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Vanilla Sourdough Scones

Vanilla Sourdough Scones Recipe By: Cece Kirkwood This post may contain affiliate links.

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The Vanilla Sourdough Scones are delightfully light and the perfect amount of crumble. I am an absolute scone fanatic. Whenever we travel somewhere new, I have to find a local coffee shop and I must eat at least three scones. Why? Because I am completely and utterly obsessed with finding the perfect scone texture. 

I believe scones should be crumbly but must have a moistness level such that a big bite might end up with some stuck to the roof of your mouth, like a good cake. There should be a buttery punch throughout the scone that would be complemented by melted butter, but is not required in order to fully enjoy this delectable pastry. 

After over 12 dozen scones baked at home, I have perfected that texture that I crave. This vanilla sourdough scone recipe is the base for all of my scone flavors. From chocolate chip to pumpkin – you will find the main ingredients in this recipe throughout each one of those. So master this recipe and you will be well on your way to the same level of scone-obsessed as me. 

And don’t worry, I still devour all the scones I can when we are exploring new areas as they will continue to inspire new flavors. 

Before we dig in, it is important to note that the Sourdough Discard in this recipe is a “fresh” discard, meaning that it is not a discard that has been stored in the fridge and solidified over time – I use a discard that was recently fed.

The Process 

First things first, prepare the baking space by preheating the oven to 350º F and measure out all ingredients in separate bowls. In a large bowl, combine flour, sugar, baking powder and salt. You can sift these ingredients together or whisk, but make sure there are no large clumps in the dry ingredients. 

Next, add in the cold butter and using a pastry cutter or your hands, rub the butter into pea sized amounts in the flour mixture. Place this mixture in the fridge to chill.

In a separate medium sized bowl, combine 100g of sourdough discard, 1 egg, vanilla bean paste, vanilla extract and 2 tbsp of heavy cream. Remove the flour mixture from the fridge and create a well in the center of the mixture to add in the sourdough mixture. 

Begin combining with a fork, starting from the inside, and slowly incorporating the dry ingredients into the wet center.

Add in more flour or the extra tbsp of heavy cream as needed until you create a soft shaggy dough. Be careful not to overwork the dough here. 

Next, turn the dough onto a floured surface and push everything together into a circular mound. Using a bench scraper or a sharp knife, divide the dough into 8 equal triangles. 

Place the sourdough discard scones on a parchment-lined baking sheet and place the sheet in the freezer for 15 minutes. After 15 minutes, remove the scone dough from the freezer and place directly into the oven for 20-22 minutes.

Once baked, remove the scones from the oven and cool on a rack for 10 minutes.

Finally, it is time to dig in and enjoy! 

The Tips 

A few notes on the temperature of this dough…

In order to help the sourdough discard scones keep their shape, you cannot skip the chilling before the bake. The butter must stay in a very cold state until they are placed into the oven. 

Make sure your butter is cold! I like to prep my butter by cutting it into cubes and then placing it back into the fridge or even freezer while I prep the rest of my ingredients. 

How active should the sourdough be for this recipe?

For these scones, it is important to note that the Sourdough Discard in this recipe is a “fresh” discard, meaning that it is not a discard that has been stored in the fridge and solidified over time – I use a discard that was recently fed, bubbly and active.

Can I prep these scones ahead of time?

Definitely! Assemble the dough the night before and shape into the scones and then place into the freezer overnight! The next morning, pop the scones straight from the freezer into the oven and voila! Breakfast is ready.

You can also bake these a few days in advance. They will stay well in an airtight container for 2-3 days or you can tightly wrap the scones, once they are cooled, and store in the freezer for up to a week. The best way to defrost the scones is to leave them on the counter to defrost at room temperature. 

Can I substitute the sourdough starter for anything?

No sourdough? No problem! This recipe works great with a 1:1 replacement of buttermilk. So replace the 100g of sourdough with 100g of buttermilk and you will be on your way to a delicious scone.

Why is this recipe in grams? 

Baking is a science and in science you want things to be exact and precise. The best way to do this is by weighing out your ingredients using a simple scale. Ever baked a cookie using the same recipe, yet somehow it turns out slightly different each time? That is because when measuring by volume, you can’t be as precise. It is vital that your ingredient ratios are accurate for a reliable bake every time. 

The Vanilla Sourdough Scones Recipe

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Vanilla Sourdough Scones

  • Author: Cece Kirkwood
  • Prep Time: 35 mins
  • Cook Time: 20 mins
  • Total Time: 55 mins
  • Yield: 8 scones 1x

Ingredients

Scale
  • 260 g all-purpose flour
  • 100 g granulated sugar
  • 2.5 tsp baking powder
  • ¼ tsp Morton’s Kosher salt
  • 100 g cold butter
  • 100 g discard sourdough starter *
  • 1 large egg
  • 2 tbsp heavy cream
  • 1 tbsp vanilla bean paste **
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract

Instructions

  • Cut in the cold butter using a pastry cutter or your hands to rub the butter into pea sized amounts in the flour mixture. 

  • Place the mixture in the fridge to chill.

  • Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F

  • In a separate bowl, combine 100g of sourdough discard, egg, vanilla bean paste, vanilla extract and 2 tbsp of heavy cream. 

  • Remove flour mixture from the fridge and create a well in the center of the mixture to add in the sourdough mixture. 

  • Combine with a fork and your hands, adding more flour or the extra tbsp of heavy cream as needed until you create a soft shaggy dough. 

  • Turn onto a floured surface and push the dough together into a circular mound.

  • Using a bench scraper, divide the dough into 8 equal parts. 

  • Place scones on a parchment-lined baking sheet and place the sheet in the freezer for 15 minutes. 

  • Remove scones from the freezer and place directly into the oven for 20-22 minutes.

  • Remove scones from the oven and cool on a rack.

  • Enjoy!

 

Notes

*For these scones, it is important to note that the Sourdough Discard in this recipe is a “fresh” discard, meaning that it is not a discard that has been stored in the fridge and solidified over time – I use a discard that was recently fed.

No sourdough though? No problem! This recipe works great with a 1:1 replacement of buttermilk. So replace the 100g of sourdough with 100g of buttermilk and you will be on your way to a delicious scone.

**If you do not have vanilla bean paste, you can swap it out 1:1 for vanilla extract. So this recipe would then have 1 tbsp + 1 tsp of vanilla extract. The dough may end up being a little stickier since the extract is more of a liquid than the paste, so just add an extra dash or two of flour as needed when combining the wet and dry ingredients together.

Keywords: Sourdough Scones

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