Learn how to make healthy carrot oatmeal scones from scratch with this simple recipe! They’re moist inside with a hint of a crust on the outside, and plenty of soft oats, tender carrots, and cozy spices fill every bite. These scones taste lovely plain, warm, and fresh from the oven, or you can top them with a bit of butter, jam, or even a cream cheese drizzle as an extra treat. Although wholesome enough (and meant!) for breakfasts and snacks, they have flavors very similar to carrot cake!
I’m partnering with Bob’s Red Mill® to bring you today’s recipe! Their products have been staples in my pantry for years. Every product I’ve tried in my baking recipes has been truly amazing and yielded incredibly delicious treats – especially their flours and oats!
While recipe testing earlier this year, I knocked on my neighbor’s front door as I balanced half of a carrot sheet cake on a serving tray. Her eyes lit up as she opened the door, and I smiled. Months prior, she had mentioned how she had baked and loved my two-layer carrot cake, and I hoped she’d approve of this new recipe too.
After accepting the platter, she motioned me inside, and I followed her to the kitchen. She pulled open a drawer, slipped out a knife, and held it above the cream cheese frosting.
“Just a small taste… I don’t want to ruin dinner.”
She closed her eyes as she popped the teensy sliver into her mouth.
“Oh… That is good.” She paused. “Did I tell you I had carrot cake at our wedding?”
I shook my head while internally marveling at her brilliance. Vanilla seemed fairly standard, bakery-style chocolate never tasted rich or dark enough to me (more chocolaty-ish than true chocolate!), but carrot… With its cozy spices, sweet carrots, and extremely moist texture, it’s basically tied with my homemade chocolate cake as my favorite cake flavor, so that sounded like the perfect choice to me — even if it was a little unconventional!
After returning home, I made a mental note about her love for carrot cake and started offering her anything I baked with those flavors (including these snickerdoodles!). Each time, she and her husband gave my treats their stamp of approval.
So when her husband drove me to the airport recently, I gave them a batch of these healthy carrot oatmeal scones as a little thank you gift. After I passed through security and found a seat in the half-empty waiting lounge in front of my gate, a text message from her had already flashed across my phone’s screen.
“Scones for lunch!!! Yummmmy”
Coming from her — and knowing her carrot cake standards — I think that’s the highest praise this recipe could ever receive! 😉
QUICK OVERVIEW – HEALTHY CARROT OATMEAL SCONES
Difficulty: Mostly easy, including for many beginner bakers.
Taste: Lots of comforting carrots and cozy spices — and lightly sweetened. (These are breakfast scones after all… Not a slice of dessert!)
Texture: Really soft and moist on the inside, and almost a little dense too (the same way I love my carrot cake!), with a hint of a crust on the outside.
KEY INGREDIENTS TO MAKE HEALTHY CARROT OATMEAL SCONES
Let’s go over the ingredients you’ll need to make these carrot oatmeal scones! Some of them are a little untraditional compared to classic scone recipes, but I bet you still have many of these items in your kitchen already.
Oats. More specifically… Bob’s Red Mill Organic Quick Cooking Rolled Oats! These have been a staple in my pantry for years. I’ve used them to make everything from cookies and cakes to muffins and quick breads — and more!
I love using these quick cooking oats because they’re smaller and thinner than old-fashioned rolled oats. Because they’re rolled thinner, they soften faster — and that gives your healthy carrot scones an incredible soft and tender texture!
Tip: Bob’s Red Mill Gluten Free Organic Quick Cooking Oats also work equally well. So do their non-organic versions (regular and gluten free)!
Flour. I used another one of my pantry favorites to make these healthy breakfast scones: Bob’s Red Mill Organic Whole Wheat Flour. It’s a higher protein flour, which means it yields baked goods that rise well and maintain their shape after cooling. (That’s the role of gluten, the protein in wheat!) This flour is also full of micronutrients (like extra fiber!) and has a lovely flavor. I’ve used it to make just about everything. Cookies, brownies, cupcakes, pie crusts, muffins, quick breads, pancakes, waffles… You name it!
Tip: For a gluten free option, Bob’s Red Mill Gluten Free 1-to-1 Baking Flour works really well. It’s my “go to” store-bought gluten free flour blend!
Spices. To give these breakfast scones a true carrot cake-like flavor, I used both cinnamon and nutmeg in the dough. Cinnamon provides that cozy comforting taste that’s so iconic of carrot cake, and nutmeg adds a subtle richness and depth. You’ll only use a small amount of nutmeg, but it makes a big difference in the scones’ flavor!
