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A pistachio scone with white chocolate, fresh cranberries, and topped with an orange glaze – easy breakfast treat that doesn’t involve a mixer, can be made in one bowl and whipped up quickly! These white chocolate cranberry pistachio scones are a great way to start the day!
I just love scones, don’t you? I mean, it’s pretty obvious if you have visited before.
Ok, so you get it. I love scones. I feel like they get a bad rep. They’re dry, you say. Pish posh applesauce. A good scone shouldn’t be like nawing on the side of a hockey puck. It should still have a tender moist crumb. And this one does.
So I used my basic scone recipe again to make this super tasty pistachio scone version with white chocolate, fresh cranberries, and finished with an orange glaze. The pistachios added a wonderful salty crunch. The cranberries add a tart pop. The white chocolate chips added some wonderful sweetness. And then it’s all finished with an orange glaze that just pairs so well with all the flavors and add some brightness to these scones. Basically scone perfection.
Ingredients for these pistachio scones
- Flour – All purpose flour works perfect in scones. It has a mid range protein content so making for a perfectly tender scone.
- Baking powder – this is a quick bread by definition meaning it gets it rise (quickly) from a leavening agent such as baking powder as opposed to a yeast bread for example. And baking powder and baking soda are NOT the same thing. So don’t swap one for the other. You can read all about baking powder vs. baking soda here and really nerd out on some baking science.
- Sugar – Granulated sugar is what I used. But I’m guessing brown sugar would also be delicious.
- Salt – As always, I add a little salt to my baking recipes to help balance the sweetness.
- Butter – I always use unsalted butter while baking. Different brands can use varying amounts of salt in their salted butter making it hard to control the salt. And make sure your butter is COLD, COLD, COLD. This makes for a flaky scone (similar to making pie dough).
- Pistachios – Chopped, salted, roasted pistachios get stirred into the dough. Be sure to stir these in before adding the heavy cream.
- White Chocolate chips – Stir in white chocolate chips before adding the heavy cream.
- Cranberries – I love the addition of fresh cranberries in this! They add a wonderful tart pop with each bite. If you don’t have fresh cranberries you can substitute dried if needed.
- Heavy Cream – I used heavy cream for richness. Again, make sure it’s cold!
- Vanilla extract – I added a little vanilla extract for a little extra flavor.
- Orange Juice– I loved the brightness that a little fresh orange juice brings to the party! I used fresh orange juice in the glaze. You can also add the orange zest if you would like.
- Confectioner sugar – You need 1 cup of powdered sugar for the orange glaze.
How To Make Scones – Step by Step
When I finally do remembering hearing about scones, I always remember hearing the word, DRY, with them. How sad for scones! And so false! If you haven’t ever tried making scones for the same reasons I always had, because they just didn’t sound appealing I suggest you give them a try. They do not require a mixer, just your mixing arm, a bowl, a whisk, spatula, and pastry cutter.
To make the dough, it is as simple as whisking together your dry ingredients.
Then you want to cut in your butter into the bowl. It’s easier if you cube the butter first up into the bowl.
Remember the butter should be COLD, COLD, COLD!
Then using your pastry cutter, cut the butter up until the butter is pea-sized, crumbly, but still visible.
You will still visible pieces of butter in the bowl and that’s what you want. Those butter pieces will help to create a flaky tender scone in the end. They will melt, and the water in the butter will steam and push apart the flour layers.
Add the mix-ins
Now’s the time to stir in the pistachios, cranberries and white chocolate chips.
And then make a well (aka push the flour aside and create a hole for the wet ingredients) and stir in the heavy cream and vanilla extract.
Cut the scones…
From there, you turn your dough onto your counter, knead the dough until it comes together and then pat into a circle.
…and cut into wedges. You want 8 equal sized wedges (basically cut ’em like you would a pizza). Easy peasy.
Then I recommend placing the scones on your baking sheet and freezing for 15 minutes (or refrigerating for 30 minutes) to firm up the butter.
This really does make a difference in the rise of the scones!
Bake And Ice!
Or don’t. That’s your call. But please do. Because it’s totally worth it.
Just whisk up a little confectioners sugar and orange juice.
Then drizzle away….you won’t regret it.
