Glorious Greek Yogurt Scones with Lemon and Poppy Seeds

Sneak Preview: These Greek Yogurt Scones with Lemon and Poppy Seeds are easy to freeze ahead and bake the morning you want to serve them.

LEMON POPPY-SEED SCONES WITH GREEK YOGURT in a serving dish with flowers behind itPin

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Are you looking for a breakfast or brunch pastry that won’t require too many jumping jacks afterward? Lemon and Greek yogurt combine with poppy seeds to create a scone that hits the right combination of sweetness and tartness.

Happy Bakers Speak Up

“I made this recipe and it was a big hit, especially for those of us watching our waistlines! Delish!” — JEANNE

Ingredients and Substitutions

  • GREEK YOGURT: Look for unflavored Greek yogurt (aka yoghurt) or use homemade yogurt with the fat content you prefer. Vanilla-flavored yogurt is another possibility, but you may want to reduce the amount of sugar called for in the recipe.
  • FLOUR: Use bleached or unbleached all-purpose flour.
  • SUGAR: Granulated sugar is specified. You may substitute brown sugar 1:1, but the texture may be different.
  • BUTTER: Substitute margarine or shortening. Salted or unsalted butter is fine. Whatever you use, be sure it’s cold.
  • LEMON: Since this recipe calls for lemon zest, fresh lemons will take care of the zest and juice. You will lose the freshness factor by using dried zest or bottled juice. Substitute fresh oranges for a different taste.
  • POPPY SEEDS: Sesame seeds (especially black ones) are the best substitute. Flax seeds have a similar appearance but will have a chewy texture because they absorb moisture. That is not what we’re going for here.

How To Shape Greek Yogurt Scone Dough

You don’t have to cut them as I did in the picture below, but it’s one way. If you don’t want to ice them, serve them with microwaved lemon curd, softened butter, or your favorite jelly.

cutting and shaping scone dough.Pin

Roll or pat the dough into a 5 x 8-inch rectangle and cut it into 12 pieces. See the recipe for baking instructions.

FAQ About Greek Yogurt Scones

Can I make these scones ahead and freeze them?

YES! This scone dough is ideal for mixing and shaping ahead of time. It makes it easy to serve overnight house guests or prepare a quick breakfast before heading out.

What is the advantage of using Greek yogurt?

Adding Greek yogurt translates to higher protein, and less fat than the sour or whipping cream often called for in a traditional scone.

Can I use regular yogurt instead of Greek yogurt?

If all you have is regular yogurt, it’s best to strain it for a few minutes to remove some of the whey. This process will make the yogurt thicker. Otherwise, the scones will be too sticky.

How do I strain regular yogurt to use in a recipe calling for Greek yogurt?

Since you don’t need much, use a coffee filter inside a small strainer. Measure out a third more yogurt than the recipe specifies. Pour yogurt into the filter-lined strainer in the sink or over a small bowl. Let the yogurt drain for at least 30 minutes. Watch for a yellowish liquid called whey to start leaking out of the yogurt. Stop the straining process when the yogurt gets thick and has the consistency of Greek yogurt.

How long will scones stay fresh?

Scones are like donuts. They are best eaten the day they are made and even better while still warm. A quick trip through the microwave or toasting them makes them a good snack later in the day.

Help at Your Fingertips: For questions or suggestions, email Paula at If you need help, I’m happy to troubleshoot via email (faster than leaving a comment). Attach pictures and as many details as possible for the best advice.

lemon poppy seed scones on a platePin
Yield: 12 scones

Greek Yogurt Scone Recipe with Lemon and Poppy Seeds

Greek yogurt takes the place of heavy cream for increased protein with less fat.

