasts a long time in the pantry. Simply follow the directions for making buttermilk so you have the correct amount of liquid for this recipe.
For perfect scones, be careful not to over-knead the dough and be sure your butter is chilled. Leftovers can be stored in air-tight containers for up to two days. I’ve tried these using all whole wheat flour but I prefer to use a blend of whole wheat and white for a better texture.
How To Freeze Scones
You can either freeze scones before or after baking. If you prefer to bake the scones first, let them cool completely and transfer them to a resealable bag or airtight container before freezing for up to 1 month. Defrost for 1 hour at room temperature then warm the defrosted scones in an oven preheated to 300F for 5 to 10 minutes.
To freeze the scones before baking, cut the scones out and put them on to a baking sheet lined with baking parchment (parchment paper). Freeze the scones on the sheet until they are solid, then transfer them to resealable bags or airtight containers and freeze for up to 3 months. Bake the scones direct from frozen, as directed in the recipe, but allow an extra 2 to 5 minutes baking time.
Lemon Cranberry Scones
- 2 tbsp sugar
- 2 tbsp fresh lemon juice, divided
- 1/2 cup low fat buttermilk
- 1/4 cup sugar
- 1 tbsp lemon zest
- 2 tsp vanilla extract
- 1 large egg
- 2 cups Ultra grain flour, or 1 cup white, 1 cup white whole wheat
- 1 tbsp baking powder
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 3 tbsp chilled butter, must be cold cut into small pieces
- 3/4 cup dried sweet cranberries or cherries
- Position rack in top third of oven; Preheat oven to 375F°.
- Line baking sheet with parchment paper.
- Make glaze by combining 2 tbsp sugar and 1 tbsp lemon juice.
- Combine buttermilk, remaining lemon juice, sugar, lemon zest, vanilla, and egg in a medium bowl, stirring with a whisk.
- Combine flour, baking powder, salt, in a large bowl, stirring with a whisk.
- Cut in chilled butter with a pastry blender, or you could use 2 knives, until the mixture resembles coarse meal.
- Gently fold in cranberries or cherries.
- Add buttermilk mixture, stirring just until moist. (dough will be sticky)
- Place dough onto a floured surface and knead lightly four times with floured hands.
- Form dough into an 8-inch circle onto baking sheet, about 3/4" thick. Using a knife, cut dough into 10 wedges (do not cut all the way through).
- Brush lemon glaze over dough.
- Bake until golden, about 18-20 minutes, or until a tester comes out clean.
- Serve warm or room temperature.
92 comments on “Lemon Cranberry Scones”
Gina, Can I use frozen cranberries (not dried but fresh frozen) in this recipe? What would I have to adjust?
No that won’t work as written
Is it better to glaze before or after baking?
Probably my favorite scone recipe from skinnytaste. Delicious and perfectly chewy! Other fresh berry scones will get wet after sitting, but these are perfect. Not very sweet, so feels appropriate for breakfast with some eggs and coffee. I made with lime as I didn’t have lemon.
Can these be made gluten free? If so, what type of flour and in what quantity?
Lemon ginger… amazing! I followed the recipe but swapped 3/4 up candied ginger for the cranberries. I also omitted the glaze and added a dash of ground ginger just for fun. They’re amazing! I did split them before baking because I like browned edges all the way around my scones. Will definitely make these again and use this recipe as my basic scone dough. Orange cranberry, maple walnut, lemon blueberry… the possibilities are endless and with just 3 TBS of butter… zero guilt!
Love these kinds of recipes! Next time I would do 1.5 cups white flour and 0.5 cups whole wheat. It had a bit too much whole wheat taste for my preference. I will also glaze AFTER next time.
Delicious!!! Best scones I’ve ever made. Perfect texture and not too crumbly.
Made these tonight and already ate two. Yummy 🙂 A few notes/tips for others: I grated the butter into flour mix. Easier than cutting in! Also, my batch took a little more than the suggested time – maybe mine were thicker than suggested in recipe? Give these a try, I recommend them.
Question for others: recipe says to glaze *before* baking but photo looks like glazed after baking. Which worked well for those who have made these? Mine seems a bit wet from the glaze. Maybe would have been better to glaze after baking?
