How to make the flakiest scones. Ever.

side of flakey ginger scones with layers

Drop everything. This is important. I have found the secret to the most amazing, most delicious scones. Like ever. This is groundbreaking. 

My favourite baked good is a scone. There’s something about the subtle sweetness, crunchy exterior, and burst of fruit that can’t be beaten. 

But let me tell you. It is hard to find a really good scone. I’ve been on the hunt since moving to Toronto. I stop at every café to order one. It’s painstakingly difficult work. I’m doing it for the greater good. Sacrificing my waistline, one coffee shop at a time. 

The winner for the category of “best scone at a café” currently is Gloria Espresso near Roncessvales. Their scones were almost like a pastry, the way the layers flaked… it was magical. Mind-blowing. And I could not for the life of me figure out how they did it.

…I hate being foiled. But I’ve finally discovered the secret.

The secret! Let me tell you….

After you form the dough into a square, you cut it into four, stack, and flatten it again to make tons of buttery delicious layers. This step is ESSENTIAL to making scones that are as light as a pastry, with all of those deliciously amazing layers. Like puff pastry, but without all the work. 

I will never make scones any other way ever again. You won’t either after you try these.


Ginger Spice Scones

Print Recipe
Serves: 9 Cooking Time: 20 min


  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/8 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp ginger
  • pinch of cloves
  • pinch of nutmeg
  • pinch of salt
  • 3 tbsp granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup cold unsalted butter, cubed
  • 1/2 cup buttermilk (or 1/2 cup milk + 1 tbsp lemon juice)
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice
  • zest of 1 lemon
  • 1/3 cup diced candied ginger

  • Topping:
  • 3 tbsp sanding sugar
  • 1 egg yolk (whisked with 1 tbsp water)



Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F. In the bowl of a food processor, pulse together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, spices, salt, and sugar. Add the butter, and pulse until the pieces are the size of peas.


Empty the dough into a large bowl and drizzle the buttermilk, vanilla, lemon juice, and lemon zest over the butter, mixing gently with a fork until incorporated.


Knead this dough a few times with your hands inside the bowl until a shaggy dough forms. It will look dry. But it will work.


Empty this onto a work surface and pat the dough into a 1" thick square. Cut the dough into 4 pieces with a sharp knife, and stack them so you have a tower of dough.


Lightly flour your work surface, and using a rolling pin or your hands, flatten this tower into a 1" tall rectangle or square. Trim a small amount of dough from each side with your knife to make clean cuts all the way around. Cut into 9-12 equal squares (you can make your scones smaller or larger to your preference). Place on a parchment-lined baking sheet, and freeze for 10 minutes.


Brush the tops of the biscuits with the egg wash, and sprinkle with the sanding sugar. Turn the oven temperature to 400 degrees F and bake for 18-20 minutes or until they are golden.


Remove from oven and enjoy slathered with butter or jam.


You can customize these scones by changing up the spices or swapping the candied ginger for other dried fruit like currants or cranberries.

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  • Reply
    December 25, 2017 at 5:22 pm

    That sounds too easy to be true! I’ve personally experienced your cooking skills but your photography skills are second to none, as well! Beautiful!

  • Reply
    August 5, 2020 at 2:42 pm

    Just about to give this a try but see that the recipe doesn’t specify when the vanilla, lemon juice or lemon zest get added. Maybe with the buttermilk?

    • Reply
      August 6, 2020 at 10:26 am

      Updated! Thanks for the edit 🙂 Yes you would add it with the buttermilk

  • Reply
    November 29, 2020 at 4:14 am

    Hi, it looks amazing scones!
    I would like to try ASAP!
    Could you tell me how much does 1 cup of flour and 1/2 cup of butter weigh for your recipe?
    Sorry I just have a Japanese measuring cup

    • Reply
      November 29, 2020 at 6:19 pm

      Hi Yurie! 1 cup AP flour = 120 grams, 1/2 cup butter = 113g. Hope you enjoy!

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