Easy Buttermilk Biscuits
These easy buttermilk biscuits are incredibly soft, tall, flaky, and buttery. Serve these with some jam or gravy for an easy breakfast!
Making buttermilk biscuits from scratch is so much easier than you’d think. All it takes is seven simple ingredients and a little elbow grease — just a little!
Believe me, once you find out how easy it is to make your own biscuits you’ll never buy the pre-made kind again.
One thing I love about this buttermilk biscuit recipe is how versatile it is. Top the biscuits with your favorite sausage gravy, jam or marmalade, or a little butter and a drizzle of honey.
No matter how you dress them up, you’re going to love these biscuits!
Homemade buttermilk biscuits require just seven basic ingredients, so it’s important that you use all the right ones. Here’s what you’ll need to make this easy biscuit recipe:
- All-purpose flour: You need to spoon and level the flour when measuring it rather than scooping it straight from the bag. This will ensure that you don’t measure out too much by mistake, which would result in dense, dry biscuits.
- Baking powder & baking soda: Make sure your baking powder and baking soda are still fresh before starting. Both ingredients are important to get a good rise.
- Granulated sugar: Doesn’t make the biscuits taste sweet, it just gives them some flavor.
- Salt: Like the sugar, the salt flavors the biscuits and makes them taste more buttery.
- Unsalted butter: Needs to be cold before being cut into the flour. If you use warm butter, the biscuits won’t rise properly in the oven, nor will they be flaky.
- Buttermilk: The acidity of the buttermilk reacts with the baking soda to help them rise as they’re baking in the oven. It also creates ultra tender biscuits! I highly recommend using real buttermilk for best results.
How to Make Buttermilk Biscuits
Before you start the recipe, it’s important to note that you need to use cold butter and buttermilk in these biscuits. Prepare your dry ingredients first, then take your butter and buttermilk out of the refrigerator to ensure that they stay cold.
- Prepare the dry ingredients: Whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, sugar, and salt in a large bowl.
- Add the cold, cubed butter to the flour mixture: The butter can be cut into the flour mixture using a fork, a pastry cutter, or a food processor. You want to see small pea-sized crumbs of butter in your dry ingredients, a few larger pieces are okay though.
- Add the buttermilk: Pour the cold buttermilk into the bowl and mix just until the dough starts to come together.
- Work the dough together: Turn the dough onto a lightly floured surface and very gently work it together with your hands.
- Fold the dough: Form the dough into a rectangle, fold it into thirds like a letter (as shown in the photo above), and then pat it back out into a rectangle. This folding process needs to be repeated two more times. By folding the dough over itself, you’re creating layers. These layers result in ultra flaky, fluffy buttermilk biscuits! Trust me here, it’s worth the extra step.
- Pat out the dough: After the dough has been folded a third time, pat it out into a 1/2-inch thick rectangle. Make sure to measure here! If the dough is too thin, the biscuits won’t rise very tall.
- Cut out the biscuits: Use a floured 2.5-inch biscuit cutter to cut out the biscuits, and arrange them on a parchment paper-lined baking sheet. When cutting your biscuits out, don’t twist your cutter. This will seal off the edges of your dough and they won’t rise as high. Just cut the dough straight down and pull the cutter right back out.
- Place them side by side on the baking sheet: Make sure the biscuits are touching each other like the picture above. Not only will this help the biscuits rise taller in the oven, but it will also give them softer sides.
- Brush the tops of the biscuits with buttermilk: This step is optional, but it helps the tops turn a beautiful golden brown as they’re baking in the oven.
- Bake until golden brown: This will take about 15 to 17 minutes, depending on your oven.
How To Freeze Buttermilk Biscuits
Yes, you can either freeze the biscuits before baking them or after you have baked them.
