These savory scones with cheddar and garlic are a delicious addition to your next meal. Baked in a cast iron skillet they are garlicky and flaky and make an excellent addition to a breakfast, brunch or a family dinner. Make savory scones instead of biscuits tonight!
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I love homemade scones because of the their buttery rich flavor. Usually scones are a sweet treat, combined with fruit like blueberries and enjoyed for dessert or at tea time. But recently I made these satisfying savory scones, which are a side dish, not a dessert.
These savory scones are made with cheddar cheese, lots of garlic and chives which makes them ideal for serving with dinner instead of bread or muffins. They are much tastier than a biscuit but don’t take much more effort to make. These savory scones with cheddar and garlic would make a delicious appetizer or addition to your next family dinner.
Cold Butter – Secret to Good Homemade Scones
Good scones are fluffy on the inside with light crunchy edges. Bad scones are doughy and hard like a hockey puck. Good scones aren’t difficult to make as long as you keep the ingredients, and especially the butter, COLD.
Cold butter is the secret to making good scones. The directions in the recipe say the butter should be “cubed and chilled” and for best results that means cube into very small pieces and put it in the freezer. Just putting the butter in the freezer for 30 minutes will make the scones more flaky and tender.
How to Make Savory Scones
Because keeping the ingredients cold is so important you should make sure you get everything ready before you start mixing the scones. Preheat the oven, chop the chives, mince the garlic, grate the cheddar cheese and find all the rest of the ingredients. That way you can work quickly.
Scones are a quick bread, similar to muffins or biscuits. There is no yeast or need for them to rise. The first step in making scones is to mix all the dry ingredients, the flour, baking powder and baking soda, in one bowl and stir well. Then add the COLD butter to the flour mixture and cut it into the flour.
I use a pastry cutter for this, although you can use a fork if you don’t have a pastry cutter. The key is to mix the butter in until it is crumbly but not smooth. It is also possible to use a food processor, but you need to be very careful that you pulse the food processor so the dough doesn’t get over mixed. You want there to still be some lumpiness to the dough after it is cut into the flour.
Then mix together the buttermilk and eggs and stir to break the yolks and mix in the eggs. Add this liquid all at once to the flour mixture and stir until it is just combined. Less mixing is best when it comes to scones.
The last step is to add the cheddar, garlic and chives to the dough. Gently stir these additions into the dough. Again, over mixing will make the scones tough.
Making Scones in a Cast Iron Skillet
A 10″ cast iron skillet makes a great pan for making scones. It is about the right size, is oven proof and is round, the traditional shape for making scones. But you can use whatever pan you like or even no pan at all.
If you don’t have a cast iron skillet you can just pat the dough into a circle and put it on a baking sheet. Whatever you decide to cook it in handle the dough as little as possible as you shape it and place it in the pan.
Variations for Savory Scones
You can use other cheeses or herbs in these savory scones. The best cheese for scones are ones that grate easily and have a strong flavor. Swiss, Gruyere or Parmesan would also work well as a replacement for the cheddar. A very soft cheese like mozzarella wouldn’t work as well.
For herbs I love garlic so I like all the garlic in these scones and it adds a ton of flavor. I have chives growing in my front garden so they are a natural choice for me to add in. Other herbs like rosemary or thyme would also blend well with the garlic and cheese.
Bacon is another favorite add on to savory scones. If you add bacon make sure it is well drained and chopped finely.
Substitutions for Buttermilk
This recipe calls for buttermilk and the scones will taste best if you use buttermilk. Buttermilk is acidic, so it reacts with the baking powder and makes the savory scones more tender along with adding flavor. But if you don’t have buttermilk you can get some of the same effect by adding a teaspoon of vinegar to regular milk and letting it sit for a few minutes. It won’t be exactly the same, but it will be close and quite tasty.
Can I Freeze Scones?
With scones it is best for freeze them before baking. Shape the dough like you are going to bake it, and then freeze it in an air tight bag instead. Then when you are ready to bake it just increase the cooking time by 5 to 10 minutes.
What to Serve With Savory Scones with Cheddar and Garlic
These savory scones are rich and tender and very garlicky. The flavor of the cheddar cheese goes well with the buttery texture and the chives add pretty little flecks of green to the scones.
- ¾ cup cheddar cheese, shredded
- 6 large cloves of garlic (about 4 tablespoons mashed or minced)
- 2 tablespoons salt
- 2 tablespoons chives
- 3 cups flour
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- 10 tablespoons butter, cubed and chilled
- 1 cup buttermilk
- 2 large eggs
- Preheat oven to 425 F.
- Prepare a cast iron skillet or other desired pan.
- In a small bowl, mash or mince garlic, then stir in salt and let sit.
- In a large mixing bowl, add the flour, baking powder, and baking soda.
- Cut butter into the flour mixture, using a pastry cutter or forks, leaving some chunks to the butter.
- In a mixing bowl, beat together the buttermilk, eggs
- Pour buttermilk mixture into flour mixture, add cheddar, garlic, and chives, and stir until just combined.
- Add mixture to the cast iron skillet, then bake for 22- 24 minutes.
- Allow to cool in pan for 10 minutes, then cut and serve.
Cast Iron Skillet
OXO Good Grips Stainless Steel Bladed Dough Blender and Cutter
Nordic Ware Cast Aluminum Mini-Scone Pan
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Nutrition Information:Yield: 8 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 376 Total Fat: 20g Saturated Fat: 12g Trans Fat: 1g Unsaturated Fat: 7g Cholesterol: 96mg Sodium: 2051mg Carbohydrates: 39g Fiber: 2g Sugar: 2g Protein: 10g