These apple and white Cheddar scones are a less time-consuming riff on apple pie with Cheddar. Easy as muffins. Flaky as biscuits. And lovely as anything we’ve tasted.
These simple apple and white Cheddar cheese scones are a rather unconventional yet not unwelcome take on the sweet and savory contrast of apple pie and Cheddar cheese. The tangy and irresistibly crumbly scones contain apple wedges that are prebaked slightly before being stirred into the dough so they’re soft enough to blend easily without becoming mushy. Trust us when we say it’s worth the time. Originally published October 15, 2010.–Bill Yosses
Apple and White Cheddar Cheese Scones
- Quick Glance
- 15 M
- 1 H, 15 M
- Six (2 1/2 inch | 6 cm) scones
- 2 firm, tart apples, such as Granny Smith, Macoun, or Pippin
- 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for the work surface
- 1/4 cup granulated sugar, plus 1 to 1 1/2 tablespoons for sprinkling
- 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon salt, plus additional for egg wash
- 6 tablespoons unsalted butter, chilled and cut into 1/2-inch (12-mm) cubes
- 1/2 cup sharp white Cheddar cheese, shredded
- 1/4 cup heavy cream
- 2 large eggs, at room temperature
- 1. Position a rack in the center of the oven and preheat it to 350°F (176°C). Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
- 2. Peel, core, and slice each apple lengthwise into sixteenths. Place the slices in a single layer on the parchment-lined baking sheet. Bake the apples until they feel dry to the touch and take on a slight hint of color, about 20 minutes. Transfer the apples to a bowl and let cool. Leave the oven on.
- 3. Sift the flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt into a bowl.
- 4. Place the butter in a large bowl or the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Add the apples, Cheddar cheese, cream, and 1 of the eggs. Sprinkle the flour mixture over the butter mixture and mix with a spoon or on low speed just until the dough comes together. Do not overmix.
- 5. Generously flour the work surface, place the scone dough on it, and sift a light layer of flour over the top. Use a rolling pin to gently roll the dough into a 1 1/4 inch thick, 6-inch circle. Cut the circle into 6 wedges (each wedge should be about 2 1/2 inches wide at its outer edge) and transfer the wedges to the baking sheet, leaving at least 2 inches between each scone.
- 6. In a small bowl, lightly beat the remaining egg with a pinch of salt. Brush the apple scones with the egg wash and sprinkle with the remaining 1 1/2 tablespoons of sugar. Bake on the center rack until firm and golden, about 30 minutes. With a spatula, lift the scones onto a wire rack to cool for maybe 10 minutes. The wedges are irresistibly fragrant and best when they’re a little warm; eat them shortly after baking.
Recipe Testers Reviews
This is one of the best recipes I’ve tested from the site. The apple and white Cheddar scones are slightly mysterious—are they savory? Are they sweet? In attempting to find an answer, I easily ate half of them in one sitting. Without a doubt, double this recipe. You won’t be disappointed. And although the technique used is not one I’ve encountered before, it’s a great way to ensure that the dough isn’t overmixed. I’m going to try a ham sandwich using a sliced scone as the bread.
The apple and white Cheddar scones are delicious, whether warm or at room temperature. I really enjoyed the tart apple slices and the hint of salt from the Cheddar, especially the cheesy crusty bits on the outer edges. The texture of the scones was very nice, too. I’d make these again. You can use the same parchment for the apples and the scones. The long apple slices look too big to be folded into the dough, but not to worry, everything comes together nicely before you know it. Lastly, don’t bother with measuring the sugar for sprinkling, as the very act of “sprinkling” foregoes accuracy. Just scoop some sugar with a spoon or even your hand, and well, you know what to do.
