Cranberry Orange Scones are flavorful, slightly crunchy on the outside, have a moist interior, and are perfect for the holiday season. The cranberry and orange combination mixed with a cream based dough makes a perfect yet simple breakfast or anytime treat.
Cranberry orange scones take 10 minutes or less to prep and about 20 minutes to bake. While they are cooling you can make a creamy orange glaze for the topping or use a simple sprinkle of sugar for a crunchy topping. Voila! You have yourself a delicious scone.
The first time I ate a scone was when I was pregnant with my first child. I don’t think I even knew what a scone was but I wanted one asap. I must have seen it in the bakery case while I was ordering my decaf whatever. Since then, scones have been one of my favorite breakfast treats. Thing is, a lot of them aren’t good. Sometimes they are too dry, have no flavor, and one time I had one that wasn’t fully cooked. No way, no more. I now make my own and the texture is spot on. Plus, they are ridiculously easy to make.
I based this recipe from my maple scone recipe. This is very simple to make:
- Combine the flour, sugar, baking powder, salt, and zest.
- Add butter and mix using a fork, your fingers, or a pastry cutter (affiliate link) until butter is mostly incorporated with flour.
- Add the cranberries and toss to combine. You can use a heaping cup of fresh cranberries or dried cranberries.
- Measure the heavy cream and mix with orange juice concentrate.
- Pour into flour mixture and mix until you have a shaggy wet dough.
- Turn onto floured counter and gather into a ball.
- Flatten into a 1 inch thick round.
- Using a scraper (affiliate link) or sharp knife, slice into 8 wedges.
- Transfer onto lined baking sheet about an inch apart. Use scraper to lift them off.
- Finish either by brushing the tops with cream mixed with orange juice concentrate, then sprinkling with sugar. Raw or course sugar is best.
- Or, you can make an orange glaze that can be spooned on top after the scones have slightly cooled.
You may be wondering why I use frozen orange juice concentrate instead of regular orange juice? I keep a can of frozen orange juice in my freezer at all times. I find orange juice concentrate has exactly what the name states – concentrated orange flavor. What do I do with the orange I zested? I eat it and use the concentrated.
Fresh cranberries have an explosion of flavor and dried cranberries offer a chewy bite.
I use less butter and more cream.
Using a scraper makes it easier to manipulate and transfer the dough without using additional flour. If the dough is dry and crumbly, your scones will be too. If you find the dough too wet for you to handle, sprinkle a little flour on your counter. Use as little as possible.
- 2 ½ cups flour
- ½ cup sugar
- 1 tablespoon baking powder
- ¾ teaspoon fine salt
- 1 tablespoon of grated orange zest
- 4 tablespoons cold unsalted butter, cubed
- 1 heaping cup of fresh cranberries OR 1 cup dried cranberries
- 1 cup heavy cream
- ¼ cup frozen orange juice concentrate, slightly defrosted
- To make Icing:
- 1 cup confectioners' sugar
- 1 tablespoons frozen orange juice concentrate, melted
- 1 tablespoon heavy cream, plus more if needed
- ⅛ teaspoon fine salt
- For a crunchy topping:
- 1 - tablespoon frozen orange juice concentrate, defrosted
- 1 tablespoon heavy cream
- 1 - 2 tablespoons sugar- course or raw work best
- Preheat oven 375 degrees.
- Line a baking sheet with parchment.
- Whisk together the flour, sugar, baking powder, salt, and zest.
- Add butter and using a fork, pastry cutter, or your fingers, mix until butter is mostly incorporated. Toss in the cranberries.
- Combine the heavy cream and frozen orange juice then add to the flour mixture. Stir until just combined. You will have a shaggy, wet dough.
- Sprinkle the counter with a little flour.
- Turn out the dough onto floured counter, flip to coat the other side with a little flour. Use a scraper to do this. Pat down into 1" thick round, then cut into 8 wedges. Place the wedges on parchment lined baking sheet.
- Transfer onto parchment lined baking sheet and bake for 20 - 25 minutes.
- Make glaze by combining confectioners' sugar and salt with orange juice and cream. Whisk until smooth. Add a little more cream or milk to thin, if desired. Spoon and drizzle over cooled scones to cover tops.
- If you want to add walnuts for a nice crunch, chop ½ cup walnuts and toss in with the cranberries.
- If you rather a crunchy top instead of the glaze, mix orange juice concentrate and cream and brush a little on top of the scones before baking. Sprinkle with some sugar. Raw works wonderfully.