Classic English Scones. Quick and Easy to make, moist, light, and fluffy! Perfect for High Tea or Afternoon Tea. This is a very popular recipe and for those searching for a good, reliable English scone recipe, this won't disappoint!

Classic English Scones. Quick and Easy to make moist, light, and fluffy! Step by step instructions to make perfect scones. Serve for High Tea or Afternoon Tea

I first learnt to make Classic English Scones when I was 11 years old, in Hong Kong. Back in those days, Hong Kong was a British Colony, and was very 'British', so my school was English as were the teachers.

We would learn to cook all kinds of recipes that English people would eat, and with my mom being Chinese and cooking mainly Chinese food at home, my dad, being English was very happy when I would bring home my cooking creations from school as they would be all the things he missed from home.

Classic English Scones.  Quick and Easy to make moist, light, and fluffy! Step by step instructions to make perfect scones. Serve for High Tea or Afternoon Tea

I learned to make scones, proper English Cucumber Sandwiches, Scotch Eggs,  Toad in The Hole, Spotted Dick, Jam Roly Poly and all kinds of English recipes.

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From there, I have obviously built up my range of English recipes and developed the ones I really love the most.

This scone recipe I would say came from my English Cookery teacher back in 1970..something! I don't know where she got it from, but I remember her name as Mrs Petrie.

Classic English Scones. 
Quick and Easy to make moist, light, and fluffy! Step by step instructions to make perfect scones. Serve for High Tea or Afternoon Tea

Many of the English dessert recipes you see here originate from Mrs Petrie and my Father's mother, 'Mam'!

Classic English Scones are traditionally served with tea, and you would have jam and clotted cream spread on each half of the scone.

Classic English Scones. 
Quick and Easy to make moist, light, and fluffy! Step by step instructions to make perfect scones. Serve for High Tea or Afternoon Tea

In some parts of England, it is known as a 'cream tea'. Watch out for signs along the road saying there is Cream Tea available!! It's worth stopping and having one!

These scones are the softest, lightest and fluffiest, moist and flavourful, and remember when you make this recipe, light hands make a light scone!

Be sure to follow my tips and you too will love this recipe. So let's see how you make this lovely Classic English Scone.

Prep Time

10 minute

Cook Time

10 minutes

Yield

8

You will need

A baking tray & a 5 cm / 2 inch round cutter

Ingredients You'll Need

  • 350 g self-raising flour *** Please seive, US Measure is 2 cups and 13 tablespoons
  • 1/4 tsp Salt
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 3 tbsp caster or regular sugar
  • 3 oz or 85 g butter, cubed
  • 3/4 cup or 175 ml milk
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • A squeeze lemon juice
  • beaten egg, to glaze
  • 1 cup or 200 g raisins, dried fruit etc of your choice. (I used raisins)

NOTE: Please ensure you use Self Raising Flour for this recipe and not All Purpose / Plain Flour.

I cannot say if making your own mix of Self-raising will work.

The best scones need to rise properly and not taste of soda or baking powder, and so the above ingredients are what I can advise for best results.

INSTRUCTIONS

1. Preheat oven to 220C/ 425 F / Gas 7. Also, preheat your baking tray.

2. In a mixing bowl, add the sifted flour, salt and baking powder, and combine.

3. Add the butter and rub in with your fingers until the mixture looks like fine crumbs.

Rubbing butter and flour together

Using a flat bladed knife, stir in the sugar. Then add the dried fruit if using.

Adding dried fruit to flour and butter

4. Put the milk into a jug and heat in the microwave for about 30 secs until warm, but not hot.

Add the vanilla and lemon juice, then set aside for 2 minutes.

milk, lemon juice and vanilla extract resting for 2 minutes

5. Make a well in the dry mix.

Make a well in the flour

then add the liquid and combine it quickly with a flat bladed knife.

Pour milk mixture in to well
Bring mixture together using flat bladed knife

Once combined, place it on a well-dusted work surface.

Bring mixture together using flat bladed knife

When it starts coming together, I use my hand to gently gather the dough around the side of the bowl so it's nice and smooth.

gather scone mixture with hand

It will be quite a wet dough at first.

Dust some flour on the work surface and place the dough on the surface.

Shake some more flour on the dough and your hands, then fold the dough over 2-3 times until it's a little smoother.

Showing thickness of scone mixture

Pat into a round about 4 cm (1 1/2 inches) deep.

