Perfectly flaky and tender Blackberry Coconut Scones made with coconut oil, coconut cream, and blackberries – no one will guess that they’re vegan! (Jump to Recipe)
Let me preface this by saying that while I applaud anyone who manages to enjoy life without butter, eggs, cream, steak, and cheese (in no particular order), I am decidedly not vegan.
I actually did try it one summer during law school when I was alone on campus doing research. In my solitude-induced haze, I watched a lot of documentaries on Netflix about our food supply and healthy eating, and decided to give the whole plant-based life a shot. To be honest, it wasn’t bad for a couple months. I like most vegetables and hey, Oreos are technically vegan. I made flax eggs and drank unsweetened almond milk (and hated it, which I still do) and ate a lot of quinoa and avocado. Unfortunately, by the time summer ended I was feeling pretty faint and nauseous all the time. When I nearly passed out in the library one day, I realized I was probably experiencing self-induced anemia (which, looking back on it, was quite predictable). I ate some chicken and miraculously felt better…and thus ended my vegan days.
That doesn’t mean, however, that I don’t still enjoy some vegan baked goods from time to time. In fact, as with these blackberry coconut scones, you often can’t even tell when pastries are vegan. The newfound popularity of coconut oil and coconut cream is a wonderful thing for the vegan and dairy-intolerant among us, and for those of us who like to eat more than one scone in the name of health.
Let’s put it this way. If you’re reading this blog, you’ve probably cut butter into flour before. To be honest, it’s probably my least favorite baking-related task besides washing dishes. It’s tedious, frustrating, and seems to take for-ev-er. There are also a lot of rules. The butter has to be super cold and it has to be cut in quickly so it doesn’t warm up too much, you have to get it to look like sand but some pieces can be bigger…etc. etc. etc. What?? Why is life so hard? I just want a biscuit.
But listen – if you use coconut oil instead, the rules go out the window. Just use room temperature (solid) coconut oil and cut it into the flour with a fork. Within 30-45 seconds, you’ve got the most even, glorious sand-like texture. LOOK!
It’s a freaking miracle and makes me want to use coconut oil in place of butter every time I have to make a pastry like this.
…sorry butter, I don’t mean it and I still love you.
Alright, let’s get down to scone-making. It’s really not that hard or time consuming, even though most people assume it is. We won’t let them be the wiser.
Once you’ve cut that coconut oil into the flour/sugar/baking powder/usual-suspects, stir in some coconut cream, which is basically the vegan version of heavy cream and it’s fantastic. It even whips up just like regular heavy cream, and it makes fantastic ice cream without having to cook/temper eggs. More on that soon.
You can buy canned coconut cream at Trader Joe’s, but if you can’t find it, just use full fat canned coconut milk – it’ll work just fine, it just won’t be quite as rich.
Fold in some shredded coconut and blackberries, because I’m forcing spring to arrive here whether it wants to or not. Pat it out on a floured surface (I used a marble pastry slab but any counter will do) into a round about an inch thick. Cut into 8 wedges, sprinkle with coarse or turbinado sugar if you like, and …wait for a while as they sit in the freezer. I know I said all the rules were going out the window, but these scones need to be cold when they go in the oven or they won’t rise as well, and they’ll spread out. That doesn’t mean they’ll be bad…but we can wait a few minutes in our pursuit of perfectly flaky scones.
When they come out of the oven, these lovely scones are tall, just slightly browned, and smell deliciously coconutty. Yes, coconutty.
I love how the berries kind of burst and get puddly in the oven. They get both sweeter and more tart too, and I’m not really sure how but it’s delicious.
These blackberry coconut scones are perfectly flaky and tender, biscuit-like but lighter – the way scones should be. Serve them with hot coffee or tea and a good book on a Saturday. No one will know they’re vegan, and no one will care once they taste them. Trust me.
Blackberry Coconut Scones
- 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1/4 cup granulated sugar
- 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 5 tablespoons coconut oil (solid state, at room temperature)
- 3/4 cup canned coconut cream (or full fat coconut milk)
- 1/2 cup shredded coconut
- 1 cup blackberries (fresh or frozen)
- Coarse or turbinado sugar, for topping (optional)
- Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.
- In a large bowl, whisk flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt together. Add the coconut oil and cut it into the flour mixture with a fork. The motion is like scraping it down into the center of the bowl over and over. Stop when the mixture resembles wet sand.
- Add the coconut cream, and stir together until a shaggy dough is formed. If it seems too dry to come together, you can add another tablespoon. Gently fold in the shredded coconut and blackberries.
- Turn the dough out onto a floured surface and pat it into a 1-inch thick disk. With a bench scraper or a very sharp knife, cut the dough into 8 even wedges. Arrange the wedges on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.
- Brush a little coconut cream over the tops of the scones and sprinkle with coarse or turbinado sugar if desired - this part is totally optional, but delicious.
- If you have time, place the baking sheet in the freezer for 10 minutes or in the fridge for a half hour before baking. It isn't absolutely necessary, but it helps the scones keep their shape and keeps them flaky and tender.
- Bake the scones for 16-18 minutes, until they are just starting to brown. Serve warm with hot coffee.