These Sourdough Discard Blueberry Scones are light and flaky with crispy crumbly edges, juicy blueberries, and fresh thyme.
They make a delicious breakfast treat or pair beautifully with your favorite tea.
You may also want to try one of my favorite sourdough breakfast treats, this sourdough dutch baby.
My herb garden is exploding so I am experimenting with pairing fresh herbs with different fruits. One of my favorite pairings is thyme and blueberries. Thyme helps to make these scones unique. Thyme also pairs well with cherries, citrus, peaches, figs, honeydew, and cranberries.
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Why you will love this recipe
- These scones are a great way to use up sourdough discard.
- You can use any type of sourdough discard; freshly fed or runny acidic hungry discard.
- They are also easy to customize by changeing the added fruit or herbs.
These sourdough discard blueberry and thyme scones are one of my favorite ways to use up my sourdough discard. They are so quick and easy to make.
If you don't have a sourdough starter, I've created a guide for creating and maintaining your own sourdough starter.
Plus the acid from the sourdough discard helps to break down the gluten in the flour to create super tender scones.
Sourdough Tip: Keep a glass jar in your refrigerator to store your sourdough discard. Continue adding to it until you have enough to make your chosen sourdough discard recipe.
Note the discarded starter is not used to leaven the scones. For lift, these scones use baking powder.
Other great ways to use up sourdough discard include:
Most of the ingredients in this are pretty standard for scones: flour, granulated sugar, baking powder, kosher salt, butter, and heavy cream.
For the flakiest scones, make sure the butter and heavy cream are chilled. Keeping the scone dough as cold as possible prevents over-spreading and preserves the scone's flakiness.
The addition of an egg yolk is nontraditional. But I think it adds richness and creates a lighter less dense scone. The additional fat will also help stop the scones from drying out.
Blueberries: Fresh or frozen blueberries can be used interchangeably in this recipe. If using frozen blueberries, do not thaw them before adding them to the scone dough.
Thyme: You can use fresh or dried thyme.
Kitchen scale: Kitchen scales make baking faster and neater. Accuracy matters in baking. Scales are more precise than measuring cups. Too much flour or not enough sugar can dramatically change a recipe. The most accurate way to bake is to measure your ingredients by weight rather than volume.
A kitchen scale also reduces the number of dishes you will need to wash because you are measuring each ingredient directly from the container into the mixing bowl without the use of measuring cups.
This scale from OXO is the one I use after it was recommended by Alton Brown. What makes this scale great is the display pulls out to make viewing measurements easier when using a large bowl.
You could cut the butter into the dry ingredients using a pastry blender, but I prefer to use a food processor. It is much faster and creates a finer more even mixture. Just be careful to not overwork the dough.
Mixing Bowls: These are some of my favorite mixing bowls. They come in a huge range of sizes, nest together for easy storage, and are easy to clean.
When baking items like scones or cookies, I love these AirBake baking sheets. My cookies and scones bake evenly every time I use these pans. AirBake baking sheets have two aluminum layers with a layer of air in between them. The layer of air decreases the temperature of the top layer of metal, preventing the bottom of the cookie or scone from browning too quickly. These pans are also really easy to clean. Just wipe them clean with a little soap and hot water. It is not recommended to fully submerge these pans in water or place them in a dishwasher.
Pastry Brush: I am partial to silicone pastry brushes because they are heat resistant and dishwasher safe. I like them over bristled brushes because I don't have to worry about them leaving stray bristles behind.
Mix the dry ingredients together. Add the flour, granulated sugar, baking powder, thyme, and kosher salt to the bowl of your food processor.
Cut in the cold butter. Cut the butter into 4 pieces and added it to the food processor. Pulse a few times to chop and incorporate the butter into the dry ingredients. Continue processing until the butter pieces are the size of peas.
Whisk the wet ingredients together. In a large bowl whisk together the sourdough discard, heavy cream, and egg yolk.
Mix wet ingredients and dry ingredients. Pour the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients and add the blueberries. Fold together being careful to not over mix the dough or crush the blueberries.