These were very light and fluffy! I used gluten free flour and grated the butter in like Gina suggests in the blueberry scone recipe. I also ended up dropping them by heaping soup spoonfuls, so as not to compress the batter (see her blueberry scone recipe video–this made for 12 servings). When I make them again, I will probably double the lemon zest and maybe add a little lemon extract, too, for a more pronounced lemon flavor. The lemon flavor was subtle. I brushed them with the glaze after they came out of the oven, and that seemed to work well too! I’d like to make it more often, but I’m always at a loss as to what to do with the leftover buttermilk. Next time I’m going to try one of these substitutes with stuff l usually have on hand and see how that works: https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/buttermilk-substitutes
I made these and they were terrific. They weren’t as hard as British scones usually are which to me is a plus. I enjoyed them with homemade apple cranberry preserves and plan to alter the recipe slightly by using blueberries instead of cranberries in the future.
Glad you enjoyed them- check out this one too— https://www.skinnytaste.com/low-fat-blueberry-scones/
I have never been able to cut butter into flour using a pastry cutter or 2 knives. I tossed the dry ingredients into my food processor and pulsed a few times to mix. Then I added the butter and pulsed a few times. When that was finished I folded in the cranberries and proceeded per the directions. They turned out really well. I liked the scones with dried cherries as much as cranberries!
Made this and it was so delicious and will make again in the future. Not real good at pastries but this was not hard at all.
Made these today and my husband is not a fan of cranberries. When they were done he said “oh they look good”. He tasted one and said it was delicious and then had another. These are a keeper for me for sure. I used all white flour and they were very tasty and delicious. Thanks for the recipe.
These look amazing! I’m wondering if I could used frozen cranberries if I cooked them first with some water so they pop, like I do for banana cranberry bread?🤔 I think that might make them lower in WW points since they aren’t dried. Thoughts?
Could I use almond flour ?
Can you use whole grin pastry flour in the recipe? Also I have Kefir in my refrigerator, can I use that in place of the buttermilk? Thanks, I love all your recipes and have all your books.
You can try!!
You can lower the temptation by going to the “Print” button and scaling down to the number of servings you want! It’s something I do all the time because I live alone and don’t always want all the leftovers.
Stay with the program – it works.
these scones were absolutely delish! the lemon zest and lemon glaze really turned up the flavor, and the scones had the perfect texture. unfortunately, i can’t make these again unless i am having 9 other guests coming really soon after these cool off. 1 scone is 7 pts (i am on weight watchers). wow, that’s great. can i eat just one? no. three scones = …21 points, yep, that’s what i had.
but all of that aside…i have lost 15 pounds so easily because there are soooooooo many great recipes on this site with the points already worked in….how easy is that?! thank you so much, gina!!!! for the scone recipe i can’t stop eating and for your huge contribution to my getting leaner and healthier! 😎 stay safe and healthy.
could i substitute 1 for 1 gluten free flour instead of what’s called for?
Yes, should be fine
What are the new Freestyle Points for this recipe please. I love this lemon cranberry scone
Hi. What would happen if I made these with regular milk instead of buttermilk and added poppy seeds to the recipe? Gina? Anyone?
Wow! The glaze really stands out and compliments the lemon flavors throughout. My fiance and I loved them warm out of the oven! 🙂 I only discovered your site a few weeks back and love what you do with heavy meals that we can all enjoy! 🙂
I mixed the dry ingredients together and the wet ingredients together the night before and substituted orange for the lemon. They were simply awesome! I can't wait to make again!!
These are delicious! I love nuts so I added about 1/4 cup of chopped walnuts to the recipe. Yum!
I love these! I used regular skim milk instead of buttermilk and changed the lemon to orange. So delicious!
We loved this. Made it exactly as it was written. My four-year-old really thought it was, "AWESOME!". Thanks for your wonderful recipes. I use them all the time for my family.
The scones are in the oven as I write this. In trying to cut down on fat and sugar I changed it up by making the buttermilk from nonfat milk and lemon vinegar, splenda instead of real sugar, and one Tbsp of applebutter to replace one Tbsp of the butter. Waiting to see if I've destroyed your recipe or made something good. =]
Thanks for this web site. It's really helped me lose some poundage!
Okay, Yummm! They turned out pretty darned good. LOL
I made these today using chocolate chunks inteas of dried fruit.
They came out a little underdone and gummy inside, do you think the chocolate made the dough too heavy? Or maybe it's because I used half brown sugar, half white?
I want to make them again, and better, because they still tasted delicious!
I know you have a separate recipe for choc. chip scones, but I love the tangy flavour of lemon + chocolate is a must!
Gina, I have been meaning to make this recipe for some time now and finally got around to it today. It smelled so good coming out of the oven that I could not wait to try them. They taste as good as they smell. Thanks for this and all your wonderful recipes. I've tried a lot of them by now and they are all great.
Love all your recipes! I am going to make this an orange cranberry scone necauae those are my fav and i am out of lemon.
