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Gluten Free Scones

Slightly sweetened gluten-free scones, that are perfectly tender inside with just the right amount of crisp and crumbly around the edges. And who can deny the sweet indulgence of a perfectly drizzled powdered sugar glaze? Use this master scone recipe to build your own gluten-free scones. It’s a recipe you’ll enjoy making again and again, changing the flavor profile every time!

This gluten-free scone recipe I’m sharing with you today is one I’ve been playing with for a while. During my recipe testing, I ended up sharing several batches of various flavored scones with friends. One friend text me later to give me her feedback (she is not gluten-free). She was surprised at how moist these scones were.

So if you are worried this recipe might be too dry or too crumbly, that is certainly NOT the case! They will melt in your mouth!

What is a Scone? 

While one would prepare a scone much like they would a biscuit, biscuits and scones are two different things. Biscuits tend to be flakey and savory, while a scone is dressed up with a myriad of mix-ins, which can be sweet or savory, and sometimes topped with a sweet powdered sugar glaze or coarse sugar. Scones are typically crumbly and dry, though when done well, not dry at all. 

Serve scones whenever muffins and coffee/tea are appropriate. Brunch, bridal showers, baby showers, church gatherings, etc. Gluten-free blueberry scones seem to be a crowd favorite, while gluten-free pumpkin scones are a wonderful touch in the fall.

Though, if you ask my kids, they will say their favorite flavor is chocolate chip scones (no surprise there). 

Tips For Making Gluten-Free Scones

  1. Keep your ingredients cold! I measure out my palm shortening first and pop it into the freezer for 15-20 minutes to chill while I’m measuring out my dry ingredients. You don’t want your shortening completely frozen, just very cold. For the egg and the dairy-free milk, I leave those in the refrigerator until it’s time to add them to the dry ingredients.  
  2. Opt for fresh berries/fruit vs. frozen. Frozen fruit causes this recipe to bake unevenly, so always opt for fresh berries, or thaw frozen berries first (just make sure you discard the liquid that results from thawing them). 
  3. Use a citrus extract or zest vs. fresh squeezed. Do not add an acidic citrus juice to this recipe (like fresh squeezed lemon juice, or orange juice), which could destroy the leavening of the scone. Instead, opt for a citrus extract or zest. 
  4. Don’t overmix your dough. Overmixing will cause your dough to be tough. 
  5. Use a thicker dairy-free milk. Try almond milk, oat milk, hemp milk, or soy milk, which all tend to be on the thicker side of dairy-free milks. If you substitute a thinner dairy-free milk, you may need 1-2 tablespoons less of it.  

Shaping Gluten-Free Dairy-Free Scones

This gluten-free scone dough will be sticky and shaggy (but should be firm enough to hold its shape), so make sure you liberally flour a clean work surface before attempting to roll it out. I prefer to use a pastry board as my work surface, but if that’s not an option for you, any clean area will do.  

A piece of plastic wrap will keep the dough from sticking to your hands as you form the dough into a disk and then roll it out on your work surface. 

Once you have the dough rolled out, and after you make your first initial cut, you may need to flour your knife, which will prevent the scone dough from sticking to it as you make more cuts. 

I find a thin metal spatula works best to transfer the scone triangles to the baking sheet. 

Gluten-Free Cinnamon Scones are ready to be baked!

Gluten-Free Scone Flavor Ideas and Mix-Ins 

  • Chocolate Chip– I use dairy-free mini chocolate chips and add a 1/4 teaspoon of nutmeg. The nutmeg adds a little something extra special to the flavor of the dough. 
  • Blueberry Lemon– Fresh blueberries + lemon zest
  • Lavender– Culinary lavender is always a fun option to try! 
  • Raspberry White Chocolate– Fresh raspberries + dairy-free white chocolate chips
  • Cinnamon– When I make a batch of cinnamon scones, I used 1 1/2 teaspoons of cinnamon, but please feel free to use as much (or as little) as you like! I also added 1/4 teaspoon of nutmeg, just to add to the flavor profile. 
  • Cranberry Orange– Fresh or dried cranberries + orange zest
  • Mixed Berry– My favorite mixed berry scones contain a blend of blueberries, blackberries, and raspberries, but you can use whatever combination you like. 
  • Cherry Almond– Cherries + almond slices + almond extract

I hope you enjoy these gf scones as much as my family does!
xoxo,
Mēgan

Gluten Free Scone Recipe:

gluten free raspberry scones sitting on pastry board at different angle

Gluten Free Scones

Yield: 8
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 35 minutes

Slightly sweetened gluten-free scones, that are perfectly tender inside with just the right amount of crisp and crumbly around the edges. Use this master scone recipe to build your own gluten-free scones. It’s a recipe you’ll enjoy making again and again, changing the flavor profile every time!

Ingredients

For the Scone Dough:

  • 1 cup tapioca starch
  • 1 cup sorghum flour
  • 1 cup brown rice flour
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 1 3/4 teaspoons xanthan gum
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 3/4 cup palm shortening, chilled until very cold
  • 1 cup cold unsweetened dairy-free milk (*see recipe notes)
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 cups mix-ins, such as fresh berries, nuts, chocolate chips, etc.

