Wheat and Sugar-Free Lemon Chia Seed Scones w/ Strawberry & Cherry Preserves
If you’re familiar with my recipes and lifestyle, you’ll know that I try to not eat refined sugar. Only natural sugars like honey, maple syrup, and from fruits. I always enjoy the challenge of making refined sugar-free dessert recipes, and although I’m not always eating wheat-free, I do like to eliminate wheat when possible, so I don’t use up my yellow container count too fast (If you’ve done the 21 Day Fix, you know what I’m talking about)! I wanted to tackle one of my favorite indulgent desserts to meet both of these criteria: Scones with jam!
Even from the time I was four years old, I loved tea time. At that age, I had yet to go to a formal tea, but would play “tea time” with my sister. We would sometimes have casual tea, fancy tea, or sometimes have an historical take on tea and re-enact scenes from the Felicity American Girl books. I recently reflected upon how playing in my grandpa’s garden was one of my favorite childhood past-times…well I think having tea time would be a close second. Over the years, I have gone to tea many times with my grandmother, mother, and sister. And my favorite part? Scones! There’s just something so irresistible about its texture; how it’s dry and crumby on the outside with a delicate taste on the inside. But then when you smother it with sweet, moist preserves the combination of opposite flavors and textures marry into something wonderful. And besides the taste, you just feel so fancy having tea and scones! Obviously, tea and scones aren’t something we have here in America everyday, but it offers a brief escape. It brings you back to a calmer past time, it makes you stop and taste flavors and leisurely eat your food while enjoying company, it gives you an opportunity to be a bit more formal than you would on a typical afternoon!
So I had my check list of wanting to make my own scone and preserves recipes refined sugar-free and wheat-free. I then decided I also wanted to incorporate seasonal flavors, to make it taste fresh, and have the preserves be as naturally sweet as possible by incorporating fruit at its peak. My end conclusion for what my recipe would be? Lemon Chia seed scones with Strawberry & Cherry preserves.
Wheat and Sugar-Free Lemon Chia Seed Scones
Ingredients (makes 8)
1.5 cups pulsed coconut flakes (or coconut flour). If blending coconut, make sure it’s very fine, almost like the texture of flour.
1.5 tsp baking powder
Pinch of salt
2 T chia seeds
2 T of coconut oil (NOT melted)
1/2 lemon (pulsed in the blender without rind)
3 T of honey
1 tsp vanilla extract
2.5 T lemon juice
1/2 cup Greek yogurt or SO Delicious Greek Style Dairy-free yogurt
1.5 T coconut milk (full fat)
21 Day Fix Container Counts: 1 blue, 2 tsp, 1/3 red
Directions (makes 8 scones)
- Preheat oven to 425 F.
- Stir together your blended coconut or coconut flour, baking powder, sea salt, and chia seeds.
3. Then take half of a lemon, remove it from rind, and pulse in blender. Add your lemon (while avoiding adding the seeds, this would be easy with a slotted spoon), and add your coconut oil to your mixture. Kneed the mixture with your hands so that it is thick and fully coated with the coconut oil).
5. Once your dry mixture is completely coated, add in your wet ingredients (yogurt, coconut milk, lemon juice, honey, and vanilla extract).
6. For baking, you can either spray a cookie sheet and add balls of the dough onto the sheet, or you can spray a pie tin and put them in the tin for triangular scones (although they won’t be as raised).
7. Bake for 15-18 minutes. My perfect time for my gas oven was 17 minutes.
Strawberry & Cherry Preserves
Ingredients (Makes 1 quart jar)
4 cups of quartered strawberries
3 cups of cherries
1 T of lemon juice
1 T chia seeds
1/2 cup of honey
21 Day Fix Container Counts: 1/2 Purple
Directions (makes 1/2 pint jar)
- Quarter your strawberries.
- For your cherries, remove the pits and then put in a blender or food processor so they are in small chunks.
3. Put all of your ingredients in a large pot on medium-high heat, stirring well.
4. Once your ingredients start bubbling, use a potato masher and mash the strawberries as much as possible (it’s okay to have some large chunks).
5. Put your heat on low, cover, and let them simmer for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.
6. When it’s near done, taste your preserves to see if they’re to your liking. Add any additional lemon juice or honey as needed to suit your tastes.
7. Once done, put in a quart-sized mason jar for up to five weeks.
I was so excited to taste my flavor combination, and it was everything I hoped for! The lemon scones were very coconutty, but with that same scone texture and delicate flavor I know and love. The Greek yogurt adds just the right amount of moistness and creamy taste that makes these scones feel like the perfect summer afternoon take on tea time. The preserves are very sweet, but in that wonderful natural fruit way, not artificially or overly-sweet. Strawberry preserves are very common, which is why I loved having the taste of seasonal Washington cherries (from Whole Foods) in my preserves, it added a unique twist to the flavor. The lemon, coconut, strawberries, and cherries blend together to create an incredibly exciting flavor for your taste buds. Since I had baked my scones in a pie tin, making them on the thinner side, I put two scone slices together with preserves in the middle and on top.
I love to be a little unique, so was very pleased that my lemon chia seed and strawberrry-cherry preserves turned out to be a wildly flavored version of a common tea time pairing. Often when you hear “wheat-free” and “sugar-free,” it can make one feel skeptical if their food will be flavorful–with the incorporation of coconut flour however, these scones were packed with delicious flavor!
Since I was having a uniquely-flavored July tea time, I decided to make a tea with ingredients I had on hand to go with the summer-time feel of the scones and preserves. Of course, a July tea time inspired me to make an iced tea. I brewed just a plain black tea (un-sweetened), in one my leftover mason jars I had purchased for the preserves. I then added my leftover lemon slices from the other half of my lemon from the scone recipe, along with some chia seeds. Chia seeds in liquid expand a bit, and when sipped through a straw has the texture of boba, which I love! Since I was having a sweet and tart scone dish, I wanted to add some coolness into my tea pairing, so threw in some mint leaves as well. I then muddled my mint, lemon, chia seeds, and a drizzle of honey. The lemon, mint, and chia seed iced tea complimented my scone perfectly!
To set the scene for the afternoon tea time in my neighborhood, I thought it would be fun to incorporate some more childhood memories, as my whole inspiration for this post was my love of playing tea time! Although I wouldn’t typically bring this outdoors to eat, I used my great-grandmother’s fine china and lace tea towels. I know what you’re thinking…who in real life makes scones and tea and eats it on fine china in the grass? No one, really! But that’s why I wanted to do it–to do something a bit overly fancy and fun, to achieve that magazine and Pinterest-worthy set-up, but just for me, my daughter, and husband to enjoy. Quite frankly, because it’s fun to add some little outrageous touches to make quaint moments magical.
Our daughter had a great time too, and couldn’t get enough of these easy, healthy, wheat & sugar-free lemon chia seed scones with strawberry and cherry preserves.
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