Fiona's Cinnamon Scones from Outlander book Voyager

Fiona's Cinnamon Scones from Voyager for Christmas Morning

"A pound of best butter -- that's what you told me to ask for, and I did, but I kept wondering whether there was such a thing as second-best butter, or worst butter --" Brianna was handing over wrapped packages to Fiona, laughing and talking at once.

"Well, and if ye got it from that auld rascal Wicklow, worst is what it's likely to be, no matter what he says," Fiona interrupted. "Oh, and ye've got the cinnamon, that's grand! I'll make cinnamon scones, then; d'ye want to come and watch me do it?"

"Yes, but first I want supper.  I'm starved!"  Brianna stood on tiptoe, sniffing hopefully in the direction of the kitchen.  "What are we having -- haggis?"

"Haggis!  Gracious, ye silly Sassenach -- ye dinna have haggis in the spring!  Ye have it in the autumn when the sheep are killed."

"Am I a Sassenach?" Brianna seemed delighted at the name.

"Of course ye are, gowk.  But I like ye fine, anyway."

Voyager, Chap 3


What traditions does your family keep on Christmas morning?

We used to gather in the living room, and Dad would bring in coffee and hot chocolate while we opened our stockings.  Mom always put a mandarin orange in the toe, along with some mixed nuts, still in the shell (it was the 70's - does anyone still do that?)  Those, and the little games, puzzles and books that came along with them would tide us over while Dad returned to the kitchen to make his famous potato pancakes, with strips of bacon running down the middle.

We needed a huge breakfast to fuel the session of present opening that was about to commence.  We would each open one at a time, while everyone else watched.  It took a long time, what with 5 of us and several presents each, but everyone got to see what everyone else got, we laughed a lot, and we genuinely shared Christmas day, beyond the gifts we exchanged.

These days, when we spend Christmas at home,  it's a slightly smaller affair.  We tend to go a little lighter on the prezzies AND the breakfast -- after all, it's Christmas -- there's lots more food to come later in the day...


I can't say that this would have been how Fiona made her cinnamon scones back in 1968 -- grating the butter and rolling the dough isn't exactly traditional -- but it does result in a wonderfully tender crumb and a cinnamon-bun-like appearance with lots of crunchy sweet edges to munch on.

For an easy, no-mess Christmas morning treat, make these up ahead of time, then freeze them uncooked.  Warm up the oven while you get the kettle/coffee maker on, pop the frozen scones in the oven, then get down to the business at hand and open those stockings! (See the tips below the recipe.)

Fresh-baked cinnamon scones scenting the house and a table full of happy wames...that's what an Outlander Kitchen Christmas is all about.

Merry day one and all.


Show/Hide Comments


21 Dec 2011 - 2:59pm

The Mom Chef …

I love cinnamon scones. I've never grated the butter before but it makes total sense. I keep scrolling back up to look at those layered beauties. I'm in the midst of making the treats for my trip north and I may have to add these to them. Sounds like a plan to me. :)

21 Dec 2011 - 5:20pm


These look amazing, totally loaded with cinnamon! nnI have a friend who totally loves the Outlander series (but I'll admit that I tried to read the first book and it didn't grip me quite the same way it did her) and she'll go bonkers over your site. :)


Send your friend over, Christine, we'd love to have her! You're welcome too, of course, I just wouldn't mention that you couldn't finish Outlander too loudly around here... ;) Theresa

21 Dec 2011 - 6:35pm


Well you have done it again! mouth is watering for this ....I love scones and these look like the best ever!...I so enjoy your page it is the best!nI love the way you lay it out tell the story and the photo's make it all one enjoyable ride...You are a true Time Traveler...and you take us all along for the ride...


Oooh, thank you Vickie! My best wishes for a joyful Christmas to you and your family...

23 Dec 2011 - 6:49pm

Emily @ Life on Food

Beautiful scones. Cinnamon is my favorite flavor. Your wooden Santa face is a treasure.


Thank you Emily! My wooden Santa was created by a very talented neighbour -- it is treasured greatly around here...

26 Dec 2011 - 12:59pm


we made these yesterday for Christmas breakfast and they were AMAZING! thank you! so delicious!


Glad you liked them -- and thanks so much for letting me know! Happy New Year...

31 Dec 2011 - 9:18am

Highland Coff…

Highland Coffees for Hogmanay

04 Jan 2012 - 11:29pm


i'm going to try this in a gluten free of these days! i'll let you know how it comes out!

05 Jan 2012 - 1:38pm


Hi Theresangoing to try these very soon with my girls who all love baking.nI freeze and grate the fats for pastry as well, the easiest way to keep everything cold'n:-)

15 Jan 2012 - 4:05pm

Kathy C

I made these this morning and they turned out wonderfully. Even my ultra-fussy son, who doesn't want to try anything new, ate one and enjoyed it. The blueberry variation also caught my eye and I will be making it soon. Thank you so much for sharing.

02 Feb 2012 - 3:50pm


I loved these, ate more than I should have with my morning coffee......


There's no such thing as too much Outlander! ;)

05 Mar 2012 - 3:25pm

Cindy Karas

I am known as the "Scone Lady" in my parts but I can't wait to make these!!! I love your method for rolling and folding... very unique! These look outrageous! I have never substituted coconut oil for all or part of the butter but wonder how they would do... what do you think?


