Earl Grey Scones with Lavender Glaze

For a unique and memorable scone recipe, look no further than these flaky, buttery Earl Grey scones with a fragrant lavender glaze. Delicious on their own with a nice cup of hot tea, they’re not too sweet to spread with clotted cream or homemade lemon curd! You can make these start to finish in about 30 minutes.

These scones use my Easy Plain Scones recipe as a base: perfectly flaky and crumbly while remaining moist and flavorful!

Earl grey scones with pink and purple lavender glaze stacked on a white cake stand with flowers in the background.

This post was first published on November 22, 2015 | Updated on April 29, 2022

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Tea and scones are a classic combination. So why not tea IN scones?

These Earl Grey scones are the first of many scone recipes I developed many years ago, and it remains a favorite (right up there with these glazed fresh orange scones!). At the time, I was drinking a steamy cup of Earl Grey tea every morning with a splash of cream, and couldn’t get enough of that flavor!

In fact, I’ve since developed many more recipes that include the bergamot-infused black tea, including Earl Grey marshmallows, a lavender Earl Grey Frappuccino, and a classic London Fog tea latte (Earl Grey and vanilla)

In this recipe, actual tea leaves are incorporated into the scone dough itself, giving a subtle bergamot-black-tea flavor to these moist, flaky mini pastries. The scones are dipped in an aromatic lavender-vanilla glaze for a nostalgic floral element.

Overhead view of flaky lavender glazed Earl grey scones on a white cake stand and silver bowl.

  • QUICK AND EASY – Making Earl Grey scones takes about half an hour start to finish. A food processor makes the scone dough foolproof and super quick (but if you don’t have one, I’ve included directions for that too!)
  • BUTTERY AND MOIST – No more bland, dry scones. A combination of butter and heavy cream gives these scones their flaky texture and rich, moist interior.
  • PERFECTLY CRUMBLY AND FLAKY – While all-cream scones tend to be cakier, these butter-and-cream ones flake apart perfectly for spreading with clotted cream or lemon curd!

What you’ll need

Ingredients for the Earl Grey Scones

Most of these ingredients are ones you probably already have, especially if you’re a tea drinker!

Ingredients for making Earl Grey scones with butter, cream, and tea leaves.
  • Dry ingredients: All-purpose flour, baking powder (use aluminum-free), salt, and just enough granulated sugar for a scone that’s sweet enough to eat on its own but not too sugary to add a sweet jam or spread!
  • Flavoring: We use actual Earl Grey tea leaves to flavor these scones. Just open up a few tea bags (I use Bigelow) and add the leaves in with the dry ingredients. If you have loose tea rather than bagged, you will need to run them through a food processor on their own first to grind them into a fine powder before adding to the flour mixture. Bagged tea is usually fine enough already to add straight out of the satchet.
  • Unsalted butter: Keep this in the fridge until you’re ready to add it. The cold butter helps create steamy pockets in the dough for a perfect flaky texture and buttery flavor!
  • Wet ingredients: An egg, heavy cream to make the scones super moist, and vanilla extract for extra flavor!
  • Finishing: Brushing the scones with heavy cream helps with browning and adds a little gloss to the finish, while coarse sanding sugar gives a little crunch and that sparkle that makes them look like they came from a bakery!

Ingredients for the Lavender Glaze

Ingredients for making lavender glaze for Earl Grey scones.
  • Base: Powdered sugar forms the base of the glaze for the scones.
  • Flavoring: A bit of culinary lavender is steeped in boiling water for ten minutes to infuse the floral aroma into the glaze! Make sure it’s food-grade so you don’t have harmful pesticides not meant for consumption. Lavender tea also works although it frequently contains other ingredients like chamomile or lemon. You can also substitute half to one teaspoon of lavender extract instead and skip the steeping step.
  • Wet ingredients: A little heavy cream and vanilla extract round out the icing in texture and flavor!

