The former Super Rugby star is one of five changes to the Cardiff Blues team that started the last league fixture with Munster Rugby at the start of November. Dan Fish is the other change in the back division as he is named on the left wing.
Macauley Cook comes in to partner Jarrad Hoeata in the second row while Ellis Jenkins is rewarded for his outstanding form in the LV=Cup with the number seven jersey in Scotland.
Kristian Dacey is named in the starting line-up at hooker, with Matthew Rees ruled out with injury, and Adam Jones will captain the region for the very first time.
Hot prospect Garyn Smith could also make his league debut for Blues with the Academy product named among the replacements after also impressing in the LV=Cup.
Director of Rugby Mark Hammett said: “We’ve enjoyed a good period of results in both cup competitions and now look forward to the resumption of the Guinness PRO12 for a crucial period of fixtures up until Christmas.
“We’re well aware of the challenge we face up in Scotland against Edinburgh. They’re well coached by South African Head Coach Alan Solomans and, from what I‘ve seen of them, they have a strong territorial game and if you get that right it is hard to stop.
“We’re keen to get Gareth (Anscombe) involved and so he will start the game at full back. A number of other players will be keen to step up, continue the good form of recent weeks and impress while others are away during the autumn international window.”
Cardiff Blues: 15 Gareth Anscombe, 14 Richard Smith, 13 Adam Thomas, 12 Gavin Evans, 11 Dan Fish, 10 Gareth Davies, 9 Lloyd Williams; 1 Sam Hobbs, 2 Kristian Dacey, 3 Adam Jones (c), 4 Jarrad Hoeata, 5 Macauley Cook, 6 Josh Turnbull, 7 Ellis Jenkins, 8 Manoa Vosawai
Replacements: 16 Rhys Williams, 17 Thomas Davies, 18 Scott Andrews, 19 Chris Dicomidis, 20 Josh Navidi, 21 Lewis Jones, 22 Garyn Smith, 23 Geraint Walsh