Gluten Free Christmas Scones – a seasonal spin on an old classic… Traditional British scones with mincemeat and (optional) marzipan. Optional dairy free.
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Gluten Free Christmas Scones – A perfect recipe to use up leftover Mincemeat
If you love Christmas mincemeat and you love scones, then you’ll love my Gluten Free Christmas Scones. They are soft and perfectly fruity and a fabulous way to use up leftover mincemeat. The mincemeat does not over-power, but offers a touch of Christmas with a hint of spice. I even added a little homemade marzipan to mine for extra decadence and almondy sweetness.
Okay… So, we all know that gluten free scones can be very hit and miss… But not these… The recipe is simple, rises well and has a great scone texture that no-one will know is gluten free. So… You can happily share with all your non-gluten free friends and family, safe in the knowledge that they will be super-impressed your food is as good as theirs… (Or they will think you have been ‘cured’.) Gluten Free Christmas Scones are a winner… Whoever eats them.
Mincemeat Scones – Cream tea meets Christmas
Of course, you don’t have to wait until January to make Mincemeat Scones. They are also perfect for Christmas itself. Making a batch of Christmas Scones for the buffet table not only makes a lovely change, but is appreciated by anyone who indulges.
Or… literally do Christmas meets Cream Tea! That very British affair of scones with cream and jam, upgraded with a seasonal Mincemeat Twist. You have to admit… It’s a genius seasonal coffee shop temptation… A delightful share for a social gathering… Or an office party treat.
What is Christmas Mincemeat?
Okay… For anyone confused or who thinks I’ve gone scone-bonkers, let’s explain…
Mincemeat is a rather British thing… But it’s not minced and neither does it contain meat. It is (in fact) a spiced and fruity Christmas preserve, usually containing a mix of dried fruits (raisins, sultanas, currants, candied peel, etc). And sometimes with additions such as dried apricots, cherries, apples and nuts. It’s generally mixed and cooked with a goodly hit of booze (brandy, rum, amaretti, or an alternative favourite liqueur). This not only supports preservation (alongside the sugar), but also offers a little seasonal merriment.
Many traditional mincemeat recipes contain suet, although it is not necessary. I have an incredible recipe for No Suet Extra Fruity Christmas Mincemeat on the blog, which has not only been known to convert the most hardened of mincemeat maligners, but is also Vegan-friendly.
While Christmas mincemeat is most usually associated with Mince Pies, it can be used in many recipes. Among our absolute favourites at Gluten Free Alchemist are No Churn Mincemeat Ice Cream, Apple and Mincemeat Cake and Frangipane Mince Pies Tart. These Gluten Free Christmas Scones will now definitely be up there in our Mincemeat hall of fame.
What are Scones?
Just like Christmas Mincemeat, scones are also traditionally British. They should be soft, buttery and slightly flaky, yet a little dense in texture… Most often, they are baked as individual rounds that have been cut or shaped from the dough… And although not super-airy, should rise so that they offer a tender crumb, yet be robust enough to be cut in half and either filled or topped.
But depending on where you live, ‘scones’ may take on a different meaning. In North America, they appear to be baked as larger, flatter rounds, that are cut into segments (although the list of ingredients is similar to the British version). But there is also an alternative and more comparable recipe… The American ‘biscuit’, which looks to the naked eye just like our English scones.
So… While both Mincemeat and Scones are for me, very traditional and British things, for my friends elsewhere in the world, feel free to call them Christmas Biscuits! I won’t be offended. 😘
Is this recipe for Gluten Free Christmas Scones safe for people with Coeliac (Celiac)?
Yes. Absolutely. My Christmas Scones are made with gluten free flour and there are no other gluten-containing ingredients. And that makes them 100% safe for people with Coeliac Disease (Celiac Disease). As always though, be sure to check ALL ingredients for any risk from hidden gluten or cross-contamination… Baking powder in particular, can catch us out.
Can Gluten Free Christmas Scones also be made dairy free?
Yes. Providing you substitute the butter and milk for good dairy free alternatives and use dairy free mincemeat, then gluten free Christmas Scones are also dairy free.
However… because the fat needs to be ‘rubbed in’ to the flour, it is essential that you use a dairy free BLOCK butter alternative. I recommend either Stork Baking Block or Flora Baking Block, for both comparable texture and creaminess.
Any good dairy free milk should be fine to use. (It will be mixed with lemon juice to make ‘buttermilk’).
Key dry ingredients used to make Gluten Free Mincemeat Scones
The gluten free flour blend
As with most gluten free baking, it is essential to use a blend of gluten free flours to make mincemeat scones. The blend you choose should be relatively flexible. However, I used my home-mixed Gluten Free Rice Free Blend B (scroll to the bottom of the linked post), for the following reasons:
- It makes a scone that doesn’t have a typically gluten free rice-gritty texture. So, these Christmas Scones don’t actually taste gluten free!
