• Pumpkin & fennel scones (Chris Middleton)Source: Chris Middleton

The pumpkin (squash) adds lightness to these scones that you perhaps wouldn’t expect, and the colour is sensational! I am a traditionalist when it comes to making scones and believe you should rub the butter in with your fingertips. You can do this step with a food processor if you like; just don’t process for too long as retaining visible specks of butter helps the texture of the scones.






Skill level

Average: 3.3 (6 votes)


  • 225 g (8 oz/1½ cups) plain (all-purpose) fl our
  • 3 tsp baking powder
  • 30 g (1 oz) cold butter, chopped
  • 2 tsp fennel seeds, roughly crushed in a pestle and mortar, plus extra to sprinkle
  • 190 g (6½ oz/¾ cup) steamed and mashed pumpkin (squash), cooled
  • 125 ml (4 fl oz/½ cup) buttermilk, plus extra to glaze
  • butter or raspberry jam and cream, to serve

Cook's notes

Oven temperatures are for conventional; if using fan-forced (convection), reduce the temperature by 20˚C. | We use Australian tablespoons and cups: 1 teaspoon equals 5 ml; 1 tablespoon equals 20 ml; 1 cup equals 250 ml. | All herbs are fresh (unless specified) and cups are lightly packed. | All vegetables are medium size and peeled, unless specified. | All eggs are 55-60 g, unless specified.


1. Preheat the oven to 200°C/400°F (fan-forced) and line a baking tray with non-stick baking paper.

2. Sift the flour and baking powder together into a large bowl. Add the butter and use your fingertips to rub it
into the fl our until the mixture resembles coarse breadcrumbs. Stir in the fennel seeds.

3. Make a well in the centre of the fl our mixture and add the pumpkin and buttermilk. Using a butter knife in a cutting action, combine the mixture until it forms a soft sticky dough. Add a little more buttermilk if the
mixture seems dry.

4. Turn the dough onto a lightly floured surface and very gently knead and press the dough together. Using
your fingertips, pat the dough out to about 3 cm (1¼ in) thick. Cut out the scones using a 5 cm (2 in) round
cutter dipped in flour. Place the scones on the prepared tray so they’re almost touching. Gently press the
dough offcuts together and cut more scones as necessary. Carefully brush the top of the scones with
buttermilk and sprinkle with the extra crushed fennel seeds.

5. Bake for 20–25 minutes or until well-risen, lightly browned and cooked through. Wrap in a clean dish towel
to keep warm and soft. Serve with butter or jam and cream.

6. These scones are best eaten warm from the oven but will keep for 2–3 days in an airtight container. Split
and toast before eating.


Recipe and image from Incredible Bakes That Just Happen to be Refined-Sugar Free by Caroline Griffiths (Smith Street Books, $39.99 hbk).

View more refined sugar-free recipes from Incredible Bakes here.

View our Readable feasts review and more recipes from the book here.