Cold butter. This is a key ingredient in scone recipes. Unlike with many cookie and cake recipes, you actually want the butter to be cold and straight from the fridge — not softened or at room temperature! We’ll cover why that is in a moment… But this is one of those blissful instances where it’s actually good to “forget” to soften butter ahead of time! 😉
Tip: For the best results, use stick-style vegan butter as a dairy free alternative. (I don’t recommend substituting coconut oil — and I’ll cover why that is soon too!)
Greek yogurt. This is another one of my favorite healthy baking ingredients! If you’ve browsed through my recipes before, then you’re probably aware of that already… I use it in so many baked treats!
In these healthy carrot oatmeal scones, Greek yogurt adds lots of moisture (for a fraction of the calories of more butter or heavy cream!), which yields that delicious soft and moist texture. It also provides a protein boost!
Pure maple syrup. Use the real kind that comes directly from maple trees! Pure maple syrup is considered an unrefined sweetener, and the only ingredient on its label is “maple syrup.” It’s often sold in thin glass bottles or squat plastic jugs.
Tip: Avoid pancake syrup and sugar free syrup. Those often yield different textures. This is especially true of sugar free syrups! Because they’re water-based, the scones often collapse while cooling and turn out overly dense.
Carrots. It’s hard to make healthy carrot oatmeal scones without them! 😉 For the best results, use the largest holes of a box grater to grate your carrots. The smallest holes release a lot more juice from the carrots, which prevents your scones from baking properly. And because someone almost always asks… I generally peel mine first!
Tip: Do not substitute store-bought pre-shredded carrots. These are also called “matchstick carrots,” and they’re thicker and drier than freshly grated carrots. They don’t soften properly while baking, so they’ll stay more stiff and crunchy. Since they’re drier, your scones will also turn out drier and not as soft or moist as compared to using freshly grated carrots. I know it takes a few extra minutes, but it’s really worth grating your own!
HOW TO MAKE THE BEST CARROT OATMEAL SCONES
Now that you’ve assembled your ingredients, let’s talk about how to make the best healthy breakfast scones! The process is fairly straightforward, but I still have some tips for you to make sure your carrot oatmeal scones turn out perfectly.
Cold ingredients. It’s okay if your flour, oats, and spices are at room temperature… But you really want the butter, Greek yogurt, milk, and maple syrup to be cold. Straight from the refrigerator is fine for each of these — no need to freeze your butter!
This is especially important for the butter! When you slide the dough into the hot oven, the butter starts to melt. As it melts, it creates tender little pockets, which creates that deliciously soft scone texture. If the butter starts to soften or melt ahead of time, you miss out on that moist texture… So that’s why you want to keep the butter as cold as possible!
Tip: This is why I strongly recommend against substituting coconut oil. It has a much lower melting point (about 76-78°F, or right around room temperature), so it almost always starts to soften and melt while you’re making the dough. For better results, use stick-style vegan butter. I’ve baked scones with this kind and this kind, and they both worked really well!
Start with the oats. This is another one of my tricks for really soft and tender scones! You’ll combine the quick cooking oats with the Greek yogurt and maple syrup first. Because oats act like little sponges and soak up lots of moisture, this gives them a softening “head start” while you mix together the other ingredients.
Shape, brush, and slice. Once you’ve mixed together the dough, you’ll transfer it to a baking sheet and shape it into a circle. The circle should be about ¾” tall to ensure the scones bake properly. Next, you’ll brush the tops and sides of the dough with milk. This seals moisture into the dough, and it also creates a hint of a crust on the outside. I love that little textural contrast!
Finally, you’ll slice the dough into 8 triangles. However… Do not separate them. Leave all 8 wedges in the circle!
This is another trick to making really moist scones! When their sides are still touching, it seals more moisture into the dough, and it also makes the scones’ sides just as soft and tender as their insides.
Bake. Traditionally, scones bake at a higher temperature than cookies and cakes, and that’s true for this recipe too. The higher temperature helps create that hint of a crust on the outside. They’re done when the tops are a deep golden brown and feel rather firm to the touch.
Let them cool on the baking sheet for a few minutes before transferring to a wire rack. (If you watch my video directly above the recipe, I show you a trick for how I do that!)
FAQS ABOUT HEALTHY CARROT OATMEAL SCONES
Are these scones clean eating, low calorie, gluten free, or vegan?
Yes! These healthy carrot oatmeal scones are naturally clean eating (made with no refined flour or refined sugar!), egg free, low fat, and lower calorie. I’ve included my recommended gluten free modifications in the Notes section, and I also shared how to make them vegan in the Notes section, if needed.
How do you make scones moist, soft, and tender?
