Lemon Scones

Easy to make, light and delicious lemon scones for afternoon tea or the perfect breakfast to start your day!

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Zesty, fresh, and filling lemon scones are the perfect coffee snack or dessert. By using both lemon juice and lemon zest, you end up with a big burst of lemony, acidic tang that makes these scones perfect. Served with homemade clotted cream, raspberry jam or my favorite, homemade strawberry freezer jam.

Lemon scones on a white plate

Lemon Scones

Getting scones right can be really tricky; sometimes they are too dense, other times too delicately biscuit-like. The key is to carefully cut the butter into the dry ingredients so that every bite is flaky and tender, without being too delicate that it breaks apart just by handling it.

You also pretty much have to use cream in this recipe because it lends so much richness, and it’s hardly a scone without it.

ingredients for lemon scones

Lemon Scones Ingredients

Don’t forget to carefully examine the recipe card at the very bottom for all of the ingredients needed.

  • Flour
  • Sugar
  • Baking powder
  • Butter
  • Cream
  • Egg
  • Lemon juice
  • Lemon zest

How To Make Lemon Scones

  • Combine all of the dry ingredients, alongside the zest, in a medium bowl
  • Cut the cold butter into thin pieces and then cut into the dry ingredients using a fork or a pastry blender
  • Beat your egg and then it into the cream
  • Mix in the lemon juice, and then combine that mixture with the dry ingredients
  • Turn out onto a lightly floured surface and press into a rectangle and cut into your desired shapes
  • Bake on a baking sheet at 350 Fahrenheit until fully risen and browned, about 17 minutes
lemon scone dough rolled into a square

How To Cut The Butter Into Flour

Making any kind of delicate baking like scones usually involves the intricate detail of cutting the butter into the flour, but how do you actually do that?

The key part of cutting butter into flour is to use really cold butter. To make it easy, take your butter and cut it into pieces, ideally small cubes, and stick those in the freezer. After about 20 minutes, the cubes of butter should be nice and cold but still pliable if you push a fork into it, which makes it perfect for cutting into flour.

The actual cutting can be done with a fork or one of those fancy pastry cutter tools. The specific tool is definitely easier, as it has all of the necessary force needed to break the butter up into smaller particles to wrap around the flour, but a fork works just as well.

cutting butter into dry flour mixture

A Great Cream Hack For Richer Scones

This recipe uses regular cream to provide the necessary liquid and richness for scones, but there is actually something you can do to really amp up the flavors; use the leftover whey cream from clotted cream!

Take your cream and pour it into a casserole dish wide enough to get the cream into a thin layer with maximum surface area.

Bake the cream in an oven, uncovered, at the lowest temperature your own can go, something like 200 Fahrenheit, but lower is better. After about 12 hours in the oven, take the cream out and refrigerate it overnight.

The cream should have separated into solid clumps and a thin, white liquid. Pour this liquid out and use it for making the scones!

With the solid lumps, take it out of the dish and pack it into a container, brown bits included. This is actually classic English clotted cream, perfect for serving with your lemon scones.

lemon scones on a white plate with raspberry jam on top

Looking for more delicious Scone recipes? Try these out:




Lemon Scones

Easy to make, light and delicious lemon scones for afternoon tea or the perfect breakfast to start your day!
5 from 10 votes
Prep Time
10 minutes
Cook Time
15 minutes
Total Time
25 minutes
Karlynn Johnston


  • 3 cups flour
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 1 cup cold butter
  • 2/3 cup cream
  • 1 large egg
  • 3 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons lemon zest


  • Preheat your oven to 350°F.
  • Combine all the dry ingredients in a large bowl, whisk them together, and then add the zest in. 
  • Take your cold butter and pre-slice it a bit to help you blend it in. Then take your pastry blender and cut the butter in until it’s crumbly. 
  • Beat your egg and then add it to the cream. 
  • Add in your lemon juice, which is going to sour the cream so don't worry when it curdles.
  • Take the cream mixture and combine it with the dry ingredients until just mixed in.
  • When combined, turn it out onto a lightly floured surface. You can make a rectangle or square and cut it into 8-12 pieces. Whatever shape you make, make them 1 inch thick. Place each scone on a baking sheet with two inches of space between them.
  • Bake in the preheated oven until risen and browned on top, about 17-20 minutes. 
  • Enjoy plain or with jam, or even better use them for classic strawberry shortcake.

Recipe Notes

Nutritional values will depend on how large you make the scones.

Nutrition Information

Calories: 487kcal, Carbohydrates: 46g, Protein: 6g, Fat: 31g, Saturated Fat: 19g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g, Monounsaturated Fat: 8g, Trans Fat: 1g, Cholesterol: 111mg, Sodium: 222mg, Potassium: 240mg, Fiber: 1g, Sugar: 9g, Vitamin A: 1035IU, Vitamin C: 4mg, Calcium: 98mg, Iron: 2mg

All calories and info are based on a third party calculator and are only an estimate. Actual nutritional info will vary with brands used, your measuring methods, portion sizes and more.

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Crispy, buttery lemon scones that are the perfect breakfast or tea time treat!

Karlynn Johnston

I’m a busy mom of two, wife & cookbook author who loves creating fast, fresh meals for my little family on the Canadian prairies. Karlynn Facts: I'm allergic to broccoli. I've never met a cocktail that I didn't like. I would rather burn down my house than clean it. Most of all, I love helping YOU get dinner ready because there's nothing more important than connecting with our loved ones around the dinner table!

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Reader Interactions

Comments & Recipe Tips Share a tip or comment!

  1. Julie Culshaw says

    I’ve made these twice this week and they are so good. The hint of lemon is wonderful. This will be my go-to recipe for scones and biscuits from now on.

  2. Charlynn says

    Mmmm, those sound so good! I’m going to have to make those to have with local strawberries when they are in season. I’m with you, why make strawberry shortcake out of cake when it gives you a great reason to make biscuits/scones? Are you a sour cream lover? I am told my members of my family that sour cream on top of strawberry shortcake is the only way to have it, but I’m not a sour cream lover so I have never tried it.

5 from 10 votes (10 ratings without comment)

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