Cranberry Buttermilk Spelt Scones

November 15, 2016
3 Ratings
Photo by James Ransom
  • Makes 8 scones
What You'll Need
  • 3 tablespoons granulated sugar, plus a bit more for sprinkling
  • 1 tablespoon freshly grated orange zest
  • Seeds of one vanilla bean or 1 teaspoon vanilla bean paste
  • 1 cup all purpose flour
  • 1 cup spelt flour
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 4 ounces unsalted butter, cold and cut into cubes
  • 1/2 cup buttermilk
  • 1/3 cup heavy cream
  • 1 1/2 cups fresh cranberries
  • A healthy dollop of yogurt (like vanilla or plain), for serving
  1. Preheat oven to 400ºF and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. Add the sugar, orange zest, and vanilla bean seeds to a large bowl and use your fingers to rub the zest and seeds into the sugar. Add the flours, baking powder, and salt to the bowl and whisk to combine.
  3. Add the butter and use your fingers to press each cube of butter into a flat shard about the size of a quarter. Keep tossing the butter in the flour mixture to ensure that it is well coated. Stir in the cranberries.
  4. Make a well in the center of the mixture add add the buttermilk and heavy cream. Stir gently to combine, but don't worry if there are a couple of dry spots. It's best to not over mix this type of dough.
  5. Use your hands to knead the dough a couple of times in the bowl then turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface. Pat the dough into a circle about 1-inch tall and 7- inches wide. Use a knife to cut the dough into 8 wedges.
  6. Transfer the wedges to the baking sheet, brush each one with a bit of heavy cream and sprinkle with granulated sugar. Bake until the scones are golden brown, 18-22 minutes. Enjoy warm with a dollop of yogurt if you'd like. These scones are best enjoyed on the day they are made.

See what other Food52ers are saying.

  • AntoniaJames
  • plotto
  • Bumdadeebum Davina
    Bumdadeebum Davina
  • CharloTea
  • Samantha Weiss Hills
    Samantha Weiss Hills
Yossy Arefi is a photographer and stylist with a passion for food. During her stint working in restaurant kitchens, Yossy started the blog Apt. 2B Baking Co. where, with her trusty Pentax film camera, she photographs and writes about seasonal desserts and preserves. She currently lives in Brooklyn but will always love her native city of Seattle. Follow her work at apt2bbakingco.blogspot.com & yossyarefi.com.

13 Reviews

AntoniaJames January 16, 2024
Thank you for one of my favorite recipes of the past year!

I have made it many times with numerous variations, substituting dried fruit for the fresh cranberries in every instance. Currants, raisins, the little cinnamon sweet bits from King Arthur Baking, all work well. I've even reduced the sugar while adding 1/2 cup of chopped dill for a savory treat that's marvelous with soups and stews.

I now make two different batches at a time, cutting and freezing the individual scones, then wrapping them for freezing in parchment so I can simply unwrap the package and put the paper plus the scones on a cookie sheets to bake 2 or more at a time when the spirit moves me.

The recipe now resides in my coveted (if recipes can covet, I suppose) "Keeper" collection.

Needless to say, I highly recommend it! ;o)
valerie J. December 21, 2019
Could this be made with gluten-free flour? Or all whole grains, say, half spelt and half whole wheat? Thanks.
Deb M. December 25, 2016
Fabulous! I made these for Christmas morning breakfast and followed the recipe exactly. These were very delicate, light and airy. It's very important to not overmix the dough. I cut into wedges leaving at least an inch between each piece. I also weighed my flours, as I often with bread baking.
I'm sure this led to the perfect texture and moist crumb. While the scones were baking I juiced the orange I used for the zest and mixed it with the remainder of the fresh cranberries form the bag, added some sugar and butter and cooked it down to a sauce (adding a pinch of salt). I took it off thye heat and added 1 to 2 T of the heavy cream and set it aside to cool. The rich tartness of the sauce paired perfectly with the scones. This reciped is a keeper for our Christmas morning breakfasts in the future. Happy Holidays everyone!!!
plotto January 14, 2017
I'm curious about weighing the flour. If the recipe lists cup measurements, what weight do you use?
Deb M. April 26, 2017
King Arthur has a conversion chart for just about any ingredient. Here is the link http://www.kingarthurflour.com/learn/ingredient-weight-chart.html#ingredients Hope this is helpful!
plotto December 25, 2016
Could one use craisins if no fresh cranberries on hand?
plotto January 14, 2017
Went ahead and made them with dried cranberries. (my
son does not like the gooey wetness of fresh fruit in his scones.) Quite yummy and love that they are half spelt. Making another batch today.
Bumdadeebum D. December 13, 2016
Don't bother with this recipe. Dough was still not cooked by 30 minutes & result was hohum. It's a modified version of an Epicurious.com recipe. If you want a tastier result, go with the epicurious.com recipe.
Bumdadeebum D. December 13, 2016
I take back my negative comment above! These improve after they sit an hour or so. The flavour is more pronounced and the nuttier aspect of spelt comes into play. But do be sure to leave a minimum of 2 or 3 inches between scones or they will take too long to bake.
CharloTea December 7, 2016
You can substitute all purpose or a mixture of all purpose and whole wheat for the spelt. Spelt has less gluten and shouldn't be over mixed.
Barbara B. December 7, 2016
Would love to make these tomorrow morning but have no spelt flour. Can I use 1/2 whole wheat and 1/2 unbleached white?
Pamela R. December 7, 2016
Can you sub whole wheat flour for spelt flour? And what is the oven temerature supposed to be?
Samantha W. December 7, 2016
I can't speak to the flour substitution, but the oven temperature should be 400ºF!