These homemade Southern biscuits are a favorite Southern staple that is quick and easy to make and is a perfect recipe for homemade buttermilk biscuits and gravy.
There’s nothing more delicious than homemade biscuits. Biscuits are serious business in the south. Although those biscuits you can pop out of a can are popular across the country, you won’t catch a southern gal or guy with those in the fridge unless they have absolutely zero time. Even then, we’d probably just opt to make something different. Those tubes are great for monkey bread and other desserts, but they are absolutely not biscuits. If you want real, honest-to-goodness biscuits, then you need to try this recipe.
As a southerner, I grew up on biscuits. I loved them with bacon or sausage and eggs for breakfast. And of course, we can’t forget drowning them in sausage gravy! When I got older, I passed on the tradition of making delicious, homemade buttermilk biscuits to my kids. I made them for breakfast, and I also showed the kiddos how to make them so they could make them for their families one day. Guess what? That’s exactly what they do.
Homemade Southern Biscuits
Southern biscuits are a southern work of art. They’re dense, but they’re not tough, just substantial, and they’re perfectly golden on the outside. They’re absolutely divine with butter and jam, your favorite breakfast foods, or drenched in sausage and gravy. The secret to these absolutely delicious biscuits is using buttermilk. The acidity in buttermilk creates a biscuit that is soft and fluffy while still being substantial and filling. For my money, you just cannot beat these delicious buttermilk biscuits.
Fluffy Southern Buttermilk Biscuits
These biscuits are substantial, but they are neither dry nor too heavy. They’re an almost confusing dichotomy of dense and light if you can imagine that. When you bite into these biscuits, you know you’re biting into something hearty, but at the same time, you’re treated to an interior that is so light and fluffy and you can actually see the flaky layers. If you’ve ever had southern biscuits, you understand what I’m saying. If you haven’t made this recipe, and you soon will.
Tips for Making Great Homemade Southern Buttermilk Biscuits
If you want to make the best biscuits possible, then it’s essential that you read this section. Biscuits are a very straightforward recipe, but the real secret to these biscuits is in what I like to call “the touch”. It takes a certain… something to make the best biscuits. For many southerners, it’s something that we just do, like an instinct almost. For everyone else, I’ve got you covered. Read one!
The biggest secret to really excellent biscuits is cold butter. Real cold. Extremely cold. Cutting in cold butter is what gives these biscuits their fluffy texture, but oftentimes, the dough gets worked so much that the butter softens inside the dough before it even reaches the oven.
To ensure your butter stays as cold as possible, cut it up into cubes, and then place it back into the fridge to get nice and cold again. Then, cut it into the flour. You can even freeze it, if you like.
Never Use Your Hands
Many people use their hands to bring their dough together, but don’t do it! The heat from your hands will melt the butter while you mix the dough. Instead, use a metal spoon that won’t add heat during the mixing process.
Use the Well Method
To get the best texture for your biscuits, use the well method when adding the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients. This helps reduce the likelihood of overmixing. Gradually bring the dry ingredients from the outside of the bowl to the center where you poured the liquid. This helps ensure a dough that is mixed to the point where the dry ingredients are just moistened.
Frequently Asked Questions
If you have questions about homemade southern biscuits, then read on. I have the answers. This section answers all the most common questions about biscuits, so it’s worth a read.
What does buttermilk do for biscuits?
The acidity in buttermilk helps the biscuits rise, getting them nice and fluffy on the inside. In addition, it adds that classic tangy flavor that we all love about southern biscuits.
Why are my biscuits flat?
Flat biscuits are almost always the result of the butter in the dough melting before the biscuits are baked. When biscuits bake, the butter melts, and the carbon dioxide from the leavening takes its place, allowing the biscuits to rise. If the butter melts prematurely, the carbon dioxide has nowhere to go except out of the biscuits.
Can I substitute milk for buttermilk in biscuits?
Absolutely not. The acidity of buttermilk not only gives biscuits their classic southern flavor, but it also helps make the biscuits rise. If you don’t have buttermilk, combine 1 cup of milk, preferably 2% or whole milk, with 1 tablespoon of white vinegar or lemon juice.
Is it better to use butter or shortening for biscuits?
For that classic southern biscuit flavor and texture, I prefer butter. You can make delicious biscuits with shortening if you do it right, but they won’t be classic homemade southern biscuits.
What makes a good biscuit?
First and foremost, a biscuit should be made with buttermilk, in my opinion. After that, using the coldest butter possible is key. Fresh ingredients also make a huge difference, especially when using things like baking powder that help the biscuits rise. Finally, a good biscuit will be golden brown on the outside, light and fluffy on the inside, and still have some heft to it.
