Yield: 8 apple butter swirled scones // Total Time: 1 hr. 10 min. // Disclaimer: This post includes affiliate links.
Flaky yet moist scones rolled up with a generous amount of delicious apple butter, and topped with a simple cinnamon glaze.
Apple Butter Swirled Scones
I’m here today to say that scones deserve more love and attention! They often have a bad reputation for being super dry, but I will assure you that these scones are super moist and super delicious. These apple butter swirled scones are THE perfect fall scone. They are bursting with cinnamon and apple flavor all throughout, and are swirled like a cinnamon roll with a generous amount of apple butter. To top it all off is a simple, delicious cinnamon glaze.
What is apple butter?
Despite what the name might imply, there is no butter in apple butter! Apple butter is essentially apples, sugar, and spices that have been cooked down together to a point where you get this super concentrated applesauce that has been caramelized and is now super flavorful. You can definitely make your own but I like to opt for store-bought in this instance!
Apple butter swirled scones recipe tips
Weigh your ingredients
Weighing your ingredients is important for getting the recipe perfect and getting consistent results. Not weighing your ingredients can lead to adding too much or too little of an ingredient. In a small batch recipe it is especially important to get those correct measurements because there is less room for error. If you haven’t already, I highly recommend purchasing a kitchen scale. This one is super cheap and worked well for me when I was starting out!
Keep the dough and ingredients cold
I’m always stressing the importance of room temperature ingredients but when it comes to scones, it’s the complete opposite! The trick to getting those flaky layers and butter pockets is to keep the dough cold. This means you should not take out any of your cold ingredients (egg, butter, sour cream) until right before you need them. If you notice the butter getting too warm at any point while making the scones, just pop the dough into the freezer for 5-10 minutes to harden it up again.
Chill the dough!
I know, I know, it’s annoying to wait. This step is super important because it ensures that the scones will not spread much in the oven, and will bake up nice and tall! I recommend freezing the dough for at least 30 minutes before slicing and baking.
Knead the dough carefully
You’re going to want to knead the dough together just until it forms a cohesive ball. If you continue to knead the scone dough, more gluten will be developed and the scones will become more tough & chewy.
Ingredients and substitutions
For the apple butter scones:
All purpose flour: for structure and chewiness.
Baking powder: for helping the scones rise.
Salt: to help balance and bring out the sweetness of the scones.
Ground cinnamon: for a little added flavor to the dough. I use cinnamon as it’s a more common ingredient, but you can substitute in apple pie spice in an equal amount if you’d like!
Unsalted butter: for tenderness and making those delicious flaky layers. You can substitute in salted butter, just be sure to remove the excess salt from the dough!
Light brown sugar: for lightly sweetening and for moisture. You can easily substitute in granulated or dark brown sugar.
Egg: for binding and for moisture.
Sour cream: makes these scones nice and tender and keeps them from being dry. I recommend using full-fat sour cream.
Apple butter: the delicious filling for the middle of the scones!
For the cinnamon glaze:
Powdered sugar: thickens up and sweetens the buttercream. I recommend using organic powdered sugar as it gives more of a melt-in-your-mouth feel to the glaze, but standard powdered sugar will work just as great!
Ground cinnamon: for flavor.
Milk: Use your favorite dairy or non-dairy milk here, we will just use a touch of milk to create and loosen up the glaze so that it can be drizzled on the scones.
How to make apple butter swirled scones
1. Cut the butter into the dry ingredients. In a medium sized mixing bowl, add in the flour, baking powder, salt, cinnamon and sugar. Add in the cold cubed butter and using your fingers or a pastry blender, cut the butter into small pieces into the dry ingredients.
2. Add in the wet ingredients. In a small bowl, whisk together the egg and sour cream. Make a well in the center of the dry ingredients, then pour the egg mixture into it. Use a wooden spoon or rubber spatula to start mixing the ingredients together. Once the ingredients seem like they are no longer mixing together, use your hands to start lightly kneading the dough just until it fully comes together.
3. Roll out the scone dough. Transfer the dough out onto a clean, lightly floured work surface. Shape the dough into a rectangle, then lightly flour the top of it. Use a rolling pin to roll the dough out into a 10″ (25 cm) x 12″ (30 cm) rectangle
4. Roll up the scone dough. Evenly spread the apple butter over the scone dough, leaving the edges clean. Exactly as you would with a cinnamon roll, start rolling up the scone dough from the shorter side until you have a log of scone dough. Wrap the dough in plastic wrap, then place in the freezer for at least 30 minutes.
5. Slice the scones. Once the scones have chilled, use a knife to slice the scones into 8 equally sized triangle pieces (to the best of your ability, mine definitely were not perfect!) I provided a photo above so you can kind of see how the dough is cut. Basically I started with a slice in the middle, then another one in the middle of both halves, and then did a diagonal cut between the lines (I hope this make sense!)
6. Bake. Lightly brush the tops of each scone with heavy cream, then bake them at 425°F for 15-20 minutes, until golden brown.
