Cranberry Orange Scones

I recently discovered a love for baking scones, and my latest creation has quickly become a favorite in my household: Cranberry Orange Scones. These scones are the perfect balance of tart cranberries and sweet orange zest, making for a delicious and satisfying breakfast or snack.

A rustic kitchen table with a plate of cranberry orange scones, a steaming cup of tea, and a vase of fresh flowers

To make these scones, I start by mixing together flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt in a large bowl. Then, I cut in cold butter until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Next, I stir in dried cranberries and orange zest, followed by a mixture of beaten egg and heavy cream. After kneading the dough briefly, I shape it into a circle and cut it into wedges before baking in the oven until golden brown.

The result is a batch of scones that are crispy on the outside and tender on the inside, with bursts of cranberry and orange flavor in every bite. Whether you’re a seasoned baker or new to the world of scones, these Cranberry Orange Scones are a must-try.

Origins of Cranberry Orange Scones

A bowl of fresh cranberries and oranges sit on a rustic wooden table next to a pile of flour and a rolling pin. A mixing bowl and whisk are ready for the ingredients to be combined

As a pastry chef, I have always been fascinated by the history and origins of different baked goods. Cranberry orange scones are a delicious treat that has become increasingly popular in recent years, but where did they come from?

Scones originated in Scotland, where they were traditionally made with oats and cooked on a griddle. Over time, the recipe evolved and scones began to be made with flour, butter, and milk. The addition of dried fruit, such as currants or raisins, was also common.

The combination of cranberry and orange is a relatively new addition to the traditional scone recipe. Cranberries are native to North America and were used by Native Americans for both food and medicine. Oranges, on the other hand, originated in China and were brought to Europe by traders in the Middle Ages.

It wasn’t until the 19th century that cranberries began to be cultivated commercially in the United States. With the rise of mass production and transportation, cranberries became more widely available and began to be used in a variety of recipes.

The addition of orange to cranberry scones is a natural pairing, as the sweet and tangy flavors complement each other perfectly. The zest and juice of the orange add a bright, citrusy flavor to the scones, while the cranberries provide a tart contrast.

In conclusion, while the origins of scones can be traced back to Scotland, the addition of cranberry and orange is a more recent development. The combination of these two flavors has become a beloved treat for many, and it’s easy to see why.

Essential Ingredients

A kitchen counter with a mixing bowl, flour, sugar, cranberries, and oranges. A rolling pin and scone cutter sit nearby


Cranberries are the star ingredient of these scones. They add a tart and tangy flavor that perfectly complements the sweetness of the orange. Fresh or frozen cranberries can be used, depending on availability. When using frozen cranberries, be sure to thaw them before adding them to the dough.


Freshly grated orange zest adds a bright citrus flavor to these scones. It is essential to use fresh oranges for this recipe to get the best flavor. Be sure to zest the oranges before juicing them for the orange juice required in the recipe.

Flour and Leavening Agents

The flour used in this recipe is all-purpose flour. It provides the perfect texture for the scones – not too dense or too light. Baking powder and baking soda are used as leavening agents to help the scones rise and become fluffy. Be sure to use fresh leavening agents to ensure that the scones rise properly.

Overall, these three ingredients are essential to making delicious cranberry orange scones. With the right balance of tartness and sweetness, these scones are perfect for breakfast or as a snack any time of day.

Step-by-Step Baking Guide

A mixing bowl filled with flour, sugar, and cranberries. A hand grates orange zest into the bowl. Another hand pours cream into the mixture

Preparing the Dough

To make Cranberry Orange Scones, I start by preheating my oven to 400°F and lining a baking sheet with parchment paper. Next, I mix together flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt in a large bowl. Then, I cut in cold butter until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs. I add dried cranberries and orange zest to the mixture and stir to combine.

In a separate bowl, I whisk together heavy cream and an egg. Then, I pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and stir until the dough comes together. I turn the dough out onto a floured surface and knead it gently until it forms a cohesive ball.

Baking Techniques

Once the dough is ready, I pat it into a circle that is about 1 inch thick. I cut the circle into 8 wedges and transfer them to the prepared baking sheet. I brush the scones with a little bit of heavy cream and sprinkle them with coarse sugar.

I bake the scones for 15-18 minutes or until they are golden brown and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. I rotate the baking sheet halfway through the baking time to ensure even browning.

Cooling and Serving

After the scones are baked, I let them cool on the baking sheet for a few minutes before transferring them to a wire rack to cool completely. Once they are cool, I serve them with a dollop of whipped cream and a sprinkle of orange zest.

Cranberry Orange Scones are best enjoyed fresh, but they can be stored in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 2 days. To reheat them, I recommend placing them in a 350°F oven for a few minutes until they are warmed through.

Variations and Substitutions

A wooden table with a plate of cranberry orange scones, surrounded by scattered cranberries and orange slices. A cup of tea sits beside the plate

Dietary Modifications

As someone who has experimented with various dietary restrictions, I know how important it is to have options when it comes to baked goods. Here are some substitutions and modifications you can make to these cranberry orange scones to fit your dietary needs:

  • Gluten-Free: Replace the all-purpose flour with a gluten-free flour blend, such as Bob’s Red Mill 1-to-1 Gluten-Free Baking Flour. You may also need to add an extra egg or some xanthan gum to help with the texture.
  • Dairy-Free: Use coconut oil or vegan butter instead of regular butter, and use a non-dairy milk (such as almond or soy) in place of the heavy cream.
  • Vegan: Follow the dairy-free modifications above, and also replace the egg with a flax egg (1 tablespoon ground flaxseed mixed with 3 tablespoons water, let sit for 5 minutes to thicken).

