These blissful, moist Pumpkin Scones are the sweet redemption of every time I’ve ordered the pumpkin scone at Starbucks, only to be disappointed by a dry, distinctly pumpkin-less hockey puck.
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Splurging for a special breakfast treat, only to be met with something cakey and bland will seriously damper your day.
This year, instead of reliving the pain that occurs every single time I order a pumpkin scone at Starbucks (which is to say annually because why do they look so good even though they taste like nothing?!), I’m turning to this pleasing, perfect homemade pumpkin scone recipe instead.
Lightly crispy on the outside, perfectly soft and fluffy on the inside, and richly spiced with cinnamon and nutmeg, these maple pumpkin scones are the very taste of fall.
For the very best moist, tender scones that you can adapt to any season, check out my favorite Fruit and Honey Scones in The Well Plated Cookbook.
Since one of the joys of a coffee shop is convenience, I’m happy to report that these scones can last in your freezer, unbaked, all season long. (Though I will not lie—it’s hard to wait!)
Whenever a pumpkin craving strikes (or you are next tempted by Starbucks) just pop one into your oven, directly from frozen.
True, fresh-baked scone bliss is mere minutes away!
5 Star Review
“I just made these scones, and yes, they are gorgeous, but even more importantly, they are DELICIOUS!!”— Mary —
How to Make Moist, Fluffy Pumpkin Scones
I’m a firm believer that any baked good sporting the word “pumpkin” in its title should and must be packed with the max amount of pumpkin possible.
Every tender bite of these tasty scones pops with pumpkin flavor.
The pumpkin also makes the scones incredibly moist, a perfect contrast to the crunchy toasted pecans that are first baked inside, then sprinkled over the top.
The Secret to Making Good Scones
Scones are similar to making biscuits, and many of the same tips apply. Follow these suggestions and your scones will rise and be fluffy.
- Use Cold Butter. Key to a beautiful fluffy scone.
- Don’t Overmix. Overmixing can make the scones tough.
- Freeze The Scones. Freeze the unbaked scones before baking as directed for the perfect flaky, tender texture. The colder the butter is, the more it will steam and make the scones fluffy.
- Don’t Overbake. This will dry them out.
- Flour. I used white whole wheat flour to bump the nutrition while ensuring the scones were still light and fluffy.
- COLD Butter. For the perfect scone texture, it is essential that you use cold butter.
- Pumpkin. While fairly bland on its own, pumpkin becomes a flavor superstar when combined with the warm spices and sweet maple syrup in this recipe.
- Spices. Cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, and allspice give these scones the warm, cozy pizzazz they need.
- Pecans. Crunchy toasted pecans are a delightful, nutty addition to the scone itself and sprinkled over the top.
- Maple Syrup. These scones are naturally sweetened with real maple syrup. It pairs wonderfully with the pumpkin.
- Maple Flavoring. An optional addition, but I highly recommend it for an extra boost.
- Maple Glaze. Sweet, finger-licking mapley goodness! It truly elevates these healthy pumpkin scones.
- Cut the butter and place it in the freezer.
- Whisk the dry ingredients together, then add the butter.
- Stir in part of the pecans.
- Whisk the wet ingredients together.
- Stir the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients.
- Divide the dough in half, pat each half into a circle, cut the circles into wedges, and pull the wedges apart.
- Freeze the scones on a baking sheet for 30 minutes.
- Brush the scones with milk, then bake at 425 degrees F for 18 to 21 minutes.
- While they bake, prepare the glaze.
- Drizzle the glaze over the scones and add pecans. ENJOY!
- To Store. Wrap any leftover scones, then place them in an airtight container, and store at room temperature for up to 2 days.
- To Reheat. Reheat very briefly in the microwave or enjoy room temperature.
- To Freeze. Freeze baked scones in an airtight freezer-safe storage container for up to 3 months. Thaw and enjoy as desired.
Meal Prep Tip
Unbaked, frozen scones can be wrapped and stored in a ziptop bag for up to 3 months. Bake directly from frozen, adding just a few minutes to the bake time (do not brush with milk until right before you are ready to bake).