7. Make the glaze. In a small bowl, whisk together the powdered sugar, cinnamon, and milk of choice. If the glaze seems too thick, add a touch more milk. If the glaze seems too thin, add a touch more powdered sugar.
8. Serve and enjoy! Once the scones have cooled to room temperature, drizzle the glaze over them. Serve and enjoy!
Apple Butter Swirled Scones Q & A
Can I double these apple butter swirled scones?
Of course! Simply double all of the ingredients in the recipe and divide the dough into two even rectangles. I (even more) strongly recommend measuring by weight if you are going to double the recipe for the best results.
Can I make these cookies ahead of time?
Definitely! Simply leave them in the freezer for as long as you’d like before baking them off (up to 1 month!) Just be sure to take them out of the freezer and to leave them on the counter for 5-15 minutes for them to soften just enough to slice.
How to store apple butter swirled scones
Like most baked goods, these cookies will definitely taste the best on the day that they are baked. They will last for up to 3 days stored in an airtight container at room temperature.
Why do you measure in grams?
My recipes are all written in grams because it is the most accurate way to bake. When you use a kitchen scale, you ensure that your baked goods turn out as close to the written recipe as possible. Plus, the cleanup is way easier when using a scale! I will provide standard cup measurements but please note that I have not tested the recipe using cup measurements and therefore can not guarantee your recipe will come out how mine did. Here is my favorite kitchen scale, and here’s an article about why I use a kitchen scale, and why you should too!
A note on oven temperature
Ovens vary and fluctuate in temperature. For example, I always have to set my oven to 330°F if I want it to bake at 350°F. If you love to bake like I do, I highly recommend getting an oven thermometer. They are super helpful for letting you know when your oven might be lying to you! I use this one.
Tools and ingredients
Cookie Sheet: I absolutely love USA pan products because of their great quality. I use their cookie sheet which is always the perfect size for all of my small batch cookies!
Silicone baking mat: parchment paper will always do the job for cookies, but I like to use a silicone mat when I can to try to cut down on waste. This is the one I use.
For a full list of tools, equipment and ingredients that I use and love, you can check out this page here.
Did you make these apple butter swirled scones?
If you made these apple butter swirled scones I would love to see them and know your thoughts! Please leave a comment and review down below, and tag me on Instagram @freshbeanbakery. If you have any questions about the recipe I will gladly do my best to answer them in the comments below!
Apple Butter Swirled Scones
Apple Butter Swirled SCONES
- 260 g all purpose flour (2 c.)
- 1 tbsp. baking powder
- ½ tsp. salt
- 1 tsp. ground cinnamon
- 55 g light brown sugar (¼ c.)
- 113 g unsalted butter cold, cut into cubes (½ c.)
- 1 egg cold
- 100 g sour cream cold (⅓ c. + 1 tbsp.)
- 200 g apple butter (¾ c.)
- 120 g powdered sugar (1 c.)
- ½ tsp. ground cinnamon
- 1 ½ tbsp. milk of choice
Apple Butter Swirled Scones
- In a medium sized mixing bowl, add in the flour, baking powder, salt, cinnamon and sugar. Add in the cold cubed butter and using your fingers or a pastry blender, cut the butter into small pieces into the dry ingredients.
- In a small bowl, whisk together the egg and sour cream. Make a well in the center of the dry ingredients, then pour the egg mixture into it. Use a wooden spoon or rubber spatula to start mixing the ingredients together. Once the ingredients seem like they are no longer mixing together, use your hands to start lightly kneading the dough just until it fully comes together.
- Transfer the dough out onto a clean, lightly floured work surface. Shape the dough into a rectangle, then lightly flour the top of it. Use a rolling pin to roll the dough out into a 10" (25 cm) x 12" (30 cm) rectangle
- Evenly spread the apple butter over the scone dough, leaving the edges clean. Exactly as you would with a cinnamon roll, start rolling up the scone dough from the shorter side until you have a log of scone dough.
- Wrap the dough in plastic wrap, then place in the freezer for at least 30 minutes. At this point you could also leave them in the freezer overnight to bake off in the morning!
- When you're getting ready to bake the scones, preheat the oven to 425°F / 220°C and prepare a baking sheet by placing a silicone baking mat or parchment paper on it.
- Once the scones have chilled, use a knife to slice the scones into 8 roughly equally sized triangle pieces. I started with a slice in the middle, then another one in the middle of both halves, and then did a diagonal cut between the lines. (Picture is provided earlier in this blog post for reference!)
- Lightly brush the tops of each scone with a bit of heavy cream, then bake them for 15-20 minutes, until golden brown.
- In a small bowl, whisk together the powdered sugar, cinnamon, and milk of choice. If the glaze seems too thick, add a touch more milk. If the glaze seems too thin, add a touch more powdered sugar.
- Once the scones have cooled to room temperature, drizzle the glaze over them. Serve and enjoy!