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Tender lemon scones are topped with a lemony glaze for a bright addition to any breakfast or brunch menu.

Two lemon scones next to lemon wedges on a white plate.

I love breakfast pastries. From muffins to scones to donuts, they’re some of my favorite breakfast treats.

And long-time readers also know all about my love for lemon, whether it’s in the form of homemade lemon bars, mini lemon cheesecakes, or simple but delicious lemon sorbet.

So is it really surprising that I combined these two loves into these beautiful glazed lemon scones?

Nope. It is not.

These tender lemon scones, which are similar to my raspberry lemon scones, are topped with a bright lemon glaze, making these beauties the ideal treat for anyone who loves lemon as much as I do. 

Close up of a glazed lemon scone stacked on top of a second scone.
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How to make glazed lemon scones

I’ve had a lot of dry, flavorless scones in my life, so you can take my word for it when I promise you that these are truly delicious lemon scones. But don’t worry – they’re not hard to make! 

A few key ingredients and a gentle hand are all you need to make tender, flavorful scones.

Ingredients you’ll need

For the scones themselves, you will need:

  • ⅓ cup granulated sugar
  • zest of 3 medium lemons
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • ¼ teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 8 tablespoons frozen unsalted butter
  • ½ cup sour cream
  • 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Ingredients for glazed lemon scones arranged on a countertop.

We are packing plenty of lemony goodness into this recipe by using lemon zest and lemon juice in the scones.

One of the key ingredients I like to use in most of my scone recipes is sour cream or yogurt. When I make vanilla scones I use vanilla yogurt; in blueberry scones and these lemon scones, it’s plain sour cream.

Just like when baking with buttermilk, the lactic acid in the sour cream or yogurt adds a bit of tang and helps keep the scones nice and tender.

Recipe Tip

Before you start baking, make sure you know how to measure flour correctly. That will help your lemon scones to turn out perfect every time.

For the lemon glaze, you will need:

  • 3 tablespoons melted unsalted butter
  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice

If you run out of powdered sugar in the middle of making this recipe, don’t panic. Check out my guide on how to make powdered sugar and save yourself a trip to the store!

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Making these lemon scones

The first step to making these glazed lemon scones is a trick I use whenever I’m adding citrus zest to a recipe: mixing the lemon zest with the granulated sugar.

Lemon zest combined with sugar in a white bowl.

I have used this trick in my cranberry orange scones, lemon zucchini cake, and so much more. By mixing the zest into the sugar until the sugar is moistened, you are releasing the oils from the zest and helping to infuse the flavor and aroma of the citrus into every bite.

Once the sugar and zest are well combined, add the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. 

Grate the frozen butter using the large holes of a box grater, then use your fingers to work the grated butter into the flour mixture until it resembles coarse crumbs.

In another bowl or measuring cup, whisk together the sour cream, lemon juice, egg, and vanilla.

Wet ingredients for lemon scones in a glass mixing bowl.

Once the liquid ingredients are smooth, add them to the flour mixture with a fork until you get large dough clumps. Don’t over-mix it! Using a gentle hand here will help you get more tender scones.

Now use your hands to press the dough against the side of the bowl. It’ll start out sticky but will come together.

Pat the dough into a 7-inch circle on a floured surface. It will be about ¾-inch thick. Use a sharp knife, dough blade, or even a pizza cutter to cut the circle into 8 even triangles.

Move the triangles to a lined baking sheet, placing them about 1 inch apart. Bake the scones for 15-16 minutes at 400°F, until they are golden brown. 

Let the scones cool for 10 minutes while you whisk together the glaze ingredients until smooth. After 10 minutes, dip the tops of the scones into the glaze, allowing it to harden a bit before serving.

Storage and freezing tips

Store your glazed lemon scones in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 2 days.

If you want to freeze the scones, you can do so before or after baking.

To freeze the unbaked scones, place the cut triangles on a lined baking sheet and place the baking sheet in the freezer for 1-2 hours, until the triangles are frozen through.