Substitutions for Culinary Lavender

For lavender glaze, you can use culinary lavender as instructed, swap it out for a lavender tea blend, or substitute 1/2 to 1 tsp lavender extract.

You can also leave out the lavender for a vanilla icing, or substitute a teaspoon of rose water for rose flavored glaze (another one of my favorites!). Rose water can sometimes be found in the International or Mediterranean section of a grocery store, or you can purchase rose water online.

Instructions and Step-by-Step Photos

The full recipe, including ingredients and quantities, is included in the recipe card at the bottom of the post.

  • Mix the dry ingredients. Add all dry ingredients, including tea leaves from a tea bag, to the bowl of a food processor. If using loose tea leaves, or if your bagged tea leaves aren’t fairly fine, they will need to be finely ground before adding. Give the food processor a couple pulses to combine the dry ingredients.
  • Cut in the butter. Add the cold cubed butter and pulse again until the mixture resembles damp sand. There should be a few larger bits of butter in the mix up to about the size of a pea.
  • Add the wet ingredients. Mix the wet ingredients separately and pour them into the flour mixture. This is important because you want to work the dough as little as possible after adding the wet ingredients, so you want to have them pre-mixed in another bowl or measuring cup. You can add the wet ingredients straight to the food processor and then pulse again to just combine, or transfer the flour mixture to a separate bowl and then add the wet ingredients.
  • Pat the dough into a ball. The dough will be pretty crumbly, but you will be able to pat the pieces together until it holds in a single ball. Don’t knead the dough or otherwise overwork it, just do this until it holds together.
  • Cut the scones. Form the dough into a 7-inch square, giving it the best corners you can. Then, using a floured knife, cut the dough into a grid of 9 squares, and each small square in half diagonally to create 18 mini scones.
Dough for Earl Grey scones cut into triangles for baking.
  • Brush and bake the scones. Space out the scones on a parchment-lined baking sheet, brush with heavy cream, and sprinkle with coarse sanding sugar before baking until the top edges are golden brown.
  • Steep the lavender. While the scones are baking, pour boiling water over the culinary lavender and let steep for about 10 minutes. Strain through a fine mesh sieve.
Pouring boiling water from electric kettle into a small white bowl of lavender flowers.
  • Make the glaze and dip the scones. Mix the rest of the glaze ingredients, and add food coloring if desired. Dip the tops of the scones into the glaze, let the excess drip off, and let them dry completely before serving or storing.
Dipping an Earl Grey scone into lavender glaze.

Expert Tips for Making Perfect Scones

  • Make sure to use an aluminum-free baking powder like Rumford. Some popular brands like Clabber Girl contain sodium aluminum sulfate, which can make your baked goods taste bitter or metallic. Your baking powder should be free from lumps and not older than 6 months to a year.
  • Keep your butter in the fridge until you’re ready to add it. Steam created during baking from the cold butter helps create the flaky layers of your scones. Leaving some larger pieces of butter up to the size of a pea when you cut it into the dry ingredients will make your scones extra flaky and delicious.
  • Don’t overwork the dough after you add your wet ingredients. This will develop a gluten network, which is great for sturdier baked goods like bread or pizza dough, but will make your scones tough. The dough will be pretty dry but minimize handling it — just enough for the dough to come together into a disk.
  • When cutting your dough into wedges or using a cookie cutter, use a straight down and up motion rather than sliding the knife across or twisting the cutter. Twisting or sliding will interfere with the way the scones rise on the edges.
  • Be sure to let the glaze harden completely before storing your scones, otherwise they will stay tacky forever.
Two whole glazed Earl Grey scones and one split open to show flaky inside texture on a gold-rimmed white cake stand.

Troubleshooting and FAQs

Wait for the glaze to dry completely before storing these in an airtight container at room temperature for up to three days. You can also store them in the fridge for up to a week, or freeze before or after baking (see below for details).

Yup! You can freeze them before or after baking.

