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Carrot Cake Scones are a fun spin on Easter’s classic carrot cake. Shredded carrots, raisins, walnuts and cozy spices speckle the inside of these soft scones for the ultimate comfort breakfast!

A carrot cake scone topped with cream cheese icing on a white plate.

Carrot Cake Scones

I simply can not resist a soft scone. And one that’s flavored like carrot cake? Count me in!!

It seems like I have a scone for every season here on the blog. There’s honey citrus sweet potato scones for fall, blueberry buttermilk scones for summer, cranberry orange scones for winter, and now carrot cake scones for spring.

If you haven’t made my soft scones before, I highly suggest you give them a try. The base is plain so you can flavor them any way you like! It’s my number 1 go-to recipe and it has yet to fail me.

Overhead view of Carrot Cake Scones on white plates and a baking sheet.

I adapted my basic soft scone recipe once again to create today’s flavorful scone. I pretty much kept the base the same and added all the essentials for that classic carrot cake taste. I did find that I didn’t need to add as much liquid to the dough since shredded carrots kept the scones pretty moist.

A good scone should have a tender interior with crisp edges. It should also be crumbly yet moist and practically melt in your mouth. This is made possible by loads of butter and the use of buttermilk. Buttermilk is key here!

Normally I prefer lemon cream cheese scones with strawberries or chai pear scones but I’m loving this carrot cake version. I couldn’t stop reaching for “just one more bite”.

A Carrot Cake Scone on a white plate with a fork taking a bite out.

How to make carrot cake scones

I always share my tried and true tips for making scones with each recipe I bring to the blog, so below is a list of the most important things to do in order to make soft, flavorful scones with the best texture.

  • Cold butter is a must! You want little bits of cold butter throughout the dough in order to create airy pockets inside the scones as they bake.
  • Use buttermilk in the dough. No other liquid will give the same result. Not heavy cream, milk, or nondairy substitute. You must use buttermilk in order to get soft scones.
  • You may not need all the liquid called for in the recipe. Add just enough to bind the ingredients together. The dough shouldn’t be wet and sticky.
butter cut into flour with pastry cutter in glass bowl
carrot cake scone ingredients in glass bowl
  • Don’t overmix the dough. Over mixing will cause gluten to develop in the dough and this can lead to a tough scone. A few dry crumbles in the bottom of the bowl is perfectly okay. You can knead those in later.
  • Handle the dough as little as possible to prevent the butter from melting in your hands. If the butter melts while you are kneading and shaping the dough, it will not do its job in the oven.
  • Freeze the scones before baking. Preheat the oven while the scones sit in the freezer for about 30 minutes. Freezing the scones helps to ensure they won’t spread a ton as they bake.
  • Just before you put the scones in the oven, brush the tops with heavy cream. Milk will work too but I always use heavy cream. This is what gives the scones their gorgeous golden color.
Carrot Cake Scone Batter
scone dough shaped onto disk on parchment paper
Unbaked Carrot Cake Scones on Baking Sheet

With this recipe, you can get 16 small scones or 8 large scones. I usually cut mine into 8 pieces and the sones end up being about the size of my hand.

And because you can’t have carrot cake without cream cheese frosting, I decided to top the scones with a simple cream cheese glaze. Cream cheese, confectioners’ sugar, vanilla, and heavy cream are all you need. Just whisk those ingredients together and spread the glaze over the scones after baking.

My sister-n-law has been living with us and she took a batch of these carrot cake scones to work. She said everyone gobbled them up faster than she could blink. I guess that means everyone loved them!

Carrot Cake Scones on a baking sheet.

Have you made any of my scone recipes? I’d love to hear what you think of them!

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A carrot cake scone topped with cream cheese icing on a white plate.

Carrot Cake Scones

Yield: 8 scones
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Additional Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 10 minutes

Carrot Cake Scones are a fun spin on Easter’s classic carrot cake. Shredded carrots, raisins, walnuts and cozy spices speckle the inside of these soft scones for the ultimate comfort breakfast!

