These flaky cranberry orange scones are topped with a bright orange glaze and are perfect for your next brunch or get-together! Let’s jump into what makes these so delicious and how to get those flaky layers…
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Layers on Layers on Layers – “Stack and Smush”
How does one achieve flaky AF cranberry orange scones, you ask? It’s easy! During the process, Step 5 asks you to cut the dough into fourths, stack them on top of each other, and smush the stack down.
You’ll repeat this twice, for a total of 3 times, and it’s what give you all those layers! If you’ve ever made any kind of puff pastry, it’s the same idea. You’re literally creating the layers yourself every time you’re stacking. The “smush” step allows everything to become homogenous once again. Plus it’s fun to say smush, admit it!
Smush smush smush.
Materials You’ll Need:
- Various sized mixing bowls
- Large baking sheet + parchment paper
- Cooling rack
- Measuring cups and spoons
- Zester + juicer (manual works great!)
- Offset spatula
- Rolling pin
- Bench scraper/dough cutter (knife will work)
- Pastry brush (or something to spread heavy cream on top)
Demerara Sugar = Crunchy Sweet Topping
I may note somewhere that you can use another coarse sugar if you don’t have demerara, but trust me when I say this–you will want to use demerara! The crunchy, almost caramel-like tones this sugar brings to the texture atop these cranberry orange scones is unreal.
Demerara sugar is a type of large-crystal cane sugar large containing subtle toffee undertones. It gives you a nice crunch and deeper flavor. I love putting it on my galette or pie crusts too!
Demerara vs. Turbinado Sugar
You may see “turbinado sugar” listed alongside demerara and they’re very similar- so it’s a great alternative if you can’t find one over the other! Turbinado is typically finer than demerara, but still coarser than the traditional granulated sugar. It can also be less sticky than demerara.
I used Bob’s Red Mill “Coarse Demerara Turbinado Sugar” for these cranberry orange scones! Check it out here.
Can’t wait to see all those cranberry orange scones out there! Tag me on Instagram @joshisbaking if you make them!
Happy baking, friends!Print
Flaky, layered, delicious cranberry orange scones topped with a bright orange glaze! Perfect your next brunch or get-together!
- 3 cups all-purpose flour
- 1/3 cup granulated sugar
- 2 tsp. baking powder
- 1/2 tsp. kosher salt
- 1 cup (2 sticks) cold, unsalted butter, cubed (1x1 in.)
- 3/4 cup whole milk
- 2 Tbsp. orange zest (1–2 medium navel oranges)
- 1 cup dried cranberries
- Heavy cream (~1/4 cup)
- Demerara or turbinado sugar
- 2 cups powdered sugar, sifted
- 3 Tbsp. freshly-squeezed orange juice (from the same oranges you zested)
- 1 Tbsp. whole milk
- Preheat the oven to 375°F and prep a large cookie sheet with parchment paper. Set aside.
- Make sure you’ve already zested your orange(s), saving some of the juices for the glaze later on. Also make sure to have your cranberries, heavy cream, & demerara sugar ready.
Making the Scones
- In a small bowl, whisk together your milk & orange zest. Set aside.
- In a medium to large bowl, whisk together your flour, sugar, baking powder, & salt. Working quickly (so the butter stays cold), cube your cold butter (if not done already) & toss in the flour. Squish each piece between your fingers to create flat little “sheets” of butter. Then make a small well in the middle of the flour mixture.
- Pour half of your milk/orange zest mixture into the well, folding it in with an offset spatula. Then pour in the other half of your milk mixture and fold until fully incorporated. Knead the dough together with your hands inside the bowl (about a minute) till a shaggy dough forms (should not be overly wet or sticky).
- Flour your work surface and a rolling pin, then roll your dough into a rough 10-12 in. square. Evenly spread the cranberries on top, pressing them gently into the dough. Fold the dough in half (so the cranberries are squished in the middle). Then roll/form into a large square again.
- Cut the dough into fourths, stack each piece on top of each other, smush the stack down, and roll into a large square square. Repeat 2 more times. After you smush down the third stack, form the dough into a large disk (~10in. circle) with your hands & cut into 8 large triangle-shaped scones.
- Brush each piece with heavy cream, top with demerara or turbinado sugar, & bake at 375°F for 30-40 minutes on the middle rack (until somewhat browned on tops/bottoms & cooked all the way through). Let cool for 10 minutes on the sheet, then completely on a separate rack.
- Once fully cooled, combine all of your glaze ingredients together in a medium bowl, mixing together with an offset spatula or whisk. Pour over your scones and ENJOY!
- You can also shred your cold, unsalted butter sticks in to the flour mixture, but creating the flat shingles of butter helps create even flakier layers! The cold butter lets off steam during the bake, which puffs up your scones even more.
- Triangles, circles, squares- cut these scones into whatever shape you like! If you cut them into smaller pieces than the 8 triangle-shaped ones I use in the recipe, bear in mind that you may not have to bake them as long! So just keep an eye on them as they bake.
- When it comes to the “stacking and smushing” – feel free to throw down flour under and on top of your dough as needed! You want to work quickly so your butter doesn’t get too warm and adding bits of flour here and there will help to avoid any sticky situations- literally. You can also dust off excess flour before topping with your cream and sugar!
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