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This is the perfect cherry scones recipe, yielding scones that are soft and tender inside, crisp and golden outside with bursts of sweet cherries and a subtle vanilla aroma. You can use either fresh or dried cherries to make them!

overhead view of afternoon tea with cherry scones sour cream and jam with cup of tea

I have always loved tea parties.

I remember being a little girl and playing make-believe tea time with my best dolls arranged around a little table.

I’d wear a hat, gloves, dress, and high-heeled shoes spirited away from my mom’s closet. And of course I always gracefully (haha!) tripped all over the place because of the shoes and too long dress. I only served water and crackers, but with a very proper (at least to my five year old ears) British accent, it always felt nothing short of elegant.

To this day I still love tea time! (You can take a peak at my Royal Tea at Peacock Alley in the Waldorf Astoria Orlando if you’re interested.) I was pretty excited when I found out that this month’s 5 Star Makeover theme is tea party.

I set out thinking about what I wanted to make, and finger sandwiches came to mind. But really, my favorite part of afternoon tea is scones!

Steaming hot from the oven, crisp on the outside, tender and soft inside. There is nothing better than splitting a scone in half and spreading it generously with jam and cream. Or cream and jam, as the case may be; I won’t get into the cream/jam ordering debate though, lol!

My favorite way to enjoy scones is in the morning for breakfast with tea or coffee and fresh fruit. The scone dough can be chilled overnight so the only thing to do in the morning is bake them. Since they’re easy to whip up but really impressive (and make the whole house smell amazing), they are especially lovely to make if you have guests staying over.

These beautiful golden scones are perfectly soft, fluffy, and sweetly scented. I think they may be my favorite scones yet, but my recipe for Olive Oil Scones with Cinnamon Figgie Butter is a pretty close second.

close up front view of cherry scone with cream and jam filling

The Best Cherry Scones Recipe (With Fresh or Dried Cherries)

In this section I discuss the ingredients and give substitution ideas. For the full recipe (including ingredient amounts), please see the recipe card below.

Cherry Scone Ingredients

  • Egg – acts as a wet ingredient and binder in this recipe, helps us achieve the right fluffy texture, and gives our cherry scones a pretty golden hue
  • Sour cream – sour cream helps create the most tender scones with a rich flavor
  • Vanilla bean paste – you can use vanilla extract instead
  • Almond extract – this adds a touch of almond flavor that pairs really well with cherries; however, if you don’t have almond extract, you can add more vanilla instead
  • Flour – we use all-purpose flour for this recipe
  • Baking powder – one of the leavening agents in this recipe
  • Baking soda – in addition to baking powder, we use baking soda to help these scones rise because we’re using an acidic ingredient (which is sour cream)
  • Salt – to enhance the flavor
  • Sugar – we use regular granulated white sugar as the sweetener in this scone recipe; if you like your baked goods on the sweeter side, increase the amount of sugar to 1/2 cup
  • Unsalted butter – make sure it’s chilled and cut into small cubes
  • Dried cherries – If you like raisins or currants in your scones, you’re going to love dried cherries; however, you can use up to 1 1/2 cups of pitted chopped fresh cherries instead if you prefer
  • Egg lightly beaten with water – this is for the eggwash that we brush on top of the scones; it helps them bake up to a gorgeous golden color

How to Make Cherry Scones

Step 1: Make the Dough:

In a small bowl, whisk together egg, sour cream, vanilla bean paste, and almond extract.

Add the following to the bowl of a food processor: 2 cups flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and sugar; pulse to combine. Add the butter and pulse a few times until it looks like coarse meal and you have a few pieces the size of peas. Gradually stream in egg mixture while pulsing, being careful not to over-mix (the dough will be a sticky). (Alternatively, you can make the dough by hand. Whisk together the dry ingredients, cut the butter in with a fork, and then stir in the wet ingredients.)  

Step 2: Knead in the Cherries:

Turn the dough out into a large bowl and sprinkle the remaining 2 tablespoons flour and the cherries on top; gently knead the dough just a couple times to incorporate the cherries. (See the recipe card below for instructions on using fresh cherries instead of dried cherries.)

Step 3: Chill the Dough:

Shape the dough into a ball and flatten it slightly into a disk. Wrap the disk of dough in plastic wrap and refrigerate until chilled, about 2 hours (up to 3 days is fine).  

Step 4: Bake the Cherry Scones:

Preheat the oven to 425F and line a large baking tray with a silpat baking mat.

Turn the dough out a lightly floured surface and flatten it into a 3/4 inch-thick circle. Use a floured 2 1/2 inch cookie cutter to stamp out the scones, then gather up the dough scraps and repeat (you should get about 8 scones total).

Transfer the scones to the prepared baking sheet and lightly brush the tops with eggwash. Bake until light golden brown, about 14 to 16 minutes. 

Step 5: Enjoy:

Serve warm with the vanilla cream and cherry jam.

Storage

Like most homemade scones, these are best served the same day they’re made. However, you can store them in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 3 days.

