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.

More Scone Recipes

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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. My favorite muffin flavor turned into scones? Plus strawberries and glaze? YUM! I got really lucky the first time I tried a scone. My dad and I were on a baseball trip in Seattle, and the hotel served us cranberry orange scones as a side for our breakfast. One of the moistest ones I’ve ever had! So I’m right there with you, and I refuse to eat dry, crumbly ones. The airier the insides, the better!

  2. Just pulled these out of the oven and they look and smell amazing! I cannot wait for them to cool, so I can dig right in! I’m trying to test fun (make or prepare ahead) breakfast recipes so that I can treat my bridesmaids to a pre-wedding brunch next summer! I think I will need a lot of time to prepare so I can try out as many yummy recipes as possible… That sounds like a legitimate excuse right? Thank you for the addition to their menu!

  3. Should have waited until I tried them to comment! They are amazing and it is totally worth a second comment to compliment you on their wonderfulness! Do you ever bake with rhubarb? A strawberry rhubarb sauce over these would be absolutely amazing. Hmm… Just another thing I will have to “test” out.

    1. If I liked rhubarb, I would definitely add it to my recipes. Let me know if you try that sauce! So happy you enjoy my scones. Thanks Kaitlyn!

  4. “don’t substitute the cream”, you say? I made these with a mixture of greek yogurt and milk up to the 1/2 cup mark and they turned out beautifully! last minute while mixing the dough I added another splash of milk, because the dough wasn’t nearly as wet as I thought was necessary. it all turned out wonderfully. next time, I might skip the glaze (a little too sweet for me) and instead try to up the lemon factor in the scones themselves. they are so, so good though!

    1. So glad you enjoy them without cream! I didn’t care for their texture with yogurt. Thanks for reporting back!

  5. OMG!! It it totally Karma that I came across this site (while looking for 50th wedding anniv ideas) and found chocolate chip scones. YUM!!! I just saw a long lost friend from a job years ago and we were talking about the yummy food from a cart outside the hospital.Not only did he have good “real” food but he had THE BEST choc chip and lemon poppy seed scones I have ever tasted. Huge, Rich, soft – even hours later and cold! I can’t wait to try these and share them with my kids. Not sure if they will like the strawberry ones, but I will definitely try that too! And I can’t wait to explore the rest of your recipes. THANK YOU!

  6. No kidding about the most moist scones ever… made these today and they tasted more like cake than scones. I really enjoyed this recipe, and although it’s definitely not light on calories, I’ll be making them again. I found that I could have added more than 1 cup of strawberries and still been fine. I would also like to try substituting (despite the warning) milk instead of heavy cream since milk is more commonly on hand.

  7. Since I once left a comment begging for a scone recipe, I felt I should report back! I made these as a treat for 4th of July weekend and they are fabulous. I didn’t have heavy cream so found some notes online about combining butter with half and half to make heavy cream. Not sure if that is what I made but whatever I did worked and they turned out terrific!

    I am swimming in cherries this weekend and wondering if another splurge this weekend would be okay on the waistline? lol Cherries and chocolate chips…mmmmmm…

  8. Would these still bake up well and taste good without the lemon in the scones or glaze? My dad is allergic to lemon.

  9. Hi Sally,

    I LOVE this scone recipe! I have been making them almost every weekend. They are so moist and bursting with flavor. My only question is, do you separate the scones after you cut them before you bake them in the pan? My FAVORITE scone recipe ever!!! Thanks for the gorgeous recipe!

  10. Hi Sally!

    So this is my first scone recipe I’ve made, so I don’t have much comparison to go off of. But I was just curious as to what type of texture scone I should be looking for with these. I feel like mine turned out almost more muffin-like in texture. I did use use half and half (instead of heavy cream) and my butter was grated more cold, not completely frozen. I tried not to overwork the batter, but I know that gets tricky… I guess I am used to more crumbly, dense scones, than soft and thick, if that makes sense? Let me know if I am still on the right track, or if I have other adjustments to make.

    Thanks much!

    1. Ashley, you may need to bake the scones a little longer to get a more crumbly, dense texture. An easy fix… just keep in the oven longer. Also, after around 20 minutes of bake time, you can carefully separate the scones using a knife. Then, return to the oven to continue to bake until done. This will help the edges crisp up too.

      1. Thanks so much! Can’t wait to try your other scone recipes 😀 The Triple Chocolate Scones Supreme is calling my name!! <3

  11. Good recipe! I had to add a bit more heavy cream as it was too dry. However, I used orange extract, black pepper instead of poppy seeds with finely chopped strawberries and a nice cream cheese glaze. Was delish! I wowed my coworkers as they wouldn’t think about using black pepper. I have so many ideas for more scone flavours!