Recommended Tools to Make this Recipe
- Mixing Bowls. A high-quality set of mixing bowls is essential in my kitchen.
- Whisk. This whisk is small and easy to store in your drawer.
- Baking Sheet. Perfect for baking the scones, and so much more.
Whatever else you are doing this week, whatever disappointment scones from Starbucks or elsewhere may have caused you in the past, pause a few minutes to bake these easy pumpkin scones.
They are a melt-in-your-mouth, maple-kissed, fall-celebrating pumpkin delight!
Frequently Asked Questions
Since these were not created to be vegan scones, I worry that substituting both the egg, butter, and milk will negatively impact the outcome.
If you want to experiment with it, you could try swapping the butter for a vegan butter, using applesauce instead of the egg, and almond milk for the milk.
If you’d prefer to not use the maple glaze, I recommend trying the vanilla glaze from this Strawberry Bread recipe instead.
To make gluten free pumpkin scones, swap the white whole wheat flour for a 1:1 gluten free baking flour like this one.
FOR THE PUMPKIN SCONES:
- 1/2 cup cold unsalted butter (1 stick)
- 2 3/4 cups white whole wheat flour
- 1 tablespoon baking powder*
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
- 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg freshly grated if possible
- 1/4 teaspoon ground allspice
- 1 cup toasted pecan halves chopped, divided
- 2/3 cup canned pumpkin
- 1/3 cup maple syrup
- 1/2 teaspoon maple extract optional but delicious
- 2 large eggs
- 1-2 tablespoons milk for brushing the scones
FOR THE MAPLE GLAZE:
- 1/2 cup powdered sugar
- 1 tablespoon pure maple syrup
- 1/2 teaspoon maple extract or pure vanilla extract
- 2-3 teaspoons milk or cream
- Cut the butter into small pieces (or for even easier incorporation, grate it with a box grater), then place it in the freezer while you prepare the other ingredients.
- In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the white whole wheat flour, baking powder, cinnamon, salt, ginger, nutmeg, and allspice. Add the butter, then work it in with your fingers or a pastry blender, just until the mixture is crumbly. Some pieces will be the size of pebbles, others can be as large as your thumbnail. Leave some large and do not overwork.
- Stir 1/2 cup of the chopped pecans into the batter, saving the rest to sprinkle over the top.
- In a separate mixing bowl, whisk together the pumpkin, maple syrup, maple flavoring, and eggs until smooth.
- Make a well in the center of the dry ingredients, then add the wet ingredients all at once. Stir into the dry ingredients until a soft, moist dough forms.
- Divide the dough in half, then turn one half onto a lightly floured work surface. Pat the dough into a 5-inch circle that is about 3/4-inch thick, then with a knife or bench scraper, cut the dough into 6 wedges. Gently pull the wedges away from each other to separate them a little, leaving about 1/2-inch of space between the scones at their outer edges. Repeat with the second half of the dough.
- Place the baking sheet in your freezer for 30 minutes. This will help the scones set, give them a better rise and texture.
- Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 425 degrees F. Once the scones have chilled, remove them from the freezer and brush with the milk.
- Bake the scones for 18 to 21 minutes, until they are light golden brown and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. (The scones will need longer to bake the closer they are placed together, shorter if they are spread out and not touching.) The edges of the scones when pulled away from one another should appear dry and baked through and not feel wet or doughy.
- While the scones bake, prepare the glaze: Whisk together the powdered sugar, maple syrup, maple or vanilla extract, and 2 teaspoons milk. Add additional milk 1 teaspoon at a time as needed to make a pourable glaze. Drizzle over the warm scones, then top with the remaining chopped pecans. Enjoy immediately.
- *I recommend aluminum free baking powder for this recipe (and all baking), as baking powder with aluminum can sometimes leave a metallic taste, especially when a large amount of baking powder is used.
- TO STORE: Wrap any leftover scones, then place them in an airtight container, and store at room temperature for up to 2 days.
- TO REHEAT: Reheat very briefly in the microwave or enjoy room temperature.
- TO FREEZE: Freeze baked scones in an airtight freezer-safe storage container for up to 3 months. Thaw and enjoy as desired.
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