Amazing Cinnamon Chip Scones

If you follow me on Instagram, you’ll know why I made these scones four times before being willing to post them.

Not that I have anything against blobby, spreading scones (they were terribly delicious), because I don’t, but I wanted a foolproof and pretty recipe to give you, and it took a few tries to get the measurements just right.

Amazing Cinnamon Chip Scones

Can we pause for a quick lecture about why a kitchen scale is so tremendously useful in the kitchen? It truly marks the line between experimental baking and no-fail recipes. I used to think only professional chefs, big baking nerds, or people with too much time on their hands had use for a kitchen scale.

Boy was I wrong.

Several years ago my frustration over inconsistent baking recipes mounted high enough that after screaming in my pillow too many times to count over failed cookies, a kitchen scale ended up in my kitchen, and it’s definitely one of my most prized kitchen tools. Inexpensive, useful and essential – if you don’t have a kitchen scale, get one! (This is the one I have and highly recommend it.)

I include weight measures for most of my baking recipes and rarely use a recipe online or in cookbooks that doesn’t include weights, because, call me crazy, I kind of like it when recipes turn out perfectly the first time, don’t you? If you are morally opposed to using a kitchen scale, please, please, please read this post on how to measure flour accurately.

Ok, phew! Rant over (for now).

Amazing Cinnamon Chip Scones

Today’s scone recipe (that I should be talking about instead of lecturing about scales) is infinitely adaptable. If you don’t have cinnamon chips, use mini chocolate chips! Or play around with other flavors – maybe lemon or orange zest with an accompanying glaze?

The base buttermilk recipe is so fantastic, it deserves to be put to work. But I will say that the cinnamon version is absolutely magical. The little cinnamon morsels soften just a bit while baking, leaving behind pockets of sweet, cinnamon flavor with every bite. I love the mini cinnamon chips from King Arthur Flour but I think regular cinnamon chips from the grocery store baking aisle will work just fine, too, and probably leave you with even more cinnamony goodness.

I included a few step-by-step photos below the recipe; sometimes a quick visual helps, especially if you haven’t made or perfected the almighty scone method, which is similar to a biscuit with the cardinal rule: DON’T OVERWORK THE DOUGH! Sorry to shout, but in the interest of avoiding tough, dry scones, it seemed necessary.

Having made these scones about a bajillion times over the last month, I can honestly say as a very proud and vocal scone lover that these are some of the best scones I’ve ever had.

I’ll be using this base recipe for just about every scone event from here on out (and encouraging my family to strongly think about making these for Mother’s Day; although just between you and me, I’m not above making my own food on Mother’s Day as a means to a very happy end for everyone).

Amazing Cinnamon Chip Scones

One Year Ago: Mexican Chopped Salad with Simple Honey Vinaigrette
Two Years Ago: Oatmeal Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Bars
Three Years Ago: Outrageous Eskimo Bars

Cinnamon Chip Scones {Best Basic Scone Recipe}

Yield: Makes 12-14 scones

Cinnamon Chip Scones {Best Basic Scone Recipe}

I have subbed half of the all-purpose flour with white whole wheat flour with pretty good results. The scones are a bit more dense but still delicious. If doing so, it's important not to overflour (using a scale to weigh the flour can help as well as not packing the flour into the cup when measuring).

The base scone recipe is very lightly sweet (meaning, not very sweet at all) which is perfect when paired with the sweet cinnamon chips and the light sprinkling of sugar, but if you are tempted to change up the add-in(s) or omit the sugar on top, you might want to increase the sugar in the dough just a bit. Speaking of cinnamon chips, the variety I use are on the miniature spectrum (similar to a mini chocolate chip) which means they easily find their way into all the nooks and crannies of the scone dough. If you use the cinnamon chips from your every day grocery store (similar to regular-sized chocolate chips), you might want to increase the amount and add 1 1/2 cups since they won't distribute as evenly as the mini ones.

I almost always use a food processor to mix up scone or biscuit dough. It's an awesome tool to avoid overmixing the dough. If you don't have a food processor, cut the butter into the dry ingredients using a pastry blender or two butter knives. If doing so, you'll want to get the butter/flour mixture incorporated together until the butter is in pea-sized or slightly smaller pieces before stirring in the buttermilk with a wooden spoon or large spatula. It's definitely doable to make these without a food processor so don't let that be a deal breaker.


