Better-Than-Starbucks Pumpkin Scones

by Heather

Since we’re already talking about Starbucks, pumpkin, and coffee, we might as well talk about Starbucks and pumpkin with coffee.

Starbucks pumpkin scones, to be precise.

pumpkin scones from starbucks recipe

I have a love-hate relationship with scones. As in, most of the time I hate them. But then one day I tried a Starbucks cinnamon chip scone, and the oddest thing happened- I didn’t hate it. A few more bites and I found myself actually liking it. And now I love them.

So imagine my dismay when I pull into Starbucks for a scone & iced coffee fix, and they’re all out of cinnamon chip scones. Instead, I saw a platter of pumpkin scones resting behind the glass, plastered in icing.

I figured I might as well give it a try. I do love pumpkin after all. I asked for one without the icing, but those apparently don’t exist.

Now, I’ll give Starbucks some credit. Their pumpkin scones are much better than their pumpkin lattes, but the thick crust of icing was a deal breaker. I’m in the scones-shouldn’t-be-overly-sweet party. That’s why they’re scones, not dry cookies.

So of course that meant only one thing. I had to make my own. Then I could have all the same tasty goodness, minus the sugar overload, plus a little whole grain.

pumpkin scones recipe

If you’ve ever tried to come up with your own baking recipe, you know that the chances of things working out the first time are about the same chances of me running into Britney Spears at Target.

Case in point?

pumpkin biscuitsvegan pumpkin bread

Pumpkin biscuits and pumpkin cinnamon biscuit bread thingamombob. Oh, you don’t recognize those? Yeah, they never made it to the blog. They turned out ok- but not perfect. And then I forgot the recipe I started with. Whomp whomp whooomp.

But this time…this time there was perfection from the beginning. It wasn’t exactly a first-try recipe since I started with my cinnamon chip scone recipe, but even the slightest change in a baked good recipe can spell disaster. Luckily this time it worked out. I scarfed at least three down before I even thought of moving on to the icing stage.

starbucks pumpkin scone

pumpkin scone recipe

Starbucks Pumpkin Scones


Vegan-ized, whole wheat-ified, de-sugarized. Still delish-ified.

starbucks pumpkin scones

The key to scones is to a) keep the butter cold and b) not to overwork the dough.

Start off with your dry ingredients, included cinnamon, nutmeg, and the remaining holy trinity of pumpkin flavor: allspice, ginger, and cloves.

pumpkin pie spice

Cut in the cold butter. I used Earth Balance so it’d be vegan, but feel free to stick with regular butter. Mix in the wet ingredients and form a ball of dough. Chances are you’ll have to get your hands in their to make the dough come together.

Roll the dough out into a rectangle, then slice into squares, and then triangles. We’re making mini scones today. You can make big ones if you’d like, you might just need to up the cook time a minute or two.

how to make homemade sconeseasy scone recipe

Spread on a lined or greased baking sheet and pop them in the oven.

vegan scone recipe

A few minutes later you’ll be pleasantly greeted with fluffy pumpkin scones.

recipe for pumpkin scones

fluffy homemade scones

Let cool completely before icing. I actually prefer them without the icing, still warm from the oven. But feel free to go the icing route too.

vegan pumpkin scones recipe

I made a cinnamon glaze and a pumpkin spice icing. You can use one or the other, or a combination of both. The combo ones were my favorite.

healthy version of starbucks pumpkin scones

pumpkin scones made vegan

So now go grab your homemade iced coffee from yesterday, and sit down with a plateful of better-than-Starbucks pumpkin scones.

pumpkin scones with iced coffee


Pumpkin Scones
Save RecipeSave Recipe


    For the Scones
  • 1 cup spelt flour
  • 1 cup all purpose flour
  • 1/2 Tbsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
  • 1/4 tsp ground allspice
  • 1/4 tsp ground ginger
  • 1/8 tsp ground cloves
  • 1 Tbsp granulated sugar
  • 1 Tbsp brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup vegan butter
  • 1/3 cup pumpkin puree
  • 1/3 cup almond milk
  • For the Cinnamon Icing
  • 1/4 cup powdered sugar
  • 1/2 Tbsp almond milk
  • Cinnamon & nutmeg to taste
  • For the Pumpkin Spice Icing
  • 1/4 cup powdered sugar
  • 1 tsp almond milk
  • 1 tsp pumpkin puree
  • Cinnamon & ground cloves to taste


    For the Scones
  1. Mix together dry ingredients.
  2. Cut in cold butter. If your dough gets too warm at any point, stick it in the fridge.
  3. Stir in milk and pumpkin puree.
  4. Mix until ball of dough forms. You'll likely need to use your hands as it will be dry at first.
  5. Roll dough into rectangle. Slice into triangles.
  6. Bake at 375 for 12 minutes.
  7. For the Icings
  8. Mix all ingredients together. Adjust amount of milk to achieve desired thickness. If only using one icing, double the recipe.



