Basic Scones


My first two years in St. Louis were spent teaching middle school (through the Teach For America program). I had never worked so hard, slept so little, or gotten up so early in my entire life. It was hard. Rewarding! But really really hard. As a way of keeping my sanity, I developed a set of little traditions and rituals to keep me going. My favorite of these was that every Friday morning, I would stop at the coffee shop a block away from my apartment and get a hot drink and a scone for breakfast. The hot drink varied – usually just tea, but sometimes a chai latte or an actual latte if the week had been really rough – but the scone was always the same. Mango Pecan. On the morning that they didn’t have Mango Pecans in stock, I knew it was going to be a bad day. Sometimes, the thought of that scone was all that got me through the week.

These are not those scones.

These are better.

These are light, fluffy, mildly sweet, amazing when spread with jam, and perfect fresh out of the oven or straight out of the fridge. Plus, who’s going to stop you from adding some pecans and mango bits? Not me, that’s for sure.

Basic Scones

by The Jess Mess

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 15 minutes

Ingredients (8 scones)

  • 1 1/2 C flour
  • 8 tsp brown sugar
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 1/4 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp baking soda
  • 6 tbsp (3/4 stick) cold butter
  • 1/2 C buttermilk


Preheat oven to 400

Combine the flour, sugar, salt, baking powder, and baking soda in a large bowl. Cut in the butter using a pastry cutter (or your hands!) until the mixture resembles coarse meal. Add buttermilk and mix until just combined.

Transfer dough to a floured board and shape into a 3/4 inch thick round. Cut the round into 8 wedges and place them individually onto a greased (or parchment paper covered) baking sheet. Bake for 15 minutes, or until lightly browned.

Serve with tea and jam.

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