I used to love making scones with my Granny, and these Savoury Vegan Pumpkin Cheese Scones are inspired by those afternoons I spent with her, learning all her tricks of how to make the lightest, fluffiest and most delicious scones around.
Pumpkin scones are an Australian classic and you can choose to make them savoury or sweet. I like them savoury, where they end up more like an American Biscuit, suitable for dunking in soups or eating with cheese.
Granny's scones were legendary, a bit like quite a few of her recipes, that I have veganised for the blog, such as her Famous Rum Balls! Her scones were always super light and fluffy. She claimed it was because she stirred them with the feather of an Angel's Wing.
And I believed her.
She confessed eventually that it was really because she had cold hands and worked the dough quickly. See the Top Tips below for how to make the most delicious pumpkin scones even if you don't have cold hands!
This vegan pumpkin cheese scone recipe has super simple and delicious ingredients. They are:
- Vegan Butter - traditionally scones are made with butter, which is no problem as there are fantastic vegan butters out there. I love Naturli's vegan organic butter or the Flora Plant block. Bothe are super buttery and also perfect to spread on the scones once cooked.
- Nutritional yeast - this creates the cheesy taste of these vegan savoury pumpkin scones. It's deactivated yeast and is a staple in many savoury vegan recipes. Now, back in the day, my Granny's cheesy scones were stuffed full of parmesan and cheddar cheese. Nutritional yeast works a treat, especially combined with the pumpkin and some fresh (or dried) sage and thyme.
- Dijon mustard - adds an extra kick, and is also an ingredient you'll find in many vegan cheesy recipes. We love dijon mustard, and you'll find it featured in my amazing cheesy lasagne.
- Pumpkin - you could use canned/tinned pumpkin here, but seeing as it's Hallowe'en as I'm writing this, why not use up some of the interiors of your Hallowe'en pumpkins! They're usually discarded, but are all edible, even though sometimes can be a little watery. Alternatively, if you have lovely sweet butternut squash or other squash you want to use, you can just steam or boil it.
- All-purpose flour - the main bulk of the vegan savoury pumpkin scones.
- Bicarbonate of soda and baking powder - to give rise and fluffiness.
- Dried herbs - sage and thyme go deliciously with these scones. You can use fresh or dried - both are delicious.
- Vegan milk - there is just a small amount needed to loosen the mixture.
This is how you make the cheesy pumpkin scones: Full quantities are listed in the recipe card below.
- Combine herbs, nutritional yeast, butter and pumpkin in a bowl.
2. Cut the butter and pumpkin together with a knife and mix well.
3. Add the flour with baking soda & baking powder to the bowl.
4.Mix the flour gradually with the pumpkin and butter mix, using a knife. It should still be pretty lumpy, but start to come together.
5. Add a small amount of vegan milk to make a soft dough.
6. Push the dough together gently then roll out the dough with a rolling pin. Make sure to roll quite thickly for a chunkier scone.
7. Cut out the scones with a glass or a cookie cutter. Press gently to leave open edges to allow the scone to puff up.
8. Put on a baking tray covered with baking parchment, and dust with flour. Bake for 15 minutes at 200°C / 400°F / Gas Mark 6.
Here are some top tips for making these delicious pumpkin scones
- You don't want the butter to melt before it hits the oven, and I don't always have the requisite cold hands for mixing the dough. So instead I use another trick I learned from Granny, which is to use a butter knife to cut the fat (in our case vegan butter). So try and work in a cool room, and use either your fingertips or a knife.
- My other top tip, is to use fridge cold or only just thawed frozen pumpkin / squash. This keeps the mixture cold and the butter from melting. If using tinned/canned pumpkin, put it in the fridge beforehand. If using fresh pumpkin, I suggest oven roasting the flesh of any large pumpkins to concentrate the flavour, before pulping it and letting it get properly cold in the fridge.
These yummy cheesy pumpkin scones are the perfect thing to serve up for a savoury alternative at afternoon tea, or are also delicious warmed through and served with some hearty lentil soup. So yummy split and toasted with some vegan butter slathered on top!
The correct way to pronounce "Scone" is so it sounds like done, and does not sound like moan. Obviously, right?! But we'll let you pronounce it however you like.
🌶 Substitutions and Variations
You can choose a few ways to mix up this vegan pumpkin scone recipe:
- Even Cheesier: Add a good grating (½ cup or 50grams) of vegan cheese of your choice. Add this in when you are mixing the pumpkin and butter together for the ultimate cheesey scone!
- Canned Pumpkin Puree- You can use pre-made pumpkin puree from a can.
- Herbs: I used sage in my recipe, but you can use dried oregano and/or thyme.
- Spicy- Add a bit of heat in with some cayenne pepper. Add a little, or a lot!
- Gluten-Free- choose your favourite gluten free flour. You might need to add extra milk to help stick the dough together.
When adding in the plant milk, be sure to add it bit by bit. If you over-add it, just add some extra flour.
Add a tiny bit more plant milk. Be careful not to over add it.
Make sure to roll your dough out thickly (at least 5-6 cms thick). When you press down on the cutter, don't twist it, just pop it down and up. This avoids 'sealing' the edge and allows the scone to rise up.
This happens when the dough is overworked and the butter gets warm. Keep the dough cool, and don't over mix it. Remember 'mixed with an Angel's Wing'
If you like the sound of these Cheesy Vegan Savoury Pumpkin Scones, you might also like some of these other tasty ideas:
Savoury Vegan Pumpkin Cheese Scones
For accuracy, I measure all ingredients in metric as standard, then convert and test the recipe for American cup measurements etc.
(Heads up Aussie and UK readers- your measurements in cups are sometimes different, so please use metric or check you have the correct cup and spoon type!!)
- 60 g (¼ cup) vegan butter
- 1 tablespoon dijon mustard
- 40 g (½ cup) nutritional yeast
- 250 g (1 cup) cold mashed pumpkin or squash (Approx 300g of uncooked pumpkin yields 250g cooked)
- 355 g (2½ cups) plain (all purpose) flour
- 4 teaspoon baking powder
- ¼ teaspoon bicarb soda
- 1 teaspoon thyme (fresh or dried)
- 2 teaspoon sage (fresh or dried )
- 2 teaspoon vegan milk (just enough to bring the dough together)
- Preheat oven to 200°C / 400°F / Gas Mark 6 and line a tray with baking parchment.
- Stir the , herbs, butter and mustard in a bowl until combined. Best to use a knife to combine the butter.60 g vegan butter, 1 tablespoon dijon mustard, 40 g , 2 teaspoon sage, 1 teaspoon thyme
- Add in the cold mashed pumpkin and stir until combined.250 g cold mashed pumpkin or squash
- Gradually add the flour, bicarb soda and baking powder to the pumpkin mix, and use a flat knife (a large butter knife is ideal) to cut the mixture together until it is just combined and starts coming together.355 g plain (all purpose) flour, 4 teaspoon baking powder, ¼ teaspoon bicarb soda
- If needed add a tiny bit of vegan milk to bring together the scone dough.2 teaspoon vegan milk
- Once you have a soft dough, turn it out onto a floured surface and give a light kneed to pull it all together (very light! you don't want tough scones!)
- Roll and pat the dough out until it is about 5-6 cm thick.
- Use a cookie cutter or a glass and cut between 10-12 scones out and put onto the baking tray. (Any leftover dough, pat together to make a wobbly scone. It's you cook's treat for later!).
- Dust with flour and bake the scones for about 14-15 minutes, until golden on top. They will sound hollow when tapped on the bottom when properly baked.
- Let cool on a wire rack and then serve!
- Delicious served warm with vegan butter!