Light and Fluffy Buttermilk Biscuits

A good biscuit is bliss. A bad biscuit is little more than a glorified hockey puck. But what a lot of people don’t realize is just how easy it is to make delicious, flaky biscuits in no time at all.

Self Rising Flour is the Best for Biscuits

I’ve been playing around with the specifics of the recipe (and seeing that there are a total of 4 biscuits or biscuit variations in the new book, I’ve done a lot of testing), and have realized a few things in the process:

1. Use self-rising flour. White Lily if you can find it. For some reason all-purpose with leavening added just isn’t quite as light.

2. Get yourself a pastry blender. For quick-mix jobs like biscuits and pie crust, it’s so much easier than lugging out the food processor (which I don’t really like to use for this anyway—I find the dough becomes too dry and crumbly).

3. Less is more. When it comes to working the dough, the less you can stir/mix/knead the better, and the lighter and flakier your biscuits will be.

How to Make Fluffy and Flaky Buttermilk Biscuits

While you can’t beat a classic biscuit—and I like to brush mine with butter and sprinkle with sea salt—don’t be afraid to experiment. Add a hefty pinch of black pepper for a savory biscuit perfect for your Thanksgiving dinner. Or finely chopped fresh herbs. Add some grated parmesan or cheddar cheese. Replace the buttermilk with cream and sprinkle with some sugar for a lightly sweet dessert biscuit (hello, shortcake!)

How to Make Buttermilk Biscuits with Butter or Lard

You can also choose to use either butter, shortening, or lard, all with equally good results. Biscuits made with butter will be flaky. Biscuits made with shortening or lard will be more on the fluffy side (and I’ll tell you that if you’re looking to recreate the authentic, traditional Southern biscuit—like those made at the famous Loveless cafe—you better get over any qualms you have about using lard).

So, as they say at the Loveless cafe: “Praise the lard and pass the biscuits!”

Light & Fluffy Buttermilk Biscuits

Yield: about 10 biscuits

Ingredients:

2 cups self-rising flour

1/4 cup butter or lard, chilled and cubed

2/3 cup full-fat buttermilk

2 tablespoons butter, melted

sea salt or flake salt, for sprinkling


Directions:

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.


Sift flour into a large bowl. Using a fork or pastry cutter, cut in butter until mixture resembles coarse crumbs. With a fork, stir in buttermilk until dough just comes together.


Turn out dough onto a lightly floured surface. Pat dough into a roughly 1-inch-thick rectangle and fold in half. Repeat this patting and folding step two (and only two!) more times; this will create flaky layers in the dough, but be careful not to overwork it or your biscuits will be tough.


Press dough into a 3/4-inch-thick rectangle and cut into rounds with a circle cutter. Reroll scraps only once and cut into rounds (note: these second-roll biscuits will not rise as tall as the first biscuits you cut). Arrange rounds an inch apart on a baking sheet; brush with melted butter and sprinkle with sea salt. Bake until tops are lightly golden brown, about 10 minutes.


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32 Comments Leave a Comment »

  1. i’ve always wanted to try self-rising flour and just never could bring myself to do it! these biscuits though? reason enough right there :)

  2. I can see the fluffiness exuding from these photos… delicious!

  3. These look fab! Simple yet yummy

  4. These sound delicious and I assume are on your Thanksgiving menu. What else are you guys whipping up?

  5. I need to get myself a pastry blender…I want it…Ok, it’s done I’m gonna run downstairs at SurLaTable to check if they have it. Because, I need it!

  6. great recipe! I’m thinking abt throwing some rosemary & asiago into this recipe for an Italian-style spin on things – that’s my specialty :)

  7. I’ve never tried self-rising flour either, but for a good biscuit I could!

  8. Looks AMAZING!!!! Have to copy that into my recipe book asap!

  9. My mom never liked buttermilk biscuits, but I love them! It’s nice to have a recipe you can trust, I’m definitely trying this one!

  10. Ok I have never tried that White Lily flour but everyone raves about it and it has sort of a cultish following! I dont even know if I can get it in SoCal? I know it’s a southern thing! But now you have me intrigued and I’m going to check!

  11. These look so incredibly delicious. Light, fluffy, flaky, and buttery. Can you ask for more in a biscuit?!

  12. I was actually thinking about biscuits this morning, I’ll take this as a sign that I need to make a batch soon.

    I WISH that I could find White Lily flour up here.

  13. you made this look really simple to do. every time I try I fail at this one but Ill be sure to try again under this easy guide.

  14. Oh yum, these look great!! :) Can’t wait to make them!

  15. I haven’t had biscuits in years! Yet alone buttermilk biscuits. My parents always used Biscuit. Yuck. I need to try some homemade ones. :)

  16. Truly perfect biscuits! You make it look so easy.

  17. Lindsay these look so good! I want to make them this Saturday!

  18. light and fluffy bisquits win my heart (and tummy) every time! Great recipe and I thank you!

  19. Oh yum – I love a good buttermilk biscuit! I’m afraid to say that the only kind I’ve made myself have been the Bisquick variety, but this recipe seems just as easy!

  20. There is nothing worse than a hockey puck biscuit. These however look fan-freaking-tastic.

  21. They really look delicious and perfect for next sundays’ breakfast!

  22. They look simply delicious and very light, I can almost taste them already.

  23. The good stuff – Amen! Love a good flaky biscuit – and this reminds me of my mom, mammaw and a wonderful Aunt Teeny. Great post and photos!

  24. I am utterly powerless before a good biscuit. Yum!

  25. The cardboard tube kind are nostalgic for me because it’s what my family always had–but these would be an AWESOME upgrade!

  26. Thanks for the tips! I’ve made biscuits before and they’ve been good, but they haven’t had that over-the-top fluffiness. Must be the self rising flour and lard!

  27. When I worked at Hardees as a biscuit maker they use White Lily. It is a special kind of flour and it is fantastic with biscuits. Not so much with popovers.

  28. My husband asked me last week to find a good biscuit recipe! I can’t wait until he makes these for me!!!!! :)

  29. Fantastic tips! Thanks so much!

  30. OK, you make this look super simple. I think I might just need to give biscuit making a try again!

  31. This takes me back to mu childhood. Mom would make homemade biscuits and we would eat it with jam or honey.

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