Last week, without thinking, I posted three dinner recipes in a row. Usually, I try to break things up a bit with a salad or dessert or some other post. So this weekend, I thought I’d make more “fun” things! And what could be more fun than these scones, Mardi Gras King Cake Scones?
I don’t know if there’s a more fun holiday (especially for adults) than Mardi Gras, especially the way it’s celebrated in New Orleans. There’s parades and parties and color everywhere. And there’s a website that will answer everything you want to know about this special celebration, Mardi Gras New Orleans.
Just for Fun:
Mardi Gras or Shrove Tuesday is sometimes referred to as Fat Tuesday; it seems to have developed as a holiday in that some indulged before the fasting for Lent began on the following day, Ash Wednesday. In many areas, those celebrations include a King Cake, which in New Orleans is wildly decorated with the Mardi Gras colors of green, yellow, and purple.
About now, my kids would be like, “Whatever Mom. Can we eat now?” But now you can see why these are Mardi Gras King Cake Scones. I slightly adapted the recipe, originally from Louisiana Cookin’ just so I could have extra icing and a lot more of these Wilton Bright Sugar Crystals on my scones. I really wanted to make something my Grandbabies would love to go wild with, and no, they aren’t paying me for the recommendation.
You’re going to see these scones, too, in a little collection of Mardi Gras Recipes I gathered together featuring some of my favorite New Orleans, Louisiana and Southern dishes. You might find another recipe you’d like to celebrate Mardi Gras with.
About Mardi Gras King Cake Scones:
Part of the reason I chose this recipe is that these scones have a little cream cheese and a touch of almond, both flavors you might find in a king cake, so these aren’t your typical scones. They’re rich and a little dense and def lean more towards the muffin side of the scone spectrum as opposed to a crispy edge, crumbly scone.
Turns out these scones are barely sweet, too, and just slightly salty without the icing and sugar. It all balanced out once the icing and sugar topping was added, but it is something to keep in mind if you’re considering making these and serving them plain and without that decoration. Maybe you’ll want to add a bit of extra sugar and slightly cut back on the salt in that case.
Making Mardi Gras King Cake Scones:
I have been dusting off my scone making skills lately. I made these Dried Cherry & Chocolate Scones, too, just the other day and bought a Scone Pan for the purpose. Now a scone pan is optional, but I’d highly recommend one if you love scones.
The biggest thing about making these scones is to not overbake them. The top will be pale and really not brown at all and they’ll be a little squishy. Trust that they’re done when cooked as instructed and know they will firm up when cool.
Saving Money on Mardi Gras King Cake Scones:
As you can see, these are not the cheapest scones to make, but they sure are fun for a special occasion! I only wish I had the grandkids to help me out with the decorating! They would have had a blast! Just a note: I decorated the whole top, and very generously. Had I striped it I would have been a little more conservative with the use of the sugar.
Decorating the tops of these scones is Wilton Bright Sugar Crystals which are gorgeous but run about $4.50. On the plus side, the crystals include pink if you’d like to make these for Valentine’s day. I’m only mentioning those to be helpful; I’m not getting any money!Print
Mardi Gras King Cake Scones
- Total Time: 40 minutes plus cool
- Yield: 8 scones 1x
- Category: Breakfast or Brunch
- Cuisine: American
- 2 ¼ cups all-purpose flour
- 3 tablespoons sugar
- 2 ½ teaspoons baking powder
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 4 tablespoons chilled unsalted butter, diced
- 1 (3-ounce) package cream cheese, chilled and diced
- ½ cup sour cream
- ¾ cup whole buttermilk, divided 1/2 cup for scones, 1/4 for topping
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- ½ teaspoon almond extract
- glaze, recipe follows
- Purple, yellow, and green sanding sugars
- 1 1/2 cups powdered sugar, sifted is highly recommended
- 1 1/2 tablespoons butter, melted
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 3 to 5 tablespoons cream or buttermilk
Always check scones for doneness early and often.
Preheat oven to 350° F. Line a large rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper (optional); set aside.
In a medium bowl, or in a food processor, combine flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt. Using a pastry blender or fingers, (or pulsing if using a food processor) cut butter, and cream cheese into flour mixture until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs with some larger clumps.
In a small bowl, whisk together sour cream, 1/2 cup buttermilk, and extracts. Add buttermilk mixture to flour mixture. Working gently, bring the mixture together with hands (or pulse in food processor) just until a sticky dough forms.
Turn dough onto a lightly floured work surface. Knead lightly to just bring together any excess flour. Push and pat into a circle about 1″ tall. Transfer to a baking sheet. Brush scones with remaining buttermilk. Cut in wedges, 8 to 12, and pull each wedge apart from the rest, leaving about 1/2″ between.
Bake until risen and nearly firm (when pressed on the top, they should have just a bit of a give) about 15 to 25 minutes. The scones will be a pale color. Let cool completely on pan.
Dip scones, after they’ve completely cooled, in the glaze, using fingers or a spoon to smooth it out and fill in any nooks and crannies. Sprinkle with desired sugars before glaze sets.
Note: If using a scone pan, divide dough into 8ths, then transfer each wedge to the pan. Bake for about 20 minutes.
Stir together the powdered sugar, butter, vanilla and two tablespoons cream or milk. Add additional cream or milk, 1 teaspoon at a time, until a thick consistency is formed. The mixture will firm a bit as it sits, so work quickly when dipping the scones. There may be a little additional glaze leftover.
Keywords: Breakfast or Brunch Dish, Buttermilk, Cajun & Creole, Cream Cheese, Frosting, king cake, mardi gras, new orleans, sanding sugar, scones, Sour cream