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Flaky Buttermilk Biscuits

Flaky Buttermilk Biscuits

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I’ve made numerous biscuits and even homemade puff pastry. When I found a recipe for Flaky Buttermilk Biscuits that utilized the dispersing of butter as in puff pastry, I knew I had a winner!
 Flaky Buttermilk Biscuits - two tricks make for magificent flaky and tender buttermilk biscuits

 How to Make Flaky Buttermilk Biscuits

I have a couple go to recipes when I have leftover buttermilk. One is Ina’s corn muffins and the other a recipe for tender buttermilk biscuits.  Cook’s Illustrated goes beyond the typical method of cutting in cold butter and shortening to create their flaky buttermilk biscuits.
You actually generate thin sheets of butter by flattening out pieces of butter with your fingers.  These sheets of butter are dispersed throughout the dough and, when baked, will melt and steam and created those incredible air pockets like in puff pastry.  You also fold the dough into thirds to give more opportunities for that flakiness we all crave.
Flaky Buttermilk Biscuits

Homemade Biscuits

I’ve added a tablespoon of sugar to the recipe, but it certainly can be left out if that’s your preference.  These are the perfect accompaniment to stews and soups. My kids eat the leftovers for breakfast.

And these flaky buttermilk biscuits are wonderful for your summer strawberry shortcakes. I love to make it with white chocolate whipped cream to kick  it up a notch!

I always add a bit more sugar when using these flaky biscuits for dessert.  Hope you’ll try a batch, whether a classic version or for a dessert!

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Flaky Buttermilk Biscuits

Flaky Buttermilk Biscuits

The flakiest buttermilk biscuits. Recipe adapted from Cook's Illustrated

Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Yield 9 biscuits


  • 2 1/2 cups flour plus more for rolling dough
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 2 tablespoons shortening
  • 1 stick very cold butter
  • 1 1/4 cup very cold buttermilk


  1. Preheat oven to 450ΒΊ. Line baking sheet with silpat or parchment paper.
  2. In a bowl, whisk together dry ingredients. Cut in shortening in with pastry blender or a couple knives till the size of peas. Cut butter into 8 pieces and, one at a time, rub them into the flour with your fingers till they are flattened into thin sheets (they will break apart). You'll want all the butter separated into these pieces so when they melt in the oven, they will make the biscuits flaky.
  3. Put the bowl in the freezer for 15 minutes.
  4. Add all the buttermilk except the last two tablespoons. Mix gently with a spatula. If the dough is too dry, you may add the remaining buttermilk. Lightly flour another silpat and roll the dough out to cover the surface (11 x 16). Fold the dough into thirds, then roll to an inch thick.
  5. Cut into biscuits using sharp round cutter, 3 inch diameter or less. Press straight down without twisting. Dip the cutter into flour if it sticks to the dough. Pat together scraps to make last few biscuits. Place biscuits on lined baking sheet, and bake about 15 minutes or till lightly browned.


Total time does not reflect freezing time.

Yield will vary depending on the size of your biscuit cutter.

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16 comments on “Flaky Buttermilk Biscuits”

  1. These look so delish Lizzy……they rose beautifully. Your Photo’s are very creative and look like they came from a magazine. Will try these for sure as my huband loves biscuits.
    Thanks for sharing πŸ™‚

  2. What an interesting method. It looks like it works for sure because your biscuits are so flaky.

  3. well hope after this fourth try to be able to leave a comment, wont take my ID below. These look fabulous! We would love these!

  4. That’s it, I’m convinced now. Your buttermilk biscuits are the keeper ones. Love the way it turned out, so flaky, and yummy, and do love your recipe much better than the one I’ve been using.
    Lizzy, I did a shout out about you on my latest post…don’t know if you noticed it!

  5. Oh how I love thee buttermilk biscuits. Let me count the ways…

  6. There is always room for some good buttermilk biscuits. These look great Lizzy!

  7. How gorgeous are these :-). A well made biscuit is one of life’s simple pleasures. These look great and sound delicious. I hope you have a great day. Blessings…Mary

  8. Next time I have extra buttermilk, I’m making these! They look so good!

  9. mmm…biscuits are one of my all-time favorite things! they’re just so deliciously buttery.

    awesome blog – will definitely be back again soon. i’m your newest follower!

  10. Girls, you are all so wonderful with your lovely comments!!! Thank you!!!! These are really good, I promise.

    Cailen, thanks for being a follower!!! Hope I inspire some baking πŸ™‚

  11. Hi, Yummy C! Thanks so much πŸ™‚

  12. looks soft and delicious buttermilk in it

  13. Beautiful biscuits…they want to be in my tummy. πŸ™‚

  14. Yum! Your biscuits look absolutely perfect! So light and fluffy and flaky :)! They would be wonderful spread with a bit of jam!

  15. These look flaky and fabulous! I’m actually making some buttermilk biscuits later today πŸ™‚ What comfort!

  16. Thanks, my friends!! I will make these again and again~

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