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Monday, September 17, 2012

Pumpkin scones for now or later

Yesterday was one of those very busy days for me. I felt I was going all day. Church, then coffee with friends. Home for lunch. Out to the store with my son to help him with some grocery shopping. Then back home to teach him how to cook a dinner for his friends. Lastly, a parents night for my daughters' youth group. And finally home. I wasn't sure I'd get to finishing this up. But I did. I don't know if you like pumpkin scones. But if you do, and if you're looking for a recipe, you can have mine.

One of my daughters is a die-hard pumpkin scone lover. This is one of her favorite treats. My other daughter also loves them, but is more of an equal opportunity scone lover, she'll enjoy any type of scone.

Last year I set out to reproduce Starbucks' pumpkin scone. I tried the copy-cat recipe, and frankly, it came out dry and flat. Not very good, in my opinion. So I decided to try to adapt my plain scone recipe to a pumpkin one. And this is what I came up with. It's moist on the inside, crispy on the outside, pumpkin-y, spicy, and just a little bit sweet. Glazing gives even more sweetness, and can be left off, if my sweet tooth is not needing it's fix.

What I love about scones, is that the dough freezes well. You can bake these right away, or keep the unbaked dough in the freezer, to be baked frozen, for a treat later. Here's my version of a pumpkin scone.

Pumpkin Scones

Yields: 8 jumbo scones or 16 petite scones

2 cups flour (I use 1  1/2 c. white and 1/2 cup whole wheat, just cuz I'm the mom and I want to get a more nutritious product into my family's tummies. but you can also do this with all white flour.)
6 tablespoons sugar
5  1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon cloves
1/4 teaspoon ginger
1/2 cup cold butter or margarine (I use margarine)
1/3 cup canned pumpkin
3 tablespoons milk
1 egg

In a large bowl, combine flour, sugar, baking powder, salt, and spices.  Cut in, with a pastry blender, the cold butter. In a small bowl, beat egg. Stir in pumpkin and milk. Gently mix into the flour. The dough will appear to be quite dry. Continue cutting through the dough with the side of a large spoon, until almost all the flour is incorporated. Then, with your hands, very gently knead the dough in the bowl, to combine.

On a large sheet of waxed paper or plastic wrap, form the dough into a long and narrow rectangle, about 12" long by 3" wide, by 3/4" thick. Transfer this dough to the refrigerator and chill for about 30 minutes.

Lightly grease a large baking sheet. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Cut dough into 4 squares, then each square into triangles (2 triangles each, for 8 jumbo scones, or 4 triangles each for 16 petite scones). Place on baking sheet, 1 inch apart. Bake for 12-14 minutes (for jumbo scones), or 10 minutes (for petite), until golden around the edges. **note** make sure oven rack is in the middle of oven. Due to the sugar content of pumpkin and the added sugar in this dough, these scones could over-brown on the bottoms.

Alternatively, cut the dough into triangles. Then wrap to freeze. Keep in the freezer for up to 8 weeks. To bake, preheat oven to 385 degrees F, and grease a baking sheet. Place frozen scones on greased baking sheet, 1 inch apart, and bake petite scones for 12-13 minutes, or larger scones for 15-17 minutes. They're done when you press the center of tops with your finger and they feel a bit firm. Again, make sure oven rack is in the center of the oven. Remove from baking sheet immediately.

The glaze

Starbucks does a double glaze. A thin white glaze spread over the tops, then a thicker, spiced glaze piped on, to look pretty. I don't have time for all that, so just do a thin, spiced glaze spread over the tops. Here's that recipe.

Spice Glaze

1/4 cup powdered sugar
dash cinnamon
dash nutmeg
dash cloves
dash ginger
1 tablespoon milk

Combine all ingredients. This should be enough for a thin coat on 8 jumbo scones.

Final note -- I was going to show you a photo of one petite scone, with a double glaze, Starbucks-style. But sorry, I got hungry and I ate the sample scone before I could even get it glazed. Good intentions and all that. Right out the window when my blood sugar hit the floor!

If you like pumpkin scones, you might also like pumpkin spice lattes -- a fall favorite here at creative savv! 


  1. I'm going to try your recipe as soon as I figure out what I'm going to make with the rest of the can of pumpkin. I'm thinking soup.

    1. Hi live and learn,
      mmm, pumpkin soup is a favorite around here, too. I like it with lots of onion and big chunks of potato, swimming in the pumpkin-y soup base.

      Thanks for reading!

  2. I've never seen canned pumpkin here in the UK but I guess you could make them with a bit of fresh cooked mushed up pumpkin?

    1. Hi Sarah,
      Yes, actually I do make these with fresh cooked pumpkin for a good part of the season. (It's just too early for my garden pumpkins). I will reduce the milk by a half-spoonful to compensate for the more liquidy home-cooked pumpkin.

      I'm guessing pumpkin pie is not the big thing in the UK that it is here in the US, then. In autumn, grocery stores have large displays of typical Thanksgiving supplies -- cranberries and cranberry sauce, canned green beans along with the canned fried onions for green bean casserole, yams, boxed stuffing and lots of cans of pumpkin.

      Thanks for your comments!

  3. So far this season I've enjoyed a pumpkin roll and a pumpkin cookie. I need to try this recipe with some of my pumpkin this year it sounds delicious.

    I didn't know you couldn't get canned pumpkin in the UK. The vast majority of people here in the US only use the canned pumpkin for baking.

    1. Hi Lois,
      Mmm, pumpkin rolls sound delicious. I'm guessing you're referring to a yeast-raised roll. I have yet to have a pumpkin cookie this season. I love those with icing on top. Pumpkin treats are a favorite for me!

      Hope you're enjoying some lovely pre-autumn weather.

  4. Yummy! Yummy! Yummy! I love pumpkin and the flavor screams fall to me.

    1. Hi Shara,
      Doesn't it though?! I can't wait to bake a bunch of pumpkin-y treats. Pumpkin cookies are sounding good to me now.

      Glad you stopped by!


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