This pumpkin scone recipe takes a savory route with fresh herbs and parmesan cheese. They’re a great alternative to biscuits or bread during the holidays!
Hands up if scones are one of your favorite baked goods!
Mine’s held high over here just so you know.
I love a good scone both savory and sweet. There’s just something about that buttery, flaky, sort of dry crumbly texture (in a good way!) that trumps bread and biscuits for me.
We’re changing that today with these pumpkin scones!
Filled with parmesan (both in the scone and on top), dried and fresh sage, chopped pecans and a few pepitas (raw pumpkin seeds) for good measure, these savory pumpkin scones are hearty and perfect for fall.
I don’t know about you, but I know I’d much prefer a basket of these pumpkin scones on my holiday table than some biscuits or rolls from a can.
What’s in savory pumpkin scones?
The ingredient list is pretty simple:
- dried and fresh sage
- baking powder
- baking soda
- parmesan cheese
- cream or milk
I use a combination of all-purpose flour and whole wheat white flour in this pumpkin scone recipe for a little extra heartiness. If you prefer to just use all of one flour, that’s totally fine and the recipe will work just as well.
The pecans can also be substituted with another nut if you prefer. Walnuts would work well or, simply leave the nuts out if you so choose.
Pepitas are also optional. Sunflower seeds would be a nice alternative or even hemp seeds too.
The trick to making super flaky scones
I’m sure you know that when making scones, just like biscuits and other flaky baked goods, you want the butter to be cold.
The difficulty with that becomes “cutting” the butter into the flour. If you don’t own a pastry cutter (which I do not), it’s a tiresome process! Using a fork will make your fingers ache and using your hands can warm up the butter too much.
My solution to all this and the trick to getting a great flake on your scones is to grate the cold butter with a box grater!
By adding grated cold butter to the flour, you eliminate the need of the whole “cutting” process. A few simple kneads with your hands and the dough will stick because the butter is the perfect size, shape and consistency to hold everything together.
I truly wish I had learned this trick sooner in life!
What I love about these parmesan pumpkin scones
Well, there’s a bunch!
But first up, I love how this is a relatively small batch scone recipe.
Often times, baked goods just produce too much for just the two of us. So, if you’re like me and it’s just a couple of you in your house, I think you’ll appreciate how this makes just 6 scones.
That said, you could easily double the recipe to get a dozen which you may want to do if making these for Thanksgiving or another holiday.
The second thing I love about this recipe is how you get pumpkin flavor without pumpkin spice.
Can I get an amen for that? I can’t be the only one out here needing a reprieve from the pumpkin spice this and pumpkin spice that literally taking over all packaged foods right now.
Pumpkin does not have to exclusively mean cinnamon, nutmeg and sugar.
It’s a wonderful savory squash with a nice heartiness and great nutrition benefits. It’s nice to enjoy it once and awhile in a non-dessert/sweet way.
Can I freeze pumpkin scones?
Yes, after they’re baked and completely cooled, you can freeze these in an air-tight freezer safe bag.
To reheat, I suggest a toaster oven.
What do they taste like?
Flavor wise, there’s an undertone of pumpkin/squash, a touch of sweetness and a heavy sage presence in these pumpkin scones.
The salty parmesan comes through just enough on the inside of the scone but then it’s really highlighted by the sprinkling on top.
Texture wise, the pumpkin keeps them ever so slightly moist in the middle as you might be able to see by the picture below but that grated butter does its job maintaining a crisp exterior and well defined layers that crumble just as a scone should.
While I’m not a huge fan of nuts and seeds in a cookie, I do love both the pecans and pepitas in these scones. They keep each bite interesting and of course, impart some flavor and added nutrition as well.
What do I serve these with?
Savory pumpkin scones would make a great “bread” option on a holiday table.
I’ve eaten them for breakfast too. Either a drizzle of some raw honey or a pat of butter on a toasted scone is delicious with a plate of eggs!
And when I make my seasonal pickled cranberries, I can’t resist pairing them with one of these scones fresh out of the oven.
The savory pumpkin flavor combined with the sweet tanginess from the pickled cranberries is outrageous!
Love this recipe for savory parmesan pumpkin scones? You might like one of these too:
Parmesan Pumpkin Scones
- 1/2 cup all purpose flour
- 1/2 cup whole wheat white flour
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- 1 teaspoon dried sage
- 1/2 tablespoon baking powder
- 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/4 cup 4 tablespoons cold butter, grated
- 1/3 cup grated parmesan cheese
- 1/2 cup pumpkin puree
- 2 tablespoons light cream/milk
- 1/4 cup pecans chopped
- 2 tablespoons pepitas chopped
- 1 tablespoon chopped fresh sage
- 2 tablespoons grated parmesan
- Preheat oven to 400°F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
- In a large bowl, combine the flours, sugar, dried sage, baking powder, baking soda and salt.
- Add the grated butter and parmesan then stir to combine.
- In a small bowl, whisk together the pumpkin puree and cream/milk.
- Pour the pumpkin/milk mixture into the large bowl with the dry ingredients and stir until just mixed.
- Add the chopped pecans and pepitas and combine gently with your hands.
- Lightly flour the counter and turn the dough out onto the surface.
- Gently knead together with your hands just until dough sticks together. Form into a round disc shape about 1" thick.
- Sprinkle the chopped sage and parmesan on top then gently pat down so it sticks to the dough.
- Slice into 6 triangle/pie shaped pieces.
- Place each scone on the baking sheet and bake for about 15 minutes until the scones are golden brown on the edges and fully baked through.
- Remove from the oven and cool on a rack.
This website provides approximate nutrition information for convenience and as a courtesy only. Nutrition information can vary for a variety of reasons. For the most precise nutritional data use your preferred nutrition calculator based on the actual ingredients you used in the recipe.
Gina Matsoukas is the writer, founder, photographer and recipe developer of Running to the Kitchen — a food website focused on providing healthy, wholesome recipes using fresh and seasonal ingredients as much as possible. Her work has been featured in numerous media outlets both digital and print, including MSN, Huffington post, Buzzfeed, Women’s Health and Food Network.