What is the best flour for biscuits?
If you have access to it, the absolute best flour for biscuits is without question White Lily. This flour has been a staple of southern biscuit recipes for decades. It’s milled from extra-fine, soft, red-winter wheat and lower in protein and gluten than other flour. It makes biscuits rise higher and come out with a fluffier interior.
How do you make biscuits rise more?
Keep your butter as cold as possible, and only use a metal spoon to mix the dough. Work the dough as little as possible to ensure the butter doesn’t heat up.
What to Serve with Homemade Southern Biscuits
The better question is what can’t you serve with them? Every breakfast item goes well with biscuits. I’ve even made them for lunch and dinner on occasion. While they’re delicious with anything, some of the best pairings include:
- Sausage gravy
- Honey butter
- Karo syrup mixed with butter in equal amounts
- Molasses mixed with butter in equal amounts
How to Store Homemade Southern Biscuits
Biscuits will keep at room temperature in an airtight container for up to 2 days. For longer storage, you can refrigerate them for up to a week.
Homemade Southern Biscuits Ingredients
It only takes a few ingredients to make this delicious southern staple. You probably have most if not all of them in your kitchen right now, in fact.
- All purpose flour
- Baking powder
- Cream of tartar
- Whole milk
How to Make Homemade Southern Biscuits
Making these biscuits is as simple as gathering the ingredients, especially if you follow the tips I listed earlier. This is a basic recipe that even beginners can make. In fact, it’s one that most southern learn to make before any others.
Step 1: Prep
Preheat the oven to 450 degrees. Then cut your butter into cubes. Place the cubes back into the refrigerator, or freezer, for at least 30 minutes to chill again.
Step 2: Combine the Dry Ingredients
In a large bowl, whisk the dry ingredients together. Next, use a pastry cutter to cut the very cold, or frozen butter chunks into the dry mixture until the flour looks like small white peas.
Step 3: Add the Wet Ingredients
Make a well in the center of the dry ingredients and add the egg, milk, and buttermilk to it. Then, mix the dry and wet ingredients and stir until just combined.
Step 4: Make the Biscuits
Transfer the dough to a well floured work surface and sprinkle the top with additional flour. Then, knead the dough 10-15 times. After that, roll dough out with a rolling pin to about 1-inch thick rectangle and cut out the biscuits with a biscuit cutter.
Step 5: Bake
Place the biscuits on a lightly greased, nonstick cookie sheet. Then, brush the tops of the biscuits with buttermilk and bake for 10 – 12 minutes or until the tops are slightly brown. Serve warm and enjoy!
Try These Delicious Homemade Southern Biscuits Today
These homemade southern biscuits are a staple of southern cooking, and you’ll see why when you give this recipe a try. These biscuits are just about the best thing you’ll ever put in your mouth, and they’re super easy to make, which makes them even better. Give them a try and pair them up with your favorite breakfast foods for a breakFEAST like you’ve never had before!
Looking for More Delicious Breakfast Recipes?
Hash Brown Breakfast Cups – These breakfast cups are made with hash browns, breakfast sausage, eggs, two types of cheese and baked in the oven and topped with salsa. So yummy!
Homemade Biscuits and Gravy – This homemade biscuit and gravy recipe is made with sausage gravy, homemade buttermilk biscuits and a family favorite comfort food recipe.
And, here is The Best Buttermilk Pancakes Recipe from Great Grub, Delicious Treats that you might enjoy too!
Homemade Buttermilk Biscuits
- 3 cups all purpose flour
- 3 tablespoons sugar
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 4 teaspoons baking powder
- ½ teaspoon cream of tartar
- ¾ cup cold butter, cubed
- 1 large egg
- ½ cup whole milk
- ½ cup buttermilk + 2 tablespoons
- Preheat the oven to 450°.
- In a large mixing bowl, whisk together dry ingredients.
- Using a pastry cutter, cut butter into the dry mixture.
- Add the egg, milk, and ½ cup buttermilk.
- Mix until just combined.
- Transfer the dough to a well floured surface, sprinkle additional flour on top of dough and knead 10-15 times.
- Roll/pat dough out to 1 inch thickness and cut with a biscuit cutter.
- Place biscuits on a lightly greased or non-stick baking sheet.
- Brush tops of biscuits with remaining buttermilk and bake for 10-12 minutes or until the tops of biscuits are slightly brown.
- Remove from oven and serve warm.