  • 3 1/2 cups (17.5 ounces) all-purpose flour (see note above about whole wheat flour)
  • 1/3 cup (2.75 ounces) sugar
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks, 6 ounces) cold butter, cut into tablespoon-sized chunks
  • 1 cup cold buttermilk
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 3/4 cup (5 ounces) cinnamon chips (see note above)
  • 2 tablespoons butter, melted
  • Granulated sugar for sprinkling


  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Line a large, rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside.
  2. In a food processor (see note above if you don't have one), combine the flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Pulse to combine. Add the butter and pulse until the butter is cut into smaller pieces - don't overprocess here; the butter should be no smaller than pea-sized pieces.
  3. Add the buttermilk and vanilla and pulse a couple of times until the dough starts to come together; don’t overmix - it’s ok if there are dry, crumbly spots here and there. Remove the blade and add the chips, using your hands to knead them in a bit. Turn the dough out onto a surface dusted with 1-2 tablespoons flour and combine the dough and chips together with your hands, kneading briefly, just 2-3 times, until it comes together. Pat and lightly press the dough into a long rectangle, about 15X3-inches.
  4. Cut the length of dough into triangular wedges, about 12-14 and place on the baking sheet, about an inch apart. Brush the tops with melted butter and sprinkle with sugar.
  5. Bake at 400 degrees for 15 minutes until just lightly golden brown and no longer doughy in the center.

Recipe Source: adapted slightly from a recipe a faithful reader, Emily B, sent me by way of Taste of Home 

Amazing Cinnamon Chip Scones

Disclaimer: this post contains a few Amazon affiliate links.

57 Responses to Amazing Cinnamon Chip Scones {Best Basic Scone Recipe}

  1. Tami says:

    I can’t find cinnamon chips anymore here in New Hampshire!

  2. Becky says:

    This is essentially the same scone recipe I use and it really is the best! I think buttermilk is just magical 🙂 Besides chocolate chip or cinnamon chip, another fun variation is white chocolate chip with craisins!

    Another butter tip: I don’t have a big enough food processor for making dough. I also loathe a pastry blender, so instead I shred frozen butter on the large holes of a grater and just stir it into the dry ingredients. It works great!

  3. Liz says:

    My kingdom for cinnamon chips!! I have placed an order with King Arthur, because I already made these sans cinnamon chips: used almond extract and the zest of an orange, plus worked some zest in the sugar topping. Very good and perfect texture! I used to make scones often and haven’t for some time. Opened up MKC to see this AND I had fresh buttermilk from making ghee (cream to butter to ghee with buttermilk as a happy by-product) – anyway perfect timing except for the cinnamon chips.

    Boy, these came together fast also ( I paid strict attention to the “just a few pulses” – perfect!). In deference to my smaller food processor and because I am a 1 human household, I made 1/3 recipe and I had scones in the oven before the coffee finished. Dishes done before the scones came out of the oven. But, I tend to have no interruptions in the kitchen 🙂

    Thanks for a great start to Monday morning, Mel!

    • Mel says:

      I always love your comments, Liz; you win some kind of award for making a lot of my recipes as soon as they are posted (and I bet before many people are even up!). It’s awesome! And I’m really intrigued by your cream to butter to ghee process. Sounds fun!

    • Brandee says:

      How do you make your cream to ghee to buttermilk? I would love to try to make ghee and often skip recipes with buttermilk as I never have any!

      • Liz says:

        @Brandee You can click on my name in the above comment to see instruction on my blog. It is not a cooking blog, just my own little web diary 🙂 – but I sometimes post things I make and I had just done all and taken photos when Mel posted this scone recipe.

        The short story for buttermilk is that when you take heavy cream beyond whipped cream, the butter (fat) separates from the liquid (buttermilk). This takes about 5 minutes in a food processor or blender so if you have cream and need buttermilk you could do this and you’ll end up with fresh butter and some buttermilk. I have a 7 cup food processor and do 16 ounces of cream at a time which yields approximately 1/2 cup of buttermilk and I’ve never measured the butter but somewhere between a baseball and softball chunk.

        Probably lemon juice in milk method is faster if you have milk and lemon juice. Mel has a post of substitute methods.

        Ghee is made with the butter cooked until the solids separate and you skim off the solids leaving the golden ghee. You don’t need to make ghee to get buttermilk, just heavy cream per above.

      • Liz says:

        @Brandee You can click on my name in the above comment to see instruction on my blog. It is not a cooking blog, just my own little web diary 🙂 – but I sometimes post things I make and I had just done all and taken photos when Mel posted this scone recipe.

        The short story for buttermilk is that when you take heavy cream beyond whipped cream, the butter (fat) separates from the liquid (buttermilk). This takes about 5 minutes in a food processor or blender so if you have cream and need buttermilk you could do this and you’ll end up with fresh butter and some buttermilk. I have a 7 cup food processor and do 16 ounces of cream at a time which yields approximately 1/2 cup of buttermilk and I’ve never measured the butter but somewhere between a baseball and softball chunk.

        Probably lemon juice in milk method is faster if you have milk and lemon juice. Mel has a post of substitute methods.

