Buttermilk Biscuits! I worked on this recipe for quite some time to get just the right combination of fluffiness and flakiness. I’ll show you a special technique to creates layers of buttery goodness.
Table of contents
Why this is the best Buttermilk Biscuit Recipe
I’ve tried many biscuit recipes over the years. Some make a very, very wet dough that could almost be scooped like a muffin rather than cut with a biscuit cutter. A very wet dough that is minimally handled produces a super fluffy and moist biscuit.
I’ve tried other recipes that make a firmer dough that is rolled and folded to create flakiness. I found some of those recipes produce a biscuit that is flaky, but too much of the fluffiness is lost.
I want the best of both worlds so I tinkered with this recipe until I got a result that was both light and flaky. This dough is so tender you don’t need a rolling pin. You can easily pat it into shape using your hands.
- Flour – This recipe uses a mixture of 1/2 all purpose and 1/2 cake flour. All purpose flour gives the biscuit dough enough body to create layers, and cake flour has a lower protein content to keep toughening gluten at bay. Pastry flour can be used instead of the flour mixture.
- Buttermilk – Acidic Buttermilk tenderizes the dough and has lightly tangy flavor that is perfect in this recipe. Fresh buttermilk will make a superior biscuit, but you can use powdered buttermilk or milk mixed with lemon juice.
- Baking Soda/Baking Powder – There is a good amount of leavening in this recipe for the lightest biscuit possible. Baking soda works with the acidic buttermilk to help rise the dough.
How to make Buttermilk Biscuits
See the recipe card for detailed measurements and instructions.
- Cut the butter into the dry ingredients.
- Add the buttermilk all at once and mix with a spatula until most of the flour is absorbed.
- Turn the dough out onto a floured surface.
- Knead a few times to bring the dough together. Do not over knead or the biscuits will become tough.
- Pat the dough to 1/2″ thick and fold in half.
- Fold the dough again.
- Pat to 3/4″ thick and cut the biscuits. Re-knead the scraps of dough and continue cutting biscuits until all the dough is used up.
- Line the biscuits on a parchment lined baking sheet.
- Brush with buttermilk before baking in a hot oven.
Work Ahead Storage
To work ahead you can combine all the dry ingredients and set them aside at room temperature. Slice the butter and keep it chilled until you’re ready to mix the dough. The biscuits can be mixed, cut and held in the refrigerator for several hours or overnight.
Buttermilk biscuits are best eaten still warm from the oven. Leftovers can be frozen and rewarmed in a 200F oven or buttered and toasted on a griddle.
If you love this recipe as much as I do, I’d really appreciate a 5-star review.
Flaky Buttermilk Biscuits
- 10 oz all purpose flour (2 cups, see note)
- 9 oz cake flour (2 cups)
- 4 teaspoons baking powder
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 2 teaspoons sugar
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 8 oz unsalted butter (cold and cut into 16 pieces)
- 16 oz buttermilk (2 cups)
- Preheat the oven to 400 °F. Line a half sheet pan with parchment paper.
- Combine 10 oz all purpose flour, 9 oz cake flour, 4 teaspoons baking powder, 1 teaspoon baking soda, 2 teaspoons sugar and 1 teaspoon salt and salt in a mixing bowl. Whisk the dry ingredients to combine.
- Mix 8 oz unsalted butter into the flour with your fingers until it's broken down into bits slightly larger than a pea. Add 16 oz buttermilk all at once and mix until about ⅔ of the dry ingredients are absorbed.
- Turn the dough onto a lightly floured surface and gently knead together just to incorporate the remaining dry flour (this should only take about 6-8 kneads).
- Gently pat dough to a ½" thick, brush off excess flour and fold the dough in half. Pat gently to stick the dough together and and fold again. Pat to ¾ " thick disc and cut with a 3" biscuit cutter. Gather the scraps together, pat to ¾" thick and continue cutting until all the dough is used up.
- Set the biscuits onto the prepared baking sheet and brush the tops with buttermilk. Bake until golden brown, about 10-12 minutes.
- If the bottoms of the biscuits are browning too fast set another sheet pan under the biscuits after 5 minutes of baking.
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