I’ve shared lots of tips above, so read through those sections for more information! But in a nutshell… Cold butter, Greek yogurt, and — for this particular recipe! — quick cooking oats are the key ingredients. Then starting with the oats, brushing the dough with milk, and leaving the scones touching while they bake are the key steps.
I only have old-fashioned rolled oats. Can I use those?
Yes — kind of! Because they’re larger and thicker, you’ll need to run them through a blender or food processor first. Pulse them until they’re about ⅛ to ¼ of their original size, and then you can use them and proceed with the recipe as written!
Should I freeze the butter?
Nope! Freezing the butter isn’t necessary for this scone recipe. Straight from the refrigerator is fine!
Can I substitute something else for the unsalted butter?
Salted butter or stick-style vegan butter are the substitutes that will yield the best texture. I don’t recommend coconut oil because it has a much lower melting point, and that negatively impacts the scones’ texture. (See the “How to Make the Best Carrot Oatmeal Scones” section above for more information!)
Can I use store-bought pre-shredded carrots?
Please don’t! They’re thicker and drier, and that negatively impacts these scones as well. (See the “Carrots” header above for more information!)
How should I store these carrot oatmeal scones? And how long will they last?
Store any leftover scones in an airtight container in the refrigerator. They should last at least four days (if not closer to a week or more!). I highly recommend reheating them prior to eating. Just pop them in the microwave (try 30% power — it helps prevent avoid overcooking them!) for a few seconds. This makes their insides really soft and tender again, and they almost taste freshly baked!
Can I freeze these scones?
Yes! These healthy carrot oatmeal scones freeze and thaw really well.
Ready to make your own? If you watch my step-by-step video above, you can follow along as I show you how – and I give you baking tips and pointers too!
And when you make this recipe, remember to snap a picture and share it on Instagram using #amyshealthybaking and tagging @amyshealthybaking IN the photo itself! (That guarantees I’ll see your picture! 🙂 ) I’d love to see your healthy carrot oatmeal scones!
Healthy Carrot Oatmeal Scones
These breakfast scones are simple to make and taste very similar to carrot cake! They’re moist inside with a hint of a crust on the outside, and plenty of soft oats, tender carrots, and cozy spices fill every bite. These scones taste lovely plain, warm, and fresh from the oven, or you can top them with a bit of butter, jam, or even a cream cheese drizzle for an added treat. Leftover scones will keep for at least four days (if not longer!) if stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator.
Preheat the oven to 425°F, and line a baking sheet with a silicone baking mat or parchment paper.
In a small bowl, stir together the oats, Greek yogurt, maple syrup, and vanilla extract. In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, cinnamon, nutmeg, baking powder, and salt. Cut in the butter with a pastry cutter (highly recommended!) or the back of a fork until the mixture resembles fine crumbs. Make a well in the center. Pour in the oat mixture and 3 tablespoons of milk. Stir them together, then gradually stir in the surrounding flour mixture until just incorporated. Gently fold in the carrots.
Using a spatula, shape the dough into a ¾” tall circle on the prepared baking sheet, and brush with the remaining milk. Slice the circle into 8 triangular segments with a sharp knife (but don’t separate them!). Bake at 425°F for 28-32 minutes, or until the tops are deep golden and the center feels firm to the touch. Cool on the pan for 10 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely.
IMPORTANT BAKING NOTE – READ BEFORE BEGINNING: Do not separate the 8 dough wedges before baking in Step 3. Instead, leave them touching on the baking sheet! This helps make the insides really moist, soft, and fluffy.
OATS NOTES: Quick cooking oats are smaller and thinner than traditional old fashioned rolled oats. (You’ll also use quick cooking oats in all of these snack cake recipes, these oatmeal muffin recipes, and these oatmeal cookie recipes of mine, too!)
In a pinch, to make your own, add the same amount of Bob’s Red Mill Organic Old Fashioned Rolled Oats to a food processor, and pulse 10-12 times, or until the oats are about ¼ of their original size.
If you can’t find the organic kind, then the regular version (Bob’s Red Mill Quick Cooking Rolled Oats) works equally well! Alternatively, you can also use Bob’s Red Mill Old Fashioned Rolled Oats (the regular version!) to make your own “DIY” quick cooking oats.
FLOUR NOTES + ALTERNATIVES: Bob’s Red Mill Organic Whole Wheat Pastry Flour or Bob’s Red Mill Organic All-Purpose Flour may be substituted for the whole wheat flour.
If you can’t find the organic kind, then the regular versions of all three flours (Bob’s Red Mill Whole Wheat Flour, Bob’s Red Mill Whole Wheat Pastry Flour, and Bob’s Red Mill All-Purpose Flour) work equally well.