        Ghee is made with the butter cooked until the solids separate and you skim off the solids leaving the golden ghee. Basically, you simmer the butter until the solids separate and then strain.

        So, you make butter and buttermilk from the cream and then ghee from the butter.

  4. Brooke says:

    Scones don’t have to be just for the sweet tooth — one of our kids’ favorite dinners is diced ham and cheese scones. You could also do something like a poblano and goat cheese with sausage… go crazy!

  5. Lachelle says:

    These look yummy; thanks for the recipe. I also get cinnamon chips from The Prepared Pantry.

  6. Jennifer says:

    Is it possible to sub a lactaid free milk for the buttermilk?

    • Mel says:

      That’s a good question but I don’t know, Jennifer. The recipe relies on the buttermilk for tenderness. Could you add a little lemon juice to the lactaid free milk to approximate the buttermilk?

  7. Laura says:

    How did you know that I have been searching for and reading dozens of scone recipes for specifically (1) an awesome basic scone recipe, and (2) to make mini cinnamon chip scones? (I may OR may not hoard those little lovelies in my basement.) I had yet to find the recipe, until this morning! Seriously, recipes-of-my-heart (a for-real thing) reading is a skill of yours!

  8. Andrea says:

    Yes! A good kitchen scale and a secondary oven thermometer have allowed me to cuss a lot less when I’m baking. I don’t weight things as much as I should… but only because I need to change the battery in my scale and can’t find a small enough screwdriver and when I find the screwdriver- I can’t find the battery I bought. DOH! lol I have made scones before and love them. They are an all occasion item and want to branch out from my basic one. 😀 Thanks for sharing!

  9. Amber says:

    Mmmmmm!!!! These are so good!! Thats what I’m hearing from the kitchen table right now from my kids. Another home run Mel!! Thank you!!

  10. Teresa says:

    These look gorgeous. I have been making cinnamon chip scones forever and have been using the KAF cinnamon chips since they’ve been available, which has been many years. I love them. The Hershey’s grocery store brand is fake tasting, and I think these are just perfect and love the mini size, like you said. I also purchase the sparkling white (glittering/decorating) sugar at KAF to sprinkle on top rather than granulated. It gives a great crunch and makes the scones look like a professional bakery item (not that yours don’t!!!). I love how you can really see the sparkling sugar on top. My recipe uses only whipping cream so they can be made quickly by hand, but I am going to try these in the processor for comparison. I am sure they are delicious!

  11. Cinnamon scones are one of our favorites. These do look absolutely amazing!

  12. Hilary says:

    These turned out so, so, SO good! This was my first time making scones and I have to say you made me look like “Wonder Woman” with this recipe!! (And apparently my dog likes them too, because as soon as I turned my back, she reached her little paw up, grabbed the pan and ate 10 out of the 12!!! Arrgggg!!! 🙁 🙁 ) these were so darn good however, that I am headed back into the kitchen to make my second batch (and this time I’m putting the dog outside!) thanks again!!!!

  13. Melanie says:

    Great timing, Mel. I am down for bringing the “bread” for breakfast in my mom’s group tomorrow. I was going to make blueberry muffins, but I think I might try these! One question though–my mornings are kind of insane, and so I am wondering about making these ahead of time. If I make them tonight, will they still be delicious in the morning? OR, could I make them tonight except for the baking part, and then put them covered in the fridge to bake in the morning? Thanks!!! And I hope I can find good cinnamon chips in my grocery store 🙂

    • Mel says:

      Absolutely! Refrigerate the unbaked scones and then pop them in the oven in the morning (maybe add a minute to the baking time to account for chilling).

  14. Fiona says:

    Hi Mel, guess what I made last week? Sultana Scones. They were just delightful, I made my mums Chantilly Cream to go with them. This recipe looks fantastic, but I will have to sub cinnamon in as we don’t get cinnamon chips in Australia. They sound amazing though. Have a great day.

  15. Mandy says:

    I love to make scones with King Arthur’s cappuccino chips as well! Or a mix of chocolate and cappuccino chips. Yum!

  16. Nita says:

    My children and I love scones! We love your pumpkin scones and the chocolate chip ones as well. I made these without the cinnamon chips (I didn’t have any) and added cinnamon to the dough and made a cinnamon glaze to drizzle on top. They were delish! I will be ordering the cinnamon chips today so I can try them that way as well.

  17. Hilary says:

    Hi Mel,
    The base recipe be good for a savory scone?

  18. Ali says:

    I made these for a teaparty..perfect. I added about 1/4 tsp almond extract. I will be sharing these on my blog soon. Thank you for the delicious spring time treat!

  19. Pauline says:

    Can’t get cinnamon chips here (except during Christmas holidays) so I’ll have to order from KAF. They have regular and minis. Which would you suggest? Thanks!