- The scones stay fresher for longer than most recipes that use commercial gluten free flour blends.
- Individual flours used are chosen for the best baking structure. That way the blend better mimics the qualities of wheat flour.
- The flours used have a better nutritional balance than most very starch-based gluten free blends. So, even treats can be better for you.
Raising agents to make gluten free scones
I always use plain flour for gluten free baking. It gives better control over the leavening process… Allows flexibility to combine raising agents for individual recipes… And removes the guess-work on how much baking powder the base blend already contains. Yes… It varies from one brand to another.
For my gluten free Christmas Scones, I use a combination of mainly baking powder, with an additional hint of bicarbonate of soda for an extra boost. If you personally find the taste of baking soda offensive, just sub for extra baking powder.
Equally, if you prefer to use self-raising flour, that’s fine too… Just reduce the baking powder by 1 tablespoon.
Do I have to use Xanthan Gum in Mincemeat Scones?
The recipe shared for Mincemeat Scones adds a little xanthan gum to the recipe. This is to support the binding of ingredients… And to hold the scones a little more robustly, so they don’t fall apart when you cut them. I would absolutely recommend that you include it in your bake.
Bear in mind however, that some commercial gluten free flour blends already have xanthan gum added. If this is the case for your scone-baking, adjust as follows… Alongside the flour blend, add an additional ¼ teaspoon of xanthan gum to the mix (instead of what is stated in the recipe).
If you are sensitive to xanthan gum and prefer not to use it, substitute with 2½ tsp of ground psyllium husk instead. Check the consistency of the dough and if it feels a little dry, add an extra tablespoon of milk.
Optional marzipan in Christmas Scones
As well as adding Christmas mincemeat to my scones, I also included a little chopped homemade marzipan. This was mainly because I had some left over from decorating the Christmas Cake. It is optional, but did offer a little extra almondy sweetness that I personally liked.
How to store Gluten Free Mincemeat Scones
Like all ‘normal’ wheat scones, these gluten free Christmas Scones are at their finest on the day they are made. However they should still be good to eat the following day, providing they are stored at ambient/room temperature in an airtight container.
Although over time, they will (like any other scone) become more dense in texture, they are back to perfection if popped in the microwave for a few seconds to warm through… Or wrapped in foil and heated in a hot oven for 10 minutes.
Mincemeat Scones are good to freeze. Again, store in an airtight container/bag and drop in the freezer on the day of making (as soon as they have cooled) for best results. Either defrost in the microwave. Or allow to defrost at room temperature and warm as desired by the instructions above.
How to serve Christmas Scones
Whether eating as a Christmas cream tea, or a left-overs treat, Mincemeat Scones are utterly delicious warm, sliced and topped for decadence…
- Go traditional with Jam and Cream… I went seasonally boozy with some Berry Daiquiri Cocktail Preserve. But like all jammy scones, the choice is yours. Most jams work fine against the mincemeat.
- The cream can be clotted cream (my favourite), extra thick cream, or standard whipped. And I honestly don’t care whether you go jam on top of cream or cream on top of jam… I’ll leave that dispute to those living in Devon and Cornwall. Weirdly, I seem to switch from one layering to the other with very little consideration. 🤭
- A slathering of plain old butter. I won’t judge!
- Top with extra Christmas mincemeat (with or without butter or cream) for extra festivity.
- And possibly my favourite discovery… Warmed with a melting dollop of booze-laden Brandy Butter. 😆👌
Have you made my Gluten Free Christmas Scones?
Whether you make Gluten Free Christmas Scones with this year’s leftover mincemeat, or save the recipe for a decadent Christmas Cream Tea next year… Please come back and tell me how you liked them. I LOVE hearing from you guys and seeing your drool-worthy bake photos on social media. It makes what I do worthwhile… And it keeps me creating, knowing that my recipes are being made and loved outside my own kitchen.
So… Leave a comment, rate the recipe and tag me on social media. It’s easiest to track me down on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter or Pinterest.
And whether you’re looking for more Christmas inspiration, or just want to up your gluten free baking game… At Gluten Free Alchemist we have an incredible on-line ‘Recipe Book’ Index. With hundreds of recipes to navigate and enjoy (all shared for FREE), it’s your one-stop shop for gluten free eating.
Happy Mincemeat/Christmas Scone making and eating.
Other fabulous Gluten Free Scones at Gluten Free Alchemist
Gluten Free Christmas Scones with Mincemeat
- measuring jug
- flat-bladed knife
- 350 g gluten free plain flour blend GFA Rice Free Blend B see NOTES
- 2 tsp xanthan gum
- 4 tsp baking powder gluten free
- 1 tsp ground cinnamon or mixed spice
- Pinch fine sea salt
- 35 g caster sugar superfine sugar
- 90 g butter or dairy free block alternative – cold and cubed
- 180 ml/g milk preferably full fat. Optional dairy free.