Transfer the frozen unbaked scones to a zip-top freezer bag and freeze for 2-3 months. When you’re ready to enjoy, take out as many of the scones as you like and bake according to the recipe directions, adding an extra couple of minutes of baking time as needed.

To freeze the baked scones, glazed or unglazed, place them in an airtight container or zip-top freezer bag. Freeze for up to a month.

To thaw, let the scones sit at room temperature for a couple of hours or place a scone in the microwave for 30-60 seconds to thaw and warm it through.

Overhead view of glazed lemon scones arranged in a circle on a piece of parchment paper over a marble board.

Recipe FAQs

I don’t have a grater. What can I do instead to add the butter to the dry ingredients?

If you don’t have a grater, you have a couple of options to work the butter into the flour mixture.

If you have a pastry blender, you can keep the butter cold (but not frozen) and cut it into pieces. Use your pastry blender to work the butter into the dry ingredients until the mixture resembles a coarse meal.

You could also use a food processor to pulse the butter into the mixture. You can use frozen butter for this, but cut it into pieces before adding it to the food processor.

If you use your food processor, transfer the mixture into a bowl after pulsing in the butter so that you can follow the rest of the recipe as written.

Can I use yogurt instead of sour cream in this recipe?

Absolutely. I often use yogurt instead of sour cream in scone recipes. I recommend using Greek yogurt – plain or lemon yogurt would work great for these lemon scones.

Halved lemon scone propped against a second scone on a white plate to show the tender crumb.
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Glazed Lemon Scones

By: Jamie
No ratings yet
Prep: 15 minutes
Cook: 16 minutes
Cooling Time: 40 minutes
Total: 1 hour 11 minutes
Servings: 8 scones
Tender lemon scones are topped with a lemony glaze for a bright addition to any breakfast or brunch menu.

Ingredients

For the scones

  • cup granulated sugar
  • zest of 3 medium lemons
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • ¼ teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 8 tablespoons unsalted butter frozen
  • ½ cup sour cream
  • 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

For the glaze

  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter melted
  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • ½ teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice

Instructions 

  • Adjust oven rack to lower-middle position and preheat oven to 400°F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  • In a medium bowl, combine sugar and lemon zest; mix with your fingertips until the sugar is moistened and fragrant. Add in the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt and mix until combined.
  • Grate butter into flour mixture on the large holes of a box grater; use your fingers to work in the butter until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs.
  • In a small bowl, whisk the sour cream, lemon juice, egg and vanilla until smooth.
  • Using a fork, stir sour cream mixture into flour mixture until large dough clumps form. Use your hands to press the dough against the bowl into a ball. The dough will be sticky first, but as you press, the dough will come together.
  • Place on a lightly floured surface and pat into a 7-inch circle about 3/4-inch thick. Use a sharp knife to cut into 8 triangles. Place on prepared baking sheet, about 1 inch apart. Bake until golden, about 15 to 16 minutes. Cool for 10 minutes and prepare the glaze.
  • In a medium bowl, prepare the glaze by mixing together the melted butter, powdered sugar, vanilla and lemon juice. Whisk until smooth. Dip the top of the scones into the glaze and allow the glaze to harden.

Video

Notes

Scones store well in an airtight container for up to two days.
Adapted from Pam Anderson via All Recipes.

Nutrition

Serving: 1scone, Calories: 383kcal, Carbohydrates: 49g, Protein: 4g, Fat: 19g, Saturated Fat: 12g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g, Monounsaturated Fat: 5g, Trans Fat: 1g, Cholesterol: 70mg, Sodium: 248mg, Potassium: 73mg, Fiber: 1g, Sugar: 24g, Vitamin A: 601IU, Vitamin C: 3mg, Calcium: 57mg, Iron: 2mg

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

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1 Comment

  1. Linda Collins says:

    We were going to a brunch saw the recipe and decided to try them.Easy to make so lemony soft not dry inside.They were delicious and real hit with everyone. This will ve tried again .Thx