Knead and shape the dough. Pour the dough onto the counter and lightly flour it. Knead the dough a few times until it begins to come together and smoothes out a bit. Flatten the dough and fold it into thirds like you would a letter. Give the dough a quarter turn and repeat this flattening and folding process two more times.
By folding the dough you will literally be creating layers of flour and butter, creating flakey layers, and encouraging the scones to rise. The dough will be a bit sticky, do not add extra flour. The moist dough gives the scones a soft texture and helps them to rise. Pat into a disc approximately 1 inch thick and cut into circles using a 2.5″ cutter. You can reshape the scraps and cut out additional scones but they won't be as flaky.
Freeze for at least 30 minutes. To prevent the scones from spreading chill in the freezer for 30 minutes.
Preheat the oven. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F. Line a baking pan with parchment paper or a silicone baking mat.
Brush tops with heavy cream. Brushing with heavy creams will encourage browning.
Bake until golden brown. Bake for 15-20 minutes.
- A food processor makes blending the butter into the dry ingredients a million times easier. And allows you to work with colder butter without hurting your hands. Try putting the butter in the freezer for an hour before blending it into the dry ingredients. The texture of your scones will be even better.
Bonus Tip: I store extra butter in the freezer at all times. Which means I always have frozen butter ready to be used in scones or pie crusts. Butter can be frozen for up to six months.
- If you don't have a food processor, use a box grater to create small strips of butter that will be easier to cut into the flour with a pastry blender.
- If you don’t have any sourdough discard, you can substitute ½ cup of heavy cream and a ½ cup of all-purpose flour for the 1 cup of sourdough discard.
- If you don't have heavy cream, you can substitute milk or half and half.
- Don’t overwork the dough. Overworking the dough creates gluten which will result in chewy rather than flaky scones.
- Fruit Variations: Swap the blueberries for your favorite fruit.
- Don't use a rolling pin. Pat the dough out with your hands to avoid overworking the dough.
- When cutting the scones, push straight down without twisting the cutter. Twisting the cutter seals the edges together and will prevent them from rising,
- To help scones keep their shape, chill them in the freezer for at least 30 minutes before baking.
- Bake scones on parchment paper or a silicone mat to avoid overcooked bottoms.
- Baking times will vary depending upon your oven. It is helpful to know your oven and worth purchasing an inexpensive oven thermometer. Oven temperatures can vary as much as 50 degrees plus or minus.
- If the bottoms of the scones are browning too quickly slide a second baking sheet directly under.
Frequently Asked Questions
Frozen blueberries are a great substitute. Frozen blueberries can be added directly to the batter while they are still frozen.
There are a few reasons why your scones may not have risen.
Check your baking powder. For maximum efficacy, the baking powder should be used within six months of opening. To test your baking powder, drop a small amount into hot water. Look for bubbles and fizzing. If a reaction occurs it's still good to use.
Kneading the dough for too long will make them tough, dense, and shorter.
Using too much flour will make the dough too stiff to rise to its full potential. I recommend using a kitchen scale to measure your ingredients by weight rather than volume. Accuracy matters particularly when baking.
Yes, scones can be in advance and frozen either before or after baking. See below for additional instructions on how to make and save scones made in advance.
Scones are best the day they are baked.
Leftover scones can be stored in an air-tight container at room temperature for up to four days.
To freeze baked scones, let them cool completely and then wrap tightly in plastic wrap and place in a zip-top bag labeled with the date and contents. Freeze scones for up to 3 months.
Thaw on the counter for a few hours, and then warm in the oven to get the best texture.
To freeze unbaked scones, cut the scones out and arrange them on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Freeze them until solid and then transfer them to a zip-top bag labeled with the date and contents. Scones can be frozen for up to 3 months.
To bake frozen scones, bake the scones directly from frozen adding an extra 2-3 minutes of baking time.
If you are new to sourdough, I've created a sourdough gift guide which lists all of my favorite sourdough products.
Thanks for Reading!
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