A Cheesy, Savory Scone That Wants to Be Spanakopita

April  5, 2018
It's a's a's a scone! Photo by Julia Gartland

It was just another day at the office. Pot of beans here. Tray of granola there. Giant salad. Cheese board! And then, out of nowhere, like a sunshower or rainbow or unicorn, scones. Scurries from desk toward snack table. To know me is to know I love scones. I love scones! This was one of my “reasons” to study abroad in Scotland. Here in the States, though, they have a tough reputation (dense, dry, crumbly) and they’re tough to do well. Unless you have a reliable recipe.

These scones were oversized—so, perfectly sized—marbled with greens, stuffed with cheese, crispy, salty, peppery crusts, fluffy, tender, pillowy centers. I carried one around and interrogated my co-workers (you know, cheerily). Are these yours? I asked one editor. Yours? I asked another. Yours? I asked another. But no one claimed them.

To the test kitchen: Who made these? I asked. Where did they come from? Why are they here? For a Shop photoshoot, they explained. It’s a recipe on the site. On the site? Like, our site? Yeah, they’re our contributor Posie Harwood’s cheesy kale scones. I mean, of course, right? To know Posie is to know all the best scone recipes. Over the years, she’s made sure that Food52 is chock-full of them. (Thanks, Posie!)

I printed the recipe and started scribbling all over it. Posie opted for kale and pecorino, plus dried currants and itty-bitty pine nuts. What if I repurposed the real estate that the fruit and nuts are taking up, and put that toward more greens, more cheese? And what if I changed up the greens and cheese? Say, to spinach and feta, like spanakopita took a wrong turn, got separated from filo dough, and ended up somewhere else. But liked it there!

Shop the Story

When I started thinking about spanakopita, I knew I wanted to get some alliums involved (scallions, garlic) and fresh herbs (dill) and lemon (zest). I love the way they turned out. In my own kitchen, then again in our test kitchen. Of course, this time I was expecting, even awaiting them. Call it a long con.

What’s your favorite savory scone? Tell us about it in the comments!

See what other Food52 readers are saying.

  • A.N.G.
  • Megan Guntas
    Megan Guntas
  • Emma Laperruque
    Emma Laperruque
Emma was the food editor at Food52. She created the award-winning column, Big Little Recipes, and turned it into a cookbook in 2021. These days, she's a senior editor at Bon Appétit, leading digital cooking coverage. Say hello on Instagram at @emmalaperruque.


A.N.G. July 9, 2018
I don't really understand the science of baking, so please forgive me if this is a dumb question, but would these still turn out without the salt? I'm going to make them either way, but would like to make them so he can eat them if possible! Thanks!
A.N.G. July 9, 2018
Sorry - I guess I deleted the part about my dad being on a super-low-salt diet!
Emma L. July 9, 2018
Hi, never a dumb question! They should turn out fine without the salt. Another option would be lowering the salt to, say, 1/4 teaspoon, and swapping in a less-salty cheese. Feta is notoriously salty. You could crumble fresh goat cheese or cream cheese, freeze for 15 or so minutes to firm up, then mix into the dough the same way. Hope this helps and let me know how they turn out!
A.N.G. July 9, 2018
Thank you so much for your quick and informative reply! I'll let you know how they turn out! :)
Megan G. April 5, 2018
This are AMAZING!
Megan G. April 5, 2018