These gluten-free cranberry scones are infused with orange zest and juicy cranberries, making them a worthy addition to any holiday table.
Gluten-Free Cranberry-Orange Scones
It feels like tea weather here — very cold at night and in the mornings with occasional days of rain interspersed with bright sun. It’s not been warm, and thus I would like a perpetual kettle to be on, please. And if I am able to nibble on a wintry-flavored scone along with my cuppa, all the better.
I’ve been trying to make perfect gluten-free scones since I transitioned to eating 99% gluten-free. Let me be more specific: I’ve been trying to make perfect for me gluten-free scones. What are “perfect for me” gluten-free scones? I mean by this scones that are tender on the inside and just lightly crisp on the outside. I’ve baked multiple recipes by other authors, experimented with a few of my own creation, and in general have not yet settled on my ideal. Until last week, when the right ratio of flours came together in the scones of my dreams.
The main issue I’d been having with my gluten-free scone attempts was that there was too much starchy flour, which resulted in scones that I found to a bit crumbly and dry. As we know from baking with regular flour, gluten gives a lovely mouthfeel to cakes, scones, cookies, etc. Mainly, we don’t notice any gritty or sandy texture. This can be the bane of gluten-free baking! Another reason I prefer not to use a general all-purpose flour mix and rather combine specific gluten-free flours per recipe for ideal results.
So for this recipe I combined just oat and teff flours and didn’t use any additional starchy flours (like tapioca or arrowroot), which created a really beautiful, soft crumb. I added an extra egg to help with binding. And heavy cream brings a wonderful richness that is offset by the tart fresh cranberries. Orange zest rubbed into the maple sugar at the start of the recipe ensures that the oils in the zest are infused into the sugar and thus the final result.
I believe these scones would make a lovely addition to any holiday brunch menu, or would be great on any morning during the month of December and beyond! Hope you enjoy this one.
Til next time – N x
Ingredients You’ll Need to Make Gluten-Free Cranberry-Orange Scones
- Oat flour: A wonderful gluten-free whole grain flour for baking
- Teff flour: A hearty gluten-free whole grain flour. Choose fine teff flour.
- Baking powder
- Heavy cream
- Unsalted butter
- Large eggs
- Orange zest
- Frozen cranberries
Tips for Success
- Let batter rest for as long as possible in the fridge — overnight is great if you can manage it.
- Keep ingredients very cold until you use them — the opposite of most gluten-free baking recipes!
- See “Notes” section following the recipe for substitution suggestions.
How to Store
Scones will at room temperature in an air-tight container for three days.
Gluten-Free Cranberry-Orange Scones
- 185 g gluten-free oat flour about 2 cups
- 65 g teff flour about 1/2 cup
- 3 tsp baking powder
- ½ tsp fine sea salt
- 2 tsp orange zest
- ½ cup maple sugar
- ½ cup unsalted butter very cold
- ½ cup heavy cream
- 2 large eggs
- 1 heaping cup frozen cranberries
- Place the sugar in a large bowl and add the orange zest. Using your fingers, work the zest into the sugar until it is fragrant and well dispersed. Whisk in the flours, baking powder and salt. Whisk to combine. Grate the frozen butter using a box grater and add it to the flour mixture. Work in the butter with a fork and/or your hands until it comes together in pea-sized crumbs.
- In a small bowl, whisk together the heavy cream and eggs. Drizzle over the flour mixture, add the cranberries, and stir together until moistened.
- Using a little oat flour, turn out the dough on the counter and, using a little more oat flour, knead and work the dough together until it is smooth and firm. Form dough into an 8-inch disc and, using a sharp knife, cut into 8 equal pieces.
- Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Place the scones on the baking sheet and place the sheet in the fridge for at least an hour. Full disclosure: the first time I baked these scones they rested for 2-3 hours in the fridge. You could also make these in advance and store in a parchment-lined, air tight container overnight for morning baking.
- When ready to bake, preheat oven to 375°F. Place the scones on their prepared baking sheet on top of another baking sheet, then place in the oven and bake for about 35 minutes, until scones are lightly browned and firm. Remove from oven, let cool on the sheet for 5 minutes, then place on a rack to cool completely. Scones will keep, in an air-tight container on the counter, for up to 3 days.