Ingredients

For the scones

  • 2 ¾ cups (358 g) all-purpose flour
  • ⅓ cup (67 g) granulated sugar
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ¾ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon ground ginger
  • ¼ teaspoon ground cloves
  • ½ cup (114 g) cold unsalted butter, cut into pieces
  • ¾ cup (96 g) shredded carrot
  • ⅓ cup (49 g) raisins
  • ⅓ cup (39 g) chopped walnuts
  • ¾ cup (180 ml) cold buttermilk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 tablespoon heavy cream or milk

For the glaze

  • 4 ounces (113 g) cream cheese, softened
  • ½ cup (60 g) confectioners’ sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 4 tablespoons heavy cream

Instructions

Make the scones

  1. In a large bowl, whisk the flour, sugar, baking powder, cinnamon, salt, baking soda, ginger, and cloves together. 
  2. Cut the butter into the flour using a pastry blender, 2 knives, or your fingertips. The mixture should look like coarse crumbs. Stir in the shredded carrots, raisins, and walnuts.
  3. Whisk the buttermilk, egg, and vanilla together and gradually add it to the flour mixture. Stir just until the dough comes together. You may not need all the buttermilk. Add a little at a time until the mixture is moist but not too wet. Do not over mix the dough or the scones will be tough.
  4. Transfer the dough to a lightly floured surface and gently knead the dough four or five times. Pat the dough into a 7 inch round circle. Cut the circle in half, then cut each half into four triangle-shaped wedges. 
  5. Arrange the scones 2 inches apart on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Place the scones in the freezer for 30 minutes.
  6. Meanwhile, position the oven rack in the center of the oven and preheat to 400°F. 
  7. Remove the scones from the freezer and brush the tops with milk or cream. Bake for 15 to 20 minutes or until golden brown. Transfer to a wire rack to cool. Top with glaze and serve immediately.

Make the glaze

  1. Combine the ingredients for the glaze in a medium bowl. Whisk until smooth and spreadable.

Notes

  1. The scones need to be cold when going into the oven. Placing the shaped dough into the freezer for 30 minutes ensures the scones will bake up light and fluffy.
  2. Alternatively, you can place the scone dough in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours.

This recipe yields 8 large scones. For smaller scones, cut the dough into  16 pieces instead of 8. Watch the scones closely as they bake because smaller scones may require a shorting baking time.

Make ahead tip

  1. Unbaked scones can be refrigerated overnight. Or seal in an airtight container and freeze for up to 1 month. Add about 2 minutes to the baking time when baking from frozen.
  2. Scones will keep for up to 2 days stored in an airtight container at room temperature.
  3. Scones can be frozen for up to 3 months. Thaw in the refrigerator overnight.

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Nutrition Information:
Yield: 8 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 294Total Fat: 11gSaturated Fat: 6gUnsaturated Fat: 4gCholesterol: 53mgSodium: 626mgCarbohydrates: 38gFiber: 2gSugar: 2gProtein: 11g

* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet. Since different brands of ingredients have different nutritional information, the values shown are just an estimate.

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13 Comments

  1. Jane McIntire says:

    I love carrot cake; but raisins, not so much. Can these be made without them?

  2. Lynn Napoli says:

    Can your scones (dough) be frozen..then defrosted and baked?

    1. Yes! Shape the scone, place them on a baking sheet and wrap tightly with aluminum foil. Freeze the scones until you are ready to bake them then add 2 minutes to the bake time. No need to thaw.

  3. Great recipe! Making for a bridal shower! Thank you!

  4. This is the best basic scone recipe I have ever tried. Delicious. I made them Easter Sunday and they were perfect till they were gone. Of course, being from Baton Rouge, I used pecans rather than walnuts and I didn’t get much flavor of sweet carrots (my carrots came from a grocery and not home grown, even though I used every bit the recipe called for) but believe me the taste of baked pecans and raisins was heavenly. Thanks so much for the recipe.

    1. Thank you for sharing your experience with the recipe. I’m thrilled to hear the scones were such a hit!!

    2. darlene carman says:

      Look for carrots grown in CA they are always sweeter then anywhere else 🙂

  5. Crab Dynasty says:

    Do you think canned coconut milk (full fat) or canned coconut cream could be used in place of the buttermilk?

    1. I haven’t tried using coconut milk. But, I’m thinking it may work since the recipe contains so much baking powder.

  6. These are just perfect! I love carrot cake!!