  12. I made these this past weekend for Easter breakfast and they are AMAZING! I’m now dying to make tons of other flavor combos with this recipe. I’m in love with the grating butter method. I even stuck mine back in the freezer for a few minutes after it was grated to make sure it was still super cold when added to the dry ingredients. With the butter pieces being so small already you hardly have to do any work with your pastry blender! I’m thinking this method would be perfect for pie crust! Thanks for the amazing recipe!

  13. Can this recipe be doubled or tripled or will it be more difficult to mix the dough without overmixing? Looks amazing, can’t wait to try it.

    1. Kim, when making a big batch of scones– I usually make 2 or 3 batches instead of doubling or tripling the recipe.

  14. I’ve made this recipe twice and it has always been amazingly tasty!

    My mum recently bought a huge Costco size bag of Sugar in the Raw.  Do you know if it’s fine to substitute it for granulated sugar?  Not just in this recipe, but in any recipe that calls for granulated sugar?  Thank you!

    1. Not in any recipe because of its coarse texture. However, it would be OK in these scones. So happy you like them!

  15. I compared this recipe to the blueberry scone recipe and (except for the poppyseed/lemon/strawberry of course) noticed that it differed in the amount of sugar for the dry ingredients. 
    I’m just curious as to why this is since I wanted to make a batch of both the blueberry scones and these scones (minus the poppy and lemon). 
    Could i just double this recipe and divide the mixture accordingly before adding the fruit?

    1. Tammy, I use less sugar here because strawberries are sweeter than blueberries. You can double this recipe, yes!

  16. Can’t wait to try making these but I have a question first. Since I usually make a recipe exactly according to the original directions, I wondered if you preferred using frozen strawberries, such as in the blueberry scone recipe, instead of fresh. I know frozen berries become mushy when defrosted so would the fresh ones be a little firmer?

  17. Hi Sally,

    I love your recipes and I’ve made quite a lot of your cookie recipes.

    This blog entry for the strawberry lemon scones – can you please tell me where you got the white plate with the lattice edge? My great-grandmother had some tea saucers very similar to the plate in your photos.

    Thanks,
    Cassie 

  18. This is dumb for you zest of a lemon or orange how do i get this.  Also recipe for danish sweet roll the one with jam in the middle.  

    1. Hi Debra! Belated response, but just in case: the zest of a citrus fruit (like oranges or lemons) is when you use the peel (just the colorful part–not the bitter white pith!) to give a recipe a nice kick of citrus flavor. While there are a few ways to zest something (it depends on your purpose–sometimes you want the peel in a big piece, or a spiral for garnish), when you’re using the peel in baked goods, you want it to be in tiny little crumbles so that it evenly distributes through the batter or dough. The easiest way to get there is to use either a hand rasp grater (aka a Microplane grater) or the side of a box grater with the tiniest little holes.
      To start, you’ll want to wash your fruit under warm water and scrub it with a brush–unless you’re using organic fruit, many companies will put a food-grade wax on their fruit to keep it fresh longer. Good for the tasty insides, not so good for a zest!
      After you’ve washed it, gently run your fruit over the rough side of the grater–be careful not to get the soft white part under the peel. Once you’ve gotten all the brightly colored peel off, you officially have the zest of one fruit :)!

  19. Hi, your scones look delicious! I make scones too and wonder what you think about putting all the ingredients in a food processor? 

  20. So amazing!  I’ve never had a moister scone.  I broke the rules and made with half n half instead of cream and they still turned out amazing!  I love your recipes and made many of them!

  21. Hi Sally! I have some ripe strawberries in my fridge that I want to use up, and I stumbled across this recipe! Looks delicious, I’ve been a fan of yours for a while now! I know substituting milk for cream might make the batter a little too wet but can I still substitute with a scant 1/2 cup? Thanks! 

  22. Hi Sally,
    Just wanted to let you know….these scones are AMAZING!!!! I will never buy coffee shop scones again, so moist…so fluffy and bursting with strawberry citrus goodness! One question….would the texture change much if I used coconut oil instead of butter? Also I use half and half instead of heavy cream in the scone, still very delightful!

    1. I’ve had a few readers report that they have added solid coconut oil and still enjoy the scones– I have never personally tried it though. It’s worth a try. But you will lose that buttery flavor, of course.

  23. Made these today and they are easy and delicious.   I am not typically a drizzle fan however this drizzle is very lemony and not too sweet so it was perfect.  The scone consistency is not traditional dry so it’s a moist scone.  Very good.  

  24. I tried this for the first time, they are in the oven. I’m planning a tea party bridal shower anscwant to include scones. One question. I found the dough to be a Bit dry. The last round I had to add some half and half to get it to stick together. I’d love you to show your dough after each step it helps. Thanks

    1. I did a trial run on the Blueberry and the Strawberry scones and served them to my family and they were a BIG hit. I then made both again to serve to 25 people at a meeting and they were blown away by them. Super easy and so light, fluffy, moist and delicious!!!

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