  20. Lesley says:

    Would fresh fruit work in this recipe? I need to use up some rhubarb, but wondered if it would make dough too wet.

    • Mel says:

      I think a lot would depend on the fruit. I actually think rhubarb would work pretty well. I’ve made scones before with strawberries (which are pretty wet) and they worked out well.

  21. Alyce says:

    If I want to make the scones smaller, would you recommend baking for the same amount of time or less time?

    And is this recipe amenable to doubling?


    • Mel says:

      I’d suggest altering the baking time if they are smaller – exact time will depend on the size. And yes, this recipe doubles great.

  22. Brittany C says:

    Mel!! Darn you. These babies are trouble! I’ve never before made scones and decided to give these a try because they seemed really simple to make, and I needed something to take to my vt sisters. They were soooo good! It’s a really good thing I had people to give them too, I ate way too many as it was.

  23. Ida says:

    Made these last night for FHE ‘treat’. Boy were they a hit! They have an amazing texture and the mini cinnamon chips were just right for sweetness. I used another reader’s tips and grated frozen butter into the flour. Worked like a charm. Thank you for all your amazing recipes! You truly make it hard for me to be humble in the kitchen.

  24. Kim says:

    These were a hit! Can’t wait to make them again.

  25. Harvest says:

    I’ve made these twice now–once with mini chocolate chips and once with cinnamon and they are amazing…however, every time I bake them they spread in the oven and do not come out looking so great. They go in as lovely triangle wedges and come out as varying triangle-ish blobs with maybe one or two on the tray looking somewhat normal. Luckily I was just feeding them to my family so I didn’t care too much that they looked strange. Is this normal? Any idea how I can fix the problem? My sister is having a baby today and I’d love to take her family some delicious scones with a meal! Any suggestions you might have would be appreciated. Thanks, Mel!

  26. Kas says:

    These were great! My dough was really crumbly when I turned it out and I ended up adding a couple of tablespoons of milk to hold it together. I love King Arthur’s recipe for harvest pumpkin scones and adding their cinnamon chips. These are a close 2nd!

  27. Amber says:

    Mel, I made these with the Hersheys cinnamon chips. They were so good I am wanting to order the ones that you used from king Arthur Flour. I’m dying over shipping costs though. Have you ever had problems with these melting while shipping? I’m wondering if the extra $6 for an insulated bag is neccessary? I live in Utah…

    • Mel says:

      I agree about shipping costs – I hate paying so much in shipping but usually when I order from KAF, I’ve saved up my list of things I want and order it all at once to maximize shipping. I live in Idaho and I’ve never paid for the insulated bag – granted, I think I’ve usually ordered the chips in winter or spring but I just ordered them a few weeks ago and they were fine. I think if you avoid the heat of the summer you should be ok.

  28. Maryh says:

    These are sooooo good. Made them for Mother’s Day brunch and they were the hit of the day. I live in Texas and I ordered the mini chips from KAF. A couple were melted and the temp here at the time was low 80’s. There mini chips are perfect for these scones. The only thing I added was an icing drizzle, using 1 cup powdered sugar, 2 tablespoons of brewed strong coffee and 1/2 teaspoon vanilla. Excellent!

  29. Nina says:

    I used to make scones a lot, but I got lazy. My recipe had you grate the butter in, which is a bit time consuming. The food processor is brilliant! I made these, and they’re amazing! We liked them better the next day reheated in the toaster oven. I topped them with cinnamon sugar. They’re so good, and I can use the recipe for all different kinds of scones!

  30. Lisa says:

    These were the best scones that I have ever made! Just like my favorite tea and scone place! Thanks, Mel, for another HIT! This is why your website is my all time favorite!

  31. Cheryl says:

    Are these something that freezes well? I’d like to make them now and freeze them to have on vacation later.
    Thank you!

  32. Jessica G says:

    We made these this morning and pulled them out just as we lost power ( thanks to tropical storm Hermine) and they were delicious! We used regular chocolate chips but I will be on the lookout for the cinnamon chips. Thanks for another great recipe!

    • Mel says:

      Oh my goodness, stay safe, Jessica!

      • Jessica G says:

        Thanks Mel! I have made 4 batches so far this week and making another tonight! I have called every store in the Savannah, GA area looking for the cinnamon chips with no look. I am going to have to break down and order from KAF but the shipping is more than the chips!!!!! Thanks!

  33. Tammy says:

    These are soooooo good! And easy to make – my 13 year old made them for me today for my birthday. Used chocolate chips and they were amazing! Thanks for the great recipe – my kids love anything from “that lady on the internet” 🙂

  34. Nita says:

    Made this a little while ago and they were super yummy! I used all light brown sugar since I was out of white sugar and this worked out just fine!

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