Classic Scottish scones in 15 minutes

Scottish scones, scones,

Did you know that scones were invented in Scotland? Well, they were. Scones are said to be closely related to Bannock bread.

According to Webster’s Dictionary, scones definitely originated in Scotland, with the first mention of the teatime treat dating back to the early 1500s.

poem about scones
A poem by Scots poet, Gavin Douglas.

The first use of the word scone in text, is said to be the poem above, written by Scots poet Gavin Douglas in the year 1513.

Originally, they were made with oats, and were cooked over a griddle. They were shaped into a round and cut into four or six triangles.

The origin of the name ‘Scone’ is said to come from the town of Scone in Perth and Kinross. However, some say the name originates from the Gaelic word ‘sgonn’ – a word which can either mean a shapeless mass, or a large mouthful.

In the north of England, and in Scotland, we tend to pronounce Scone to rhyme with ‘swan’ – but in the south of England and the Republic of Ireland, they generally pronounce it to rhyme with ‘tone.’

Here’s a very quick and simple recipe, which should only take 5 minutes to prepare, and 10 minutes to bake.


  • 350 grams of self-raising flour
  • a quarter of a teaspoon of salt
  • 1 teaspoon of baking powder
  • 85 grams of butter, cut into cubes
  • 3 tablespoons of caster sugar
  • 175 ml milk
  • 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract
  • a squeeze of lemon juice
  • one beaten egg (for glazing)
  • jam and clotted cream


  1. Preheat the oven to 220C, for fan ovens – 200C or gas mark 7
  2. Put 350 grams of self-raising flour into a large bowl with a quarter of a teaspoon of salt and 1 teaspoon of baking powder and mix.
  3. Add 85 grams of butter cut into cubes, then rub it all together with your fingers until it resembles fine crumbs, and stir in 3 tablespoons of caster sugar.
  4. Put 175 ml milk into a jug and microwave for 30 secs until warm (not hot).
  5. Add a teaspoon of vanilla extract and a squeeze of lemon juice.
  6. Put an oven tray (or a baking sheet) in the oven.
  7. Make a well in the dry mix, and then add the liquid and combine with a butter knife. It will be quite wet at this stage.
  8. Put some flour on the work surface and then tip out the dough. Squeeze the dough together with your hands with a little more flour, and fold a few times until it’s smooth. Roll it out until it’s around 4cm thick.
  9. Take a round 5cm cutter and dip into some flour. Cut out some scones until you have to reshape the dough to create some more.
  10. Glaze the scones with a beaten egg or some milk, and then place them onto the preheated baking tray.
  11. Pop them into the oven for 10 mins until they have risen and appear golden in colour. Best eaten warm, or on the same day of baking, and with clotted cream and jam.

You can also freeze the scones, once cooled, and either reheat for a few seconds in the microwave, or for a few minutes in the oven to refresh. Enjoy!