Hey these look great =] I actually have a box of King Aurthur scone mix in my pantry that i need to use up first, but do you think that I could use the same butter, milk and egg ratio that you did?
First I'd like to tell you that I love your sight and make your recipes all the time. You're awesome!
Do you think that I can drop these by large spoonfuls like your blueberry scones? I would assume so, butbd hate to mess these up.
I think it would work ok
In case you haven't found the answer to your post, of Mar 20, this is as close an answer as I could come up with. Probably not exact but close enough I think.
For – 10 Servings
Amount Per Serving
Total Fat 12.3 g
Saturated Fat 7.3 g
Polyunsaturated Fat 0.7 g
Monounsaturated Fat 3.5 g
Cholesterol 31.1 mg
Sodium 191.3 mg
Potassium 33.0 mg
Total Carbohydrate 30.3 g
Dietary Fiber 1.4 g
Sugars 6.6 g
Protein 3.8 g
Vitamin A 8.7 %
Vitamin B-12 0.3 %
Vitamin B-6 0.7 %
Vitamin C 0.0 %
Vitamin D 0.0 %
Vitamin E 1.2 %
Calcium 2.8 %
Copper 2.2 %
Folate 1.7 %
Iron 3.1 %
Magnesium 1.5 %
Manganese 9.4 %
Niacin 1.9 %
Pantothenic Acid 1.4 %
Phosphorus 3.8 %
Riboflavin 1.2 %
Selenium 12.4 %
Thiamin 3.1 %
Zinc 1.3 %
I am a nursing mom and my baby is lactose intolerant. What could I substitute for the buttermilk? And do you think using a small amount of butter in a recipe for bread would affect him? I am new at this and am unsure about how to do baking without using dairy products. Thanks, Raeval
Just got them out of the oven! Great recipe!
This was a delicious recipe! I mixed tangerine juice and zest with the lemon juice & zest for a blended citrus flavor – turned out very nummy! I've been trying to make scones for several years – they never turn out…until I tried your recipe! Thank you for a great (and easy) recipe!
Just made these using orange instead of lemon….they are so good! I made an extra batch to freeze too. Merry Christmas!
I've never tried that Brinda, not sure.
Can these be mixed up and placed in the refrigerator to be baked the next morning?
Found this site earlier this year and absolutely LOVE it! I tried this scone recipe and substituted coconut oil for the butter and it was delicious! I make biscuits all the time and never tried scones. I also used fresh cranberries because that's what I had. I upped the sugar to 1/3 cup and it was perfect.
I recently had a cinnamon scone. How can I alter this recipe to make just a cinnamon scone? Thanks!
These were very good. I was initially concerned about the sweetness and thought about adding more than 1/4 cup of sugar, but you don't need it. The cranberries make this sweet. The other positive is that these come together pretty quickly!
I've been wanting to make these for the longest time but for some reason the word "scone" freaked me out. Finally made them tonight and I can't wait to share them; they turned out so delicious! Thanks for another fantastic recipe Gina!
Wonderful!!! This was my first attempt at making scones and I don't think I did half bad-lol!!
has anyone tried this using splenda? would that work too?
Thanks Michelle! It's great to get a thumbs up from the UK!!
Made these for Easter morning breakfast. Followed the recipe exactly and they were PERFECT!!!! Delish!!! Enjoyed them right out of the oven with a cup of coffee, but were equally as good when cooled! Lived in the UK for a bit and picky about a good scone and THESE are a GOOD scone! LOVE IT! Try these if you are considering it!!!!!!
I made these this weekend, but I used raisins and oranges instead (it was what I had on hand). They turned out amazingly good! It was a great Sunday breakfast.
I've never made scones before, these worked out so well! Made the house smell yummy too! Great job, keep em coming.
Anyone who changes this recipe would have to use recipe builder to see the new points.
And no cranberries?
What would the points be if I used Splenda, and egg substitute?
ur recipes are amazing!
first time here and would love to revisit. i am booking mariking ur blog.
I used this recipe but made Cherry Almond Scones. These were amazing!!! I omitted the lemon juice and subsituted almond extract for the vanilla and dried cherries for the cranberries! Yummm!
Carrie, I dont think it would be weird.
Thanks km and anonymous!
Ashley, I bet you could use lactaid milk instead!
Is there a good non-dairy substitute for buttermilk? I would really like to try these, but I am lactose intolerant.
I've made them twice already!!
I totally dig your blog. Look, I even made your recipe and put it on mine!
I was thinking of making these and also adding in a few frozen blueberries and using ocean spray cranraisins for the cranberries. Is that a weird combo you think?
