Triple Chocolate Scones: a "dark" start to Thanksgiving Day

Thanksgiving is SO not about chocolate.

Chocolate cream pie? Maybe.

But chocolate cake? Chocolate chip cookies? Chocolate ice cream?

Try pecan pie, pumpkin bread, and ginger cookies. Cranberry cake. Apple crisp.

Chocolate, for one day in the year, takes a back seat to all its usually subsidiary flavors.

Notice I say, for ONE day of the year: Thanksgiving. And really, what’s to prevent you from slipping a bit of fudgy goodness onto the menu really early in the day Thursday? Triple Chocolate Scones go wonderfully well with your morning cup of coffee.

Plus, they augment the coffee’s caffeine as you’re prepping the turkey at 5:30 a.m…

Preheat your oven to 375°F. Lightly grease a baking sheet, or line it with parchment.

Did you know that by clicking anywhere on this block of pictures, you can enlarge them to full size? Go ahead, give it a try; it’ll work for any of our photos.

Blend the following in a mixing bowl:

2 cups (8 1/2 ounces) King Arthur Unbleached All-Purpose Flour
2/3 cup (2 5/8 ounces) King Arthur White Whole Wheat Flour or Premium Whole Wheat Flour
1/3 cup Dutch-process cocoa
1/2 teaspoon espresso powder, optional, for flavor and color
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 tablespoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
3/4 teaspoon salt

You’ll never notice the whole wheat flour in these scones; it disappears in the chocolate. However, feel free to substitute an equal amount of all-purpose flour for the whole wheat, if you like.

Cut 1/2 cup (8 tablespoons) cold butter into pats. With a pastry blender, pastry fork, a mixer or, most easily, your fingertips, work it into the dry ingredients until the mixture is unevenly crumbly.

Whisk together the following:

1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 large egg
3/4 cup milk or liquid whey (the liquid drained from yogurt)

Add to the flour/butter mixture, along with 1 1/2 cups semisweet or bittersweet chocolate chips.

Want to add fruit to the mixture? Substitute 3/4 cup dried cranberries or dried cherries for 3/4 cup of the chocolate chips.

Stir until the mixture is evenly moist. If you’re using milk rather than whey, you may need to add an additional 2 to 3 tablespoons, to make the dough come together.

Mix 3 tablespoons confectioners’ sugar with 1 teaspoon cocoa powder, and sprinkle it on your parchment-lined (or lightly greased) baking sheet. You’re using this sugar mixture in place of the usual flour, to keep the scones from sticking to the pan as you shape them.

Divide the dough in half, and place the two pieces onto the baking sheet. Pat them gently into two 6″ circles, each about 3/4″ thick.

Cut each circle into 6 wedge-shaped pieces with a bench knife or bowl scraper (or sharp knife or pizza wheel), pressing down firmly without sawing. You’ll find it easier if you dip your cutter in flour after each cut.

Make sure you press it into the dough quickly, without twisting or sawing. This shears the dough cleanly rather than pressing it together, which allows the scones to rise higher.

Bake the scones for 18 to 23 minutes, until they lose their moist look, and a cake tester inserted into the center of one comes out clean; or with just a smear of chocolate from a melting chip.

Remove the scones from the oven, and when they’re cool enough to handle, transfer them to a rack to cool completely.

To make the glaze: Place the following in a microwave-safe bowl or small saucepan –

2/3 cup semisweet or bittersweet chocolate chips
1/4 cup half & half or liquid coffee creamer

Heat in the microwave (or over low heat) until the cream is very hot. Remove from the heat, and stir until the chips melt, and the mixture is smooth.

Drizzle/spread the glaze over the cooled scones.

Do you prefer warm scones? Since these are iced, they’re not a good candidate for reheating in the oven. However, you can reheat individual scones very briefly in the microwave; watch closely so their icing  doesn’t melt and run.

Here comes the sun! Thanksgiving week is dawning – is your menu in place?

Hint: These scones are a good candidate for pre-prep. Make the dough, shape the scones, place on a baking sheet, and freeze. Store in the freezer until EARLY Thursday morning, when you can quickly pop the scones into the oven and bake, adding 2 or 3 minutes to the baking time. Once they’re cool, quickly stir up the glaze, ice, and enjoy a mid-morning snack with the Macy’s parade!

Read, bake, and review (please) our recipe for Triple Chocolate Scones.

Print just the recipe.

PJ Hamel

PJ Hamel grew up in New England, graduated from Brown University, and was a Maine journalist before joining King Arthur Flour in 1990. PJ bakes and writes from her home on Cape Cod, where she enjoys beach-walking, her husband, two dogs, and really good food!


  1. Sher

    Was looking for a recipe to use my leftover liquid whey from the yogurt I’d made, and here I landed. (Didn’t have the patience to bake bread today.) Turned out delicious, though I was not able to make clean cuts in the scones. They’re kind of a delicious, crumbly mess. I am not even bothering to make the glaze, as they are good as-is. But yeah, not sure what I did wrong to make them so crumbly. It’s okay, though. Yummy anyway.

    1. The Baker's Hotline

      Sher, we’ve been experiencing some really dry weather lately, so the problem was likely that there just wasn’t enough moisture, Next time, try holding back 1/4 cup of the flour. you can sprinkle it in as needed, but you likely won’t need it all to form a cohesive dough. We hope this helps! Annabelle@KAF

  2. Ariell

    I made these this even and substituted buttermilk for the liquid called for in the recipe…I also used shortening instead of butter and for some reason the scones came out kinda rubbery. I am making sure to NOT overmix, and I am not sure what I am doing wrong as this is the second batch that has turned out this way…Any suggestions or recommendations?

    1. Amy Trage

      Are you chilling the shortening before cutting it in? If you are going to substitute a different fat in the recipe, it will still need to be cold in order for the scones to have a good texture. ~Amy

  3. essiemyra

    I made these scones this morning without the topping. They were delicious. I halved the recipe as it is only me and my dh. They make a nice breakfast treat.

  4. Anne

    Warm scone I like. Rich chocolate I love. Plus the augment of caffeine – no further convincing is needed, I am baking a batch this afternoon.

    Scones are best when they are fresh from the oven. Baking a whole batch at a time is too much for me. But since I learned – from this KAF blog – that unbaked scones freeze rather well – I have been making more scones. Imagine all the so-so scones I used to pick up at a well-known coffee chain, and paid good money for each of them! (I still do, when I am away from home and have that unexpected ‘scone attack’.)

    To prevent the scones from sticking, this recipe calls for a mixture of powdered sugar and cocoa powder. I wonder what this would do to the underside of the scones? Would the sugar darken or scorch the scones? Would the white of the sugar cause ‘spots’?

    I find recipe for scones usually have a fair amount of butter in them and so the scones just slide off the parchment. But with chocolate, I guess the dough behaves differently and might stick to the paper?

    I don’t believe this mixture should cause darkening or burning of your scones, but it may make the bottoms a little lighter due to the light coloration of the sugar mixture. I would say a light spray of cooking oil would help any sticking just as well.-Jon

  5. Rebecca

    We always have chocolate at our Thanksgiving table – it’s one of the things we are thankful for! The scones look delicious.

  6. lorrainesfav

    Nice recipe PJ. We think alike for our morning meal! These chocolate scones look delicious and much easier to make than brownies. How about a morning friendly topping with Nutella or Biscoff spread? Either sound great to me! They might not set like our ganache will, but you can always melt some chocolate chips and fold in the nutella or Biscoff for a stiffer topping packed with flavor! Awesome! ~Kim@KAF


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