Wake up to tart, yet sweet, cherry scones with orange glaze. This breakfast pastry is quick and easy to make with frozen cherries, but fresh cherries work too! The zesty citrus glaze complements the tart and tender scones perfectly.

cherry scones with orange glaze on parchment paper.


 

I’ve gone into a cherry craze and who knows when we’ll see the end of it. My cherry muffins have been on constant rotation in my kitchen and it’s time to switch it up. Enter these homemade cherry scones. They have a similar flavor profile with the almond extract, but I added an orange glaze for a citrusy twist. This may be my new favorite scone recipe!

Why You’ll Love This Recipe

  • Use fresh or frozen cherries! Whatever you have on hand. In the summer months, fresh cherries are abundant, but in winter frozen cherries are easier to find (and help keep the dough cold!)
  • Perfect texture. This is my go-to scone recipe, which always yields rich, tender scones that are buttery and soft. I just switch out the mix-ins with the season (these apple cinnamon scones are a personal favorite).
  • Delicious flavors. Tart cherries pair so well with citrusy orange and a touch of almond. Your tastebuds are in for a treat!
  • Easy to make ahead of time. The nice thing about scones is that they freeze really well before or after baking.

Ingredient Notes

bowls of ingredients to make cherry scones.
  • Cherries: I use frozen cherries to help keep the dough cold, but you can also use fresh cherries!
  • Butter: Use unsalted butter that is frozen, then grated into small pieces. You can also cut butter into 1/4-inch pieces, just make sure it’s cold.
  • Heavy cream: For a rich and tender texture, use cold heavy cream.
  • Egg: All you need is one egg to help bind the ingredients!
  • Baking powder: This leavening agent will help the scones rise in the oven. Check that it is fresh and not expired.
  • Almond extract: This flavor is a natural complement to cherries, but if it’s not your favorite you can use vanilla instead.
  • Orange zest and juice: For a citrusy twist, add orange zest to the mixture and use the juice for an orange glaze!
  • Confectioners’ sugar: Also known as powdered sugar, this is used to make the glaze.

Recipe Variations

Add some chocolate. Cherries and chocolate go SO well together (if you don’t believe me, try this black forest cake). When adding the chopped cherries, stir in 1/2 cup chopped dark chocolate or white chocolate if you prefer. You can also use chocolate chips like I do in my chocolate pecan scones.

Mix in some nuts. For a little added crunch, add 1/2 cup chopped nuts to the dough. I suggest almonds, but walnuts, pecans and pistachios would taste delicious too!

Try a different glaze. Instead of orange juice, you can use fresh lemon juice for a lemon glaze. To make a vanilla glaze, add 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract and 1 tablespoon cream. Alternatively, you can omit the glaze all together and drizzle melted chocolate over the scones.

Make mini scones. Divide the dough in half and shape into two 6-inch discs. Cut each disc into 6 triangles to yield 12 mini cherry scones. Bake at 400 F for 12 to 15 minutes.

How to Make Cherry Scones

photo collage demonstrating how to make cherry scone dough in a mixing bowl.
  1. Whisk together the dry ingredients: flour, baking powder, salt and orange zest.
  2. Cut the butter into the dry ingredients.
  3. In a measuring cup, whisk together the cold heavy cream, egg and extracts.
  4. Add wet ingredients to dry ingredients and mix until large clumps form. It’s okay if there are some flour-y spots.
photo collage demonstrating how to make cherry scones with orange glaze.
  1. Stir in the chopped cherries. Be careful not to overwork the dough.
  2. Shape the dough into a disc about 8 inches in diameter. Cut into 8 triangles and place them on a baking sheet.
  3. Brush scones with cream and sprinkle with sugar. Place them in the refrigerator to chill while the oven preheats to 400 F, then bake for 20 minutes or until golden.
  4. Make the glaze. Whisk together the confectioners’ sugar and fresh orange juice. Drizzle over scones and serve.

Expert Tips

Weigh your ingredients. This is the most accurate way to measure ingredients, especially flour. If you don’t have a scale, spoon the flour into the measuring cup and level with a knife.

Use cold ingredients! This is the most important tip for making scones. Cold ingredients guarantee and super tender texture (Read: not dry and crumbly). I prefer to use frozen butter and grate it, but you can also cut cold butter into 1/4-inch cubes.

Don’t over-mix the dough. Over working it will make tough, dense scones. You want a light dough that comes together in clumps. Once you reach this step, stop mixing and stir in the cherries (you might have to use your hands).

Chill the scones before baking. This is your guarantee that the dough is cold when the scones go into the oven.

plate with a cherry scone with orange glaze.

Make Ahead and Storage Tips

Make ahead: Make the scone dough and form into a disc. Wrap in plastic wrap and store in the refrigerator for up to 48 hours. When ready to bake, cut into triangles, brush on a little cream and a sprinkle of sugar. Bake according to recipe.

Storage: Baked scones are best when they are eaten the day of. However, they will keep in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 3 days.