After the first day, I recommend reheating scones before serving. You can do this in a preheated 350F oven for 5 to 7 minutes, or in a preheated air fryer at 350F for 3 minutes.

Variations on this Recipe

  • You can use fresh cherries instead of dried cherries to make these scones.
  • For a little sparkle and extra sweetness, sprinkle 1 tablespoon of sugar on top of the scones after you brush them with eggwash before baking.
front view of 2 cherry scones on plate with cup of tea

Cherry Scones FAQs

What is the Secret to Making Good Scones?

Don’t over-mix the dough! Other than that, it’s just a matter of measuring out all the ingredients correctly (this is where a kitchen scale comes in handy, which you can find affordably on Amazon).

What is Eggwash?

Eggwash is a mixture of egg and water that’s lightly beaten together. We brush a little eggwash on top of the scones before baking to help give them beautiful golden-colored shiny tops.

Do I Need to Chill Scone Dough Before Baking?

Yes. Chilling scone dough before baking will result in the best scones! This is for a couple of reasons.

Firstly, letting the scone dough rest allows the gluten to relax, yielding a softer scone.

Also, remember when we worked the butter into the dough, we left some larger bits of butter? When the dough (and butter pieces in it) are chilled and then immediately baked, those small cold butter lumps create steam and help make our scones flaky. YUM.

Are Scones Supposed to be Dry or Moist?

Scones should be crisp outside, and soft and tender inside. This cherry scones recipe yields the perfect scone!

More Delicious Scone Recipe to Make

front view of dried cherry sones on serving plate with cherry jam

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Cherry Scones Recipe with Vanilla Cream and Cherry Jam

Prep Time25 minutes
Cook Time15 minutes
Other Time2 hours
Servings: 8 scones
This is the perfect cherry scones recipe, yielding scones that are soft and tender inside, crisp and golden outside with bursts of sweet cherries and a subtle vanilla aroma. You can use either fresh or dried cherries to make them!

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Ingredients
 

Vanilla Cream (optional):

Cherry Scones:

  • 1 large egg
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla bean paste
  • 1 teaspoon almond extract
  • 33 1/2 tablespoons all-purpose flour divided (this is 2 cups + 1 1/2 tablespoons; you will also need a little more to roll out the dough)
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 6 tablespoons sugar
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter chilled and cubed
  • 1/2 cup dried cherries chopped (see Note for using fresh cherries instead)
  • 1 egg lightly beaten with 2 teaspoons water, for eggwash

Other:

Instructions
 

For the Vanilla Cream:

  • Mix together all ingredients, leaving a few lumps if desired to resemble clotted cream. Cover and refrigerate until using (up to 3 days).

For the Scones:

  • In a small bowl, whisk together egg, sour cream, vanilla bean paste, and almond extract.
  • Add the following to the bowl of a food processor: 2 cups flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and sugar; pulse to combine. Add the butter and pulse a few times until it looks like coarse meal and you have a few pieces the size of peas. Gradually stream in egg mixture while pulsing, being careful not to over-mix (the dough will be a sticky). (Alternatively, you can make the dough by hand. Whisk together the dry ingredients, cut the butter in with a fork, and then stir in the wet ingredients.)
  • Turn the dough out into a large bowl and sprinkle the remaining 2 tablespoons flour and the cherries on top; gently knead the dough just a couple times to incorporate the cherries. Shape the dough into a ball and flatten it slightly into a disk. Wrap the disk of dough in plastic wrap and refrigerate until chilled, about 2 hours (up to 3 days is fine).
  • Preheat the oven to 425F and line a large baking tray with a silpat baking mat.
  • Turn the dough out a lightly floured surface and flatten it into a 3/4 inch-thick circle. Use a floured 2 1/2 inch cookie cutter to stamp out the scones, then gather up the dough scraps and repeat (you should get about 8 scones total).
  • Transfer the scones to the prepared baking sheet and lightly brush the tops with eggwash. Bake until light golden brown, about 14 to 16 minutes.
  • Serve warm with the vanilla cream and cherry jam.

Notes

  • To Use Fresh Cherries Instead of Dried Cherries: Use up to 1 1/2 cups of fresh sweet cherries that are pitted and quartered. Once you have the cherries chopped, place them on a paper towel-lined plate and pat them with another paper towel to remove excess moisture.
  • Chilling the Dough: If you’re pressed for time, you can freeze the dough for 15 minutes instead of refrigerating it for 2 hours. Or you can make the dough up to 3 days in advance.
  • Sugaring the Tops: For a little sparkle and extra sweetness, sprinkle 1 tablespoon of sugar on top of the scones after you brush them with eggwash before baking.
  • Vanilla Cream: The vanilla cream is completely optional. If you prefer, you can serve these scones with clotted cream, whipped cream, or butter instead.
  • Storage: Like most homemade scones, these are best served the same day they’re made. However, you can store them in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 3 days. After the first day, I recommend reheating scones before serving. You can do this in a preheated 350F oven for 5 to 7 minutes, or in a preheated air fryer at 350F for 3 minutes.
  • Nutrition Information: The nutritional information for this recipe was calculated including the scones with vanilla cream, but not including the optional cherry jam for serving.

