Cranberry White Chocolate Scones with Buttermilk

Home » Recipes » Desserts » Cranberry White Chocolate Scones with Buttermilk


Cranberry white chocolate scones is the best breakfast or dessert for the Holidays. This festive treat is packed with butter, cranberries and white chocolate to create a buttery, tart and sweet snack. Freeze ahead of time to make your Holiday dinner planning easier.

These scones were such a hit with my family and friends that I have decided to share the recipe 2 weeks earlier! The tart cranberries, the sweet white chocolate, the tang of the buttermilk all comes together for a perfect combination of flavours. A bit of cinnamon and nutmeg also compliments the flavour profile to create the perfect Holiday scone.

Why Make Cranberry White Chocolate Scones?

These scones are:

  • Buttery
  • Made with buttermilk
  • Eggless
  • Made with tart dried cranberries and
  • Sweet white chocolate chips
  • Able to make ahead and freeze
  • Perfect for the Holiday season

Cranberry White Chocolate Scones Ingredients

  • All-purpose flour: All-purpose flour is used as a foundation to our scone recipe. I have not tried this recipe with other types of flour.
  • Baking powder: Leavening agent.
  • Baking soda: Another leavening agent, baking soda will work with buttermilk to activate.
  • Salt: To balance the sugar.
  • Cinnamon and Nutmeg: These spices are flavourful and work well with cranberries and white chocolate.
  • White granulated sugar: For sweetness.
  • Butter: COLD butter is essential for scones, more on butter below.
  • Buttermilk: I like to use buttermilk for scones because it is easily accessible (available in most grocery stores), it has no fat content and can be used for pancakes, waffles and Pumpkin Spice Scones.
  • Dried cranberries: Cranberries are in season during the fall/winter season, which makes it perfect for these holiday scones. Dried cranberries are tart and balance the sweetness of the chocolate well.
  • White chocolate chips: Use the mini white chocolate chips so there are little bites of chocolate throughout the scone.
  • Sanding sugar: This is optional but sprinkle sanding sugar (coarse sugar) on top of the scone prior to baking to add a crunch!
Flatlay of 5 cranberry scones on a black wire rack.

White Chocolate Glaze Ingredients

  • White chocolate chips: A white chocolate glaze is nothing without the white chocolate chips! No need to buy special white chocolate for this glaze, use the same white chocolate for the scones.
  • Powdered sugar: Also known as confectioner’s sugar, it’s perfect for a glaze because it dissolves quickly.
  • Hot water: Water brings the above 2 ingredients together.

How to Make Cranberry White Chocolate Scones

  1. Prep the butter: 20 minutes before prepping the butter, freeze the butter. Frozen butter is easier to work with while grating. Use a box grater to grate the butter and put the grated butter back in the freezer until it’s needed for the recipe.
  2. Whisk dry ingredients: In a large bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, sugar and the ground cinnamon and nutmeg.
  3. Add butter: Add the grated butter to the dry ingredients. Use a fork or a dough cutter to cut the butter into the flour mixture.
  4. Add buttermilk: Next add in the cold buttermilk and mix.
  5. Fold in the cranberries and white chocolate chips: Before adding the dried cranberries, chop the cranberries roughly to create smaller pieces. Then add in the dried cranberries and white chocolate chips to the scone mixture.
  6. Gently knead: Turn out the scones on a clean surface and gently knead together. The dough should come together to form a ball without being too sticky. If the dough is too dry, add in buttermilk 1 tablespoon at a time.
  7. Form into disks: After the dough comes together into a ball shape, split the dough into 2 disks.
  8. Cut into scones: Cut each disk into triangles, creating 8 triangles per disks = 16 scones total
  9. Refrigerate or Freeze: If baking the scones the same day, refrigerate the scones for 20 – 30 minutes. During this time, preheat the oven to 375°F.
    • If Freezing: Refrigerate the scones for 1 hour, then pack into freezer bags. Use the frozen scones within 2 weeks. Bake the scones from frozen at 375°F for 20 – 23 minutes, until the bottom turns light brown.
  10. Brush and sprinkle: Brush each scone with buttermilk and sprinkle sanding (coarse) sugar.
  11. Bake: Bake for 15 – 20 minutes until the bottom turns light brown. Transfer to a wire rack to cool completely. Serve as-is or add white chocolate glaze.

How to Make White Chocolate Glaze

  1. Melt chocolate: In a heat-safe bowl, melt white chocolate chips in the microwave.
  2. Combine ingredients: Add the powdered sugar and water and stir until combined. The glaze should be thick but easy to pour.
  3. Drizzle: Using a spoon or piping bag, drizzle the glaze over each scone.
flatlay of a small bowl of white chocolate glaze

Frequently Asked Questions about Scones

What causes scones not to rise? See below for my 5 tips to make the best scones. Also, use fresh baking powder and baking soda so you have the best quality of each ingredient.

Can I use baking soda instead of baking powder in scones? Baking soda and baking powder are 2 different leavening agents and cannot be substituted for each other. This recipe requires both leaveners and cannot be substituted.

