Get these fluffy, Southern-grandma-approved Buttermilk Biscuits in your oven and then into your mouth.
I get in these little baking fits where I become obsessed with perfecting a recipe. These Buttermilk Biscuits are the flaky results of my latest fit.
I woke up one Saturday and really, really wanted biscuits. The kind that steam when you open them up and have layers so buttery and so flaky that they melt in your mouth. After several Saturdays and dozens of biscuits, I found my perfect recipe.
Like pie crust, biscuits use the cut in method. Cold butter is cut into flour until the butter pieces are smaller than a pea. Those tiny butter pieces are distributed throughout the dough and, when baked in the oven, will melt and release steam. That steam creates buttery biscuit layers.
In my biscuit baking, I found that kneading the dough correctly is just as important as cutting the butter in properly. Over mixing creates heavy, dense biscuits, and that’s not what anyone wants to wake up to.
So here’s what I do.
After cutting in the butter, create a little well in the center of the dry ingredients. Add a quarter of the buttermilk in the well and gently swirl in the flour. Continue to add buttermilk to the well a little bit at a time, swirling in flour after each addition, until a dough forms. I want the dough to come together but not be too sticky, so only use as much buttermilk as you need.
This is the same technique I use when making pie crust, which you can see in the video below.
Once the buttermilk is added, gently knead the dough 1-2 times to help it become a smooth dough.
Then pat out the dough into a rough 4×8 inch rectangle. Fold in half, short end to short end. Pat out the dough and fold in half two more times for a total of three folds.
This folding creates layers within the dough which along with baking powder and the cut in butter makes for sky-high biscuits. Just so you know, sky-high biscuits are the only way I prefer to eat biscuits.
If done correctly, you should be able to see the layers when you cut out the biscuits. Ain’t he a beaut?
After that, it’s just an egg wash and a quick trip to the oven, and you’ll be in biscuit heaven. My two favorite ways to eat these buttermilk biscuits are either smothered in jam or topped with bacon scrambled eggs. Annnd now, I can’t wait for breakfast.
- 2 cups all purpose flour
- 1 ½ tsp salt
- 1 tsp granulated sugar
- 1 Tbs baking powder
- ½ cup unsalted butter, cold and cubed
- ¾ cup buttermilk, more or less
- 1 large egg
- Preheat the oven to 425F. Line a sheet pan with parchment or a nonstick mat and set aside.
- In a medium size bowl, whisk together flour, salt, sugar and baking powder together.
- On a large cutting board, dump out dry ingredients and butter. Coat butter pieces in flour and begin to cut in butter with a bench scraper or pastry cutter. Stop cutting once the butter pieces are smaller than pea size and are starting to blend into the flour mixture.
- Create a well in the center of the dry ingredients and add a quarter of the buttermilk. Start to mix in the buttermilk by swirling the flour into the well. Continue adding buttermilk and combining with flour little by little. Stop adding buttermilk when the dough holds together but isn’t too sticky. Gently knead the dough 1 to 2 times until a smooth dough forms.
- Pat out the dough to roughly 4x8 inches. Fold in half, short end to short end. Pat out the dough again to roughly 4x8 inches. Repeat two more times for a total of three folds.
- After the third fold, pat out the dough to 4x8 inches. Using a 2 inch cutter, cut out 8 biscuits and place them on prepared pan. Place scraps on pan as well, those are your post-baking snacks!
- In a small bowl, whisk together egg and 1 Tbs of water. Brush egg wash on top of biscuits.
- Bake for about 13 minutes or until the biscuits are golden and the bottoms are brown.
- Eat hot or in one to two days. Enjoy!