Strawberry Lemon Poppy Seed Scones

These strawberry scones are bursting with juicy strawberries and fresh lemon flavor. They’re buttery and moist with crisp crumbly edges, poppy seeds, and soft flaky centers. Crunchy coarse sugar and lemon icing are the perfect finishing touches!

Strawberry lemon poppy seed scones

Do you like scones? Until recently, I was never a fan. I went 30 years passing them off in favor of muffins, quick breads, and other more exciting pastries. Truth is, scones can taste pretty lackluster and boring. Why waste your calories?!?!

But my opinion took a total 180 when I attended a cooking event in the Panera Bread test kitchen. We made deliciously moist yet crisp scones filled with juicy strawberries. The flavor, texture, and total process were all totally on point. If you’re not a fan of scones, you may just be eating the wrong ones! When done right, scones are pure pastry perfection.

These strawberry lemon poppy seed scones will turn you into a scone enthusiast. Promise.

Strawberry lemon poppy seed scones

Since my scone breakthrough, I have mastered chocolate chip scones, cinnamon scones, and blueberry scones. I use the same master scone recipe for each flavor, a careful formula promising the BEST flavor and texture. By the way, I wrote an entire post devoted to my favorite basic scone recipe. Today we’re making a strawberry lemon variety!

Everything to Love About These Scones:

  • Sweet crumbly edges
  • Crunchy golden brown exterior
  • Soft, moist, lemon-y centers
  • Juicy strawberries
  • Lots of lemon icing

Strawberry lemon poppy seed scones

Ingredients in Strawberry Lemon Poppy Seed Scones

Start your grocery list!

  1. Flour: 2 cups of all-purpose flour is my standard amount, but set extra aside for the work surface and your hands.
  2. Sugar: I stick with around 1/2 cup of sugar for this scone dough. Feel free to slightly decrease, but keep in mind that the scone flavor and texture will slightly change.
  3. Baking Powder: Adds lift.
  4. Poppy Seeds: For fun. Duh.
  5. Salt, Lemon Zest, & Vanilla Extract: Add flavor.
  6. Cold Butter: Besides flour, cold butter is the main ingredient in these strawberry scones. It adds flavor, flakiness, crisp edges, and rise.
  7. Heavy CreamFor the best tasting pastries, stick with a thick liquid such as heavy cream. For a nondairy option, try using full-fat canned coconut milk. Avoid thinner liquids such as milk or almond milk– you’ll be headed down a one way street to dry, bland, and flat scones. What a difference 1 ingredient makes!
  8. Egg: Adds flavor, lift, and structure.
  9. Strawberries: Use chopped fresh or frozen strawberries. If using frozen, do not thaw.

Frozen butter shreds

Frozen Grated Butter

Frozen grated butter is key to scone success. As with pie crust, work cold butter into the dry ingredients. The cold butter coats the flour, which creates tons of flour coated butter crumbs. When the butter/flour crumbs melt as the scones bake, they release steam which creates all the delicious flakiness we love. The exterior becomes crumbly, crunchy, and crisp.

Why FROZEN butter? Refrigerated butter might melt in the dough as you work with it, but frozen butter will hold out until the oven. And the finer the pieces of cold butter, the less the scones spread and the quicker the butter mixes into the dry ingredients. Remember, you don’t want to over-work scone dough.

I recommend grating the frozen butter with a box grater.

Strawberry Lemon Poppy Seed Scones | sallysbakingaddiction.com

How to Make Strawberry Lemon Poppy Seed Scones

These strawberry lemon poppy seed scones are surprisingly quick and easy. First, mix the dry ingredients together. You need flour, sugar, baking powder, poppy seeds, lemon zest, and salt. Second, cut cold butter into the dry ingredients. You can use a pastry cutter, 2 forks, or your hands. A food processor works too, but it often overworks the scone dough. To avoid overly dense scones, work the dough as little as possible.

