Strawberries + Mint for Spring
If you seem to always have a never-ending supply of sourdough discard on hand, this recipe is for you. If you generally have a reasonable amount of sourdough discard on hand but just love warm and tasty scones, this recipe is also for you. These Sourdough Discard Strawberry Mint Scones were created to use up some of my never-ending sourdough discard supply before it burst from its container and spilled all over my fridge (yet again). These spring scones are studded with bright, fresh strawberries and mint complemented with a measure of buttermilk and vanilla, then brushed with cream and topped with a sprinkle of coarse sugar to make the tops golden, crackly, and thoroughly irresistible.
5 Tips for Perfect Scones
- Keep the fat. These scones use real butter, buttermilk, and heavy cream to impart flavor and a tender, flaky texture. Do not be tempted to lighten scones up with milk or margarine (in fact, don't even say the "m" word in front of me) because you will not yield good results.
- Freeze your butter and grate it. Scones work best with cold (Read: COLD!) fat so freezing the butter (and sometimes even the flour) yields the best results. Frozen butter can be difficult to slice and work through the dough properly, so I prefer to grate it using a standard cheese grater / box grater instead. This allows you to better work the butter through the flour while keeping it in its cold, unmelted state.
- Do not overwork your dough. It's important that the gluten in the flour (and sourdough discard) is not overworked, otherwise, you'll end up with a dense, chewy scone instead of a light and flaky scone. The frozen butter gets worked into the dry ingredients first, which provides a barrier to help prevent gluten in the flour from forming. Then the liquids (which include also contain gluten from the sourdough starter) are added last and you gently work them into the dough by hand -- so skip the mixer! I prefer to fold the liquid ingredients in with a sturdy spatula or dough scraper, then finish by hand just until there aren't any huge streaks of flour; some small flour streaks may remain and that's totally okay.
- Brush the tops with heavy cream. Brushing your scones with heavy cream before baking helps the tops brown properly and helps the turbinado sugar stick to the tops of the scones without rolling off.
- Freeze the scones before baking. (see below)
Why should I freeze scones before baking?
I always freeze my scones prior to baking for two main reasons. First, cold helps stunt gluten formation so popping the scones in the freezer allows the gluten in the flour and sourdough discard to relax, yielding a lighter scone with a higher rise (compared to the dense blocks that scones sometimes are). Second, it chills the fat (butter), which helps keep the scones from spreading flat when baking and yields a tender, flakier-textured scone. Think of butter's role in scones similar to how you consider it when making rough puff pastry.
You should freeze the scones for a minimum of 1-hour before baking, but I generally opt to make the dough and freeze the scones the day before (or the night before) and bake the following day.
Also important: Before freezing, make sure that you've sliced your scone dough into wedges and separated them (I just freeze directly on a parchment-lined baking tray), otherwise, you'll need to wait for the scones to partially thaw before being able to slice them and risk the scones spreading slightly. Once frozen, you can also transfer the unbaked frozen scones to an airtight container or bag lined with parchment paper between each layer and continue freezing for up to 3 months, baking one or two scones at a time as desired.
Can I freeze these scones after baking?
Yes, absolutely! These Sourdough Discard Strawberry Mint Scones will freeze well in their unbaked state or their baked state for up to 3 months in an airtight container or freezer bag. To defrost frozen baked scones, pop them in the oven at 350 degrees F / 175 C for about 10-15 minutes, or the microwave for about 30-60 seconds. Frozen unbaked scones can be baked as directed, below, in the recipe card.
Can I substitute the strawberries for another berry?
Yes, absolutely! These scones are gorgeous with raspberries, blueberries, and blackberries -- I particularly love using Marionberries and Boysenberries when they're in season here in the Pacific Northwest -- or a combination of multiple types of berries for a mixed berry blend. The mint also pairs really well with alternative berries varieties, so no need to omit it.
Fresh berries out of season? You can also use frozen berries if preferred.
Let's talk about the coarse sugar topping
I love to top these Sourdough Discard Strawberry Mint Scones with a bit of coarse turbinado sugar so they develop a nice, sparkly crunchy topping as they bake. If you do not have turbinado sugar, demerara sugar makes a nice alternative. If you wish, you can also omit the sugar topping altogether and these scones are still lovely.
How to serve these Sourdough Discard Strawberry Mint Scones
These scones are super tasty fresh out of the oven on their own or with a smear of clotted cream, heavy whipped cream, or salted butter. Though, I will gladly eat them in their cooled-down state sans toppings too! I've also been known to reheat these scones in the microwave for 30-60 seconds to warm them back up again in the morning.
What tools do I need to make this recipe?
