Utah Scones with Honey Butter & Raspberries


Utah Scones with Raspberries and honey butter from Our Best BitesSo my dad is a really interesting guy. And I don’t mean that in semi-snide jerkfaced way, I mean that he is a really interesting guy. Anyone who knows him (does anyone know my dad? Besides Sara and my one sister who reads the blog?) knows that he is an interesting guy. He is the world’s most cautious man (we were not allowed to have a trampoline, which may have scarred me for life), someone who perpetually drives 15 miles under the speed limit (at least), no matter what it is, but he participates in all sorts of dangerous or potentially dangerous activities like motorcycling and skiing and backpacking and white water rafting. In addition, he has a couple of terrible puns that he re-uses at every opportunity (“I never Metamucil I didn’t like!” or one involving horticulture, which was Sara’s field of study so he brings it up a lot, but it’s kind of PG-13. So you might have to use your imagination.) Are you getting a feel for him?

One thing about my dad is that he’s not a particularly social guy. He doesn’t do small-talk (not even with his kids–in fact, the running joke is that two minutes into any conversation, he’ll say, “I’ve got Alan Stephens [his colleague] on the other line, I’ve gotta go.”) and he was not friendly to boys I dated in high school, which was horrifically embarrassing at the time.


When he throws a party, he goes all out. Even if it’s for strangers.

For as long as I can remember, every 4th of July while I was growing up, we had a neighborhood breakfast in the park and my dad cooked scones. That was his thing. This whole party was thing, which was quite a feat for a semi-grumpy pun-maker who hates holidays.

Now. Some of you may be wondering how in the world he made scones for the whole neighborhood in the park because scones are crumbly, slightly-sweet biscuits baked in an oven.

Well. In Utah (and apparently a few other select geographical regions based very loosely on some fairly inaccurate Instagram science), scones are pieces of fried bread dough served with whatever you want, but really, butter, honey (or honey butter), or raspberry jam. Or if you’re me, you spread on some honey butter and then you smoosh a small handful of raspberries down into the honey butter and it’s more delicious than just about anything you can imagine.

So basically, Utah scones are beignets. Sopapillas. Fry bread. Doughnuts. Whatever.

When I discovered these were not the scones other people were familiar with, I was embarrassed and disillusioned. Life got hard. In a my-parents-lied-to-me-about-baked-goods kind of way.

So you can really use any dough that’s been enriched with some kind of fat (butter…oil…egg yolks). We actually have a recipe for sopapillas in our first book (I think…I don’t actually have my books with my this second) and we already have a recipe for beignets here. And you could use either one of those doughs, among the zillions (not really) of other yeast doughs we have on the blog. But I wanted to experiment with something (I’m tweaking my World’s Best Dinner Roll recipe) and it was a huge success. Not that you can go wrong with fried dough slathered in honey and butter, right?

To get started, dissolve the yeast and 1 tablespoon sugar in warm water.

yeast dissolving

Let stand about 10 minutes or until very bubbly and frothy.

In the bowl of a stand or heavy-duty mixture, mix 2 cups of buttermilk, some sugar, melted butter, vegetable oil,


and salt

melted butter

until completely dissolved. Add baking powder and 3 cups of flour to the milk mixture and beat on low for 30 seconds, scraping sides of bowl constantly.

soft dough

Add yeast mixture and beat on high for 3 minutes.

Add the eggs and mix until completely combined. then stir in as much remaining flour as needed to make a soft dough. This dough should be very soft–it will be coming away from the sides of the bowl, but it will still stick to your finger when you touch it. Place the bowl in a warm place and cover with a clean towel; allow to rise 1 hour or is doubled in bulk.

risen dough

When the dough has risen, lightly sprinkle a large, clean work surface with flour.

floured work surface

Punch down the dough and then roll it to about 1/4″ thick. Using a sharp knife or a pizza wheel, cut the dough into equal rectangles.

cut scones

Separate the dough pieces so they have enough room to rise. Cover with a clean cloth.