Freezing unbaked scones: You can freeze the unbaked scones after you brush them with cream and sprinkle with sugar. Freeze them separately on a baking sheet for an hour or until they’re set, then store in a freezer bag for up to 3 months until you’re ready to bake.

To finish making the scones, remove from the freezer while you’re preheating the oven. Bake as instructed, adding a couple minutes to the baking time. Alternately, thaw overnight in the fridge and bake for the normal amount of time. Glaze as instructed.

Freezing baked scones: You can also store baked scones in the freezer in an airtight container or freezer bag for up to three months. If you freeze them already glazed, thaw overnight and enjoy at room temperature. If they’re unglazed, you can reheat them in the oven at 300 degrees for about 10 minutes and add the glaze afterwards.

While I love the speed and ease of using a food processor to cut in butter, you don’t need one to make these scones as long as your tea is ground finely enough! The tea from my Bigelow Earl Grey tea bags is a fairly fine powder that should work well if you don’t have a food processor; however, if you are starting with loose tea leaves you will need to grind the larger leaves first with a food processor, spice grinder, or mortar and pestle.

You can cut in butter using a handheld pastry blender or just your fingertips! Just use a pinching motion on your butter chunks as you work it into the flour until you reach the right consistency. Avoid using the palms of your hands to cut in butter, as this will transfer too much heat to the butter — you want it to stay as cold as possible for the best flaky texture! I’ve also seen people grating their cold or frozen butter with a cheese grater and then mixing it into the flour.

Sure! Instead of making a 7-inch square, form the dough into a 7-inch round. Cut in half, and then cut each half into 3 or 4 wedges to make 6 or 8 scones. Bake for about 18-22 minutes instead of 15-18 minutes.

The culprit here is your leavener.  Either you accidentally used baking soda, or something is amiss with your baking powder. If your baking powder is clumpy, contains aluminum (like Clabber Girl), or is old or expired, it can cause a bitter, sour, or metallic taste in your baked goods. If you’re at a high altitude (over 3,500 feet) you will need to slightly reduce the amount of baking powder as well.

Overhead shot of lavender glazed Earl Grey scones and cup of tea.

What goes well with Earl Grey scones?

 Here are some toppings that go great with lavender glazed Earl Grey scones:

And these would go perfectly alongside simple cup of Earl Grey tea or a London Fog tea latte, which is Earl Grey and vanilla!

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5 from 2 votes

Earl Grey Scones with Lavender Glaze

For a unique and memorable scone recipe, look no further than these flaky, buttery Earl Grey scones with a fragrant lavender glaze. Delicious on their own with a nice cup of hot tea, they’re not too sweet to spread with clotted cream or homemade lemon curd! You can make these start to finish in about 30 minutes.
Print Recipe
Course: Afternoon tea, Breakfast, Dessert
Cuisine: American
Servings: 18 mini scones
Calories: 165kcal
Prep Time:15 mins
Cook Time:15 mins
Total Time:30 mins

Ingredients

  • 2 cups flour
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 1 egg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 8 tablespoons cold unsalted butter diced
  • 3 bags Earl Grey tea leaves about 1 tbsp

Lavender glaze

  • 2 teaspoons culinary lavender
  • 2 tablespoons boiling water
  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 teaspoons heavy cream
  • 2 drops red and 1 drops blue food coloring optional

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • In the bowl of a food processor, mix flour, sugar, baking powder, salt, and tea leaves. Pulse until blended.
  • Add cold butter cubes to the food processor and pulse until mixture has the texture of damp sand. There should still be some butter pieces up to about the size of a pea. If you don't have a food processor, you can use a handheld pastry blender or your fingertips (not palms) to cut in the butter.
  • Beat egg, cream, and vanilla extract in a separate bowl or liquid measuring cup. Mix into flour mixture until just combined. Do not overwork the dough or your scones will be tough!
  • Pat mixture into a ball and shape into a 7 inch square on a lightly floured surface. Cut into a 9-square grid, then cut each square diagonally to make 18 triangle-shaped mini scones. Arrange on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.
  • Brush the tops of the scones with a bit more heavy cream and sprinkle liberally with coarse sanding sugar.
  • Bake for 12-17 minutes, or until you can see golden brown around the bottoms of the scones.