- 1 tbsp lemon juice
- 1 tsp bicarbonate of soda baking soda
- 1 large egg UK large (Canadian ‘Extra Large’; Australian ‘Jumbo’; and US ‘Extra or Very Large’)
- 2 tsp vanilla extract
- 100 g Christmas mincemeat
- 50 g marzipan optional – cut into small cubes and chilled
Egg wash and rolling
- I egg + a little milk to glaze beaten together
- Extra flour for dusting and rolling
- In a large mixing bowl, weigh and mix together the flour, xanthan gum, baking powder, spices, salt and sugar, until all lumps are broken down and the mixture is well-blended.
- With finger tips, rub the butter into the flour mix until it resembles coarse breadcrumbs. (for hot hands see NOTES)
- If possible (although not essential), chill the rubbed-in mixture in the fridge for an hour or so.
- When ready to finish making the scone dough, mix the milk with the lemon juice. Stir and leave to stand at room temperature for about 15 minutes to make homemade buttermilk (It should become grainy/lumpy).
- Meanwhile, base-line a large baking sheet (or two) with baking paper and place in the oven to heat.
- Pre-heat the oven to 200 C/400 F/Gas 6.
- Add the bicarbonate of soda to the flour-butter mix and stir through.
- Beat the egg with a fork until blended and add to the mixture along with the homemade buttermilk, vanilla extract and mincemeat.
- Gently stir the mixture using a flat-bladed table knife until it has become damp and clumpy.
- Add the chilled cubes of marzipan (if using) and gently stir through the clumpy dough (before it forms a ball).
- With lightly-floured hands, carefully bring the dough into a ball and press lightly together (do not over-work or over-condense).
- Tip the dough onto a lightly-floured surface.
- Gently press the dough down to flatten slightly and very lightly sprinkle with flour to prevent sticking.
- Roll the dough out using a rolling pin to a thickness of about 4 to 5 cm.
- Using a round pastry cutter to the size of scones you require, cut the dough into rounds, by pressing straight down.
- As each scone is cut, set them to one side until ready to bake.
- Bring any remaining dough together and repeat the rolling and cutting process until all the dough has been used, trying hard not to 'work' the dough too much as you go.
- Using a pastry brush, glaze the top of each scone with a little egg-wash.
- When ready to cook, carefully take the pre-heated baking tray(s) from the oven and (either by hand or with a spatula) quickly transfer the dough-scones to the tray, ensuring about 3 centimetres space around each one for an even bake.
- Using oven gloves, put the tray back in the oven and bake for 12 to 15 minutes for medium-sized scones (or 16 to 17 minutes for large scones) until well-risen and golden.
- Remove from the oven and transfer to a wire rack to cool.
© 2019-2023 Kate Dowse All Rights Reserved – Do not copy or re-publish this recipe or any part of this recipe on any other blog, on social media or in a publication without the express permission of Gluten Free Alchemist
Gluten Free Mincemeat/Christmas Scones shared with
- Cook Blog Share Week 3 2022
- What’s for Dinner #349 with The Lazy Gastronome
- Full Plate Thursday #572 with Miz Helen’s Country Cottage
- Fiesta Friday #415 with Angie
- Sundays on Silverado #76 with The House on Silverado
I’m 100% pro not gatekeeping certain foods for certain times of years – mincemeat year round I say!
👏👏👏 Yay! Pleased to hear it xxx
Eb Gargano | Easy Peasy Foodie says
Total genius! Love this idea 😀
Thanks Eb x
Cat | Curly's Cooking says
What a great idea, I love the sound of adding mincemeat to the scones.
Thanks Cat. They worked really well x
Sisley White - Sew White says
Oh this is the best of summer and winter food! I love a scone and now making them Christmassy sounds incredible. I need this!
Thanks Sisley. Somehow I just love the idea of Christmas Cream Tea 😆😆
Mincemeat scones? That’s a genius idea. One up on a classic fruit scone. And marzipan is NOT optional. I’m definitely including that. Can’t wait to try them.
😂😂 Yeah… I TOTALLY agree… ‘Put marzipan in everything’ I say… But I guess there are people who aren’t so keen… Never say I’m not inclusive 😘
Genius Idea! I’d forgotten just how good mincemeat is in scones.
Thanks Janice. I’ll take that!
But yes… mincemeat is really good in scones x
What a great idea for using up leftover mincemeat as I hate seeing anything going to waste.
Thanks Lesley. Me too! Waste is a travesty here xx
Helen at the Lazy Gastronome says
Sounds tasty!! Thank you so much for sharing at the Lazy Gastronome’s What’s for Dinner party. Have a fabulous week.
They are absolutely delicious Helen. Have a great week x