In a large, heavy pan (I use a 7.5 quart Le Creuset), heat about 2-3 inches of peanut or other high smoke point oil over medium heat until it reaches 350-360 degrees (use a candy thermometer). When hot, add a few dough pieces and cook until golden brown on one side, then flip and cook the other side. When puffy and golden, remove from oil and drain on a paper towel. Repeat with remaining dough pieces.

cooked scones

Serve immediately smeared with honey butter

honey butter on scone

with a handful of raspberries pressed into the honey butter.

bite of fa raspberry honey butter scone

Makes about 24 scones.

Utah scones with honey butter and fresh raspberries from OUr Best Bites


woman in denim shirt holding a salad bowl
Meet The Author

Sara Wells

Sara Wells co-founded Our Best Bites in 2008. She is the author of three Bestselling Cook Books, Best Bites: 150 Family Favorite RecipesSavoring the Seasons with Our Best Bites, and 400 Calories or Less from Our Best Bites. Sara’s work has been featured in many local and national news outlets and publications such as Parenting MagazineBetter Homes & GardensFine CookingThe Rachel Ray Show and the New York Times.

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Questions & Reviews

  1. I grew up in California– no Utah connections at all– and these are the only scones I ever knew. I’ve always been confused why everyone called the baked ones scones. I thought these were the “real” scones to everyone, not just a regional thing.

  2. When I was growing up and my mom made scones, they were like this (basically doughnuts without a hole). We used to love scone night! Sometimes we would turn them into Navajo tacos for dinner and have the extras with honey for dessert. I grew up in AZ, but my family lived in Utah for a few years when I was a baby, so maybe that’s where my mom learned how to make scones. 🙂 I also didn’t know what the rest of the world called scones until a few years ago.

  3. I had no idea about the “other” type of scones until I was in my twenties. I absolutely love Utah scones! Can’t wait to try these out.

  4. Grew up mostly in UT so I’m familiar with Utah scones. We used to have them at Girls’ Camp too! I’m headed to UT for the weekend so your post has inspired me to seek out a scone with honey butter or a navajo taco–diet be darned!

  5. Hi cute Katie- What a great time to post the recipe and the memory of our Logan neighborhood 4th of July breakfast tradition. Fresh Hot Scones are so delicious!
    I saw your Dad in his bike shorts a few week ago at the Logan Post Office. The mountain bikes were in the back of his truck & Rick Johnson was sitting in the cab ready to ride after, your Dad took care of the mail.

    Have a great summer! Pam D.

    1. Haha, yes! Big ol’ camp stove and Dutch ovens (like for camping). 🙂

  6. I grew up in Utah and still live in Utah. I can’t believe this is how I find out that the scones here aren’t real. My life has now changed.

  7. This sounds like a drool worthy recipe, but it needs a better name as it does not even remotely resemble a scone.

    1. Ha ha ha! I was feeling like “the other scone” should be called a biscuit instead!

  8. Both of my son-in-laws grew up in Utah. After they married my daughters and visited our home (in California) for the first time, I told them I was making my famous scones for breakfast. Years later, they both told me (on separate occasions) how excited they were to be having scones and then how disappointed they were to find out that my version of scones were the English version. Waa Waa. They now both adore my kind of scones but said they were really in shock that first time to find out that my scones were not their scones. Since then, I have tried Utah scones and enjoy them too. honey butter is a must). But I do think they resemble sopapillas more.

  9. I love your blog and never comment but I have to this time. Not only does your dad sound so much like my dad but his aunt used to make us Utah scones. We loved to go to her house as kids both because she was kind and awesome and because she would make us piles of scones (and it was a *lot* of scones – my family had five kids). I was well past college before I learned that those fried squares of deliciousness were not what the rest of the world called scones.

  10. I know your dad. Love your dad! You described him perfectly. Can’t wait to try the scones. I even have leftover buttermilk from the delicious German chocolate cake I made yesterday for my husband’s birthday.

