mini cranberry-orange scones

There’s a coffee shop I won’t name here that sells petite scones. While I find those scones to be cloyingly sweet, I like the idea of a small treat to pair with a mid-morning cup of tea or to savor with my afternoon Americano. Cranberry and orange is a pairing I crave as we head into winter; the balance of tart and sweet energizes me on a chilly day.

These tender mini cranberry-orange scones are studded with chewy dried cranberries and glossed with a bright citrus glaze. If you prefer full size scones, pat the dough into an 8-inch circle and score into 12 wedges. Regardless of what size scone you choose, I highly recommend making a double batch! For more cranberry-orange deliciousness, see my Christmas morning muffins.

Mini-Cranberry-Orange Scones
2 cups self-rising flour*
1/3 cup sugar
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp cinnamon
1 Tbsp orange zest
1/4 cup chilled unsalted butter
3/4 cup dried cranberries
6 Tbsp low-fat buttermilk
1 large egg

1/2 cup powdered sugar, sifted
1/2 tsp orange zest
2 1/2 tsp fresh orange juice

Preheat oven to 400°F and line a baking sheet with a silicone mat or parchment paper. Whisk together self-rising flour, sugar, baking soda, cinnamon, and orange zest in a large bowl. Dice butter into 1/2-inch pieces; sprinkle over flour mixture and use a pastry cutter to cut in evenly until mixture resembles coarse meal.

Fold cranberries into flour mixture. Whisk together buttermilk and egg in a small bowl; add to flour mixture and fold in just until incorporated. Use a floured bench scraper to scrape dough out onto prepared baking sheet; use a lightly floured rolling pin to roll dough into an 8-by-10-inch rectangle. Score into 12 squares with floured bench scraper; score each square across the diagonal to create 24 triangles.

Bake 16 to 17 minutes or until golden. Cool 2 minutes on baking sheet, then carefully transfer to wire rack to cool before slicing into wedges. To prepare glaze, whisk together powdered sugar, orange zest, and juice in a small bowl. Set rack with scones over a piece of wax paper and use an offset spatula to spread glaze on top of each scone (if glaze starts to harden, microwave for 5 seconds and whisk); let set before serving. Store leftovers in an airtight container at room temperature up to 2 days.

*Don’t have self-rising flour? Substitute 2 cups all-purpose flour plus 2 teaspoons baking powder and 1/4 teaspoon salt (and include the 1/2 teaspoon baking soda). Increase the buttermilk to 1/2 cup.

Yield – 24 mini scones (serving size: 1 scone)
Calories – 92
Carbs – 17

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  1. says

    Darling little scones, Laura! I wonder what makes us all crave that wonderful cranberry-orange combination this time of year? It’s almost as essential as hot cocoa and marshmallows! :)

  2. Jennifer @ Mother Thyme says

    This is one of my favorite combinations! I love how you incorporated this flavor into scones. I’ll definitely be baking these this holiday season! :)

  3. says

    Oooh! Me thinks the Christmas spirit is alive and kicking! These mini cran-orange scones are so perfect! I like my scone petite as well, although I think I end up eating the equivalent of 1 jumbo or more! You are making me so hungry, and it’s, like, 2:30 AM here in Toronto right now!

  4. says

    these are so incredibly festive looking, perfect with afternoon tea or with a cup of a coffee in the morning! i’m sure santa would love them in lieu of the cookies he always gets when he climbs down the chimney! :)

  5. says

    I adore the pairing of cranberries and oranges! It is meant to be as they both are in season at the same time. Your Cranberry Orange scones are indeed the perfect treat to pair with a steaming mug of coffee! I would love one this very rainy, windy morning.

  6. says

    I’ve always wanted to make scones (I have never tried them) I thought they would be crunchy (like cookies) but you say these ones are tender: are they llike little pieces of cake?
    Totally love this orange glaze!

  7. says

    I have a confession. I bought a huge bag of cranberries, used about half, with every intention to make scones with the rest of the bag. I just didn’t share this info with anyone at Thanksgiving, they didn’t need to know.

  8. says

    I’m with you, a lightly sweet (and mini!) scone is a perfect scone… these sound much better than those coffee shop variety… 😉

    I think I actually have everything to make these… tomorrow morning!

  9. says

    Scones are my most favorite among cupcakes and muffins! And among scones, cranberries come first as my favorite ingredient. Now you added orange zest, they seem even better. I just have to find the time to make these for myself!!

  10. Lora @cakeduchess says

    Scones are a fun last minute Sunday breakfast here. I want to try your recipe and really love cranberry and orange together:)

  11. says

    What lovely little bites, Laura! I was just looking at a carton of leftover buttermilk wondering what I should make…these scones will make a welcome after-school snack for my boys! Thanks for the tip on self-rising flour, too.

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