{ 30 comments… read them below or add one }

Heather @ Dietitian on the Run September 22, 2011 at 10:10 am
Scone success!! I love that you "whomp whomp" 'd your scone fails, hah.
jen @ jen is green September 22, 2011 at 10:27 am
could you use ww flour instead of spelt?
Heather September 22, 2011 at 10:32 am
You can, but they'll be a little bit denser. You could try using cake or pastry flour instead of all purpose, or using a little bit more ap and a little less ww. Or just sub ww for the spelt if you don't mind a denser scone.;)
Lindsey September 22, 2011 at 11:32 am
I need to make these! I tried a Starbucks pumpkin scone on the weekend and it totally turned me off. Icing was too much and the scone too dry :(
Heather September 23, 2011 at 9:18 am
I know what you mean about them being dry- mine crumbled allll over the place. I guess that's why they drown them in icing- to try to make up for it. :/
Shanna, Like Banana September 22, 2011 at 11:50 am
YUM! I did a similar twist last year I love scones in general but am always dismayed at the crazy calorie count. Yours turned out fabulous it looks like :)
Heather September 23, 2011 at 9:19 am
Ooo I love the addition of oats in yours!
Carolyn September 22, 2011 at 12:28 pm
I love this, and will def be making them. Thanks for a healthy and tasty recipe!
Aimee September 22, 2011 at 12:49 pm
These sound amazing! I love that we are back in pumpkin treat season. :)
Anna @ On Anna's Plate September 22, 2011 at 12:59 pm
Starbucks' scones are sooooo good. I'm glad you found a way to make them at home!!
Lindsay @ biking before bed September 22, 2011 at 1:04 pm
I have always been tempted to try Starbucks pumpkin scones but these look so much better. If you run into Britney at Target... Give her one of these:)
Heather @ Get Healthy with Heather September 22, 2011 at 2:07 pm
They sure did fluff up! I'd much prefer your homemade version to s-bucks anyway. They sure are cute!!
Michelle September 22, 2011 at 6:48 pm
Those are beautiful layers!
Katie September 23, 2011 at 2:19 am
Yum! These look so good! I used to love starbucks pumpkin scones and haven't been able to have them in years. Just might have to try this recipe!
Kristi @ lifesprinkles September 23, 2011 at 2:43 am
ohhhh gonna try these! LOVE starbucks pumpkin scones :)
Marina September 23, 2011 at 6:06 am
Can't wait to make those! Do you think I could freeze them maybe? I live by myself, so better if I froze them :D
Heather September 24, 2011 at 9:32 am
Definitely! You can freeze them baked or unbaked; which ever is easiest for you!
Marina September 24, 2011 at 1:41 pm
Thanks! I will definitely make them pretty soon!
Natalie September 23, 2011 at 10:41 am
yum! these looks so good!
My Fudo September 23, 2011 at 11:36 am
Oh great. that scones looks so delectable. I can have a better use for a cause of our backyard pumpkins.
Haley @ Health Freak College Girl September 23, 2011 at 1:00 pm
oh wow these look amazing! i will be making these veryyy soon :)
Amy September 24, 2011 at 1:18 am
Would oat flour work as a good substitution for the spelt flour?
Heather September 24, 2011 at 9:34 am
It's worth a try! It'd probably make a denser scone, like whole wheat flour would. You might try using a little more all purpose and a little less oat, increasing the baking powder a little bit, or just have a bit of a heavier scone. ;)
Heather @ That Uncomfortable Itch September 24, 2011 at 11:27 am
What a stunning collection of pictures! So mouth watering. Were it not for that deathly gluten allergy I would chuck my kids' Saturday soccer games, make these and eat them all. I might try to make it with gluten free flour though.
Alison September 5, 2012 at 6:45 am
Wow!! I just baked these. I'm not the best in the kitchen so wasn't sure how I'd go. These are amazing!! My husband is super impressed too! I made them for a morning tea at work for tomorrow, but we want to eat them all now!
Michelle November 30, 2012 at 2:14 pm
I just made these. I used two cups all-purpose flour as I did not have any spelt. They are really good. I love the fact that they are not too sweet.
Heather December 1, 2012 at 7:27 pm
I'm so glad you liked them! Glad to hear they tasted good with AP flour too!
Valerie M December 7, 2012 at 5:41 pm
I was wondering if you could substitute the butter for coconut oil?
Heather December 8, 2012 at 2:49 pm
You probably could, but you want to make sure it's solid and cold- maybe even pop it in the freezer for a few minutes before using it.
Valerie M December 15, 2012 at 6:03 pm
Thank you. I am giving it a go now. I will let you know the outcome.

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