Next, whisk the wet ingredients together. You need heavy cream, 1 egg, and vanilla extract. These are my go-to wet ingredients in scones. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients, add the strawberries, then gently mix together. Form the dough into a disc on the counter, then cut into 8 wedges. Before baking, brush the scones with heavy cream and sprinkle with coarse sugar. These extras add a bakery-style crunch and beautiful golden sheen. Delicious!!

One of my tricks: To obtain a flaky center and a crumbly exterior, keep scone dough as cold as possible. I highly recommend chilling the shaped scones for at least 15 minutes prior to baking. You can even refrigerate overnight for a quick breakfast in the morning.

After that, bake the scones until golden brown.

Video Tutorial

If you’re interested, I have a 5 minute video demonstrating the scone recipe. I’m making blueberry scones in this video, but the base recipe and process is exactly the same.

Strawberry scones on baking sheet

Strawberry scones with lemon icing

Enjoy the scones warm right out of the oven, but to elevate them even more– drizzle with lemon icing. (One should never turn down an excuse for icing!!) You need fresh lemon juice, a splash of heavy cream, and confectioners’ sugar. The lemon icing seeps down into the cracks and crevices and will eventually “set” on the scones, so stacking and storing is a breeze.

Strawberry scones

I’m confident you’ll be a scone enthusiast after this one.

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Strawberry lemon poppy seed scones

Strawberry Lemon Poppy Seed Scones

  • Author: Sally
  • Prep Time: 30 minutes
  • Cook Time: 25 minutes
  • Total Time: 1 hour
  • Yield: 8 large scones
  • Category: Breakfast
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: American

Description

These strawberry scones are bursting with juicy strawberries, delicious lemon zing, and poppy seeds. They’re buttery and moist with crisp crumbly edges and soft flaky centers. Read through the recipe before beginning. You can skip the chilling for 15 minutes prior to baking, but I highly recommend it to prevent the scones from over-spreading.


Ingredients

  • 2 cups (250g) all-purpose flour (spoon & leveled), plus more for hands and work surface
  • 1/2 cup (100g) granulated sugar
  • 1 Tablespoon fresh lemon zest (about 1 lemon)
  • 2 and 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 2 teaspoons poppy seeds
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick; 115g) unsalted butter, frozen
  • 1/2 cup (120ml) heavy cream (plus 2 Tbsp for brushing)
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 and 1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 1 heaping cup (170g) fresh or frozen chopped strawberries (do not thaw)
  • for topping: coarse sugar

Lemon Icing

  • 1 cup (120g) confectioners’ sugar
  • 2 Tablespoons fresh lemon juice (about 1 lemon)
  • 1 Tablespoon (15ml) heavy cream or milk

Instructions

  1. Whisk flour, sugar, lemon zest, baking powder, poppy seeds, and salt together in a large bowl. Grate the frozen butter using a box grater. Add it to the flour mixture and combine with a pastry cutter, two forks, or your fingers until the mixture comes together in pea-sized crumbs. See video above for a closer look at the texture. Place in the refrigerator or freezer as you mix the wet ingredients together.
  2. Whisk 1/2 cup heavy cream, the egg, and vanilla extract together in a small bowl. Drizzle over the flour mixture, add the strawberries, then mix together until everything appears moistened.
  3. Pour onto the counter and, with floured hands, work dough into a ball as best you can. Dough will be sticky. If it’s too sticky, add a little more flour. If it seems too dry, add 1-2 more Tablespoons heavy cream. Press into an 8-inch disc and, with a sharp knife or bench scraper, cut into 8 wedges.
  4. Brush scones with remaining heavy cream and for extra crunch, sprinkle with coarse sugar. (You can do this before or after refrigerating in the next step.)
  5. Place scones on a plate or lined baking sheet (if your fridge has space!) and refrigerate for at least 15 minutes.
  6. Meanwhile, preheat oven to 400°F (204°C).
  7. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper or silicone baking mat. After refrigerating, arrange scones 2-3 inches apart on the prepared baking sheet(s).
  8. Bake for 22-25 minutes or until golden brown around the edges and lightly browned on top. Remove from the oven and cool for a few minutes as you prepare the icing.
  9. Make the icing: Whisk the icing ingredients together. Drizzle over warm scones.
  10. Leftover iced or un-iced scones keep well at room temperature for 2 days or in the refrigerator for 5 days.

