These easy cheese and bacon scones are savoury, and loaded with strong cheddar, salty bacon and fresh parsley. They bake up light and fluffy in about 30 minutes.
Cheese scones are perfect for serving on their own with butter or as a side dish to go with beef and ale stew, or ham and lentil soup. They're easy to make using plain flour and some other basic pantry ingredients. Perfect for amateur and expert bakers alike.
Why This Recipe Works
- Plain flour is used with baking powder and bicarb (baking soda) so you can skip the self raising flour.
- The salty bacon and the strong cheddar makes these savoury scones perfect for any time of day.
- The acidity in the Greek yogurt (you can use buttermilk) and the reaction with the raising agents ensure that you end up with the lightest and fluffiest scones possible.
- pancetta- streaky bacon works great here too.
- Greek yogurt (full fat)- you can use buttermilk here as a straight substitution.
- eggs- they give richness to the flavour and structure during the baking process. And one of the eggs for egg washing the top of the scone.
- plain flour- I prefer to use plain flour and add raising agents rather than buy self-raising flour. I find the results more consistent.
- brown sugar- really complements the saltiness of the bacon and the strength of the cheese.
- raising agents- baking powder and baking soda (bicarb)
- butter- when making scones it should always be kept cold. And salted or unsalted work for this recipe.
See the recipe card for quantities.
Step By Step Instructions
1 & 2- cooking the bacon
- Heat a teaspoon of oil in a nonstick frying pan. Once the oil is hot, add the bacon or pancetta and fry until crispy and golden. Use a slotted spoon to remove the bacon to a plate or bowl lined with paper towel to absorb any excess fat.
- In a medium bowl measure out the dry ingredients. Set aside while you cut the cold butter into small cubes.
3 & 4- flour mixture
- While the bacon is cooling, make the dough by rubbing the butter into the flour until the mixture resembles fine breadcrumbs.
- Once the butter is rubbed in, stir in the shredded cheese. Add the Greek yogurt or buttermilk and use a wooden spoon or spatula to mix until just combined.
5 & 6- dough comes together
- Gently bring the dough together and roll out on a floured work surface.
- Use a round cutter or a glass to cut the scone dough. Once you have cut all the scones push the scraps together and roll again. Continue to do this until all the dough has been cut.
7 & 8- baking the scones
Place the scones on a baking tray with some parchment paper. Brush the tops of each scone with some egg wash and sprinkle with extra cheese, fresh cracked black pepper and some parsely.
Bake the cheddar scones until they are light and fluffy and to cheese is melted and golden brown. The scones will sound hollow when tapped on the bottom. They only take about 15 minutes to bake.
One of the key reasons is that gluten has been overworked in the dough. This will cause the scones to be dense and heavy.
Make sure that your raising agents are fresh and in date. And be sure to avoid brushing the sides of the scones with egg wash. The egg cooks as it bakes and if brushed around the sides will prevent the scones from rising evenly or at all.
Yes! The eggs in scones help to bring richness to the flavour and structure of the dough. Eggs are also a very important raising agent in baking.
All of these liquids can be used when making scones. It just depends on the leavening method you're using.
Baking soda (bicarb) will react with the buttermilk or Greek yogurt in a recipe giving you a very quick reaction.
Baking powder reacts twice. Once when it's mixed with the wet ingredients and the second reaction happens when it's heated. This makes it perfect when you want tall fluffy scones.
Substitutions & Variations
These cheese and bacon scones are so adaptable to be go with almost anything you're serving.
- Spicy - these scones are amazing with some chilli powder or some fresh diced jalapeno mixed into the dough
- Cheese - as mentioned above, you can use many different types to make these scones your own.
- Vegetarian - yup! You can skip the bacon or pancetta and just make these cheese scones if you prefer.
- Butter- you can use butter or margarine for this scone recipe, but your result will be better with butter. It will give you a light flaky finish. But both work well here.
Gluten-free- please note that I have not tested these scones with gluten-free flour, but you could try using any brand that you prefer and you should end up with a light and fluffy scone.
Equipment can have a big impact on how a recipe turns out. But most of the recipes on Savvy Bites don't require much at all. I list what I've used on each recipe.
These scones are incredible when they're fresh. But they do last for a couple of days at room temperature in an airtight container.
Freezer- Place the baked scones in a freezer bag and freeze for up to 3 months.
To reheat them- let them come to room temperature and heat in the microwave for about 1 minute, or wrap them in foil and heat in the oven for about 5 minutes until they are warm all the way through.
- incorporate air while you mix the dough
- don't over mix or over handle the scones before baking them
- bake them just until they are golden about 15-18 minutes. Over baking will make them dry.
- drain the fat from the bacon before mixing it into the dough
- cool the scones completely before freezing
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Easy Cheese and Bacon Scones
- 85 g smoked pancetta or bacon
- 350 g plain flour
- 2 tablespoon baking powder
- 2 tablespoons bicarb soda, baking soda
- 2 tablespoons light or dark brown sugar
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 110 g salted, or unsalted butter, cold cubed
- 200 g red Leicester cheese, shredded (reserve 4 tablespoons)
- ¼ teaspoon cracked black pepper
- 280 g full-fat Greek yoghurt
- 2 eggs- 1 egg is for egg wash
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
- Preheat the oven to 155ºC
- Heat a non-stick frying pan over medium heat and cook the bacon until golden and crispy. Use a slotted spoon to remove the bacon and drain on some paper towel.
- In a large mixing bowl weigh the flour, baking powder, bicarb of baking soda, salt and brown sugar. Cut the butter into the flour mixture using your fingers. The mix should resemble bread crumbs. Stir in the shredded cheese. Mix in the Greek yoghurt, bacon bits and egg. Gently mix the dough until it just comes together. The dough will be soft and shaggy but not too sticky.
- Place the ball of dough on a lightly floured work surface and roll into a disc about ½ inch thick. That’s just over 1 centimetre. Use a 3-inch round cutter to cut the dough and place the scones on the baking tray lined with baking paper. Gather any remaining dough and repeat the rolling and cutting process.
- Once all the scones have been cut and placed on the baking tray beat the remaining egg with a teaspoon of water. Brush the tops of the scones with the beaten egg and sprinkle with the remaining cheese and the fresh chopped parsley. Sprinkle with some fresh cracked black pepper.
- Bake the scones for about 15-18 minutes. When they are baked they will be well risen and the cheese on top will be golden brown and melted and the bottom of the scones will be browned and sound hollow when tapped.
- Remove the scones to a wire rack to cool for about 10 minutes before serving, or cool completely before storing.
- Makes 12-16 scones depending on the size of the cutter used.