Royal recipe for scones is ‘delicious’ – but they take over an hour

Express recreates royal style scones using royal family recipe

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Queen Elizabeth II loved eating scones in the “Cornish” style, according to her formal royal chef Darren McGrady. This style is when you spread a layer of jam on a scone, followed by cream. In contrast, the Devonshire style layers cream first.

The royal pastry chefs at Buckingham Palace have previously shared how to make their very own scones which they serve at the royal residencies, enjoyed by the late Queen.

The Royal Family says on its website: “Every year at Garden Parties across The Royal Residences, over 27,000 cups of tea, 20,000 sandwiches and 20,000 slices of cakes are consumed!

“The royal pastry chefs are happy to share their recipe for fruit scones, which traditionally would be served at Buckingham Palace every summer.”

I baked the scones exclusively for and found the recipe incredibly easy to make, albeit strange at some points.


500g Plain Flour
28g Baking Powder
94g Butter
86g Sugar
2 Whole Eggs
140ml Butter Milk
100g Sultanas (optional)


I started by pre-heating my oven to 180 degrees Celsius, as instructed. In a large bowl, I mixed the flour, baking powder, sugar and butter with my hands until a light crumb was formed.

In a separate bowl, I whisked the eggs and buttermilk together. I had never cooked or baked with buttermilk before, and usually with scones I would use milk – so I found this choice of ingredients a little strange.

After adding the liquid mixture to the flour mixture, I combined it all together until a dough was formed. At this point, royal fans could also add the sultanas, however, I decided to leave these out.

The recipe then says to leave the dough covered with cling film for half an hour, which I found a little odd as I’ve never seen a scone recipe that asks for this before.

Then, once I cut the scones with a cookie cutter, I had to leave these to rest for a further 20 minutes before putting them in the oven.

I’m not sure why there was so much waiting around with this royal recipe – but I followed the instructions to a tee. After egg washing the scones, I placed them on a baking tray and put them in the oven for 12 minutes.

Overall, the recipe took an hour and a half to make, once I factored in all the waiting around for the dough mixture to rest. That was quite long for a scone recipe which shocked me.

Nonetheless, they turned out so beautiful and delicious, with the egg wash creating a gorgeous glaze on top of the scones. I placed them on a cooling rack immediately and waited a few minutes before eating them so they could cool down.

I cut one in half and tried one with the jam on first and the other with the cream on first. Without a doubt, I preferred the scones in the “Cornish” style with the jam on first – just like the late Queen.

I’m still not sure why the recipe called for buttermilk as opposed to milk, as they taste the same as most scones I’ve ever eaten.

However, I noticed buttermilk has a long-lasting use by date, unlike milk which can go rancid fairly quickly.

Therefore, it’s a useful substitute to have in your fridge if you’re ever making scones seeing as it worked just the same as milk would.

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