For the glaze

  • While scones are baking, cover culinary lavender flowers with 2 tbsp boiling water. Let steep for 10 minutes. Strain.
  • Mix the strained lavender water with the rest of the glaze ingredients in a medium bowl until smooth. Adjust food coloring as desired.
  • While scones are still warm out of the oven, flip the scones top-side down and dip the tops into the icing. Let excess icing drip off before putting right-side up on a wire rack. For easier cleanup, put wire rack on top of a baking sheet to catch drips.
  • Let dry completely before storing in an airtight container. (if they are not completely cool and dry when you store them, the icing will be gooey instead of hard and shiny tomorrow!)
  • Store at room temperature for up to 3 days or in the refrigerator for up to a week.

Notes

The tea leaves you use should be pretty finely ground. If your tea leaves are larger, add them to a small food processor or spice grinder. Whirl around tea until leaves are fine, more like powder. Then proceed with the recipe. You can also use a mortar and pestle to grind your tea leaves.
To make rose glaze instead of lavender glaze, substitute 1 teaspoon of rose water for the steeped lavender water and use a couple drops of red food coloring only.
Adapted from Cooking Classy.
Tried this recipe?Mention @pinchmeimeating or tag #pinchmeimeating on Instagram!

Nutrition

Serving: 1scone | Sodium: 169mg | Calcium: 44mg | Vitamin C: 1mg | Vitamin A: 276IU | Sugar: 11g | Fiber: 1g | Potassium: 28mg | Cholesterol: 31mg | Calories: 165kcal | Trans Fat: 1g | Saturated Fat: 5g | Fat: 8g | Protein: 2g | Carbohydrates: 21g | Iron: 1mg

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12 Comments

  1. 5 stars
    100% LOVE this recipe!!! I have made it dozens of times for family, work, and friends over the past few years. Folks request these scones ALL the time for special occasions and they always deliver. People in my life talk about eating them and always make the same wistful sigh of utter delight upon remembering them. I make the lavender, rose, and orange water versions (referring to a question asked above). Since first making these, I have gone to a plant-based diet. Using plant-based substitutions for the recipe, they still stand up beautifully. Thank you SO SO much for an absolute favorite recipe. Hope this finds you well after all this time. (Always).

  2. 5 stars
    Absolutely loved them! Definitely going to make them again,thank you for inspiring our weekend with your recipes!

  3. 5 stars
    I feel for you, I am now in the same situation with a dead PC. But what a wonderful idea those early grey scones. If the weather is mild I work in the garden, and being in the South of France even have lavender. I have some meeting set up next week with some English ladies, tea with scones is a perfect idea. I have some orange flower water left over from Easter Pastiera and I will try to use it for the icing. Thanks for the idea

  4. saw this gorge recipe on the request for lavender recipes on FBC on Facebook and had to check it out! I love every single thing here! What I wouldn;t give to have one magically appear in front of me…

    1. Sorry you’ve had a similar photo loss experience! Isnt it just the worst? I’m just glad I didn’t lose any irreplaceable family photos or anything. I do love the florals with the Earl Grey flavor! It is so calming and really makes you stop and savor every bite. Thanks so much for stopping by my blog!

  5. Well, I am glad to see you back (if this even goes through!). The scones sound wonderful and the photos are lovely, even if not the originals. I have not yet had this happen, although I have thought I took a great shot and didn’t take my usual 5-7, only to find that when downloaded, it was completely out of focus. Sigh. Ahhh… The trials and tribulations of blogging! Hope you and Mike have a great Christmas!

    1. Thank you, David! We did have a very nice Christmas and got to see both of our families, but I am looking forward to relaxing more and doing less this month! Hope you had a great Christmas and happy new year!

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