Freeze: After cutting the dough into triangles, individually wrap the scones with plastic wrap and store in an airtight container for up to 3 months. When ready to bake, remove plastic wrap and let the scones sit at room temperature while the oven preheats, about 15 minutes. Bake for 20 to 22 minutes. Baked scones also freeze well. Store in an airtight container in the freezer for up to 3 months.

Recipe FAQ

Can I use fresh cherries?

Absolutely! Remove the stems and pits, then chop the cherries into quarters. Place in the freezer until you are ready to use them (this helps prevent the juices from bleeding).

Can I use dried cherries?

Yes, you definitely can! The fruit will obviously have a different texture, but the overall texture of the scone will be the same.

What’s the secret to good scones?

Use cold ingredients and don’t over work the dough. This will make a tender texture that is moist with large crumbs, rather than dry and dense.

Why are my scones dry?

They were either over-baked or there was too much flour in the dough. Check that your oven temperature is correct with an oven thermometer and weigh your flour with a kitchen scale.

cherry scones with orange glaze on parchment paper.

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cherry scones with orange glaze on parchment paper.

Get the Recipe: Cherry Scones with Orange Glaze

Wake up to tart, yet sweet, cherry scones with orange glaze. This breakfast pastry is quick and easy to make with fresh or frozen cherries!
5 (13 ratings)

Ingredients

Cherry Scones

  • 2 cups (250 g) all purpose flour, plus more for dusting work surface
  • 3 Tablespoons granulated sugar, plus more for sprinkling on top
  • 1 Tablespoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 ½ Tablespoons fresh orange zest
  • 4 Tablespoons frozen unsalted butter, grated
  • ⅔ to ¾ cup (160 to 180 ml) cold heavy cream, plus more for brushing on top
  • 1 large egg, cold
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • ½ teaspoon almond extract, optional
  • 1 cup chopped frozen cherries, keep in freezer until ready to mix in (see notes for fresh cherries)

Orange Glaze

  • 1 cup (120 g) confectioners’ sugar, sifted
  • 1-2 Tablespoons fresh orange juice

Instructions 

  • Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Set aside.
  • In a large bowl, whisk together flour, sugar, baking powder, salt and orange zest. Set aside.
  • Use a box grater to shred butter into small pieces (it’s best if the butter is frozen). Alternatively, cut butter into small 1/4-inch pieces. Add butter to flour mixture and cut butter into the mixture by using a pastry cutter or two forks. The mixture should resemble sand.
  • In a separate bowl or measuring cup, whisk together 2/3 cup heavy cream, egg and extracts.
  • Pour the wet mixture into flour mixture. Use a wooden spoon or silicone spatula to mix ingredients together until large dough crumbles form (avoid over mixing). If the dough is not forming clumps, add more cream, one Tablespoon at a time. Dough should be slightly sticky with a few flour-y spots, which will disappear when the cherries are added.
  • Stir in chopped frozen cherries just until incorporated. If necessary, use your hands, but work quickly so the dough stays cold.
  • Use your hands to form dough into a loose ball. Transfer the dough ball to a floured work surface and press into an 8-inch round disc. Use a bench scraper or sharp knife to cut dough into 8 triangles.
  • Place scones on prepared baking sheet and brush them with cream and add a sprinkle of sugar. Place baking sheet in the refrigerator to keep the scones cold while the oven preheats (about 15 minutes).
  • Preheat oven to 400° F. Once the oven beeps, wait 5 more minutes to ensure it is at 400 and hot!
  • Remove scones from the refrigerator and transfer them to the oven. Bake for 18 to 20 minutes or until the edges are golden brown. Let scones cool on the pan for a few minutes before transferring to a wire rack.
  • To make the glaze, whisk together the confectioners’ sugar and orange juice. Drizzle over scones and serve warm or at room temperature.

Notes

Fresh cherries: Chop the cherries and place them in the freezer while you prepare the other ingredients. The cold cherries help keep the dough cold and the juices are less likely to bleed.
Almond extract: This flavor complements the cherries well, but if you aren’t a fan, then omit it from the recipe (it’s still delicious!)
Butter: If you grate frozen butter, the butter pieces will be super small and easier to cut into the flour mixture. If you don’t have a grater, simply cut cold butter into 1/2-inch pieces, then cut into the dry ingredients with a pastry cutter or two forks.
Mix-ins: This recipe tastes delicious with chocolate chips or nuts added. Stir in about 1/2 cup chopped nuts or chocolate when adding the cherries.
Store scones in an airtight container for up to 3 days.
Freeze for up to 3 months. Wrap scones (baked or unbaked) in plastic wrap and store in an airtight container. To bake from frozen, let scones sit at room temperature while oven preheats. Bake for 20 to 22 minutes.
Serving: 1scone, Calories: 288kcal, Carbohydrates: 50g, Protein: 5g, Fat: 8g, Saturated Fat: 5g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g, Monounsaturated Fat: 2g, Trans Fat: 0.003g, Cholesterol: 43mg, Sodium: 161mg, Potassium: 280mg, Fiber: 2g, Sugar: 22g, Vitamin A: 342IU, Vitamin C: 4mg, Calcium: 91mg, Iron: 2mg

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