SPICES NOTES: I highly recommend Saigon cinnamon! It’s stronger, richer, and sweeter than the regular kind commonly found at grocery stores. (It’s basically the only kind I use in my baking recipes now!) The nutmeg adds a subtle richness and depth. It’s a small amount, but it makes a big difference in the flavor!
IMPORTANT BUTTER NOTES + ALTERNATIVE: It’s very important that your butter is cold, straight from the fridge. (Freezing it isn’t necessary for this recipe!) With very cold butter, it won’t soften or melt until you put the scones in the extremely hot oven, and it will create little air pockets and a very tender crumb when it melts.
For this reason, I don’t recommend substituting tub-style spreadable butter. (It’s already soft and more likely to melt!) I also don’t recommend substituting coconut oil. It melts at a much lower temperature, which affects the texture of your scones. (See the “Butter” and “Cold Ingredients” headers in my blog post above for more information!) If you do decide to substitute spreadable butter or coconut oil, just keep this in mind!
Salted butter may be substituted for the unsalted butter. See the “Dairy Free + Vegan Option” below for the best non-dairy alternatives.
MAPLE SYRUP NOTES + ALTERNATIVES: Honey or agave may be substituted for the pure maple syrup.
I do not recommend substituting sugar free maple syrup. Those products are often water-based, which affects the scones’ texture. The scones usually turn out denser and collapse some while cooling.
MILK ALTERNATIVES: Any milk may be substituted for the nonfat milk.
CARROTS NOTES: For the best results, use carrots that you’ve grated yourself using the largest holes of a box grater. (I peel my carrots first!)
Do not substitute store-bought pre-shredded carrots (also called “matchstick carrots”). They’re thicker and drier, and they don’t soften properly while baking. They’ll also negatively impact your scones’ texture.
FOR SWEETER SCONES: As written, these scones aren’t overly sweet. If you prefer sweeter scones, substitute additional pure maple syrup for an equal amount of milk in the dough. (For example, use 4 tablespoons of pure maple syrup, and decrease the milk in the dough to 2 tablespoons.)
EGG FREE VERSION: No modifications necessary!
DAIRY FREE + VEGAN VERSION: Use stick-style vegan butter (such as this kind or this kind). Substitute your favorite non-dairy milk and non-dairy yogurt (ie soy-based, almond-based, etc).
GLUTEN FREE VERSION: For the oats, use Bob’s Red Mill Organic Gluten Free Quick Cooking Rolled Oats or Bob’s Red Mill Gluten Free Quick Cooking Rolled Oats (non-organic).
If you’re unable to find either of those, then add the same amount of Bob’s Red Mill Organic Gluten Free Old Fashioned Rolled Oats or Bob’s Red Mill Gluten Free Old Fashioned Rolled Oats (non-organic) to a food processor or blender, and pulse 10-12 times, or until the oats are about ¼ of their original size.
For the gluten free flour, use Bob’s Red Mill Gluten Free 1-to-1 Baking Flour. Alternatively, use the following homemade blend: ½ cup (60g) Bob’s Red Mill Millet Flour, ¼ cup (30g) Bob’s Red Mill Tapioca Flour, ¼ cup (30g) Bob’s Red Mill Brown Rice Flour, and ½ teaspoon Bob’s Red Mill Xanthan Gum.
HOW TO STORE: Store your scones in an airtight container in the refrigerator. They’ll keep for at least four or five days, if not longer.
I highly recommend reheating leftover scones in the microwave before eating. It really improves their texture and makes them soft and fluffy again! I heat them on 30% power until they’re warmed all the way through.
These scones also freeze really well!
gluten free option, dairy free option, vegan option, egg free, clean eating, low fat, lower sugar
View Nutrition Information + Weight Watchers Points
This post was sponsored by Bob’s Red Mill. You can find their products at stores near you using their handy store locator! As always, all opinions, text, photographs, and recipe are my own. Thank you for supporting the brands that help me continue to create and share recipes with you!
You may also like Amy’s other recipes…
♡ Healthy Oatmeal Raisin Scones
♡ Healthy Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Scones
♡ Healthy Carrot Cake Scones
♡ Healthy Carrot Cake Oatmeal Muffins
♡ Healthy Carrot Cake Oatmeal Snack Cake
♡ Healthy Carrot Cake Breakfast Quick Bread
♡ Healthy Carrot Cake Pancakes
♡ Healthy Carrot Cake Waffles
♡ …and the rest of Amy’s healthy scone recipes and healthy “carrot cake” flavored recipes!