Lemon Poppy Seed Scones


Lemon Poppyseed Scones

Last weekend, I threw a wedding shower for my dear sister-in-law, Katie. We had settled on a tea party theme, so scones were a must. I asked if Katie had any flavors that she particularly liked and she immediately said lemon poppy seed. So I set out to make my first ever lemon poppy seed recipe.

You see, I love poppy seeds, but tend to favor my mother’s recipe for poppy seed bread that has no lemon at all, just a touch of vanilla and almond. That said, I have certainly eaten my fair share of lemon poppy seed pastries and so I knew what I wanted. A little sweet and a little tart. To amp up the lemon flavor, I also decided to do a lemon glaze, which was the perfect touch.

I usually use the¬†cream scone recipe from the Joy of Cooking that Amy turned me on to a few years ago and that she modified here and here (we obviously like scones!). It makes truly lovely scones without the fuss of cutting butter into flour, and it can be tossed together in under thirty minutes. However, for these, I decided to go that extra step. Besides, I have learned to use my food processor to cut the butter into flour and it makes this step so easy. I learned trick from one of Mark Bittman‘s cookbooks and I figure that if it’s good enough for him, it’s good enough for me.

Lemon Poppyseed Scones 3

I did stick to the scone recipe in the Joy of Cooking, just the original version and not the cream version. I figured, if it’s not broken, don’t fix it! I added some lemon juice, zest, and poppy seeds and they turned out just right! Flaky, tasty, with just enough zing. The glaze pushed them over the edge. You don’t need a shower or tea party as an excuse to make these, but it doesn’t hurt!


I also made some adorable tea sandwiches and a spiced scone with candied ginger that I will share in future posts.

Lemon Poppy Seed Scones

Yield: 8-12 scones


  • 2 cups flour
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 1 tbs. baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 6 tbs. unsalted butter, cold
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 2 tsp. lemon zest
  • 2 tbs. fresh lemon juice
  • 3 tbs. poppy seeds
  • For the glaze:
  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • 1 tbs. lemon juice
  • 1-2 tbs. milk


  1. Preheat your oven to 425 F.
  2. Combine flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt in a food processor and pulse a few times to mix (or whisk together in a large bowl).
  3. Cut the butter into pieces and add to the flour mix. Either pulse in the food processor or cut in the butter with a pastry blender until you have a mix of pieces ranging from pea-sized to breadcrumbs.
  4. Stir in poppy seeds and lemon zest.
  5. In a small bowl, whisk together the egg and cream. Add the lemon juice to the flour mix, and then add it all the cream mixture. Mix together just until the dry ingredients are moistened and a thick dough forms.
  6. Gather the dough into a ball and gently knead it a couple times against the sides and bottom of the bowl, gathering up an dough scraps in the process.
  7. Transfer to a floured surface and pat into a round about 8 inches across and at least 3/4 inch thick.
  8. Cut into 8-12 wedges (a pizza cutter works great here). Place wedges on an ungreased baking sheet, about 1/2 inch apart.
  9. Bake till tops start to brown, about 12-15 min.
  10. Cool on a wire rack till room temperature.
  11. For the glaze: In a small bowl combine, the powdered sugar, lemon juice, and 1tbs. of the milk. You want a thick but pourable consistency. Add the remaining milk, a bit at time till you reach the right consistency. Drizzle over cooled scones.
  12. Let the glaze set for at least 30 min, then serve!