These bacon cheddar scones are tender, flaky and buttery, packed full of crispy, smoky bacon, melt-y pockets of cheddar cheese and variety of spices including fresh chives, garlic, cayenne, smoked paprika and lots of black pepper. These bacon cheddar scones are perfect for a breakfast on the go, a brunch time gathering with friends or for an afternoon snack.
Slice the scones in half to create an epic breakfast sandwich. Pack it high with eggs, sausage, avocado and all the breakfast sandwich fixings. Or, slather them with butter while still warm and serve them as a snack. I've also made these scones many times and served them with soups and stews.
Scones vs Biscuits
These savory scones are similar but are slightly different than biscuits. Both are made with flour, leavening, fat and dairy. Butter is cut in to the flour mixture, then dairy is added. Biscuits are usually lofty and are known for having tall flaky layers, and these bacon, cheddar and chive scones do have a bit of loft and flakiness, but they are a bit more tender, slightly more dense, and buttery, like a traditional American sweet scone (without the sweet). Like biscuits, these scones also do not require eggs. They're really the best of both the biscuit and scone world.
Why You Will Love This Recipe
- Flaky, buttery, and tender with crisp and crumbly edges
- Cheesy, garlicky and smoky
- Egg free
- Can be made in advance and baked off when needed
All purpose flour - Fluff up the flour in its storage container by giving it a few light stirs. Scoop the flour into a measuring cup, then level the flour with a straight edge utensil, like the back of a butter knife.
Baking powder - helps the scones rise and gives them a lighter texture. Without baking powder the scones would be heavy and dense.
Baking soda - helps the scones puff up and neutralizes the tang in the buttermilk
Fine sea salt
Cayenne pepper - The cayenne isn't overwhelmingly spicy, but just adds a touch of heat and flavor to the scones.
Smoked paprika - Smoked paprika is one of my favorite spices to cook with. It adds a smokiness to the scones.
Bacon - cooked, cooled and crumbled
Cheddar cheese - grated
Fresh chives - Chives are added for a bit of an onion-y flavor. Scallions or dried chives will work too.
Buttermilk - works to break down gluten for a more tender scone
Flaky salt - for sprinkling on top before baking
Before beginning the recipe, line a large baking sheet with parchment paper.
- Combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, black pepper, garlic powder, cayenne pepper, and smoked paprika into the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Mix on low to combine.
- Cut the butter into the flour mixture until the mixture is sandy and there are pea-size pieces of butter mixed throughout.
- Mix in the bacon, cheddar and chives.
- Drizzle the cold buttermilk over the mixture and use a spatula to mix. Mix the dough until it just seems to hold together. If the dough still seems dry and isn't fully incorporating, add more buttermilk, a teaspoon or two at a time until the mixture comes together. You want a mixture that is well combined and holds together, but not wet.
- Dust your work surface with a light coat of flour. Turn out the scone dough onto the floured surface. With a light hand, shape into a disc, about 8" round. Cut into 8 wedges and place on a baking sheet 2-3 inches apart. Chill for 30 minutes. Preheat the oven to 400F.
- Brush the tops of the scones with additional buttermilk and sprinkle with flaky salt. Brushing the tops of the scones with heavy cream before baking will help them bake to a lovely golden brown color.
- Bake the scones until golden brown, 25-30 minutes.
- Use a mixer or a food processor to cut in the butter. Using one of these tools ensures that you're not overworking the dough, and that the butter is evenly distributed. It also prevents warming or melting the butter with your hands and is faster than cutting in the butter with a pastry blender.
- Chill the scones before baking. This allows the butter and the cheese to firm back up so they don't melt out of the scones while baking.
- Use a light hand when shaping with the scone dough. Overworked dough can result in tough scones.
Storage and Freezing
Freshly baked scones will last up to two days at room temperature stored in an airtight container. Scone dough can be made in advance and stored in the refrigerator, unbaked for up to two days in a zip top bag.
They can also be frozen for up to two months so they can be baked off as needed. I usually make a batch on Sunday so that I can bake them off Monday and Tuesday morning for breakfast sandwiches for the family.
You can substitute up to ⅓ cup of whole wheat flour for all purpose flour.
Absolutely. Brush the tops with buttermilk, sprinkle with salt and bake. Be sure to add an additional 10-15 minutes of baking time when baking the scones frozen.
The dough should be damp and sticky with no pockets of dry flour. I recommend using a bench cutter or a spatula to place the scones on the cookie sheet.
If you make these bacon cheddar scones, let me know! Drop a comment or tag me on Instagram. I love seeing your bakes!
More Breakfast Recipes to Try
Bacon Cheddar Scones
- Electric Stand Mixer (or a food processor)
- 2 ⅓ cups all purpose flour
- 1 ½ teaspoons baking powder
- ¼ + ⅛ teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon fine sea salt
- 1 ½ teaspoons black pepper
- ½ teaspoon garlic powder
- ½ teaspoon cayenne pepper, more or less to taste
- ½ teaspoon smoked paprika
- ½ cup unsalted butter, very cold, cut into ½ inch cubes
- ½ cup bacon, cooked, cooled and crumbled
- ¾ cup sharp cheddar cheese, grated
- 2 tablespoons fresh chives, chopped
- ¾ cup buttermilk, cold
- flaky salt, for sprinkling
- Line a large sheet pan with parchment paper.
- Combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, black pepper, garlic powder, cayenne pepper, and smoked paprika into the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Mix on low to combine.2 ⅓ cups all purpose flour, 1 ½ teaspoons baking powder, ¼ + ⅛ teaspoon baking soda, 1 teaspoon fine sea salt, 1 ½ teaspoons black pepper, ½ teaspoon garlic powder, ½ teaspoon cayenne pepper, more or less to taste, ½ teaspoon smoked paprika
- Scatter the butter cubes over the dry ingredients. With the mixer on low speed, cut the butter into the flour mixture until the mixture is sandy and there are pea-size pieces of butter mixed throughout.½ cup unsalted butter, very cold, cut into ½ inch cubes
- Mix in the bacon, shredded cheddar and chives. Remove the bowl from the mixer.½ cup bacon, cooked, cooled and crumbled, ¾ cup sharp cheddar cheese, grated, 2 tablespoons fresh chives, chopped
- Drizzle the cold buttermilk over the mixture and use a spatula to mix. Mix the dough until it just seems to hold together. If the dough still seems dry and isn't fully incorporating, add more buttermilk, a teaspoon at a time.¾ cup buttermilk, cold
- Dust your work surface with a light coat of flour. Turn out the scone dough onto the floured surface. With a light hand, shape into a disc, about 8" round.
- Cut into 8 wedges and place on a baking sheet 2-3 inches apart.
- Place the scones into the refrigerator to chill for 30-45 minutes. Preheat the oven to 400F.
- After the scones are chilled, brush the tops with additional buttermilk and sprinkle with flaky salt. Bake until the scones are golden brown, about 25-30 minutes.flaky salt, for sprinkling