Carolyn, love the addition of poppy! The dried fruit really sweetens these so if you leave the fruit out, they may need more sugar.
Emma, thanks for sharing! Can't way to try your grandma's version!!
i will have to try this! just made some strawberry scones myself
For the person asking for a lighter recipe, the scones I (and my grandma and my mother) have always made are just
2 C SR flour
3 Tbs Butter grated
1 C milk
Then you mix it all together quickly with the back of a butter knife, turn out onto a heavily floured surface, turn over once to flour both sides, and shape into a square (do not knead) then cut into 12 squares. Brush with milk and bake at 410 (210 celcius) for 8 min. they should rise to almost 2 inches high or you have over-mixed and made them heavy. Serve with jam and cream(or sugar free jam and cool whip)
They are light slightly lower in points (3pp) and have a much lighter consistency than scones with egg/ buttermilk. The flecks of butter help the scone to rise and be flaky and light.
Thanks for another great recipe, Gina!
I made these tonight and left out the fruit in favor of poppy seeds (1 Tablespoon). Like a previous commenter said, the scones were very moist, which is fantastic!
1) Mine didn't turn out as "lemon-y" as I wanted, and I doubled the lemon juice. I might add a little lemon extract next time.
2) I know it's not traditional, but I do like my scones a little sweeter. I might experiment with a Splenda-lemon juice glaze to drizzle over the top after baking, or even add some Splenda to the recipe.
Meg, I'm not really sure, you'll have to plug it into recipe builder.
Aidensmom- These would be wonderful with orange in place of lemon.
Looks delish! I wonder how it would taste with orange instead of lemon? I love orange and cranberry together.
Thanks for all you do Gina!!!
Wow, these look and sound SO good!
These sound like just the thing to make today for the weekday mornings on the fly!
Oh yum! I love citrus and cranberry! I'm gonna try substuting orange for the lemon because orange cranberry scones are my favorite! Do you think these would freeze well?
This looks so good. I plan on adding it to my Easter brunch menu. I just love your blog and recipes. I've made several of them – and they were all great. Thanks!!!
Hi Gina —
Your recipe looks delicious! I am anxious to try it! I've had scones at some restaurants/bakeries and they always seem dry. I ran across this recipe years ago from a Food Network Show. While it uses more butter than your recipe does, it has oatmeal in it which seems to give a softer result. These too are wonderful! Could you please analyze this recipe and see what you think could be done to bring down the fat/calorie count. Thank you!
Cran Oat Scones
2 cups all purpose flour
1/2 cup oatmeal
6 tablespoons sugar
3/4 teaspoon baking powder
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
10 tablespoons cold unsalted butter
1/2 cup dried cranberries
The rest of the directions are the same as for yours, except for cutting into individual pieces and then baking at 375 for about 22 minutes.
Looks devine, I just sent a comment, and it didn't go. So here's another. I will try this recipe, love scones. yvonne
Just made these with fresh blueberries instead of cranberries. Had a slight bitter taste – probably from the wheat flour – but still good (and not dry like many scone recipes). If using fresh fruit, fold the fruit as final step instead of before adding liquid.
As a fellow food-blogger and food photographer, these are gorgeous!!
oops, meant to say "love" not "look"
That looks so good, I'd look a slice with a hot cup of tea.
This looks so good. I can't wait to try it out!
I love scones too! I can't wait to make these with raspberries like another poster said!
These look beautiful! I am in charge of the food for a competition my dog club is putting on the end of April. I am going to be making these plus several other recipes from your site.
In the past, the food at these events has always been notoriously unhealthy. Thanks to finding your blog, I'm going to change things up for the better!!
I made these tonight and they are delicious!!! Perfect amount of lemon and the glaze makes the scone! Love this recipe! Next time I am going to try them with frozen raspberries. Thanks Gina!
Gwen, I think they would be ok, I've made them with blueberries and strawberries and both were wonderful.
Dyan, Thanks, I'm happy you think so!
Amy, have you tried my banana pancakes? They are heavenly, taste like banana bread!
Sounds delicious! We tend to go toward pancakes and french toast on the weekend, but I want to try these scones and see how they go over. I think my guys will love 'em!
Hi, Gina – I haven't tried these yet, but just spent a good part of my Sat afternoon going through your entire blog. You have some amazing recipes, and I love that you have photos with everything. I've recently got back on a cooking kick and now have bunches and bunches to try. Thanks so much for all the time and effort you put into this.
These sound amazing! Do you think it would work with fresh berries, or would the dough be too wet? Cranberries would probably be too tart but I have frozen blackberries from my CSA that are begging for some special treatment.