  11. I’m an east coast girl, and the first time I visited Utah and had a “scone” I was so utterly confused. Why in the world were they calling fry bread “scones”?? I was expecting a biscuit.

  12. Your dad sounds EXACTLY like my father-in-law, which would be NOTHING like my own dad who is so funny and friendly and outgoing. The funny thing is my husband is just like MY dad and nothing like HIS dad.

    But scones. If I learned to make them we could save some money. Once we went to Chuck a Rama (it goes without saying-for my grandma’s 80th birthday) and my kids were IN LOVE with the scones. So now my kids beg to go to Chuckarama so they can eat scones. And the drinks. And that is all.

  13. as a born & raised Utahn, I also only thought our scones were real scones. it wasn’t until I was about 20 that I learned there are other scones out there!
    Thanks for this recipe. I was looking for something to make for my annual 4th of July brunch; I think it will be these!

  14. Love this. We just had a scones night with our youth in the ward and it was great. The dip we use is melted marshmallows and butter with a touch of honey. You have to eat it pretty quick before it hardens. Thanks for posting this.

  15. How funny! These were the type of scones my mother made we when I was growing up. Every time she’d make bread, she’d save some of the dough and make us scones. I had NO idea there was any other kind of scone until I grew up. This is the first time I’ve ever heard that anyone else ever thought of fried bread as scones too. I don’t think its just a Utah thing. I grew up in Alaska and my mother had grown up all over the country due to the military. Although..she did like for a couple years in Utah in high school..maybe she picked it up then. I should ask her. For my kids..only this type of scone will do!

  16. This made me laugh, because I grew up in Texas. I remember hearing people rave about the scones in Utah and I remember thinking, “I have to try one, they sound wonderful.” The first time I tried a “Utah scone” with honey in it, I remember saying to my native Utah husband, “Ummm, this this is actually called a sopapilla.” Let’s just say it was a bit of a let down, but made me laugh for days.

  17. I LOVE Utah scones – but my butt doesn’t, so we really enjoy all of your other scone recipes too! These are a fun treat though!

  18. I remember my Grandma teaching me how to cook scones. It is a definite family tradition for us. And the honey butter is VERY important. We also like to make some of the scones into Navajo tacos (scone on the bottom topped with taco makings; meat, cheese, lettuce, tomatoes, sour cream, etc.)

  19. Ha! After my mom joined the church and we moved to Colorado some nice ward members invited us over for “scones”. It was 1969 we had no idea what any sort of scone was 🙂 When we saw them we just-moved-from-California-people with a hispanic background said “oh, these are sopaipillas!” They introduced us to raspberry jam and we introduced them to a sprinkle of powdered sugar after the honey drizzle. Whatever you call them, they are always delicious.

  20. I love these scones…and I live in utah. 🙂 I didn’t know until recently that there was another kind of scone! 🙂 Thanks for sharing for those that are unaware of the utah scone goodness! 🙂

  21. The first time I tried a scone outside of Utah I was appalled. They were dry crap! I had no idea the world had a different scone. I have since learned to appreciate them, but Utah scones are my love. We have been eating them with buttermilk syrup lately.

  22. I don’t know your dad, but I’ve heard Annie’s take on him. I know he was really there for her through some rough times!

  23. Yes Utah Scones are the best. I remember going to this restuarant in Holliday Utah which also has some great pies. But thier scones were always on point. Thank you for sharing the recipe gonna have to try and make some

  24. My family has the same tradition for the 4th (and also memorial and Labor Day), although we eat ours dipped in butter and maple syrup. So good!

  25. Yay- MY kind of scones! And I’m from Virginia, but now that I think about it, maybe I was introduced to them by youth leaders who were from Utah. Those biscuit-style wedge things are NOT scones, and much more disappointing.

  26. Utah scones are the BEST! The other scones will do, and they are delicious,…but they (obviously) just aren’t the same. In fact, the first time I had the other variety of scones I was, admittedly, disappointed. I’m so happy you are introducing them to those who are unaware! They are in for a real treat!!! 🙂