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Petite Vanilla Bean Scones

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Petite Vanilla Bean Scones
These mini scones were inspired by the pastry case at Starbucks, where they always have a tray of Petite Vanilla Bean Scones set out. These scones are very small, each less than 1/4 the size of their full sized counterparts, so they appeal to coffee lovers looking for a small (and inexpensive) sweet treat. I make scones at home on a regular basis, so I set out to turn this particular coffee shop favorite into a recipe that we can all make easily at home.

My Petite Vanilla Bean Scones scones have a lot of vanilla flavor in a small package. I scraped half of a vanilla bean into the scone dough while mixing it, then adding a little bit of vanilla bean (extra scrapings from the bean) and vanilla extract into the glaze that tops them. The result is that the scones have a very fragrant vanilla scent and a strong vanilla flavor, perfect for vanilla lovers and complimentary to just about any coffee or tea you might want to serve alongside them. Vanilla extract can be used in the scone dough instead of a vanilla bean, but you’ll get a more floral vanilla flavor by using the bean and the look of all those lovely vanilla bean seeds, too.

The scones themselves are tender and almost cake-like. They’re not too sweet, despite all the buttery vanilla flavor they have, so they really need that glaze on top to push them over the edge and add more sweetness and vanilla. You can pour over the glaze to coat the entire scone (place them on a cooling rack so the excess drips off) or you can give them a generous drizzle if you prefer a lighter touch with the frosting. Any way you prepare them, these little scones are hard to resist. If you can’t eat them all at once, they can be stored for a few days in an airtight container.

Petite Vanilla Bean Scones, up close
Petite Vanilla Bean Scones
2 cups all purpose flour
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/3 tsp salt
1/2 cup butter, room temperature
1/3 cup sugar
1/2 vanilla bean or 2 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 cup milk

Preheat oven to 400F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder and salt.
In a large bowl, cream together butter and sugar until light. Cut vanilla bean in half lengthwise and scrape seeds out with a small, sharp knife. Add to butter and sugar mixture and beat to incorporate. Mix in half of the flour mixture, followed by the milk. Stir in remaining flour mixture until dough comes together into a firm, slightly sticky mass.
Divide dough into 5 equal pieces and roll into tennis ball-sized rounds. Place on a lightly floured surface and flatten each ball into a disc about 1/2 – 3/4-inch thick. After all balls have been flattened, cut each into quarters and arrange on prepared baking sheet.
Bake for 11-15 minutes, until scones are light golden at the edges. Cool on a wire rack before glazing.

Makes 20 small scones

Vanilla Bean Glaze
2 cups confectioners’ sugar
4 tbsp milk
2 tsp vanilla extract
small amount of vanilla bean (scraps from scones)

In a large bowl, beat together all glaze ingredients, adding in any leftover vanilla bean seeds (scrape the pod a second time) from the scone recipe. Mix until glaze is very smooth and has a pourable consistency. Add a few extra tablespoons of confectioners’ sugar if it is too thin, and an extra tablespoon of milk if it is too thick.
Pour over cooled scones.

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  • Tracy @ Pale Yellow
    March 19, 2012

    These scones look so delicious, I just love fresh vanilla beans. Thanks for sharing!

  • Blog is the New Black
    March 19, 2012

    Yum! I’ve made these before and they are WAY better than Starbucks!

  • Megan @ Megan's Munchies
    March 19, 2012

    I love the petite vanilla scones at Starbucks and these look just like them!

  • chelsa
    March 19, 2012

    It look’s so good i so making them.

  • Marina
    March 20, 2012

    I just made these with a Kitchenaid stand mixer and they came out great! I used all organic ingredients and they taste just as good, if not better then the Starbucks version – I used to love their petite vanilla scones, but they don’t use organic ingredients. Great recipe, thank you!

  • Jeff @ Cheese-Burger.net
    March 21, 2012

    It was so tasty when I ate it at Starbucks. I can’t wait to try and make them myself.

  • Roo
    March 21, 2012

    We just made these and loved them. Thanks for the great recipe!

  • Miriam @ Overtime Cook
    March 21, 2012

    I have also been known to stand in line at starbucks and imagine how I will recreate the treats I see. These look amazing.

  • wendi
    April 1, 2012

    i just noticed..there is no eggs in your recipe…can scones really be made with out eggs?! and your method is so different from others you don’t cut the butter in the flour… is all this done on purpose for the cake like texture your talking about? im VERY curious!!

  • Nicole
    April 1, 2012

    Wendi – Yes, there are no eggs in this recipe. And you are absolutely correct that the mixing method for these scones is what gives them a more cake-like texture!

  • Wendi
    April 11, 2012

    ohhhh. Awesome!! i will definitely have to try these and tell you the results! thanks for the reply!

  • CAH
    May 1, 2012

    Made a half-recipe of these last night for my boyfriend to take to work in the morning…

    …but they didn’t last! Between he and I, we ate them all.

    Delicious. Thanks for the recipe! Just as a note–used water instead of milk in the icing for half of them and couldn’t tell the difference.

  • Aurora Terra Hobden
    February 2, 2013

    Yum! I’m gonna make these.

  • MK
    August 3, 2013

    These were divine!! Just as good as what you get from Starbucks. I can’t believe how easy these were!

    I ate them with lemon curd, nutella, and biscoff cookie spread. Definitely going into my repertoire!

  • dawn
    February 20, 2014

    These scones were so delicious all by themselves, I didn’t even need to make the glaze.

  • Kalah
    March 14, 2015

    Delicious! Yummy!!!! Great but half the icing. It has to much even when you do half it and if you do a third layer of icing it is to sweet. Just a tip- DO NOT MAKE THE WHOLE RECIPE CALLED FOR THE ICING!!!!! Lol!

  • clarisa
    July 10, 2015

    Can I substitute vanilla paste for the vanilla beans..?

  • Laurie A.
    August 30, 2015

    I’m about to bake these but I noticed that the recipe states 1/3 teaspoon salt.

    Hi Nicole,

    I am baking these right now, but I noticed that the recipe says “1/3 teaspoon salt”. Is that a typo? Should it be 1/4 or 1/2? There is no 1/3 measuring spoon. I did fill a 1/2 teaspoon but only part way to make it 1/3. Is that what you did? Thanks in advance.


  • Nicole
    August 30, 2015

    Hi Laurie,

    No, it is not a typo. I felt that they needed a touch more than 1/4 tsp of salt (in part because the glaze is sweet). I actually have a set of measuring spoons that measure 1/3 tsp, but you measured it out perfectly. I prefer to specify instead of calling for vague measurements like a “heaping 1/4 tsp” of salt. Hope you love the scones!

  • Nicole
    November 12, 2015

    Yes, Clarisa, but vanilla beans will have a better flavor.

  • Rose
    May 26, 2016

    I just made these! I have to admit, I had my reservations because this recipe did not include an egg like other recipes I have tried, but let me tell you, this is so delicious! Instead of making the mini sizes, I just patted the dough into a 1/2 inch round disk and divided it into 8 triangular scones about the size of my palm. I baked it for about 11 minutes and took the scones right off the pan and onto the cooling rack to cool. I halved the icing recipe and found it was the perfect amount to glaze all 8 scones. Since I halved it and thinned it out more, the glaze is not as white and thick like your picture, it’s a barely beige color from the vanilla bean paste I used. The product is slightly crisp on the outside, and the inside is moist (if I press on the crumbs they stick together) and not too sweet with a nice vanilla flavor. This recipe is more cake like than flakey, but all the more delicious! Pairs great with coffee 🙂

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