Moist, fluffy lemon poppyseed scones are the perfect breakfast treat! These are the best lemon poppy seed scones with sour cream for an extra rich texture. And if you love these scones, you’ll definitely want to try my Earl Grey Scones with Vanilla Bean Glaze, my Pecan Pastry Braid, and my Iced Sugar Cookie Almond Milk Latte (Starbucks Copycat)!
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Best Lemon Poppy Seed Scones Recipe
I love citrus season! Some of my favorite recipes on this site, like my Orange Rosemary Olive Oil Cake or my Lemon Icebox Pie are full of citrus flavor that is so perfect this time of year. And today I'm so excited to share these lemon poppyseed scones! They're soft and tender, with the perfect amount of tart lemon flavor and crunchy poppy seeds for texture. Then, just top them with a simple lemon glaze and you've got the perfect brunch treat or afternoon snack!
This lemon poppyseed scones recipe is based on my cinnamon scones recipe, and just like those, you won't be able to stop eating them! They're perfectly sweet and so easy to make! Enjoy them with a delicious Sweet Cream Cold Brew or as part of a Mother's Day brunch platter!
What makes a good scone?
So what is the secret to making good scones? Well, the number one thing to remember is to keep your ingredients cold. That means starting with frozen butter, and adding cold sour cream and a cold egg. Plus, we're grating our butter into the dry ingredients, which will help it to mix in easily without giving it time to warm up. Finally, when our lemon poppyseed scones are ready to bake, we'll pop the whole baking sheet in the freezer while the oven preheats. This re-chills the butter and makes sure we get the best rise and most tender and flaky texture.
Should you put eggs in scones?
What does adding an egg do to scones? An egg is an important ingredient in scones to provide the texture and structure for the best lemon poppy seed scones! Without an egg, your scones will be a bit drier and won't rise as high.
Lemon Poppyseed Scones Ingredients
Here's what you'll need for this simple lemon poppyseed scones recipe:
- granulated sugar - adds just enough sweetness to these scones!
- lemon zest - we're going to rub the zest into the sugar to release the lemon oil and boost the lemony flavor even more! Be sure to only zest the yellow outer part of the lemon rind, avoiding the white pith, which can add bitterness.
- all-purpose flour - you'll want to measure your flour by weight using a kitchen scale for the most accurate result, or use the spoon-and-level method.
- baking powder & baking soda - helps to give these lemon poppyseed scones their lift!
- poppy seeds - these add some nice nutty flavor and texture to these scones.
- frozen salted butter - because we need the butter to be very cold and stay cold until the scones are in the oven, we're going to use frozen butter grated with a box grater so that it incorporates into the dough quickly without too much manipulation.
- sour cream - I recommend using full-fat sour cream for the best texture.
- an egg - unlike in most baking recipes, you'll actually want to use a cold egg for this lemon poppyseed scones recipe!
- vanilla extract - definitely opt for a good-quality pure vanilla extract. Or better yet, check out my post on how to make vanilla extract at home with just 2 ingredients!
And for the quick lemon glaze you'll just need:
- fresh-squeezed lemon juice
- powdered sugar
- vanilla extract
You'll need a box grater to grate your frozen butter, and I like to use a bench scraper to divide the dough into 8 pieces. Other than that, you'll need a large sheet pan to bake your scones. Here are all my tool recommendations:
Tips and F.A.Q.
How do you make scones rise and not spread? Well, as I mentioned, make sure you grate in frozen butter and use cold ingredients!
Also, don't over mix your dough or handle it too much before baking. We're also using a special ingredient, sour cream, as an additional boost. It interacts with the baking soda in the dry ingredients to add even more lift to these lemon poppyseed scones!
Finally, make sure your oven is the right temperature and is fully preheated before you begin baking. If your oven temp is a little low, your butter may melt before the outside of the scones have risen and firmed up. I recommend using an oven thermometer to double check your oven temperature and adjust accordingly.
I think so! Adding an egg gives these lemon poppyseed scones a richer, softer texture and helps them to rise while baking.
One of these scones, including the lemon glaze, has a total of 406 calories. See below for complete nutrition information.
Yes! They're best frozen prior to baking -- just freeze them solid, then place in a freezer bag for up to 2 months. Then just bake straight from frozen and add a few more minutes to the bake time.
The chilling step allows the gluten in the dough to rest so that your lemon poppyseed scones keep their shape as they rise in the oven.
If you try this recipe, I would love it if you could leave a star review rating and comment below! It’s so wonderful hearing your feedback! And don’t forget to share your creations with me by tagging @chenee_today on Instagram!
More Lemon Recipes You'll Love
- Lemon Dump Cake
- Almond Lemon Cookies
- Vegan Olive Oil Cake with Lemon and Pistachio
- Buttermilk Blueberry Muffins with Lemon Zest
- Lemon Lavender Cupcakes
- Lemon Icebox Pie
Equipment you may need
- 1 large egg
- ¾ cup (173 g) full-fat sour cream - or greek yogurt
- 2 teaspoon (10 ml) pure vanilla extract
- ½ cup (100 g) granulated sugar
- 1 tablespoon (6 g) lemon zest - packed (about one lemon)
- 2 cup (250 g) all-purpose flour - measured by weight with a kitchen scale or with the spoon-and-level method
- 2 teaspoon (8 g) baking powder
- ¼ teaspoon (1 g) baking soda
- 2 tablespoon (18 g) poppy seeds
- ½ cup (114 g) salted butter - frozen
- 2 cups (240 g) powdered sugar
- ¼ cup (61 g) fresh squeezed lemon juice
- ½ teaspoon (2 ml) pure vanilla extract
- pinch salt
- At least one hour before preparing dough (or the night before), place butter in freezer.½ cup salted butter
- In a medium bowl, whisk together sour cream, egg, and vanilla. Set aside in fridge to keep cool.1 large egg, ¾ cup full-fat sour cream, 2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- In a separate large bowl, combine sugar and lemon zest, pressing zest into sugar to release oils.½ cup granulated sugar, 1 tablespoon lemon zest
- Whisk in flour, baking powder, baking soda, and poppy seeds and mix well.2 cup all-purpose flour, 2 teaspoon baking powder, 2 tablespoon poppy seeds, ¼ teaspoon baking soda
- Grate in frozen butter and combine with dry ingredients. Using a pastry blender or a fork, blend butter into flour mixture.
- Fold sour cream mixture into dry ingredients with a rubber spatula until just combined. Use floured hands to continue to lightly knead dough into a ball.
- Place dough on a lightly floured surface and dust top of dough ball with a little more flour. Gently shape into a 8-inch round flattened disk and cut into 8 wedges. Place wedges in a circle, slightly touching each other, on a large baking sheet lined with parchment paper or a silicone baking liner.
- Preheat oven to 400°F and place baking sheet with scones in the freezer to chill while it heats up.
- Bake for 16-17 minutes or until scones are lightly golden on top and golden brown on bottom. Let cool before adding glaze.
- Whisk glaze ingredients together until smooth.2 cups powdered sugar, ¼ cup fresh squeezed lemon juice, ½ teaspoon pure vanilla extract, pinch salt
- Place scones on cooling rack over parchment paper or paper towels to catch drips. Drizzle glaze over cooled scones and allow to set.
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Last Updated on May 12, 2023 by Chenée Lewis
These scones have the most wonderful flavor and texture. The perfect treat for Spring!
Thank you! I love them too!
These are some of the best scones I've ever made. The classic flavor combo is great, but I really love the texture of these. They're perfect!
I'm so glad to hear that you liked them! 🙂