It can be difficult to find baked goods that actually taste and look good when you have a digestion sensitive to dairy, but it's still possible to whip up beautiful, homemade scones that will keep your insides happy and peaceful.
Making a Dairy Free Scone Recipe
Scones are synonymous with buttery flaky goodness, but they can be just as nice when made with pure lard. This will ensure your scones are flaky and tender. If you just can't bear the lack of butter flavor, you can also substitute with butter-flavored shortening. It may not stand up to the original, but it does impart a hint of buttery deliciousness to the dough.
Scones also require a wetting agent to transform flour into dough. Normally this would be milk or cream, but you can make excellent scones without either of those. You could use a nut milk such as almond or hazelnut, but I prefer creamy oat milk.
Bonus: They're Gluten Free, Too
To challenge myself, I decided to make these scones gluten free as well as dairy free. I was quite nervous about it since past attempts have resulted in scones that, to be honest, weren't that great. Thankfully, these ones surpassed my hopes and I can now share them with friends who require both dairy free and gluten free diets.
There are some wonderful gluten free flour mixes out there, so if you've got a favorite, by all means, substitute it for the flours I have listed in this recipe. I have a grain mill, so I like to grind grains fresh before baking so they have that wonderfully warm, nutty fragrance that translates into an even tastier gluten free and dairy free scone. This time I used a half and half mixture of buckwheat flour and oat flour with a few spoonfuls of ground almonds. It smelled so good and imparted a beautiful texture in addition to the nutty flavor and fragrance.
Mixing Dairy Free Dough
Once the dry ingredients are stirred together and the lard cut in until the mixture resembles coarse sand, it's time to add the liquid. When making a dairy free scone recipe, it's important to handle the dough as little as possible once the liquid is added since it's easy for gluten free baking to come out tough.
I use a fork to add the wet ingredients to dry, gently turning the mixture until there's no dry flour visible. Then, instead of kneading or rolling out the dough, I use a big tablespoon to scoop the dough onto a parchment-lined baking sheet and then use my fingers to shape it into the scone shape I wish. This gives you the best chance of a scone that is tender yet still holds together.
I added ground almonds, almond extract, and sliced almonds to these scones to make them extra special. I added the ground almonds and extract to the dough and reserved the sliced almonds to decorate the tops and give them a lovely nutty crunch when you bite into them. With regular scones you'd have to brush the tops with beaten egg before adding the sliced almonds so they'd stay in place, but these beauties are wet enough that you can just push them onto the dough and they'll stay put.
If you don't fancy almonds, you could also try our plain gluten free dairy free scones or our gluten free blueberry and rosemary scones.
Tea and Scone Pairings
I like these scones fresh right out of the oven. Give them a few minutes to cool and then eat them warm with a big cup of tea. Since they have so much almond-y goodness in them, I like to pair them with an almond tea such as Caramel Almond black tea, No Obligations decaf black tea with hazelnut, almond, and cinnamon, or Toasted Nut Brûlée oolong with a swirl of hazelnut, chestnut, almond, and walnut.
Gluten Free & Dairy Free Scone Recipe with Almonds
- 1 cup buckwheat flour
- 1 cup gluten-free oat flour
- 1 tablespoon white sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 4 teaspoons baking powder
- 1/2 cup lard or butter-flavored shortening
- 3/4 cup ground almonds
- 1/2 cup oat milk
- 1 egg
- 1 teaspoon almond extract
- 3/4 cup sliced almonds
In medium bowl, stir together flours, sugar, baking powder, and salt.
Blend in lard/shortening until mixture resembles coarse sand. Stir in ground almonds.
In small bowl, whisk together milk, egg, and almond extract. Add to dry mixture and stir with fork until no dry flour is left. Dough will be wet.
Cover baking sheet with parchment paper and preheat oven to 450 F.
Using large tablespoon, scoop mounds of dough onto parchment-lined baking sheet about 2 inches apart. Using flour-dusted fingers, gently shape dough into circles with flat tops and decorate each one with 5 pieces of sliced almonds.
Bake for 10-12 minutes until almonds and tops of scones are golden brown.
Serve warm or room temperature.