Belinda Jeffrey

Small Batch Scones

4/22/2020 02:10:00 PM

Today's recipe is a teeny-tiny batch of four scones to serve two people! (Or one hungry person, no judgement). They can be made super quickly and are perfect for an isolation treat with no wastage and no leftovers!

Scones with jam and cream
Small Batch Scones

I'm so excited about this recipe today - small batch scones! I love baking (duh), and now that we're socially distancing I've got so much more time to bake. (Hooray). However, without my usual social outlets - having people over, visiting friends and family, even going to the office - it's really hard to get through baked goods, and it feels wasteful (not to mention unhealthy) to bake so much.

For this avid baker, the solution is not baking less frequently, but just baking in smaller quantities. With that in mind, I've developed this small batch scone recipe and I'm really happy with it! It makes four scones, which I would consider as the perfect amount for two people. It's just a standard scone recipe, made in tiny quantities, with a few little technique tweaks to accomodate the smaller amount of dough. Let's take a look.

It starts with the regular step of rubbing cold butter into the dry ingredients. With this small amount - just half a cup of self raising flour and twenty grams of cold butter - it barely takes any effort. I certainly wouldn't bother using a mixer or processor for this step.

Butter and flour for scones
Dry ingredients and butter for scones

Ta-dah! You know you're done when the the mixture looks like breadcrumbs and the butter is reasonably evenly dispersed throughout the flour.

Rub the butter into the flour
Rubbed butter and flour

From here you just need to stir in the liquid using a flat knife (a butter knife or small palette knife would be ideal). In my opinion, the best liquid for scones is buttermilk - the tangy flavour is gorgeous, and the acid in the buttermilk makes the finished product so fluffy and tender! I love buttermilk a lot, and almost always have a carton of buttermilk on the go in the fridge. (It's fab in pancakes, waffles, banana cake, American-style biscuits, and it makes the best pie dough). However, I know it's not always a standard ingredient for everyone, so if you don't have or can't find buttermilk, regular milk will do as well. (You can also add a spoonful of plain or Greek yogurt to the milk to boost the acidity).

Scone dough
Scone dough, all mixed

In a regular-sized batch of scones, you'd roll out the dough and cut it out with a cutter, gathering and re-rolling the scraps until it's all used up. However, for this tiny quantity, it makes much more sense just to gather up the dough into a squat rectangle, and cut it into four squares.

Scone dough
Scone dough

I suggest using a sharp knife, and cutting straight down and up in one firm motion - no sawing back and forth horizontally. This is so you don't smoosh up the edges and impede the rise in the oven.


I like brushing these with a little milk before baking, to help them go golden. In previous scone recipes I've used a double layer of egg yolk glaze, which makes them super shiny, but here it seems a little wasteful to crack open an egg only to use a teaspoonful or so.

Glazed scones

That's about it! Bake for fifteen to twenty minutes while you put a pot of tea on and whip some cream.

Small-batch Scones
Small batch Scones

These scones are soooo lovely - super light and fluffy with a gorgeous crisp crust. They are easy to make (it takes longer to explain how to make them than it actually takes to make them). Perfect treat for us isolators / quarantinerinos!

Small-Batch Scones
Small batch scones

Enjoy! (P.S. if you like these, make sure to check out my Small Batch Cheddar and Chive Scones too!)

Small Batch Scones
A recipe by Sarah Cooks, adapted from Belinda Jeffrey's Mix and Bake

1/2 cup self raising flour
1 and 1/2 teaspoons caster sugar
Pinch of salt
20 grams cold butter
1/4 cup buttermilk
Optional: 1 tablespoon milk, for brushing the tops

Preheat the oven to 200C.
Place the flour, sugar and salt in a bowl and stir to combine.
Cut the butter into small pieces and rub it into the flour with your fingertips until it resembles fine breadcrumbs.
Pour the buttermilk in, and stir together with a butter knife or pallet knife until the dough comes together.
Tip onto a lightly floured surface and press the dough into a rectangle of about 4 centimetres thickness.
Cut into four squares using a sharp knife. Press straight up and down and don't use a back-and-forth sawing motion. (This is to help the scones rise as best they can).
Place the squares onto a baking tray lined with baking paper, with a couple of centimetres space in between.
Brush the tops with milk if desired.
Bake for 15-20 minutes, or until golden brown and cooked through.
Allow to cool slightly and serve with jam and cream.
Makes 4 scones, serves 2

Have you made this recipe? Leave a comment below! Tag me on Instagram @sarahcooksblog and hashtag #sarahcooksblog

Other scone recipes:

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  1. Anonymous5:15 AM

    how many tsp of baking soda/powder should i use if I do not have self rising flour?

    1. 1 teaspoon of baking powder (NOT baking soda)

  2. You could use regular milk but they won't be as tender.



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