For the Optional Powdered Sugar Glaze:

  • 1 cup organic powdered sugar
  • 1-2 tablespoons of water

Instructions

To Make the Scone Dough:

  1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees (F) and line a large baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone liner.
  2. In a large bowl, combine the tapioca starch, sorghum flour, brown rice flour, sugar, baking powder, xanthan gum, sea salt, and baking soda.
  3. Cut in the cold palm shortening until mixture resembles coarse crumbs.
  4. Gently stir in the cold dairy-free milk, egg, and vanilla extract until just combined. Do not over-mix (lumps are okay!). The dough will be sticky and shaggy.  
  5. Gently fold in optional mix-ins.
  6. Liberally flour a clean work surface. Place the scone dough on your work surface and cover with a piece of clean plastic wrap. Using your hands, shape the dough into a disk. Now use a rolling pin to roll the disk of dough into an even round that is 1-inch thick.
  7. Peel off the plastic wrap and use a sharp knife to cut the dough into 8 triangles (I flour my knife as I cut, which helps keep the dough from sticking to it).
  8. Transfer the triangles to the prepared baking sheet and bake for 15-16 minutes. These scones will not be visibly golden on top when done, but will be golden on the underside.  
  9. Remove to wire racks to cool.

To Make the Optional Powdered Sugar Glaze:

  1. In a mixing bowl, whisk together the powdered sugar and 1 tablespoon of water until smooth. If the glaze is too thick, add more water, teaspoon by teaspoon, until it reaches the desired consistency.
  2. Drizzle over cooled scones.

Notes

Keep your ingredients cold! I measure out my palm shortening first and pop it into the freezer for 15-20 minutes to chill while I'm measuring out my dry ingredients. You don't want your shortening completely frozen, just very cold. For the egg and the dairy-free milk, I leave those in the refrigerator until it's time to add them to the dry ingredients.  

Opt for fresh berries/fruit vs. frozen. Frozen fruit causes this recipe to bake unevenly, so always opt for fresh berries, or thaw frozen berries first (just make sure you discard the liquid that results from thawing them). 

Use a citrus extract or zest vs. fresh squeezed. Do not add an acidic citrus juice to this recipe (like fresh squeezed lemon juice, or orange juice), which could destroy the leavening of the scone. Instead, opt for a citrus extract or zest. 

Don't overmix your dough. Overmixing will cause your dough to be tough. 

*Use a thicker dairy-free milk. Try almond milk, oat milk, hemp milk, or soy milk, which all tend to be on the thicker side of dairy-free milks (I used soy milk in my recipe testing). If you substitute a thinner dairy-free milk, you may need 1-2 tablespoons less of it.  

*Did you make these gluten-free scones? Please give it a star rating and leave an honest review below! 

Don’t forget to snap a pic and tag me on Instagram @allergyfreeak and #allergyfreealaska with your gf scone pics!

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Barbra

Saturday 3rd of April 2021

Hi! I was wondering your thoughts about using psyllium husk as a gluten sub instead of xanthan gum. Unfortunately, I react to xanthan, which rather limits my gf options. :-( Part of what I've really loved about your bagel (made a couple times so far) and cinnamon roll (rising overnight in the fridge right now) is that they don't rely on the xanthan gum as that structural sub.

Mēgan

Monday 5th of April 2021

Hi Barbra, Have you heard of or tried guar gum? I'd be more likely to recommend using that as a sub in this recipe vs. using psyllium husk powder. While I use psyllium husk powder, I have to specifically formulate a recipe around it, because it requires so much moisture.

Megan Hunter

Sunday 3rd of January 2021

Can you use a 1:1 as I have bob mills gluten free and was wondering if it could work as a substitute to the other flours?

Mēgan

Wednesday 13th of January 2021

Hi Megan, This recipe has only been tested using the flours/starches listed above. I'm not sure what your results would be if you used 1:1 flour.

Samy

Tuesday 8th of December 2020

Wow this looks so good! Thanks for sharing. I will try and make this for my daughter who has celiac and always fancy something delicious

Mēgan

Wednesday 13th of January 2021

I hope she enjoys them! Thanks Samy. :)

Tiffany

Thursday 5th of November 2020

Hello! I wanted to thank you for finding the right ingredients, finally I have found the recipe I’ve been searching for! These scones were not dry or crumbly, they baked up beautifully. I was wondering if they can be frozen? It’s a lot for just the two of us :) Thanks again!

Mēgan

Thursday 5th of November 2020

Hi Tiffany, Oh that makes me so happy - I'm so glad to hear you love them! Thank you for coming back here and leaving a comment with your results. It's very helpful for me, and other readers. ;)

As for freezing, that's a great question. I actually haven't frozen any of these yet. I think they would freeze well? They just might err on the side of a bit more crumbly/dry after being frozen/thawed. But again, I haven't tried it, so I really don't know for sure.

Dustin

Wednesday 28th of October 2020

Thank you so much for this delicious recipe. My husband was stoked and the kids could not tell they were GF. You have cracked the code, thank you

Mēgan

Wednesday 28th of October 2020

You're so welcome, Dustin! I'm thrilled to hear this. :) Thanks for coming back here and letting me know you tried and loved this recipe!