Notes

  1. Special Tools: Glass Mixing Bowls, Box Grater, Pastry Cutter, Baking Sheet, Silpat Baking Mat, Pastry Brush, Citrus Zester
  2. Freeze Before Baking: Freeze scone dough wedges on a plate or baking sheet for 1 hour. Once relatively frozen, you can layer them in a freezer-friendly bag or container. Bake from frozen, adding a few minutes to the bake time. Or thaw overnight, then bake as directed.
  3. Freeze After Baking: Freeze the baked and cooled scones before topping with icing. I usually freeze in a freezer-friendly bag or container. To thaw, leave out on the counter for a few hours or overnight in the refrigerator. Warm in the microwave for 30 seconds or on a baking sheet in a 300°F (149°C) oven for 10 minutes. When ready to serve, top with lemon icing.
  4. Overnight Instructions: Prepare scones through step 4. Cover and refrigerate overnight. Continue with the recipe the following day.
  5. Over-spreading: Start with very cold scone dough. Expect some spread, but if the scones are over-spreading as they bake, remove from the oven and press back into its triangle shape (or whatever shape) using a rubber spatula.

Keywords: scones, strawberry scones

If you're looking for the perfect scone, this is it! We LOVE this recipe for Strawberry Lemon Poppy Seed Scones!

175 Comments

  1. I love making and eating scones and i always make mine with cold butter. Like the idea of using frozen butter. Can’t wait to try out your recipe Sally. Looks so moist and delish

  2. I always thought making scones was really hard! I guess I was just intimidated by the shape, but I am so gonna try these!

  3. Scones. That’s something I never made before, but hey! I’ll give it a shot. Especially with lemon, strawberries AND poppy seeds in them (three of my more interesting flavour loves)! I’ll stick some butter in the freezer right now 🙂

      1. Well I did make them today. And they were wonderful! I multiplied the glaze by 1.5 because, well, this family really likes lemon 😉

  4. These are so pretty, Sally! They look delicious, and strawberries are such a wonderful pairing with lemon. I was thinking about having a lemon party this summer…lemonade, a salad with fruits and lemon dressing, lemon chicken, and something lemony for dessert. I had been thinking of lemon tarts, but this would be fabulous too! 😀

  5. My Mum makes the best scones. She has the lightest touch and they work out perfectly every time. I have the fondest memories of Sunday afternoon tea with scones piled high with jam and cream accompanied by a sweet pot of English Breakfast Tea.
    Since I have had to go gluten free I have missed Mum’s scones and I lack the nerve to try to recreate her recipe. Perhaps I will have to give these delights a try to ease me into scone making. Thanks Sally, and happy birthday week.

    1. Thanks for the birthday wishes, Amy. And I hope you give scones a try converting them to your new dietary needs. Such sweet memories with your mother!

  6. Scones are one of my favorite breakfast “desserts!” And these sound amazing! Strawberries and lemon are the perfect combo! Pinned!

    1. I’m glad you said breakfast “dessert” – these definitely fall into the dessert category as well as breakfast! So wonderful after a light dinner, too.

  7. They turned out wonderfully! Third time’s a charm, right 🙂 They look lovely and I am a recent scones convert myself. When you make things yourself, you can prevent the dry, cardboard phenomenon, right 🙂 Pinned!

    And happy early Bday! I love those yellow shoes and the TB bag isn’t too shabby either 🙂

    1. Thanks Averie – I definitely splurged on that purse. Totally worth it. And all the tried getting these scones perfectly moist and tender… also worth it!

  8. So summery– I might have to make these as a present to myself for finishing finals 🙂

  9. Hi! Im 12 year old and I love to bake. I come to your blog a lot to make recipes, and every single one of them has turned out great! I made the blueberry lemon cake for my dads birthday :). This looks really yummy! Maybe I’ll try it! But can you subsitute anything for the heavy cream in the dough? Thank you!