Rate this recipe

(5 stars if you loved it)

5 from 5 votes


Prep time: 15 minutes
Cook time: 13 minutes
Total time: 28 minutes


  • 2 cups (240 g) unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 3 tablespoons (36 g) granulated sugar
  • 2 tablespoons poppy seeds
  • Zest of 2 medium lemons
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ cup (113 g) cold unsalted butter (sliced into 8 pieces)
  • cup (187 g) unflavored Greek yogurt
  • ¼ cup (57 g) fresh-squeezed lemon juice


  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • ½ cup (57 g) confectioner’s sugar


  • Preheat oven to 400˚ F (200˚C).
  • In a bowl of a stand mixer, combine 2 cups (240 g) unbleached all-purpose flour , 3 tablespoons (36 g) granulated sugar, 2 tablespoons poppy seeds, Zest of 2 medium lemons, 1 tablespoon baking powder, 1/2 teaspoon baking soda, and 1/2 teaspoon salt. Add 1/2 cup (113 g) cold unsalted butter (sliced into 8 pieces) and mix 30-45 seconds until butter is in smallish, irregular pieces. Add 2/3 cup (187 g) unflavored Greek yogurt and 1/4 cup (57 g) fresh-squeezed lemon juice. Stir together by hand until the dough comes together in a ball.
  • Dump out onto a piece of plastic wrap or floured towel and shape with your hands or a rolling pin into an 8 x 5-inch rectangle about 1-inch thick. The dough may be a little crumbly–gently squish it together with your hands. Cut in half the long way. Cut again crossways to make six pieces. Divide each square on the diagonal to make 12 small scones. Place onto a cookie sheet covered with a silicone mat or parchment paper.
  • Bake for 12 to 14 minutes.


  • While scones cool, stir 1 tablespoon lemon juice 1/4 cup (57 g) fresh-squeezed lemon juice into 1/2 cup (57 g) confectioner’s sugar until smooth. Drizzle over scones.


How to freeze unbaked scones:
Freeze prepared scones on a cookie sheet. Once hard, place scones in a plastic bag. When ready to bake, pull out what you need and put them directly into a hot oven. Allow a few extra minutes of baking time.


Serving: 1 | Calories: 194kcal | Carbohydrates: 25g | Protein: 4g | Fat: 9g | Saturated Fat: 5g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 2g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 21mg | Sodium: 256mg | Potassium: 41mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 9g | Vitamin A: 244IU | Vitamin C: 2mg | Calcium: 101mg | Iron: 1mg

All images and text ©️ Paula Rhodes for Salad in a

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Recipe Rating


  1. How would it be if you used a whole grain flour? Trying my best to eat better!
    ~ Sheryl

    1. Hi Sheryl,

      The scones might be a bit denser but I imagine they would still be good. I haven’t tried it myself.

  2. 5 stars
    I made this recipe and it was a big hit, especially for those of us watching our waistlines! Delish!

  3. mariaphelan says:

    Hello Paula, Have just discovered your website – wonderful recipes. I will be crazy baking this week end for the family, and also your bacon wrapped chicken – thanks so much for sharing. Maria, London.

  4. …And you’ve just answered my “what the heck am I gonna do with all this Greek yogurt?!?!” question! THANK YOU!

  5. These are delicious scones! The lemon flavor is just right. I did add a bit more sugar (1/3 cup) because my husband likes his scones sweet. Great recipe! Thank you.

  6. Love your blog, Paula, I’ve been an avid reader for awhile now. The scones look delicious and I’d like to try them and I’m fairly certain I understand the freezing part, but just to be absolutely clear, you’ve frozen them before their baked and then baked them straight from frozen? (If it seems obvious to everyone else, forgive me, I get worried when something seems this brilliant and easy!)

    Thanks for all the wonderful recipes.

    1. Thanks, Pamela. I think you have the scones figured out. Once frozen, I remove the little triangles from the cookie sheet and throw them in a plastic bag and back into the freezer. When you are ready to eat, preheat your oven and put the frozen triangles on your cookie sheet and straight into the oven. No need to thaw. They will need a few minutes longer to bake.

  7. I happy that your son and his family are settling in to their new home. The grandskids will be missed, as will your DIL’s help in the kitchen but hopefully they are not far away and you can get those requests for *who wants a kiss-kiss* seen to quickly 🙂
    Beautiful scones! Something I still have yet to make.

  8. I know exactly how you feel! It takes a while before you get used to not having those sweet little ones nearby- I know you miss them! Those scones are beautiful, and I love that they can be made ahead and frozen. 🙂

  9. I love scones, lemon and poppy seeds and these are especially yummy looking. I have frozen baked scones and popped them into the microwave for a few seconds to thaw/warm but this is a nice way to have them handy.

    I can imagine how you are missing those sweet little ones and the precious love they give each day. I can’t believe your grandson is four already!