These Easy Buttermilk Biscuits are a crowd-pleasing recipe. Made with a handful of pantry staples, these flaky biscuits are light, fluffy and oh-so-buttery. Whether you're serving them for breakfast, brunch, or as a side dish, they are sure to impress.
These Easy Buttermilk Biscuits are a must-try! Made with simple ingredients and a generous amount of butter, these biscuits are guaranteed to impress. This recipe comes from renowned Southern chef Edna Lewis. If you haven't heard of her, this article is a great place to start on who this pioneer in American home cooking and soul food was.
Why you'll love these
Fluffy and Buttery Perfection
These easy homemade biscuits are incredibly light, fluffy, and oh-so-buttery. The combination of buttermilk and butter creates a rich and tender texture that will have you reaching for seconds.
Quick and Easy
With just a few basic ingredients and minimal prep time, these easy homemade biscuits come together quickly. Perfect for busy mornings or last-minute gatherings, you can whip up a batch in no time.
You can enjoy them warm with a pat of butter, as a side dish to accompany hearty stews and soups, or even as a base for biscuits and gravy. Making them incredibly versatile.
This recipe is perfect for both seasoned bakers and beginners alike. With clear step-by-step instructions and helpful tips, you'll achieve golden easy homemade biscuits every time.
History of Easy Buttermilk Biscuits
Southern buttermilk biscuits have roots from early settlers in the American South. The recipe itself can be traced back to British and Scottish immigrants who brought their traditional baking techniques to the region.
Southern buttermilk biscuits have become deeply ingrained in Southern culture, representing comfort, hospitality, and tradition. They are a staple at family gatherings, Sunday brunches, and cherished community events.
This quick bread became popular due to how difficult and expensive yeast was in the early Nineteenth Century. The biscuit also kept it’s shape and made wiping up gravy much easier than with bread, making this pairing one that is still popular (see notes for a recipe to find traditional Southern Sawmill Gravy to top your own biscuits with).
They became a Southern dish thanks to the warmer climate that helped winter wheat grow in the summers which resulted in less protein making the flour perfect for cakes, cookies and quick breads like biscuits.
How to prepare Easy Buttermilk Biscuits
- Stir the dries: Toss the dry ingredients in a bowl and stir together.
- Cut the butter: Add the chilled butter and cut into the flour until the mixture resembles course breadcrumbs.
- But-ter-milk: Pour in the buttermilk and stir until the dough looks shaggy.
- Press: Press the dough into the edges of your bowl and invert onto your work surface.
- Half and half: Cut the dough in half and layer and repeat.
- Press and shape: Press the dough firmly together and shape the edges into a square.
- Roll roll roll your dough: Roll out your dough until it is 1 ½ inches thick.
- Cut out: Cut into equal shapes and place on your baking tray.
- Brush: Brush the tops of the biscuits with milk.
- Bake: Bake until golden.
- Serve: Serve to your preference. Enjoy!
Ingredients and substitutions for Easy Buttermilk Biscuits
- Flour: Plain or all purpose flour works because biscuits, though being more a bread type dish, aren’t bread. We don’t want a firm crust or overly activated gluten which is easier to control with a plain flour that has less protein in it.
- Baking powder: The key to our biscuits rising is in the quantity of baking powder which doesn’t leave its flavor thanks to being offset with the acidity in that buttermilk.
- Buttermilk: Buttermilk is acidic which reacts with the baking powder and activates the baking soda in the biscuits as well giving our biscuits moisture to create a soft and flaky texture.
- Butter: Unsalted chilled butter was used, however, you can replace in equal measure with salted.
See recipe card for quantities.
How to make Easy Buttermilk Biscuits:
Preheat the oven to 230C/450F and greaseproof a baking tray.
Place the sifted flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt into a bowl and stir to combine.
Add in the cubed butter and begin cutting it into the flour with a pastry blender or knife until the pieces of butter are no larger than a pea and the mixture resembles course breadcrumbs.
Make a well in the center and add in the buttermilk.
Stir the buttermilk through the flour mixture until no dry patches remain and the dough looks shaggy.
Press the shaggy dough into the edges of your bowl to form the dough and upturn onto a work surface.
Press firmly together and shape into a rough square with your hands.
Cut the dough in half with a bench scraper and lay one half on top of the other.
Press down firmly and lightly flour the bench scraper, press the edges of the dough to shape into a square.
Lightly flour a rolling pin and roll out into a rectangle that is 1 ½ inches thick.
Cut into 9 equal squares and place on your baking tray.
