Recipe Review

Buttermilk “Biscones” Are the Best of Both Worlds: Craggy and Crisp with Tender, Flaky Centers

updated May 21, 2021
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Credit: Kelli Foster

Whenever I watch Jennifer Garner’s Pretend Cooking Show on Instagram, I immediately want to head to the kitchen and make whatever she’s making. If you’re not familiar with her series, it’s basically Garner cooking her way through her family’s favorite recipes. Because she’s a home cook, the show is endearing and relatable — she often eyeballs measurements and makes on-the-fly substitutions when she’s out of an ingredient, just like the rest of us!

Earlier this year, Garner posted a video of herself making the buttermilk biscones from Back in the Day Bakery‘s Cheryl Day. I saved the post (with the recipe!) immediately. Not only do I love a good play on words, but I couldn’t resist trying a baked good where biscuits and scones join forces. Here’s how it went when I made biscones at home.

Credit: Kelli Foster

How To Make Back in the Day Bakery’s Buttermilk Biscones

You’ll start by heating the oven to 375°F and lining two baking sheets with parchment paper. In a large bowl, mix together all-purpose flour, cake flour, sugar, baking powder, salt, and ground cardamom. Add cold, cubed, unsalted butter and cut it into the flour with a pastry blender or your hands until you have various-size pieces ranging from sandy patches to pea-size chunks and some larger bits as well. Stir in add-ins (dried fruit or chocolate chips), if using.

Gradually pour in buttermilk and gently fold it into the dry ingredients until the dough is soft and no flour remains at the bottom of the bowl. Lumps in the dough are okay, and the dough will be moist and sticky. If the dough feels dry, add a little more buttermilk.

Use your hands to pat the dough in the bowl until it resembles a loaf of bread. Dust lightly with flour. Scoop out mounds of dough and place them one inch apart on the prepared baking sheets. Bake until lightly golden, rotating the baking sheets halfway through. Serve warm.

My Honest Review of Back in the Day Bakery’s Buttermilk Biscones

These biscones take on the best qualities of both baked goods: the craggy, crisp exterior of scones and the tender, flaky center you get with a biscuit. In fact, be prepared for them to play tricks on your mind: the firm, crisp edges will have you expecting a dense scone-like center, but inside you’ll find an intensely buttery and flaky interior that’s not at all like a scone but very much like a biscuit. It’s a baked good mash-up that’s so much better than the sum of its parts — and several weeks later my husband and I are still talking about them.

My only regret was not following Jennifer Garner’s lead and folding in chocolate chips. Next time, though! I hope to make them soon for weekend guests — they’d be perfect for company.

If You Make Back in the Day Bakery’s Buttermilk Biscones, A Few Tips

  1. Plan to use 2 baking sheets. While the instructions in Garner’s Instagram post call for two baking sheets, the original directions in the The Back in the Day Bakery cookbook call for a single baking sheet. Do plan to use two baking sheets though, as the recipes yields 10 to 12 biscones and they spread as they bake.
  2. Heat leftovers in the oven or toaster oven before serving. In her recipe, Cheryl Day notes that biscones are best enjoyed the day they’re made, and I agree — there’s definitely no better time to eat a biscone than when it’s fresh from the oven and still warm, preferably with butter and jam. As they sit, the biscones soften and lose their crispness. That said, you can easily restore most of that fresh-from-the-oven feel by reheating them in the oven or toaster oven for about 10 minutes.

Have you tried Back in the Day Bakery’s Buttermilk Biscones? Let us know in the comments!