Cardamom and Dried Cherry Scones Recipe

Kristen Swensson of Cheap, Healthy, Good swings by these parts each week to share healthy and delicious recipes with us. Today, scones.

Generally speaking, scones are not a light food. They tend to be made with lots of butter, lots of heavy cream, or both together, like some unholy duo of deliciousness. Granted, recipes for lighter scones aren’t too tough to come by, but the portions are usually Lilliputian in size. And it’s my firm belief one should not be able to scarf an entire scone in a single bite. (Unless one is actually from Lilliput. In which case, where do you find such tiny shoes?)

Cardamom and Dried Cherry Scones don’t have the size problem. The recipe is an adaptation of one I dug up on Cooking Light’s website, which originally called for dried pears. Alas, I couldn’t find them at my Middle Eastern grocer’s, and wasn’t prepared to fork over my remaining Roth IRA to purchase a cup at Key Food. So, I substituted dried cherries. (Frankly, I like ‘em better anyway.)

In the end, my frugality paid off. The cherries and cardamom complement each other really well, especially when the scones are warmed and/or right out of the oven. They’re nice-sized scones, too (about 3 ounces each) – not the mini-servings Cooking Light sometimes pulls on you. And finally, at around 250 calories and 6 grams of fat per serving, they’re about 200 calories and 13 grams of fat less than Starbucks Blueberry Scones, and about 300 calories and 23 grams of fat less than their Cinnamon Chip Scones. For a scone, that ain’t too shabby.

So, go forth and scone it up, folks. You won’t be sorry.

Recipe Facts



Total: 0 mins
Serves: 8 servings

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  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cardamom
  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 10 tablespoons low-fat buttermilk
  • 1 teaspoon grated lemon zest
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 cup dried cherries (chopped if you like, but it’s not necessary)
  • 2 teaspoons all-purpose flour
  • Cooking spray
  • 1 large egg white, lightly beaten


  1. Preheat oven to 350°F.

  2. Lightly spoon flours into dry measuring cups; level with a knife. Combine flours, sugar, baking powder, salt, and cardamom in a large bowl; cut in butter with a pastry blender, 2 knives, or a fork until mixture resembles coarse meal.

  3. Combine buttermilk, rind, vanilla, and egg in a medium bowl; stir in dried cherries. Add buttermilk mixture to flour mixture, stirring just until moist (dough will be sticky).

  4. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface. Dust top of the dough with 2 teaspoons all-purpose flour, and pat into an 8-inch circle. Cut dough into 8 wedges; arrange wedges 1/2 inch apart on a baking sheet coated with cooking spray. Brush egg white over wedges. Bake at 350°F for 25 minutes or until golden. Serve warm.