4 Essential Tips for Making Scones Crispy on the Outside

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Scones, when correctly cooked, may be a brunch staple. Consider this: nothing beats a light, buttery, flaky scone with a crispy shell.

Unfortunately, finding out how to make scones crispy on the exterior may be difficult, and you can wind up with a dry, thick mass that isn’t a crowd-pleaser.

So, if you’re seeking for ideas and ways to get that crispy texture, look no further. We’ll go through four basic techniques to help you conquer the scone game in this post!

How to Make Scones Crispy on the Outside

How to Make Scones Crispy on the Outside (4 Essential Tips)

Let’s get started with a few easy ideas that may make or break your scope recipes:

1 – Choose Your Flour Wisely

Choosing the appropriate flour type and brand is critical to a successful scone recipe.

Using simply all-purpose flour may not produce the greatest scones. Most all-purpose flours have a high protein concentration (between 8 and 11%).

The greater the protein concentration, the greater the water absorption. A rich, bread-like scone will come from using a lot of water to hydrate strong absorbent flour.

In contrast, flour with little water absorption may get sticky rapidly, even if you haven’t added all of the wet components, resulting in a dry scone.

Try the following strategies to overcome making thick scones:

  • Instead of using all-purpose or self-rising flour, combine it with a low-protein flour, such as cake flour. You may also use pastry flour to make a more flaky scone.
  • Keep in mind that the protein content of various flour brands may vary, so keep track of the modifications you make (adding extra wet or dry components) to your recipe each time you try a new flour brand.
  • Don’t measure the flour by scooping it out of the bag and leveling it. This will pack the flour into the cup, causing you to use more flour than necessary.
  • Instead, use a scale to weigh the flour or fluff it with a spoon, then scoop it into the measuring cup and level it.

2 – Keep Your Ingredients Cool

It makes no difference if you use butter, shortening, milk, buttermilk, or cream in your scone recipe. What matters is that you always chill the scone components before combining them into the dough.

Keeping the ingredients cold will keep the butter from melting before baking your scones, which is essential if you want wonderfully flaky, crispy scones.

When cold components, like as butter, begin to melt in the oven, they produce steam between the dough layers, puffing the dough. Furthermore, the fat on the top of the scone dough melts, resulting in the ideal crispy exterior layer.

To keep the butter cold, work fast while combining the wet and dry components, particularly if your kitchen is hot, so it doesn’t melt before entering the oven.

3 – Avoid Overworking the Dough

Scones do not tolerate kneading or over-mixing. When moist and dry substances are combined, two proteins (glutenin and gliadin) combine to produce gluten.

When kneading, the gluten network lengthens and strengthens, resulting in an elastic dough. The longer you knead a dough, the more gluten it develops, making it difficult to stretch.

As a consequence, your scones will be harsh on the inside rather than light and crispy on the surface.When baking pastries like scones and pie crusts, you normally want to avoid developing gluten.

Here’s how to correctly combine the components for scone dough:

  • First, combine the dry ingredients in a large mixing dish.
  • Then, using a food processor or pastry cutter, press the butter into the flour until it is evenly distributed and has a crumbly texture.
  • If you’re pressing butter into the flour with your fingers, chop the butter into little pieces to make it easier to combine.
  • To create the dough, combine the wet components and begin adding them gently. Remember not to overmix; just mix until the dry ingredients are wet but still crumbly.
  • Flour your hands and carefully massage the dough until it forms a ball. Don’t knead the dough to smooth it out; excellent scone dough isn’t smooth.
  • When shaping or cutting your dough, take care not to overwork it. This may result in chewy scones.

4 – Hit the Right Baking Temperature

Scones must be baked at the right temperature and duration to be crispy on the outside.

Undercooked dough results in moist, doughy scones. Overcooking, on the other hand, will result in dry scones that lack the required crispiness.

That is why baking your scones correctly is like putting the finishing touch on a properly crafted scone batter.

Here are a few tips for baking your scones:

  • Preheat your oven to 400°F and check that it is completely hot before baking your scones.
  • Remember to chill the dough until baking since, as previously said, the only area we want the butter to melt is inside the oven.
  • Think about the size of your scones. Larger scones may take a little longer to obtain that crispy golden brown exterior.
  • Meanwhile, if you cut the scones into smaller pieces, they will take less time to cook.
  • Understand your oven. Most recipes will give you an approximate baking time, but not all ovens are created equal, so you may need to inspect a scone from the inside to see whether it is done.
  • To enjoy a light and crispy scone, bake the scones shortly before you want to consume them. The scones get softer and lose their crumbly, crisp quality as they rest.

Final Thoughts

A flawless scone might be difficult to make, but it is still possible. Learning how to make scones crispy on the exterior can elevate your baking skills to a whole new level.

All you need to do is concentrate on a few tips and methods, such as selecting the proper flour type, keeping your ingredients cold, and perfecting your kneading technique.

You’ll soon be able to relish every morsel of those beautiful cakes!


Why are my scones not crunchy?

Think about the size of your scones. Larger scones may take a little longer to obtain that crispy golden brown exterior. Meanwhile, if you cut the scones into smaller pieces, they will take less time to cook. Understand your oven.

What makes scones hard on top?

Scone batter is much wetter than dough – it’s midway between the two. To prevent adding excessive flour to the dough, just lightly dust your work surface. Just a friendly reminder: don’t overwork the dough or the scones will be rubbery – or worse, bullety and hard. Cleanly cut out your scones.

What is the secret to good scones?

The less you knead the mixture, the less the gluten will tighten, resulting in scones that are loose and crumbly rather than tight and bouncy. Make certain that you filter the flour and baking powder into the mixing basin. This implies the two will be well blended, giving you a higher likelihood of an equal increase.

What do you brush scones with before baking?

A golden crust is achieved by brushing scones with milk or cream before baking. Brush with egg wash for richer color and shine: 1 whole egg combined with 1 tablespoon water and a teaspoon of salt.

What does adding an egg to scones do?

The egg provides flavor, lift, and structure. Optional: Vanilla essence adds taste to sweet scones, but leave it out if preparing savory scones.

Are scones supposed to be soft or crunchy?

Scones should be crusty on the exterior and soft and moist on the interior. They should not be crumbly or dried.

How do I get my scones to brown on top?

Brush your scones with egg or milk to obtain a lovely brown top. If you did this, the oven may have been too cool, or the scones could have been cooked on a shelf that was too low in the oven.

What not to do when making scones?

5 Scones Baking Mistakes to Avoid
Using anything other than cold substances. Start with cold ingredients — cold butter, cold eggs, and cold cream — for the flakiest scones.
Using just all-purpose flour.
The dough was overworked.
The dough was not chilled before baking.
Baking them in advance.

How do you get the best rise on scones?

Similarly to cinnamon buns, putting your scones side by side, almost touching, helps the scones rise evenly and higher. Because the heat causes the scones to rise, placing them side by side forces the scones to rise upwards rather than outwards.

Should you let scone dough rest?

The reason is simple: much as with other doughs, including pizza dough, resting allows the gluten in scone dough to relax fully, preventing it from snapping back during shaping or baking.

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