I think it’s fair to start a countdown to Christmas now, no? I mean, we are almost exactly a month away. And these scones definitely communicate a festive, cinnamon-y, “I love winter” kind of feeling, which is what one certainly wants to cultivate in the weeks before Christmas. And in the weeks after Christmas, come to that.
These scones are gluten-free, vegan, made with coconut oil, and stocked with apple cider-infused cooked apples, as well as just some more plain ol’ apple cider. I amped up the cinnamon factor as well, upon the recommendation of my sister.
Admittedly I went back and forth for awhile on the topping – glaze, no glaze, glaze, no glaze. I really try to use natural sweeteners, and while there is nothing wrong with the occasional indulgence of icing sugar, I wanted something just slightly less processed. In the end, I decided a simple cinnamon sugar topping was best, using organic cane sugar.
These apple cider scones would make a delightful addition to any festive brunch, as well as any lazy weekend breakfast. Make them in addition to some banana espresso scones, and you have a variety of please every palate. Round it out with some tofu scramble, coconut yogurt, fresh fruit, and perhaps a green juice or two, and you have a festive morning meal that can’t be beat.
Festive Apple Cider Scones (v, gf)
- Author: Backyard Owl
- Recipe Notes: vegan, gluten-free, soy-free, nut-free
- Yield: 8-10 scones
- 2 cups brown rice flour
- 3 teaspoons baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon pink salt (if you don’t have pink salt, use another coarse salt)
- 1/3 cup cold coconut oil
- 1/4 cup maple syrup
- 1/2 cup almond milk
- 1 apple, diced (if organic, wash well but keep the peel on)
- 1/2 cup apple cider + another 1/2 cup apple cider
- 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon + another 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- OPTIONAL: 1/4 tsp additional spices of choice: nutmeg, cloves, allspice, and/or ginger
For the topping:
- 2 teaspoons organic cane sugar
- 1/4 tsp cinnamon
- Measure out coconut oil and chill in fridge until firm. Here’s a tip: measure into the 1/3 cup and then scoop out onto a plate and chill that way. Once chilled, the coconut oil can be more difficult to extract from the measuring cup.
- In a small saucepan, stir together 1/2 cup of the apple cider, 1/4 teaspoon of the cinnamon, and diced apple. Cook over medium heat until apples are very soft and almost all of the cider has been absorbed. Set aside to cool.
- In a small bowl, stir together another 1/4 teaspoon of cinnamon and 2 teaspoons organic cane sugar (for the scone topping).
- In a large bowl, whisk together brown rice flour, baking powder, salt, and 1 teaspoon cinnamon.
- Using your hands or a pastry cutter, cut together cold coconut oil and flour mix until it resembles coarse sand (the goal here is to create bits of coconut oil covered with flour – to create the flaky scone texture). Put in fridge until ready for use.
- Mix together almond milk, maple syrup, apple cider, and cooled cooked apple mixture.
- Pour apple/almond milk mix into cold flour/coconut oil mix and stir gently. When halfway mixed, turn out onto a well-floured counter top and continue gently combining (you don’t want to squish the coconut oil bits you’ve so carefully prepared) until you’ve formed a soft dough.
- Form into a square of dough about 1 inch thick. Using a sharp knife, slice into 9 squares (or so) and place on baking sheet.
- Freeze for 10 minutes before baking (or until oven has preheated – see next step).
- Preheat oven to 425F.
- Bake for 18-20 minutes or until firm on the outside and lightly golden.
Enjoy! These are best served on the day they’ve been made, but they also keep in the fridge for another two to three days.
© Backyard Owl