Pumpkin Scones

pumpkin sconeWhen I lived in DC, there was a time when I visited Starbucks every day. There were so many located within easy walking distance of my office between Metro Center and Gallery Place, it was simple to stroll in, order a cup of tea, and peruse the treat offerings behind the glass counter.

The pumpkin scone was a popular surprise; I remember waiting for it in the fall and being delighted to discover it amid the cinnamon swirl coffee cake and black bottom cupcakes. There was a time when I swore off of them, after my friend Kelly and I looked up their calorie content. Let’s just say that one shouldn’t eat a pumpkin scone every day if she wants to keep her waistline (and heart health, and blood sugar levels) in check.

There are many copycat recipes out there, including the one I’ve adapted below from Damn Delicious. My end result was more cakey and tender inside than the somewhat crumbly Starbucks variety, and next time, I’d like to omit the glaze and mix some chocolate chips and pecans into the batter for some interesting texture. Full disclosure: somehow, I omitted the cinnamon in my recipe when I baked these. I don’t know how this happened (perhaps my two weeks away from the kitchen have made me a bit rusty?), but I will definitely use it next time. The scones were delicious, but they could use that extra spicy kick.


For the Scones

  • 2 cups flour
  • 1/3 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1 teaspoon cloves
  • 1/2 teaspoon ginger
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 8 tablespoons cold butter, cut into chunks
  • 1/2 cup pumpkin puree
  • 3 tablespoons milk
  • 1 egg
  • 2 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract

For the Glaze

  • 1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
  • About 2 1/2 tablespoons milk

For the Spice Drizzle

  • 1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon cloves
  • 1/4 teaspoon ginger
  • 1 1/2 to 2 tablespoons milk


Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

In a large bowl, combine flour, brown sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, ginger, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Add butter and rub into the flour mixture until it resembles coarse crumbs.

In a small bowl, combine pumpkin puree, milk, egg, and vanilla and stir to combine well. Pour over flour/butter mixture and stir with a spatula until a soft dough forms.

Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface and knead briefly to combine well. Pat down into a 10 x 7 inch rectangle and cut into 8 wedges.

Place wedges on the prepared baking sheet and bake for 10-13 minutes, until a cake tester comes out clean.

Cool completely before glazing.

To prepare the glaze:

Place 1 cup powdered sugar in a small bowl and slowly add about 2 tablespoons milk to reach a consistency that is easy to spread, but not too thin. Spoon 1 tablespoon glaze over each scone and spread with a small offset spatula, allowing excess glaze to drip down the sides.

To prepare the spice drizzle:

Place powdered sugar, cinnamon, cloves, ginger, and nutmeg in a small bowl and add 1 tablespoon milk. Stir to combine, adding additional 1/2 to 1 tablespoon milk to reach a drizzly consistency. Place in a small piping bag fitted with a plain tip and drizzle over scones in a zigzag pattern.

Allow glaze to harden completely before serving.





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