Savoury scones are one of my favourite picnic snacks, they're also great indoor snacks too! They are especially delicious when warm with butter melting into them, and go very well with a nice chutney. These Cheese, Sundried Tomato & Pesto Scones are a combination of some of my favourite savoury flavours and they remind of margherita pizza flavours too!
What are scones?
Scones are actually a type of quick bread, they're easy to make because you don't have to knead or prove them (proving means leaving them to rise). The rise is created by using self raising flour, and an additional raising agent of baking powder.
The recipe and photos for this post were updated in October 2020.
How to make Cheese, Sundried Tomato & Pesto Scones
In a mixing bowl, stir together self raising flour, baking powder and salt. Then add butter and rub it in with your fingers, then add grated cheese and stir it in.
Drain the oil off the sundried tomatoes, then cut them up and mix them into the flour mixture. In another bowl, mix the pesto, milk and egg together, then add them to the flour mixture and form a dough.
Flatten out the dough and cut out rounds with a cutter. Brush them with milk, and sprinkle cheese on top, bake them for 12-14 minutes.
Can you freeze the scones?
Yes, scones freeze really well. Once they have fully cooled down, put them in a freezer bag or airtight container and freeze for up to 3 months.
What kind of cheese is best for scones?
Grated cheddar is the best kind of cheese to use, especially a mature cheddar as it has a lovely strong flavour. Do not use the ready grated cheese, it is best to grate yourself. I also don't recommend a low fat cheese, as they don't melt as well and don't have a strong flavour.
Is pesto vegetarian?
Most pesto is not vegetarian because is contains parmesan, which in turn contains rennet. Rennet is stomach enzymes, usually from cow's, and it is used in many cheeses. You can however, purchase vegetarian and vegan pesto. I used a vegetarian pesto for this recipe. Please make sure to use vegetarian pesto if you are serving these scones to vegetarians.
Tips for making the Cheese, Sundried Tomato & Pesto Scones
- I used a 2.5″ round cutter and got 6 scones from the batch, depending on the size of cutter you use, you will get different amounts of scones.
- Push the cutter straight down into the dough and do not twist it, twisting it can affect the rise of the scones.
- When you are patting the dough out, aim for it to be 1 inch thick.
- When you glaze the top of the scones, make sure the milk doesn’t drip down the sides. This can affect the rise of the scones.
Recommended equipment & ingredients*
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More scones recipes...
Cheese, Sundried Tomato & Pesto Scones
- 250 g Self raising flour
- 1 tsp Baking powder
- ¼ tsp Salt
- 50 g Butter
- 85 g Mature cheddar grated
- 2 ½ tbsp Milk
- 70 g Pesto (make sure it is suitable for vegetarians if you are serving to vegetarians)
- 1 Egg large
- 60 g Sundried tomatoes diced
- 1 tbsp Whole milk for glazing, optional
- Pre-heat your oven to 200C Fan/220C/400F/Gas Mark 6, and place a baking tray in the oven
- Stir the self raising flour, salt and baking powder together a mixing bowl. Add the butter and rub it into the flour with your fingers until it resembles breadcrumbs
- Stir in 70g of the grated cheese
- Use kitchen towel to soak the oil from the tomatoes then cut them up using scissors. Aim for the pieces to be about the size of a raisin. Add them to the flour mixture and stir in
- In another mixing bowl, whisk together the milk, pesto and egg
- Pour the pesto mixture into the flour and make a dough. Pat it out onto a clean work surface dusted with flour to about 2cm/1" thick and cut out the scones using a round cutter, size of your choice. Push the cutter straight down and do not twist it. Reshape the dough and cut out more rounds until it's all used up
- Brush the top of the scones with the milk, then sprinkle on the reserved cheese
- Place the scones onto the pre-heated baking tray, bake for 12-14 minutes or until they are golden brown and risen
- Remove from the oven and allow to cool, you can eat them warm or cold
- Store in an airtight container and eat within 2 days. They can also be frozen