Lemon Shortcakes

Preparation info

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Appears in

Welcome to Claire's: 35 Years of Recipes and Reflections from the Landmark Vegetarian Restaurant

Welcome to Claire's

By Claire Criscuolo

Published 2014

  • About

Soft and tender, these lightly sweetened biscuits are good enough to serve warm from the oven all by themselves, and they also make a most wonderful strawberry shortcake. But don’t stop there. Switch to blueberry shortcake or peach shortcake as the summer harvest progresses—or the mood strikes.


  • 1 pint fresh organic strawberries
  • 4 tablespoons turbinado sugar
  • 1 cup unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup whole wheat flour
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • Finely grated zest from 1 lemon
  • ¼ cup plus 2 tablespoons organic trans fat-free shortening (I like to use Spectrum® brand), chilled
  • cups chilled half-and-half
  • 1 cup heavy cream


  1. Rinse the strawberries, then remove the green caps. Slice into a bowl. Sprinkle with 1 tablespoon of sugar. Toss gently. Set aside to macerate.
  2. Center your oven rack. Preheat the oven to 450°F.
  3. Sift the flours, sugar, salt, and baking powder into a bowl. Add the lemon zest. Using your fingers, toss to combine. Break off pieces of the shortening and scatter them over the dry ingredients. Using your fingers, rub the shortening into the dry ingredients, until the mix resembles medium crumbs. Add the half-and-half. Using your hand, mix to combine. Spray a cookie sheet with canola oil spray or line it with parchment paper.
  4. Using a ½-cup measuring cup, drop ½-cups of the batter onto the prepared cookie sheet, allowing a couple of inches in between for even baking. Bake on the center rack of the preheated oven for about 20 minutes, until biscuits are golden brown and a cake tester inserted into the center of one comes out clean.
  5. While the shortcake biscuits are baking, you can whip the cream until soft peaks form, making sure that cream and beaters are cold.
  6. When the shortcake biscuits are done, remove the tray from the oven and set it on a heat-resistant surface to cool slightly. Just before serving, cut each shortcake biscuit in half. Spoon some of the strawberries and their juices onto the bottom half of the biscuit, then spoon a dollop of whipped cream over the strawberries. Cover with the top biscuit. Continue filling the remaining biscuits.