Tips For Making These White Chocolate Cranberry Pistachio Scones:
- Be sure to measure your flour. You want to scoop it with a spoon, and then level it off with a knife. Here is a tutorial on how to do that. For best accuracy, it’s best to use a kitchen scale.
- Make sure to use cold butter for the scones. You want butter that doesn’t get incorporated into the flour so that it steams in the oven and creates wonderful flakiness.
- And cold cream! You want the cream to be cold as well so it doesn’t warm up the butter. So COLD, COLD, COLD. Got it? Good. Moving on…
- Knead the dough. You want to knead the dough together a few times to bring the dough together. But then stop kneading. Overkneading can cause a tough textured scone.
- Add a bit more cream. If your dough is not coming together and seems dry, add a teaspoon of heavy cream to the dough.
Why is my scone dough dry?
Sometimes even as careful as you can measure, your dough will be on the dry side. I made batch after batch while working at a bakery and sometimes I needed to add a touch of extra cream to the dough.
Blame the weather. I usually do. Just add a bit more cream and knead the dough together.
How do you store scones?
Store leftover scones in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 2 days.
How Long Do Scones Last?
I like them of course fresh out of the oven. But they can last 1 to 2 days properly stored at room temperature.
You can also keep them store in the refrigerator for up to a week.
Or better yet freeze them! Freezing desserts is my secret to always having baked goods at my fingertips.
Can You Freeze Scones?
Oh yes! That’s what I love about scones. Once you cut them into wedges, you can freeze them by placing them on a cookie sheet. Then once frozen, wrap in either plastic wrap or store in a plastic bag in your freezer for up to 3 months. I like to do both to ensure they don’t have freezer burn.
Then when ready to bake, no need to thaw, just bake frozen. You will just need to tack on a few extra minutes of baking time.
Can I Make These Half Sized?
I do this by cutting the 8 wedges and then cutting those in half again.
These half sized scones will take less baking time of course. After the first 10 minutes, rotate the pan in the oven and bake 5 minutes more.
If you like this recipe let me know and leave me a star rating and comment below!
More Breakfast Recipes
- Sourdough cinnamon rolls
- Homemade Pop-Tarts
- Healthy Cinnamon Rolls
- Sweet Potato Crumb Muffins
- Whole Wheat Apple Crumb Muffins
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For the scones
- 2 cups (240 g) all purpose flour
- 1 tablespoon baking powder
- 3 tablespoons granulated sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 5 tablespoons unsalted butter cold, and cut into small chunks
- 1/2 cup pistachios chopped
- 1/2 cup white chocolate chips
- 1 cup heavy cream
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
For the glaze
- 1 cup (120 g) confectioners sugar
- 2 tablespoons orange juice
- Preheat your oven to 400F degrees. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper.
- In a large bowl, whisk together your flours, baking powder, and salt. Add the chilled butter pieces and with a pastry blender cut the butter into the flour mixture until the largest piece of butter is the size of pea. Toss in the pistachios, white chocolate chips, and fresh cranberries and stir to combine.
- Make a well in the middle of your flour and butter mixture. Pour the heavy cream and vanilla in the well. Stir to combine.
- Transfer to a well-floured surface. Sprinkle a little flour over the dough. Pat the dough into a 7-inch square, about 1 inch high. Cut into 8 triangles, or use a biscuit cutter to cut dough circles out.
- Bake for 15 minutes until they are lightly golden around the edges. Cool in the pan for one minute, and transfer to a cooling rack. Allow to cool and set up before digging in, or at least try to let them cool a little bit!
- Make the glaze: Combine the powdered sugar and orange juice. Adjust consistency if needed. Drizzle on cooled scones.
- You want to make sure to use cold ingredients. Especially the butter. You want chunks of butter that doesn't get incorporated to help create a light and fluffy scone.
- And don't overwork the dough which can create gluten and create a tough scone on you in the end. So be gentle!
- Do not use a mixer for these, just a pastry cutter and a spatula will work to bring the dough together!
- Scones are easy to make, but if you find stirring the dough together a bit tricky and some the flour refuses to combine, don't be afraid to get in there with your hands. They are after all your best tools in the kitchen. You want the dough a little damp and sticky, so they aren't dry hockey pucks, but if the dough it too sticky sprinkle with a little extra flour and they should come together in a snap.