Flavor Twists

While these cranberry orange scones are delicious as is, sometimes it’s fun to mix things up. Here are some flavor variations you can try:

  • Lemon Blueberry: Replace the dried cranberries with dried blueberries, and add the zest of 1 lemon to the dough.
  • Chocolate Chip: Add 1 cup of chocolate chips to the dough before shaping and baking.
  • Maple Pecan: Replace the orange zest with 1 teaspoon of maple extract, and add 1/2 cup of chopped pecans to the dough.

Don’t be afraid to get creative and come up with your own flavor combinations!

Pairing and Serving Suggestions

A platter of cranberry orange scones with a side of clotted cream and a pot of hot tea

Beverage Pairings

When it comes to beverages, Cranberry Orange Scones pair well with a variety of drinks. For a classic pairing, I suggest serving these scones with a hot cup of tea. The subtle flavors of the scones complement the earthy flavors of the tea, making for a delightful combination. Coffee is another great option, especially if you prefer a stronger, bolder flavor.

If you’re looking for a non-caffeinated beverage, try pairing the scones with a glass of milk. The creamy texture of the milk helps balance out the tartness of the cranberries. Alternatively, you could try serving the scones with a glass of orange juice. The citrusy flavor of the juice complements the orange zest in the scones.


Cranberry Orange Scones are a versatile treat that can be served in a variety of settings. They make a great addition to a brunch spread, alongside other breakfast pastries and savory dishes. If you’re hosting a tea party, these scones are a must-have. They’re elegant, easy to make, and pair well with a variety of teas.

For a more casual occasion, try serving the scones as a mid-day snack. They’re perfect for enjoying with friends over a cup of coffee or tea. If you’re hosting a holiday gathering, Cranberry Orange Scones make a festive addition to any dessert table. Their bright, cheerful colors and flavors are sure to put a smile on your guests’ faces.

No matter what the occasion, Cranberry Orange Scones are a delicious and easy-to-make treat that everyone will enjoy.

Storage and Freshness Tips

To keep your Cranberry Orange Scones fresh and delicious, it is important to store them properly. Here are some tips to help you maintain the quality of your scones:

  • Store the scones in an airtight container or wrap them tightly in plastic wrap.
  • Keep the scones at room temperature for up to two days. If you want to keep them fresh for longer, store them in the refrigerator for up to a week.
  • To freeze the scones, wrap them tightly in plastic wrap and then place them in a freezer-safe container. They can be stored in the freezer for up to three months.
  • When you are ready to enjoy your scones, let them come to room temperature before serving. You can also warm them up in the oven or toaster oven for a few minutes to enhance their flavor and texture.

By following these simple tips, you can ensure that your Cranberry Orange Scones stay fresh and delicious for as long as possible. Enjoy!

Frequently Asked Questions

How can I make my scones fluffier?

To make your scones fluffier, use cold butter and avoid overworking the dough. You can also add a little bit of baking powder to the recipe to help them rise.

What is the best way to incorporate fresh cranberries into scones?

The best way to incorporate fresh cranberries into scones is to chop them into small pieces and fold them into the dough gently. Be careful not to overmix, as this can cause the dough to become tough.

Can I use dried cranberries instead of fresh in scone recipes?

Yes, you can use dried cranberries instead of fresh in scone recipes. Just make sure to rehydrate them first by soaking them in hot water for a few minutes before adding them to the dough.

What are some tips for achieving a perfect scone texture?

To achieve a perfect scone texture, make sure your ingredients are cold, use a light touch when mixing the dough, and bake them at a high temperature for a short amount of time.

How do I prevent my scones from becoming too dry?

To prevent your scones from becoming too dry, make sure to use enough liquid in the dough and avoid overbaking them. You can also brush the tops with a little bit of milk or cream before baking to help keep them moist.

What are common substitutions for orange flavor in scone recipes?

Common substitutions for orange flavor in scone recipes include lemon zest, vanilla extract, or almond extract. You can also omit the citrus altogether and add other flavors like cinnamon or ginger.

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Cranberry Orange Scones

  • Author: recipstep
  • Total Time: 35 minute
  • Yield: 8 scones
  • Diet: Vegetarian


Cranberry Orange Scones are a delightful blend of tangy cranberries and zesty orange, perfect for a breakfast or brunch treat.


| – 2 cups all-purpose flour | – 1/3 cup granulated sugar | – 1 tablespoon baking powder | – 1/2 teaspoon salt | – 1/2 cup cold unsalted butter, diced | – 1/2 cup dried cranberries | – Zest of 1 orange | – 1/2 cup heavy cream | – 1 large egg | – 1 teaspoon vanilla extract |


| 1. Preheat the oven to 400°F (200°C) and line a baking sheet with parchment paper. | 2. In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt. | 3. Cut in the cold butter using a pastry cutter or fork until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs. | 4. Stir in the dried cranberries and orange zest until evenly distributed. | 5. In a separate small bowl, whisk together the heavy cream, egg, and vanilla extract. | 6. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and stir until just combined. | 7. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and gently knead it a few times until it comes together. | 8. Pat the dough into a circle about 1-inch thick. Cut the circle into 8 wedges. | 9. Place the scones onto the prepared baking sheet, leaving space between each one. | 10. Bake for 15-18 minutes or until the scones are golden brown and cooked through. | 11. Remove from the oven and let cool on a wire rack before serving. Enjoy! |


You can brush the tops of the scones with a little cream and sprinkle with sugar before baking for a shiny finish.

  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 15-18 minutes
  • Category: Breakfast/Brunch
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: British/American


  • Calories: 280 kcal
  • Sugar: 12g
  • Sodium: 330mg
  • Fat: 14g
  • Saturated Fat: 9g
  • Carbohydrates: 35g
  • Fiber: 1g
  • Protein: 4g
  • Cholesterol: 65mg

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