Scented Pine Cones for Holiday Decor and Potpourri

This post may contain affiliate links.

Scented Pine Cones

These DIY cinnamon and vanilla-scented pine cones smell and look great! They’re a beautiful addition to your holiday decor and potpourri.

Ever walk into a store with overwhelming chemical holiday fragrances? I’m talking smack you in the face, unbelievably strong fragrance. I avoid these stores!

Strong scents can trigger migraines, asthma attacks, and other respiratory issues for many people.[1] However, there are many ways to find a natural alternative to strong scents. My favorite way is to make them myself!

How to Make Scented Pine Cones

Making this DIY was fairly simple because I already knew I would use essential oils for the aroma. However, since I have little children at home, Cinnamon essential oil was out as it is not safe to use around children. Vanilla oleoresin is a safer “essential oil” choice and has a lovely, deep, sweet aroma that pairs perfectly with cinnamon.

Instead of cinnamon essential oil, I used cinnamon spice. It is potent enough on its own, lending the perfect cinnamon scent for these scented pine cones.

Plus, the glue to hold on the cinnamon spice was a great medium to dilute the vanilla oleoresin. I simply mixed the vanilla in the glue, then added cinnamon spice to make a thick paste and rolled the pine cones in it.

However, if you have no children at home and would like a stronger cinnamon aroma, you can also add cinnamon bark essential oil or cinnamon cassia essential oil to the vanilla oleoresin.

Preparing Cones for Indoor Use

If you are collecting pine cones from outdoors, make sure to prepare them before using them indoors. Otherwise, your scented pine cones can bring some uninvited guests in your house.

It is simple to prepare pine cones and this step also helps them open up fully. Simply place the pine cones on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper or wax paper. Turn the oven up to 200 degrees and allow them to dry out for 30 minutes to 3 hours.

It took my pine cones two hours to open up because when I gathered them, they were still on the tree and had a lot of sap covering the cone. Make sure to never leave your oven unattended at this time as pine cones can catch fire easily.

Once the scented pine cones are fully opened, remove them from the oven and place them on a counter to cool. They are now ready to use in crafts, decor, and whatever else you choose.

Scented Pine Cones

Scented Pine Cones

5 from 1 vote
These DIY cinnamon and vanilla-scented pine cones smell and look great! They’re subtle, beautiful, and the perfect addition to holiday decor and potpourri.
Estimated Cost




  1. Begin making your scented pine cones by placing the pine cones on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper or wax paper.
  2. Bake at 200 degrees until pine cones are fully opened. (30 minutes to 3 hours).
  3. Remove pine cones from the oven and allow to cool fully.
  4. While pine cones are cooling, mix 1/2 cup glue with 10 drops of Vanilla Oleoresin and stir well.
  5. Pour in 2 tablespoons of ground cinnamon and stir well, adding more glue if needed.
  6. Roll cooled pine cones in the glue mixture, then transfer to parchment paper to dry fully, turning halfway through.
  7. Once fully dried, store pine cones in a decorative container or jar. Refresh with a drop of vanilla oleoresin as needed.
Made this recipe?

Mention @diynatural or tag it #diynatural!

These little pine cones make adorable additions to potpourri and can be combined with fresh fir branches, cinnamon sticks, dried oranges, and other dried aromatics for a festive holiday decoration. One of my favorite potpourri recipes is this Simple DIY Christmas Potpourri for Holiday Decor.



  1. Fragrance Chemicals. Health Care Without Harm. Accessed Nov 2019.

About Katie Vance

Katie is a wife, mother, aromatherapist, and lover of all things DIY. She offers consultations and gives simple aromatherapy advice at Katie Vance, Aromatherapy Simplified. You can also find Katie on Facebook.

PAID ENDORSEMENT DISCLOSURE: In order for us to support our website activities, we may receive monetary compensation or other types of remuneration for our endorsement, recommendation, testimonial and/or link to any products or services from this website.

DISCLAIMER: Information on DIY Natural™ is not reviewed or endorsed by the FDA and is NOT intended to be substituted for the advice of your health care professional. If you rely solely upon this advice you do so at your own risk. Read full Disclaimer & Disclosure statements here.