  10. Always glad to hear I’m not the only one who fails in the kitchen! Meanwhile, these scones look and sound amazing. I love how you make them into triangles, scones in Australia are always round 🙂

    1. I need to try round scones sometime Jessica! I love how versatile scones are – from the shape to the flavors and everything else. They’re great!

  11. I always thought scones had to be dry and bland too, until I started making my own. Definitely an enthusiast now! I bought some strawberries the other day and my kids haven’t even touched them so I should probably make these!

  12. Here in Australia scones are very popular and iv’e never seen a scone look like yours! (in a good way!!) this looks amazing, even though it’s different from what we would usually bake! Good job.

  13. These look completely different from the scones we make here in Ireland but they look incredible! Love the flavours 🙂

  14. By the pictures alone i am drooling all over the place… haaaah yummers. The only thing though is that i hate cream and eggs…could i use alternatives? But thanks for the post i will totally do these for my next friends gathering !!

    1. I do not suggest alternatives. They are the most important ingredients as far as the scone’s texture goes.

  15. Sally thanks a lot for the advices, your recipes always work and they are so easy to make. You made my day with this recipe! I love all the ingredients!

  16. Hey, I’m impressed that you kept trying (to such a great result, no less) after all those epic fails! I had one this weekend too and just gave up. I’m a quitter! 🙂
    These are delicious. Totally worth a 6 AM run!

    1. Thanks Mir. When I have something on my mind, I won’t stop tip I get it right. And I’ve been dying to make moist, tender scones for the past month since I had a few great ones at an event. Hope you try these!

  17. These look amazing, Sally! I think you should be my family’s baker: your pizza for my little sister, the mint truffles for my boyfriend and now these scones..! My big sister looveess scones. I’ll try and make her happy with these next weekend. If they turn out to be half as good as yours, I’ll be smiling from ears to ears too 😉

  18. Sally, I baked some savoury scones fairly recently and was happy with my photos, so I kidded myself they were good enough to post on my blog. Wrong! Totally too flat. You have inspired me to have another go and try to get them right because, coming from the UK where we’re scone-lovers and experts, I think I should get at least one scone recipe nailed! Thanks for the tips!

    1. Helen, definitely give them a try again. Use frozen butter – I found that my scones were much flatter (still using 2 and 1/2 tsp baking powder) when I used cold butter – not frozen. So frozen does the trick.

  19. Sal, these look SO yummy! I made scones Friday (raspberry & white chocolate) and I also use the dozen/cold butter trick and I love it – your right, frozen works better but if your grating by hand, I find cold butter grates much easier and I just pop it back into the cold while I finish the rest of my prep if I think it’s getting too warm.
    Anywho, I love scones! If made correctly, they are so yummy! Glad you gave them a second chance! (YAY!)
    & beautiful photos, as per usual!!

    1. Thanks so much, Kendra! Your raspberry white chocolate scones sound phenomenal. Raspberries are one of my favorite fruits!

  20. Looks good! I recently discovered the grated-butter trick, and it works excellently for biscuits and pie crusts. My mom hates scones so much that she would never let me make them, but she might change her mind after seeing these!

  21. Sally, I’ve been eating and making scones all my life (mother’s family English)–I make mine with less sugar than yours, but there’s nothing wrong with these lovely scones of yours! 🙂 Bring ’em over and I’ll put the kettle on!

  22. These look absolutely amazing! I’ve made lemon poppyseed scones but the strawberries seem like a great addition. I’ll be making these in the near future.

  23. LEMON POPPYSEED! YES! These look and sound amazing. Also, frozen butter shreds look like strange chocolatey cheese to me that I would like to place in my mouth ASAP.

  24. Scones are some of my all time favorite breakfast foods – I sually like to lighten up mine – but if I was going for a treat – this would most definitely be it! Simply decadent, Sally!!!

  25. Sally – these look amazing! I love scones, but the flavors you picked are perfection! What a great combination! And the strawberry lemonade with these scones? Definitely a must! Pinned! Hope you had a great weekend 🙂

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