Brush the milk over the top of the biscuits.
Place in the oven and bake for 20 minutes or until really golden on top and the edges.
Remove and allow to cool.
Serve warm, with butter, peach jam or drizzles of honey.
Equipment needed to make this
Mixing bowl: A medium to large mixing bowl is perfect to make the dough.
Pastry cutter or bread knife: A pastry cutter or bread knife works to cut the butter into the flour.
Bench scraper: A handy bench scraper helps when making biscuits, from flattening those layers to lifting the dough up from your bench. If you do not have one, simply use a flat butter knife.
Baking tray: A large flat baking tray that fits all the biscuits in one go will make baking these a quick process.
FAQ's for the best Easy Buttermilk Biscuits
The total time to make Easy Buttermilk Biscuits is about 30-35 minutes, including making the dough and baking time.
While it's recommended to use unsalted butter in this recipe, you can use salted butter if that's what you have on hand. Just adjust the amount of added salt to balance the flavors.
Yes, you can freeze Easy Buttermilk Biscuits for later enjoyment. After baking and cooling, place the biscuits in an airtight container or freezer bag and freeze for up to 3 months. Thaw them at room temperature or reheat in the oven before serving.
Absolutely! You can adjust the size of the easy homemade biscuits to your preference. For smaller biscuits, use a smaller biscuit cutter or reduce the diameter of each biscuit. For larger biscuits, use a larger cutter or shape them accordingly. Just note that baking time may vary slightly depending on the size of the biscuits.
Yes, this biscuit recipe with butter are suitable for a vegetarian diet as they do not contain any meat or animal products. However, please ensure that the specific ingredients you use align with your dietary preferences and restrictions.
These easy homemade biscuits are perfectly complemented by a rich and creamy sausage gravy. Sawmill Gravy is a great and traditional place to start as this is often the way they are served in the South and this recipe is a great one to top your biscuits with.
More quick breads you'll enjoyPrint
This soft and fluffy easy buttermilk biscuits recipe is perfect for lazy day breakfasts either smeared with butter and drizzled with honey or topped with gravy. With their fluffy texture, rich buttery taste, and versatility, they are sure to become a family favorite.
340 grams / 3 cups sifted plain flour
14 grams / 1 tablespoon baking powder
2 grams / ½ teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon sea or kosher salt
160 grams / 5.6 ounces butter, chilled and cubed
250 grams / 1 cup + 2 tablespoons buttermilk
1 tablespoon milk
- Preheat the oven to 230C/450F and greaseproof a baking tray.
- Place the sifted flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt into a bowl and stir to combine.
- Add in the cubed butter and begin cutting it into the flour with a pastry blender or knife until the pieces of butter are no larger than a pea and the mixture resembles course breadcrumbs.
- Make a well in the center and add in the buttermilk.
- Stir the buttermilk through the flour mixture until no dry patches remain and the dough looks shaggy.
- Press the shaggy dough into the edges of your bowl to form the dough and upturn onto a work surface.
- Press firmly together and shape into a rough square with your hands.
- Cut the dough in half with a bench scraper and lay one half on top of the other.
- Press down firmly and lightly flour the bench scraper, press the edges of the dough to shape into a square.
- Lightly flour a rolling pin and roll out into a rectangle that is 1 ½ inches thick.
- Cut into 9 equal squares and place on your baking tray.
- Brush the milk over the top of the biscuits.
- Place in the oven and bake for 20 minutes or until really golden on top and the edges.
- Remove and allow to cool.
- Serve warm, with butter, peach jam or drizzles of honey.
The great lard/butter debate: Traditional recipes for biscuits call for lard which is not as frequent an ingredient found in homes nowadays. Additionally, some bakers who have made traditional biscuits with either ingredient cannot tell a large difference in the final result which means that if you have lard on hand, simply sub the butter in this recipe in equal measure.
Keep your ingredients chilled: When preparing the butter, it’s best to measure out and cube into equal portions and return to the fridge until required, this helps in the final result of fluffy and layered biscuits.
Serving your buttermilk biscuits with gravy: If you want to make more traditional biscuits and gravy, Sawmill Gravy is a great and traditional place to start as this is often the way they are served in the South and this recipe is a great one to top your biscuits with.
Best served: Biscuits are best served the day they are made, but will keep covered for up to 3 days, however, will be better served toasted at this time.
Adapted from Edna Lewis via New York Times
- Calories: 279 calories per plain biscuit
Keywords: southern recipes, flaky biscuits
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