These apple and white Cheddare scones were delicious—light, flaky, sweet, tart, cheesy (that is a good thing here), and almost foolproof. However, it does depend on who the fool is…and once again, it was me! Those apples? I peeled them, cored them, and then WHAT? Cut them into sixteenths? Well. Mothers of the World, when you cut an apple for those kids of yours, how do you cut it? Right! From top to bottom. So I cut 16 slices out of each apple. Then I got to wondering, maybe I should have “chopped the suckers into 16 bullets.” Well, too late for that now! Those apples are sliced and sitting on that pan waiting to dry out. Twenty minutes later? Still sitting there, looking juicy. So after 35 minutes, I just yanked them out of the oven and proceeded. I mixed it all together, put it on the counter, rolled it into a 6-inch circle cut it into 6′s and plopped them gently on the old parchment lined sheet. I egg-washed them (tops? sides, all over? I really didn’t care much by then, I was hungry), and dusted them with the sugar before putting them into the oven. Whew—can I tell you how much hard work it is being a tester?
These apple and white Cheddar scones have a very nice balance of flavors. You get a slight hint of sweetness from the sugar along with the tart taste of the apples, and a touch of savory sharpness from the cheese to bring it all together. Be careful about which type of sharp white Cheddar you purchase. There are two ways this cheese is processed: One creates a crumbly cheese, and the other is a smooth, blending cheese that grates well and is better suited for this recipe. I love how easily this recipe mixes up using my KitchenAid mixer with the scraper attachment. I did use the rolling pin like the directions instructed, but I’ve never used one to make scones before. I always pat the dough into shape and cut. To me, the rolling pin method is the untraditional way.
These apple and white Cheddar scones are wonderful. They're tender, cheesy, rich, and sweet (maybe a touch too sweet). I'm already getting requestes from my wife to make them again. Just a couple of notes to ensure success: cutting the apple into sixteenths means cut it into sixteen wedges and using a Kitchenaid mixer helps incorporate and break the apple wedges down a bit, so use it if you have it.
These scones were so easy to make and were so tasty and buttery. I had all of the ingredients measured ahead of time so they came together in a snap. The recipe made 6 large scones, which I had absolutely no problem with, but the recipe easily can yield 8. It seems like dried apples could also be used to further simplify the recipe. They were yummy.
I love to make scones and am always on the lookout for new recipes to try. I wasn’t sure I’d like the flavor of these since I’ve never enjoyed Cheddar on my apple pie. I loved them, though, and will definitely be making these again. I’ve never made scones with a mixer but wanted to try this method, so I borrowed my daughter’s KitchenAid for the task. It did help the ingredients come together nicely and quickly, but I think next time I’ll just make them with my fingers as I normally do. I cut my apples into 16 chunks instead of slices since chunks seemed like they’d distribute better in the ingredients. I used a Silpat on the pan for baking the apples, as well as the scones themselves. I don’t think you need to sift the sugar with the flour; so just add it to the flour and other ingredients on the waxed paper. Instead of a rolling pin, I used the author’s suggestion to pat the dough into a circle before cutting, which is the typical way I make scones.
Delicious results. The recipe requires a bit of kitchen space and utensils to prepare, but the apple and white Cheddar scones that result can easily be frozen, defrosted, and reheated with no problems. I did need an additional 15 minutes of baking, but that may be because my batter seemed a bit wet. Also, if time is an issue, consider using dried apples from the store.
These apple and white Cheddar scones are tender and savory and just sweet enough to accent the apple. A very lovely combination. I don’t know that the apples benefited from baking first. It was easy enough, but sort of a bother. Ultimately, I felt the apple slices were too big. When I bit into a slice, it pulled out of the scone. So one mouthful was mostly apple and the next two bites were apple-free. But I loved the taste. I highly recommend them.
The flavor and texture of these apple and white Cheddar scones are great— flaky with crisp edges and a soft inside studded with pieces of apple paired with the tangy but not overpowering flavor of Cheddar. The recipe strikes a great balance between these tastes, and I’m keen to make the scones again. One thing I’m curious about is the egg wash at the end. It seems like such a waste of a whole egg, that I wonder if a milk wash, as traditionally used on British scones, would do the trick instead. I don’t own a stand mixer and so, as always, used my hand-held mixer. I think the only difference the mixer made was to break the apple up a bit further than a paddle attachment might have.