Date Cardamom Orange Scones. Wake up the flavours in your weekend brunch with these warmly spiced orange scones with pieces of sweet dates baked right in.
Regular readers of Rock Recipes will know that brunch is a well established weekly favourite in the Parsons household. Freshly baked scones are a particular weekend favourite and we’ve added some 20 Scone Recipes over the past 7 years from blueberry oatmeal to raspberry white chocolate and many more.
Last weekend when tidying the pantry cupboard, we seemed to have an abundance of dried fruits and I determined that I would make a mental note to try and put them to good use. There were quite a few dried dates that needed attention, so they were the main inspiration for this recipe.
My mom sometimes adds a twist to one of our tradition Newfoundland favourites when she makes Orange Date Crumble Bars, so I knew that would work. One of my favourite complimentary spices to use when baking with orange is cardamom so in that went too. If you don’t have it on hand and are looking for a cardamom substitute, try mixing cinnamon and nutmeg in equal parts.
These fragrantly orange scones baked up beautifully, with crispy edges and a warm soft centre, just how I love them and the flavours all worked together beautifully. In the interest of full disclosure I ate two and then had warmed a third as dessert after dinner.
They are just amazingly delicious with melting butter. I know my mom would love these too. I must remember to invite her for brunch when she returns from vacation in Ontario and be sure to have these on the menu.
I hate rewarming baked goods in the microwave, I just despise it. It often overheats them and turns baked goods rubbery or steams them and makes them too soft. I often stretch a batch of scones over 2 brunches by sealing them in a single layer of aluminum foil and reheating them for about 5 minutes in a preheated 350 degree oven.
I also freeze baked scones in the same way and it takes about 15 minutes to reheat them. I have also very successfully frozen unbaked scones, thawed them in the fridge overnight on a cookie sheet and baked them off in the morning. That’s a great way to enjoy just a few scones at a time for singles, couples or small families.
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- 3 cups flour
- 1/2 cup brown sugar
- 6 tsp baking powder
- ½ tsp salt
- 1 tsp ground cardamom
- ¾ cup very cold butter cubed
- Zest of one large orange finely grated or minced
- 1 cup chopped pitted dried dates
- Juice of one large orange plus milk to total 1 cup
- 1 tsp vanilla extract (optional)
I start these in my food processor because it is so fast but they can be made just as easily in a large bowl by cutting the butter in with a pastry blender or even 2 knifes held between the fingers.
In a food processor, combine the flour, brown sugar, baking powder, cardamom and salt.
Pulse in the cold butter until this mixture resembles a coarse meal. It is very important that pea sized pieces of butter remain in this mixture.
Transfer to a large bowl and toss in the dates and orange zest.
Juice the large orange that you zested and add that to a measuring cup. Add enough milk to bring the total volume of liquid tot he 1 cup mark., then stir in the vanilla extract
Pour this liquid over the surface of the dry mixture. Toss all together gently with a fork only enough to form a dough ball.
It is important that you work this dough as little as possible or the finished scones will be too dense and heavy.
Roll to 1 inch thickness and cut out scones with biscuit cutter or in triangles with a sharp knife and place on parchment lined baking sheet.
If desired you can brush the tops of the scones with an egg wash of 1 egg beaten together with 1 tbsp water.
You can sprinkle the tops with turbinado sugar and a little more orange zest if desired but this is, of course, optional.
Bake at 375 degrees F for 25 minutes or until light golden brown. Baking time will vary depending on the size of your biscuit cutter.
Makes 8 to 1o large scones or about 18 small scones.
The nutritional information provided is automatically calculated by third party software and is meant as a guideline only. Exact accuracy is not guaranteed. For recipes where all ingredients may not be used entirely, such as those with coatings on meats, or with sauces or dressings for example, calorie & nutritional values per serving will likely be somewhat lower than indicated
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Friday 17th of March 2023
Baking powder overload!! I couldn’t eat these! And I love dates and cardomom!
Saturday 8th of January 2022
The scones were excellent! Really flavorful and the perfect crisp on the outside and light inside! Loved them!
Sunday 1st of March 2020
Barry, could I make these without the sugar? I tried your sugarless fruit scones & they are amazing! Now I’m on a hunt for more sugar free recipes. :-)
Saturday 26th of May 2018
Delicious! Thank you Barry. My observations: After seeing vanilla was optional, decided to leave it out, as there were several other ingredients to give flavour. The dough seemed dry, was worried about that, but the finished scone was perfect, the bits of butter must have done the trick! Made 8 triangles, very, very large, very filling. Next time will cut in 12, will still be big. These were sweet enough (dates), didn't think they need the sugar on top so didn't use.. Did brush with egg though. Will be making again.
Sunday 20th of May 2018
Oh, help. These look delicious. In the list of all ngredients, i don't see the vanilla amount listed, but it is in the instructions. Have all the ingredients ready....
Barry C. Parsons
Wednesday 23rd of May 2018
1 tsp. Recipe is now updated.