- A cutting board
- A chefs knife
- A standard cheese grater/box grater
- A large mixing bowl
- A medium mixing bowl
- A kitchen scale - OR - measuring cups (for less accurate measurements)
- Measuring spoons
- A sturdy wooden spoon
- A sturdy silicone spatula - OR - dough scraper
- A bench scraper (nice to have, but you can also use a chef's knife)
- A baker's half sheet lined with parchment paper
- A basting brush and small bowl (for the heavy cream)
Are you looking to upgrade to your cooking tools or replenish your pantry? Check out my kitchen tools shop page and pantry staples shop page to find my must-have kitchen tools, pantry items, and other Whip & Wander favorites.
Looking for more baking inspiration?
Love this Sourdough Discard Strawberry Mint Scones recipe? Here are some additional sweet baking recipes that you might enjoy!
- Sourdough Discard Cranberry Orange Scones
- Sourdough Discard Pumpkin Scones
- Sourdough Discard Spiced Pear Muffins
- Hagrid's Rock Cakes (a British treat similar to a scone)
- Sourdough Discard Buttermilk Pancakes
- Brown Butter Buttermilk Skillet Cornbread
- Buttermilk Dutch Baby
These Sourdough Discard Strawberry Mint Scones were created to use up some of my never-ending sourdough discard supply before it burst from its container and spilled all over my fridge (yet again). These spring scones are studded with bright, fresh strawberries and mint complemented with a measure of buttermilk and vanilla, then brushed with cream and topped with a sprinkle of coarse sugar to make the tops golden, crackly, and thoroughly irresistible.
- 400 g (about 3 cups + 3 tbsp + ½ tsp) all-purpose flour, plus more to lightly flour your work surface
- 132 g (about ⅔ cup) granulated sugar
- 1 tbsp baking powder
- ½ tsp Kosher salt
- 4 oz (½ cup) unsalted butter, frozen
- 250 g (about 1 cup, stirred down) 100% hydration cold sourdough discard
- 60 g (about ¼ cup) buttermilk
- 1 large egg
- 2 tsp vanilla extract
- 200 g (about 1 ½ cups) fresh strawberries, chopped
- 7 g (about ¼ cup, loosely packed) fresh mint, sliced in chiffonade
- 2-3 tablespoon heavy cream
- 3-4 tablespoon turbinado sugar
- Line a baker's half sheet with parchment paper and reserve to the side.
- In a large mixing bowl, combine the flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt until well-mixed.
- Using a standard cheese grater, grate the frozen butter directly into the bowl of dry ingredients. Using your fingertips, work the butter into the dry ingredients just until the mixture is uneven and crumbly. It's okay if some chunks of butter are unincorporated. Transfer the bowl to the freezer to keep cold while you prepare the remaining wet ingredients.
- In a medium mixing bowl, combine the sourdough discard, buttermilk, egg, and vanilla extract. Mix together with a sturdy wooden spoon until fully combined.
- Remove the four and butter mixture from the freezer and transfer the remaining wet ingredients to the flour mixture as well as the strawberries and mint. Using a sturdy spatula or a dough scraper, combine the ingredients until roughly combined. I prefer to transfer the dough to a lightly floured work surface at this point and finish combining by hand but you can continue combining in the bowl if it's more comfortable for you. You'll want to work the dough until just combined and there aren't any huge streaks of flour; some small flour streaks may remain and that's totally okay.
- On a lightly floured work surface, gently work the dough into an 8-inch flat circle. Using a bench knife or chef's knife, slice the circle in half, then into fourths, then into eighths until you have 8 wedges.
- Transfer each wedge to your reserved baking sheet, equally spaced across the sheet so the scones aren't touching.
- Using a basting brush, brush the tops of each scone with heavy cream. Then sprinkle each with turbinado sugar.
- Transfer the sheet of scones to the freezer for a minimum of 1 hour. I prefer to make the dough and freeze the scones the day before (or the night before) baking and bake the following day.
- When ready to bake, pull the scones from the freezer and allow the tray to rest on the counter while you preheat the oven to 425 degrees F / 220 C. Bake for 23-28 minutes or until the scones are lightly brown on top and the internal temperature reaches 200 degrees F / 94 C. Enjoy warm with clotted cream, whipped cream, or salted butter if desired. Once cool, store the scones in an airtight container in the fridge so they don't dry out. The scones should keep this way for up to 5 days.
Nutritional information on Whip & Wander is provided as a courtesy and is approximate only. We cannot guarantee the accuracy of the nutritional information given for any recipe on this site.
Once frozen, you can also transfer the unbaked frozen scones to an airtight container or bag lined with parchment paper between each layer and continue freezing for up to 3 months, baking one or two scones at a time as desired.
- Serving Size: 1 scone
- Calories: 460
- Sugar: 23 g
- Sodium: 272 mg
- Fat: 13 g
- Saturated Fat: 8 g
- Carbohydrates: 74 g
- Fiber: 1 g
- Protein: 10 g
- Cholesterol: 60 mg
Keywords: Scones, Strawberry, Mint, Sourdough Discard