How long do homemade scones last? Keep scones in an airtight container for up to 5 days. If freezing pre-baked scones, keep in a freezer bag for 2 weeks.

side picture of cranberry white chocolate scones

5 Tips to Make the Best Scones

  1. Use FROZEN, GRATED butter: Scones with frozen and grated butter have a better rise in the oven. The cold butter heats up rapidly once in a hot oven and starts to melt, creating little pockets of air. This air helps the scone to rise.
  2. Use COLD liquids: In this case, buttermilk is used. Keep the buttermilk in the fridge until the recipe calls for it.
  3. Keep the scones close together: It’s normal to leave 2+ inches of space on a baking tray. This is not the case for scones. We want to encourage the scones to grow, so leave about 1 inch of space between each scone.
  4. Keep the dough cold: After the scones are cut into little triangles, refrigerate! It’s essential to keep the butter cold so it can work it’s magic in tip #1.
  5. Keep the oven HOT: Preheat the oven while the scones are chilling, about 20 – 30 minutes. Once the cold scones enter the hot oven, the butter will start to melt and the scones will rise!


Tools Required for Making Scones

  • Large mixing bowl
  • Grater
  • Whisk and Spatula
  • Measuring cups and spoons
  • Dough cutter or fork
  • Baking tray with silicone mat or parchment paper
  • Wire rack

Other Recipes to Try

Pumpkin Pie Spice Scones
Apple Cinnamon Crumble Cake
Moist Carrot Cake with Raisins
Maple Vanilla Chai Tea Latte

Cranberry White Chocolate Scones with Buttermilk

Cranberry white chocolate scones is the best breakfast or dessert for the Holidays. The tart cranberries, the sweet white chocolate, the tang of the buttermilk all comes together for a perfect combination of flavours. A bit of cinnamon and nutmeg also compliments the flavour profile to create the perfect Holiday scone.
5 from 7 votes
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Chill Time 20 minutes
Total Time 45 minutes
Course Breakfast, Dessert, Quick Breads
Cuisine American
Servings 16 Scones

Ingredients
  

  • ¾ cup (160g) Unsalted butter Frozen and grated
  • 3 cups (387g) All-purpose flour
  • 2 tsp Baking powder
  • ¼ tsp Baking soda
  • ¼ cup (50g) White granulated sugar
  • 1 tsp Salt
  • ½ tsp Ground cinnamon
  • ¼ tsp Ground nutmeg
  • ¾ cup + 2 tbsp Buttermilk Cold + extra for brushing
  • ¾ cup Dried cranberries, chopped
  • ½ cup Mini white chocolate chips
  • Sanding sugar for sprinkling (optional)

White Chocolate Glaze (Optional)

  • ¼ cup Mini white chocolate chips melted
  • 2 tbsp Powdered sugar
  • 2 tsp Water

Instructions
 

  • Use a box grater to grate the frozen butter. Keep the grated butter in the freezer until time to use.
  • In a large bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, sugar, ground cinnamon and nutmeg.
  • Use a dough cutter or a fork to cut the frozen, grated butter into the dry ingredients. The mixture should look like fine bread crumbs. Pour the cold buttermilk and mix.
  • Add in the chopped dried cranberries and white chocolate chips, stir. Turn out the dough onto a clean surface and gently knead. If the dough is too dry, add in buttermilk 1 tbsp at a time. The dough should come together into a ball without being too sticky. Cut the dough in half to create 2 disks.
  • Cut each disk into 8 triangles, 16 triangles total. Transfer the scones to a baking tray lined with a silicone baking mat or parchment paper and refrigerate for 20 – 30 minutes. Preheat the oven to 375°F.
  • Brush each scone with buttermilk and sprinkle sanding sugar. Bake for 15 – 20 minutes until the bottom is light brown. Transfer to a wire rack to completely cool. Serve with the white chocolate glaze.

White Chocolate Glaze

  • Melt white chocolate chips in the microwave. Mix in powdered sugar and water until the glaze is thick but pourable. Drizzle the glaze on each scone, let dry.

Notes

Make-ahead: Make the scones until Step 5. But refrigerate the scones for 1 hour, then transfer to a freezer bag and freeze up to 2 weeks. When ready to bake, continue with the rest of step 5. 
Storage: Store in an airtight container for up to 5 days.
Tips to Make Great Scones:
  1. Use FROZEN, GRATED butter: Scones with frozen and grated butter have a better rise in the oven. The cold butter heats up rapidly once in a hot oven and starts to melt, creating little pockets of air. This air helps the scone to rise.
  2. Use COLD liquids: Keep the buttermilk in the fridge until the recipe calls for it.
  3. Keep the scones close together: We want to encourage the scones to grow, so leave about 1 inch of space between each scone.
  4. Keep the dough cold: After the scones are cut into little triangles, refrigerate! It’s essential to keep the butter cold so it can work it’s magic in tip #1.
  5. Keep the oven HOT: Preheat the oven while the scones are chilling, about 20 – 30 minutes. Once the cold scones enter the hot oven, the butter will start to melt and the scones will rise!
Keyword Buttermilk, Christmas, Cranberry, Holiday, White Chocolate Chips

If you tried this recipe, leave a comment below!
On Instagram, tag 
@ashleycbakes and #ashleycbakes so I can see your bakes!

Connect with me here: Facebook | Instagram | Pinterest | YouTube

pinterest cover for scones with buttermilk

14 Comments

  1. 5 stars
    You had me at scones and then teased me by adding chocolate. I absolutely LOVE this recipe. Printed so I can make it after lent, give up chocolate.
    I love everything about this recipe and cannot wait to make it.
    Thank you for sharing!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Recipe Rating




This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.