**** Please, the thickness is VERY IMPORTANT so measure if you are not sure!

Showing thickness of scone mixture

TIP:
When you turn the dough out onto the work surface, it will be sticky and a little wet at first.

Don't worry about this as you need to dust your hands and dough. Try to handle the dough as little as possible, and not be heavy-handed. This will cause the scones to be heavy and tough

6. Take a 5cm (2 inch) cutter -( Plain cutters cut more cleanly and give a better rise than patterned edge cutters ) and dip it into some flour.

Showing cutter to make scone shape

Plunge in a single movement into the dough, then repeat until you have four scones.

Showing cutter to make scone shape


By this point, you'll probably need to press what's left of the dough back into a round to cut out another four.

Try not to overwork the dough, be light with your hands when reshaping.

Tips for cutting the scones

  • To ensure your scones rise vertically in the oven, when you use your cutter, be sure to cut the scone in one vertical action straight down through the dough.
  • When removing the cutter, DO NOT do a twisting action, but remove the cutter straight up
  • If you twist the cutter, this will destroy the structure of the dough and you will not get the scones to rise properly with the classic break apart in the middle look.

7. Brush the tops with beaten egg, then carefully place onto the hot baking tray.

egg glaze on scones before oven

8. Bake for 10 mins until risen and golden on the top.

Classic English Scones. Quick and Easy to make, moist, light and fluffy!


These scones will freeze very well once cooked in an airtight bag, just defrost and reheat if you want them warmed through.


Serve with whipped cream and jam, or as I have done in the pictures, served with butter and some Home Made Lemon Curd. See HERE for the recipe for Lemon Curd

Classic English Scones. Quick and Easy to make, moist, light and fluffy!
Classic English Scones. Quick and Easy to make, moist, light and fluffy!

Recipe Card

Classic English Scones. Quick and Easy to make, moist, light and fluffy!

Classic English Scones

Yield: 8
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 20 minutes

Classic English Scones.
Quick and Easy to make moist, light, and fluffy! Step by step instructions to make perfect scones. Serve for High Tea or Afternoon Tea

Ingredients

  • 350 g self-raising flour *** Please seive, US Measure is 2 cups and 13 tablespoons
  • 1/4 tsp Salt
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 3 tbsp caster or regular sugar
  • 3 oz or 85 g butter, cubed
  • 3/4 cup or 175 ml milk
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • A squeeze lemon juice
  • beaten egg, to glaze
  • 1 cup or 200 g raisins, dried fruit etc of your choice. (I used raisins)

Instructions

  1. Pre heat oven to 220C/ 425 F / Gas 7. Also pre heat your baking tray.
  2. In a mixing bowl, add the sifted flour, salt and baking powder,and combine.
  3. Add the butter and rub in with your fingers until the mixture looks like fine crumbs. Using a flat bladed knife, stir in the sugar. Then add the dried fruit if using.
  4. Put the milk into a jug and heat in the microwave for about 30 secs until warm, but not hot. Add the vanilla and lemon juice, then set aside for 2 minutes.
  5. Make a well in the dry mix, then add the liquid and combine it quickly with a flat bladed knife. Once combined, place it on a well dusted work surface.

Try to handle the dough as little as possible, and not be heavy handed. This will cause the scones to be heavy and tough

  1. Take a 5cm (2 inch) cutter -( Plain cutters cut more cleanly and give a better rise than patterned edge cutters ) and dip it into some flour. Plunge in a single movement into the dough, then repeat until you have four scones.

*** See tip below for cutting.

  1. By this point you'll probably need to press what's left of the dough back into a round to cut out another four. Try not to over work the dough, be light with your hands when reshaping.

To ensure your scones rise vertically in the oven, when you use your cutter, be sure to cut the scone in one vertical action straight down through the dough. When removing the cutter, DO NOT do a twisting action, but remove the cutter straight up. If you twist the cutter, this will destroy the structure of the dough and you will not get the scones to rise properly with the classic break apart in the middle look.

  1. Brush the tops with beaten egg, then carefully place onto the hot baking tray. Bake for 10 mins until risen and golden on the top.
Nutrition Information:
Yield: 8 Serving Size: 8
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 330Total Fat: 10gSaturated Fat: 6gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 3gCholesterol: 48mgSodium: 600mgCarbohydrates: 56gFiber: 2gSugar: 26gProtein: 6g

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70 thoughts shared

  1. 5 stars
    I have made these so many times since I found your recipe and finally added raisins this time around. I live in a very humid country, but the recipe works very well for me.