Nutrition

Serving: 1scone with vanilla cream | Calories: 364kcal | Carbohydrates: 42g | Protein: 5g | Fat: 20g | Saturated Fat: 12g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 5g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 72mg | Sodium: 324mg | Potassium: 177mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 15g | Vitamin A: 886IU | Vitamin C: 0.2mg | Calcium: 86mg | Iron: 2mg

Nutritional information is automatically calculated and should be used as an approximate.

Course: Bread, Breakfast, Brunch
Cuisine: British
Keyword: Cherry Scones, Cherry Scones Recipe

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Faith, author of An Edible Mosaic.
About Faith

I’m the writer, recipe developer, photographer, and food stylist behind this blog. I love finding the human connection through something we all do every day: eat! Food is a common ground that we can all relate to, and our tables tell a story. It’s my goal to inspire you to get in the kitchen, try something new, and find a favorite you didn’t know you had.

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29 Comments

  1. So pretty! I really like the sour cream, to keep it from being too sweet.

  2. It’s funny how most of us who love to cook and entertain began with our own tea parties. Lovely scones with all the right stuff for a perfect tea party.

  3. It’s been ages since I last made scones, so seeing these photos now is just short of torture! I should really end the suffering and just whip up a new batch, right? I’ve never seen anything quite like your vanilla spread before, so that’s a “must make” for me. I love all things deeply vanilla-flavored so I’m excited to try it.

  4. Evelyne@cheapethniceatz says:

    I so agree scones are a must with tea. And a pairing with cherries is so good. The sour cream adds a nice moist slight tang to the dough I bet.

  5. Even before you mentioned it in your post, I was already remembering your Disney tea experience that you shared with us!! I LOVE LOVE LOVE tea parties as much as you do! When I was little I would have “water” tea parties too :) I guess when you’re that young tea isn’t really allowed, haha. Scones are my favorite too, and these look awesome. Haven’t made mine with sour cream before but if it’s anything like buttercream in the character it gives the scone I’d definitely love to try it!

  6. These look amazing, as usual! I have never made scones…and actually never been to a tea party, but I’m sure I’d love both :-)

  7. Katie@Cozydelicious says:

    I love teh texture of sour cream scones. Yours look wonderful!

  8. Joan Nova says:

    The scones look delicious, especially slathered with that vanilla cream and cherry spread.

  9. 5 Star Foodie says:

    These scones sound wonderful with cherries! And it’s a great idea to make the dough the night before, saves so much time in the morning!

  10. Girlnpurpledres says:

    I do LOVE scones and high tea is certainly one of the favourites with the girls. I was thinking of making currant buns this weekend like my mum used to….I want some!

  11. They look delicious. I’m akways game to try a new scone recipe.
    Mimi

  12. I love the story of you dressing up for tea parties with your 5-year-old British accent, haha ;) I’ve recently discovered the awesomeness of sour cream in baked goods, so your scones are going to the top of my list. And with cherries – my favorite!

  13. You took me back many years Faith! I used to play with my little fake china too. Only back then I didn’t know scones but I served the coffee with Greek cookies and cake. If I had known about the ones you made I would have definitely included them in my childhood’s coffee afternoons!!

  14. Angie@Angie's Recipes says:

    These scones are fantastic!

  15. Ohhhh, I love tea time too, Faith! :-) There’s something so lovely about sitting down with a dear friend with hot tea and a delicious something. :-) These scones sound divine. :-)

  16. Lovely scones & beautiful pictures!!

  17. These look so tender and fluffy! I’m not a huge fan of scones but I’m going to save this to try.

  18. Roxana | Roxana's Home Baking says:

    Oh, tea parties, sounds so familiar. We’re hosting at least one party a week, sometimes i let Tiffany enjoy the tea with the dolls while I make dinner.
    Your scones look great Faith, I love these little British treats

  19. angela@spinachtiger says:

    Just lovely. I love scones too and I loved tea parties as a child. Your scones look comfort good and elegant at the same time.

  20. i used to think a scone wasn’t a scone unless it was triangular. good thing i have people like you to straighten me out. :)

  21. BeadedTail says:

    Making scones intimidates me but one day I’ll try. These look so tasty!

  22. Norma-Platanos, Mangoes and Me! says:

    Sweet post and the scones are lovely.

  23. Jenn and Seth says:

    these sound incredible! so gorgeous and tasty, i just love it!

  24. these look fantastic, especially with the jam and cream! i’m off to check out your olive oil scones, sound like another winner :)

  25. This post makes me want to have a tea party with Kay :). And these scones would be present…and we’d both hog them down! What a gorgeous treat

  26. Gorgeous scones and flavors!

    Cheers,

    Rosa

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