The Best Glazed Mixed Berry Scones

I’ve never been a big fan of scones because they’re usually dry, boring, and taste like flaky cardboard.

These are none of the above.

They’re actually the best scones I’ve ever had. And they’ve changed my mind about scones in general.

They’re incredibly easy, you don’t need to dirty a food processor or a mixer, and they’re ready in a half hour.

How’s that for a fast, easy, and guaranteed-to-disappear weekend breakfast, brunch, or easy impromptu dessert or snack.

You don’t even need to use fresh fruit. I used Trader Joe’s frozen berry medley, which includes strawberries, raspberries, blueberries, and blackberries.

I rarely bake with pricier fresh fruit and save that for snacking. I almost never have a surplus of fresh berries since we eat them so fast, but feel free to use fresh, noting that baking time will likely be reduced.

Another advantage to using frozen fruit is that it keeps the dough colder, and cold dough rises better. It’s also why you want to use cold butter in pastry-making or when making pie crusts. The hot oven air hits the cold butter in the dough and creates air pockets, which create a tender, flaky crust.

Same principle with cold butter and cold berries in the scones. They’re flaky and tender, but also supremely moist. Sour cream is used which helps prevent dryness.

Rather than milk or heavy cream as the wet ingredients that are mixed into the dry ingredients, the sour cream not only moisturizes and tenderizes the dough, but since it’s cultured like buttermilk, it helps the scones rise higher and stay fluffier and lighter, without being airy or dry.

There’s an abundance of juicy berries in every bite. As the scones bake, the berries release their juices and the bites of dough surrounding the berries are melt-in-your mouth soft. Those are my favorite bites.

Before baking I sprinkled the tops with turbinado sugar. I love the crunchy, big sugar crystals for an added pop of texture, but it’s optional.

I made a simple confectioners’ sugar and cream glaze, but you could also do a citrus glaze by replacing the cream with lemon or orange juice. Optionally, to bring out the citrus flavor, also add a tablespoon of lemon or orange zest to the batter when folding in the berries.

This a great blank canvas base recipe for scones, and most any fresh fruit, dried fruit, or zest can be added. Use what you have, enjoy, and is seasonal.

When I made these I thought I was going to have a ton of scones to re-home. Wrong.

We devoured them all the same day I made them. And I want to make more.

The Best Glazed Mixed Berry Scones

These are the best scones I’ve ever had, and they’ve changed my mind about scones in general, which are too often dry and bland. They’re incredibly easy, you don’t need to dirty a food processor or a mixer, and are a guaranteed-to-disappear weekend breakfast, brunch, or impromptu dessert or snack. They’re flaky, tender, and supremely moist. Sour cream is used which not only moisturizes and tenderizes the dough, but since it’s cultured, it helps the scones rise higher and stay fluffier and lighter, without being airy or dry. I used a frozen berry medley, but fresh can be used, noting that baking time will likely be reduced. It’s a great blank canvas base recipe for scones, and most any fresh fruit, dried fruit, or zest can be added. Use what you have, enjoy, and is seasonal. For example, citrus zest can be added to the dough and citrus juice can by used in the glaze.

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Ingredients:

2 cups all-purpose flour + about 2 to 4 tablespoons for work surface and hands
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 tablespoon baking powder
pinch salt, optional and to taste
1/2 cup unsalted butter, cold (1 stick)
1 large egg
1/2 cup sour cream (lite is okay)
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 heaping cup mixed berries (I used TJ’s frozen mixed berry blend which includes strawberries, raspberries, blueberries, blackberries; if using frozen, keep frozen so berries bleed/run less)
1 tablespoon lemon or orange zest, optional (I didn’t include any in scones shown)
turbinado, raw, or coarse sugar, optional for sprinkling
1 cup confectioners’ sugar
about 1 tablespoon cream or milk (or substitute with orange or lemon juice)

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 400F. Line a baking sheet with a Silpat or parchment; set aside.
  2. In a large bowl, add 2 cups flour, granulated sugar, baking powder, optional salt, and whisk to combine.
  3. Add the butter, and with a pastry cutter or two forks, cut the butter in. You can use a food processor, but I find not having to wash it is a big time-saver. I smoosh the butter with forks and when it’s the size of large marbles, I use my hands and knead it in. It will feel like semi-wet, cool sand. Some larger pea-sized butter clumps are okay; set bowl aside.
  4. In a small bowl, add the egg, sour cream, vanilla, and whisk to combine until smooth.
  5. Pour wet mixture over dry, and fold until just combined with a soft-tipped spatula; don’t overmix or scones will be tough. Dough will be wet and shaggy.
  6. Fold in the berries and optional zest.
  7. Sprinkle about 2 tablespoons flour over a Silpat  or clean work surface and lightly coat hands.
  8. Turn dough out onto surface and knead it into a 8-inch round, approximately. Dough is very moist, wet, sticky, and tacky, but if it’s being too stubborn or too wet to come together, sprinkle with flour 1 tablespoon at a time until you get it to come together and into a round.
  9. With a large knife, slice round into 8 equal-sized wedges.
  10. Using a flat spatula or pie turner, transfer wedges to prepared baking sheet spaced at least 2-inches apart. Do not crowd because scones puff and spread while baking. Tip – try to make sure there are no exposed berries touching the baking sheet because they’ll be prone to burning.
  11. Optionally, sprinkle each wedge with a generous pinch of turbinado sugar, about 1 teaspoon each.
  12. Bake for about 18 minutes, or until scones are very lightly golden and cooked through. 18 minutes in my oven with frozen fruit is perfect, but if using fresh fruit, baking time will likely be reduced. A toothpick inserted in the center should come out clean or with a few moist crumbs, but no batter. Because they’re baking in quite a hot oven, watch them closely starting after about 15 minutes to ensure the bottoms aren’t getting too browned.
  13. Allow scones to cool on baking tray for about 5 minutes before removing and transferring to a rack to finish cooling. While the scones cool, make the glaze.
  14. In a small bowl, combine the confectioners’ sugar and cream (or citrus juice).
  15. Whisk together until smooth. Depending on desired consistency, you may need to play with the cream and sugar ratios slightly.
  16. Evenly drizzle the glaze over the scones before serving. Scones are best fresh, but will keep airtight at room temperature for up to 4 days. I’m comfortable storing glazed items at room temperature, but if you’re not, glaze only the scones you plan to consume immediately; I don’t recommend refrigerating them because they will dry out.
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