Chocolate Cranberry Scones are delightfully easy to make with self-rising flour, sugar, butter, cranberries, chocolate, buttermilk, and eggs. Be sure to make some to freeze for later!
Ready to hunker down with a cup of tea and something delicious?
If you’ve got chocolate chips in your pantry and some fresh cranberries in your fridge or freezer, you are set for a great breakfast or teatime snack!
These Chocolate Cranberry Scones are a great way to use up all that self-rising flour you panic bought in the Great Flour Shortage of 2020. Oh, was that just me?
Lucky for you, deliciousness awaits you regardless of how you stocked up.
What is a scone?
A scone is a quick bread of Scottish origin, supposedly named after the Stone of Destiny (or Scone). Originally a triangular-shaped oat cake baked on a griddle, today you’ll find scones made of flour and oven-baked.
Scones are cut into triangles as well as rounds, squares, or diamonds. They can be savory or sweet. Scones are delicious for breakfast or tea.
These Chocolate Cranberry Scones are lightly sweetened and dotted with fresh cranberries and dark chocolate. A simple powdered sugar glaze at the end rounds out the flavors for a treat low on the sugar, but packed with flavor.
What ingredients do you need to make scones?
Scones are made of the following ingredients:
- cream, milk, or buttermilk
- spices, extracts, and mix-ins
Flour: These Chocolate Cranberry Scones are made with self-rising flour which accounts for the flour, leavening, and salt.
Liquid: When this recipe was first published, I recommended a mix of milk and cream. To make things easier and to produce a fluffier scone, I now use buttermilk. You can use milk or a plant milk if you prefer, just be sure to substitute 1 tablespoon of white vinegar for part of the liquid.
Chocolate: If you can find mini chocolate chips, that’s what I recommend for this recipe as they add a dainty dose of chocolate without overpowering the whole treat. If you prefer, feel free to use white, milk chocolate, or semisweet chocolate.
Cranberries: Fresh cranberries, while delicious left whole in cranberry bread or cranberry muffins, are a little too large for these scones. Coarsely chop the washed cranberries in a food processor prior to preparing the recipe.
Can I use regular flour instead of self-rising flour?
If you don’t regularly stock self-rising flour, you can use regular, all-purpose flour in recipes that call for self-rising flour. Be sure to add 1 1/2 teaspoon baking powder and 1/2 teaspoon salt to each cup of flour in the recipe.
For example for these Chocolate Cranberry Scones, you would use 4 cups all-purpose flour plus 2 tablespoons baking powder and 2 teaspoons salt.
How do you make Chocolate Cranberry Scones from scratch?
Scones are made in a similar manner to biscuits:
- Combine the flour and sugar.
- Cut the butter into the flour mixture until coarse crumbs form.
- Fold in any mix-ins.
- In a separate bowl, beat the eggs and mix in the buttermilk and vanilla extract.
- Combine the wet and dry ingredients until a dough forms.
- Transfer the dough to a floured surface and roll out into 1-inch thickness.
- Cut the dough into your desired shapes and place on a baking sheet lined with parchment or a silicone baking mat.
- Bake until golden. Cool and serve. Glaze if desired.
Can you freeze Chocolate Cranberry Scones?
Scones freeze beautifully! In fact, you can freeze the scones before or after baking.
To freeze baked scones: Prepare the scones according to the recipe instructions. Cool the scones completely on a rack. Once cool, store the scones in an airtight, freezer-safe container. You can also place them in a ziptop freezer bag, removing all the air from the bag. Store in the freezer for 4 to 6 weeks.
To serve: thaw on the counter. Glaze if desired.
To freeze unbaked scones: Label a ziptop freezer bag with the date, recipe name, and baking instructions. Prepare the scones as directed and place on a baking sheet. Instead of baking, place the baking sheet in the freezer. Once the scones are frozen solid, remove them to a ziptop freezer bag and store in the freezer until ready to serve.
To serve: preheat the oven and bake the scones from frozen, adding 5 minutes or so to the baking time if necessary.
Chocolate Cranberry Scones
- 4 cup self-rising flour
- 1/2 cup granulated sugar
- 1/2 cup butter cubed
- 1 cup fresh cranberries coarsely chopped
- 1/2 cup chocolate chips
- 3/4 cup buttermilk
- 2 egg
- 2 tsp vanilla extract
- 3/4 cup powdered sugar
- 1 tbsp milk
- Preheat the oven to 400°. Line a baking sheet with parchment or a silicone baking mat.
- Coarsely chop the cranberries with a knife on a cutting board or in the food processor fitted with the metal blade. If using the food processor, wipe out the bowl before proceeding.
- In the bowl of a food processor fitted with metal blade, measure in the flour and sugar. Secure the lid and pulse briefly to mix.
- Add the butter pieces and process until coarse crumbs are formed. (If you do not have a food processor, the same effect can be achieved in a mixing bowl with a pastry blender, fork, or two table knives held together.)
- Pour the crumb mixture into a large mixing bowl. Add the cranberries and chocolate chips. Toss to coat.
- No need to wash the processor bowl. In the bowl, combine the buttermilk, eggs, and 1 teaspoon of the vanilla extract. Or whisk them together in a mixing bowl.
- Slowly pour the wet ingredients into dry crumb mixture and stir quickly, just until a shaggy dough forms. Overmixing will result in tough scones.
- Empty the dough onto a lightly floured surface. Knead three or four times with floury hands. The dough will be sticky.
- Shape dough into a large, flat rectangle. Cut into 12 squares. Separate the squares carefully. Alternatively, you can cut out 24 2-inch rounds with a cutter. Place the scones on the prepared baking sheet, allowing about an inch of space between them.
- Bake for 12 to 14 minutes, until lightly browned. Cool slightly on a rack while you prepare the glaze.
- To prepare the glaze, combine the powdered sugar, remaining 1 teaspoon extract and the milk. Add more milk if necessary to create a drizzling texture.
- Drizzle the glaze over the slightly warm scones. Allow the glaze to set before serving.
- Store the scones in an airtight container for up to 4 days at room temperature.
This post was originally published on January 21, 2010. It has been updated for content and clarity.