Cindy -- I hope these live up to yours! I'm also known for being a bit of a "scone lady" in these parts, LOL...I have never used coconut fat in scones, but I can't see why it wouldn't work...perhaps try half butter half coconut oil first and see how that goes? Love to hear back from you, Cindy...Theresa

29 Jun 2012 - 1:13am

tami hottinger

the whole orange-in-the-stocking, etc..brought back a lot of memories! i didn't know about your sight last year so i'll be making these.....TOMORROW! thanks so much for sharing!

30 Jun 2012 - 1:07pm

Mindy Reed

I made these for breakfast this morning and let me tell you, they we SO GOOD! And so easy too! Delicious!!!! Thanks for the awesome recipe!! My two year old saw them when he woke up and yelled... "I bite the breakfast!!!" lol!

01 Aug 2012 - 6:53pm


Moran Taing for such a wonderful recipe. I love making these. I did alter the recipe one day and put cheese and steak bits in for tea one day. Very tasty :)nI really do think grating the butter makes the difference.


My pleasure, Bree! And I'm so glad you love them...savoury scones like the ones you describe are some of my favourites...Theresa

03 Sep 2012 - 1:43am


I made these the first time you posted them and OMG they are to die for. yummynHelen in Ark.

26 Nov 2012 - 1:41pm

Barbie Zuleski

So happy we found you, the family will be having these scones for Christmas Morning, I plan on making three batches and freezing for the big day. Thank you.


That's great Barbie! Funnily enough, I made a batch of Fiona's scones just 15 minutes ago, destined for the freezer. Nothing like easy peasy scones any day of the week. :D

22 Feb 2013 - 12:35am

Robin Dalton

Reblogged this on .

05 Mar 2013 - 1:15am

Terri B

Hi Theresa. I wanted to let you know that I've made your scones a couple of times and they are wonderful and quite easy. I could practically see my family members biting their tongues to avoid saying "YOU made these?" ;-)nnI especially love your tip about using grated frozen butter. I grated it by hand for my first batch but since then I've used the ice shaver insert of my Salad Shooter. It grates a whole stick in about 15 seconds flat - just like they used to do it in the 18th Century. :-) nnTerri B


Smart, Terri! I use the grater on my food processor when I'm making multiple batches. It speeds up the process and is easier on the old arm!

08 Mar 2013 - 2:27am

Dee White

I bookmarked this when I saw it on facebook and just got around to making them. Delicious! Lovely, tender texture. Excellent tip on grating the butter. I will remember it! I leave a stone in my oven all the time because I bake bread every 3 days. Because of that I think 19 minutes was just a tad too long. Next time I'll take them out at 17 minutes.

11 May 2013 - 2:02pm


Wow, these turned out just great!!!!!! Even looked like the ones on your pictures, only one left now...nThanks!!!

08 Jun 2014 - 6:27pm


I love these scones! Making them again for the umpteenth time. Once added bacon to them. So yummy. Today I am out of brown sugar and have substituted maple sugar. Thank you for so many awesome recipes!

24 May 2015 - 5:28pm


They're different, and not interchangeable. You'll find them next to each other in the baking aisle.


Thank you Theresa. I am living in Switzerland, and am afraid I have never seen two different baking powders. I will check and also Google both; they sounded interchangeable, but are not as you say.


You didn't mention that you're in Switzerland. I think both should still be available, but I'm really not sure. Google will give you the answer! Good luck.


Hi Mel, baking powder is levure in french and lievito per dolci in italian; bakin soda is bicarbonate de soude/bicarbonato di sodio. Bye :)

17 Sep 2014 - 4:30pm


These were amazing! My daughter thought they were divine! We had fun grating the butter. She said it looked like popped corn!rnThis is one we'll make time & again. Thanks for sharing it with us!

04 Dec 2014 - 6:17pm

Georgia Kline

Dear Theresa, I love your website, your recipes and your wit! I was wondering if you think I could make plain scones from this recipe? (my daughter and I make scones for tea and I don't think she is cinnamon fan.) Would I just leave out the brown sugar or use white granulated sugar instead?


Hey, Georgia! You can of course leave the cinnamon out...a bit of orange zest instead? Or, I suggest a blueberry filling in the tips below the recipe for those who aren't cinnamon fans. Or, you could try

09 Dec 2014 - 8:14pm


Made them this morning, they're outstanding! It was a tough fight between me and the sticky dough, but Iwon it :D I like the frozen butter tip, very useful. Next time I'll try with walnuts in the filling, it sounds delicious. And oven's temperature a little bit lower. Thank you for all these wonderful recipes, I've already picked the next one :)

11 Dec 2014 - 5:28pm


My Armstrong ancestors apparently stopped making scones at some point, and started makings Southern biscuits instead. (I'd love it talk to those women!) I think I need to take us back a bit, and make these for Christmas breakfast. They look worth all of the effort. Fabulous recipe!

12 Dec 2014 - 6:08am


Just finished my first batch -- I followed your instructions perfectly and they came out beautifully!! (I am not a baker by any stretch, so this is huge for me!) Thank you for sharing your delicious recipes and wonderful talent with us. Your website is great.

15 Feb 2015 - 7:56pm


Fiona's Scones are a hit in my house. I made a batch for my husband to take to work for the Outlandish ladies he works with.

18 May 2015 - 12:46am


These are the best things I ever baked! Thank you so much!

21 May 2015 - 6:35pm


Im a big fan of scones and quite enjoyed these. I altered it using some frozen blueberries and lemon zest and they were a success. I love that these are not overly sweet :)

24 May 2015 - 4:22pm


This recipe looks absolutely delicious! I just wonder about the difference between baking powder and baking soda; I always thought they were the same? I have never noticed two in the store either. Thank you :-)

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