    We really love them, and this is by far the best recipe I have found.

    Thank you so much for it!

  2. 5 stars
    I have been looking for a good english scones recipe for years and is very sceptical to try online recipe after so many failures. I am very glad I decided to try your recipe. Fantastic. It is what I have been looking for. Your lemon custard recipe is simply awesome. Thank you very much.

  3. I love how they taste ! Thank you!
    My only problem is, I’ve followed the recipe to a T twice now and I have to add a whole 3/4 more milk than the 3/4 I already add.
    The dough isn’t at all wet enough nor does it stick together it’s still so floury . Am I doing something wrong ?

    1. Hi Jordann, glad you like the scones. Nope that is very strange for you to have to add more milk. I’ve made these soooo many times and I know the measures are exact so I don’t know what is happening your end. The only thing I can think of is the flour brand, although I can’t imagine the difference in brand would cause such a huge difference in liquid measure. All I can say is at least you’ve worked out what you need to do to get the correct consistency of the dough!

  4. 5 stars
    I’ve made these to your recipe & it is brilliant!
    Instead of using a cutter & having to remold the leftovers, I cut the dough , straight down with a sharp knife, into 6 even- ish sized pieces & proceeded as per your instructions! Really, really pleased with the results. Thank u. xx

  5. 5 stars
    How do you recommend rewarming them after freezing? Can you leave the raisins out without messing up the measurements of the other ingredients?

    1. Hi Maria, from frozen you can defrost at room temperature or in the microwave. If you want to warm them through if they’re already defrosted, you can do 30 seconds microwave or pop in the oven until they’re warm. I tend to just pop them in in microwave because it’s quicker!
      As for the raisins, you can leave them out completely, no need to change the ingredient amounts. They’ll just be plain scones, sweetish if you add the sugar, and savoury if you leave the sugar out. They’re very versatile!
      Please enjoy!

  6. 5 stars
    Beautiful recipes , thank you for sharing. My scones turn out beautiful golden colour , crispy from outside and smooth, moist and tasty inside. I use dry apricot instead of raisins, just because we have plenty stock at home ?

  7. 5 stars
    I tried this recipe yesterday evening. Awesome. Successful. recipe was precise and easy to follow and the photos do helps! Warm english scone. Staight from the oven. Cream cheese and strawberry jam and coffee on rainya day. Perfect … So yummilicois … The feeling ‘Priceless’ … enjoy .. You got to try it!

  8. 5 stars
    Can’t wait to try this. A couple new things for me (I’m more a cook than a baker) is self-raising flour. How fun!
    I’m making these for Strawberry Shortcake for Independence Day.
    I’ve had the most amazing scones at a coffee shop here in Portland (Cafe’ Umbria); they are fluffy & soft in the inside and crispy and buttery on the outside, so well…

    I bet they are great for savory bites too! I will check back and let you know. Terri

    1. Hi Terri, these scones are certainly fluffy inside and not dry! I think you were asking about self raising flour, it’s often used in cake baking to give extra lightness and air. You will be able to find it in the baking section alongside the other flours.
      Hope that helps!

      1. 4 stars
        Wow! Thank you for your quick reply! My scones were very good! I only used 1/2 cup of currants as these were for strawberry shortcakes. They also seemed a bit salty. So my question re: self-raising flour. If it already has salt and baking powder in it, is the added salt necessary? I understand the need for more baking powder (more rise). Oh and I didn’t use unsalted butter….hmm.

      2. Comment author image

        Lovefoodies

        says:

        Hi Terri, so happy your scones cake out nice!
        SR flour shouldn’t have any salt (check the package). If you’ve found them too salty, I can suggest perhaps just double check you added the right amount from the recipe, you shouldn’t actually be able to taste any salt. It’s just there to help with the texture and rise of the scones. If you did add the correct amount, perhaps next time, try reducing it a little to your taste. But honestly, you really shouldn’t be able to taste any salt!
        Hope that helps!

  9. 5 stars
    This is the best recipe for British scones, I have tried so many different ones for a afternoon tea like Harrods, at our community. I used buttermilk but otherwise followed your recipe they rose perfectly tasted great but I had to cook them longer. I live at 4500 feet maybe that’s why. Thankyou