- To freeze before baking: Place the cut out biscuits on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Transfer the baking sheet to the freezer and freeze for 1 to 2 hours or until the biscuits are frozen solid. Place the biscuits in a large freezer bag and freeze for up to 3 months. The biscuits may be baked from frozen, just add a few extra minutes to the baking time. If they start to brown too much before they’re fully baked through, place a piece of foil over the top until they’re done.
- To freeze the baked biscuits: Once the baked biscuits have cooled completely, place them in a large freezer bag and store in the freezer for up to 3 months. Bring to room temperature on the counter. Reheat in the microwave or in the oven at 300°F until warmed through.
These biscuits are best eaten the same day that they are prepared. However, you can store them in an airtight container at room temperature for 2 to 3 days. I recommend warming them for a few seconds in the microwave or for a few minutes in the oven at 300°F.
For longer storage, you may freeze the biscuits as mentioned above.
- Don’t overwork your dough! The more gentle you are with the dough, the more tender the biscuits will be.
- If you don’t have a circular cutter, you can use a knife to cut the dough into eight to ten square biscuits.
- I prefer to bake my biscuits side by side on the baking sheet so the sides are softer. If you prefer crisper sides, you can leave a little space between each one. Keep in mind that if you do, they may not rise quite as tall.
- If the dough feels a little too warm after you have cut it out, place the baking sheet in the freezer for 10 minutes, then bake as directed.
More Easy Breakfast Recipes to Make!
Easy Buttermilk Biscuits
- 2 cups all-purpose flour spooned & leveled (250 grams)
- 1 tablespoon baking powder
- ¼ teaspoon baking soda
- 2 teaspoons sugar
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 6 tablespoons cold unsalted butter cubed (85 grams)
- ¾ cup cold buttermilk plus more for the tops of the biscuits (180 ml)
- Preheat the oven to 450°F (230°C). Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone baking mat and set aside.
- In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, sugar, and salt until well combined. Add the cubed cold butter and cut it into the dry ingredients using a pastry cutter (you may also use a food processor for this step) until you have small pea sized pieces of butter. Pour the cold buttermilk into the mixture and gently mix until the dough starts to come together.
- Scoop the dough onto a lightly floured surface and gently work it together with your hands. Pat the dough into a rectangle and fold it into thirds (like a letter). Turn the dough, gather any crumbs, and flatten back into a rectangle. Repeat the folding process two more times.
- Place the dough onto a lightly floured surface and pat it down into a 1/2-inch thick rectangle (make sure to measure!). Using a floured 2.5-inch biscuit cutter, cut out the biscuits. Make sure not to twist the biscuit cutter as you're cutting, just press the cutter straight down and pull it straight back up.
- Continue to gather any scrap pieces of dough, patting it back down to 1/2-inch thickness, and cutting it until you have 8 to 10 biscuits. I suggest trying to get as many as you can the first time, as you continue to work the dough the biscuits won't be quite as good.
- Arrange the biscuits on the baking sheet touching each other. Brush the top of each biscuit with a little bit of buttermilk.
- Bake for 15 to 17 minutes or until lightly golden brown. Remove from the oven and brush with melted butter, if desired. Allow to cool for a few minutes, serve, and enjoy!
Adapted from All Recipes and Food.com with some helpful research from King Arthur Flour.
What would the measurements be if I were to cut the recipe in half? I’m just making this for my husband & I.
For half of the recipe, you would use:
1 cup (125 grams) all-purpose flour, spooned & leveled
1 and 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/8 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
3 tablespoons (45 grams) cold unsalted butter, cubed
1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons cold buttermilk
Easy recipe. Yes to all who grate the frozen butter. Yes to those adding 3 T more buttermilk. Yes to those who said only get 6 biscuits (pushing to get 7) when truly measured dough at 1/2 in. Yes to using your hands and no rolling pin.
OMG this was easy and good. After making one batch, I doubled an other batch, easy sausage and biscuits for morning rush. If they last that long.
I actually made this recipe using whole wheat flour AND did them as drop biscuits. (I.e., no kneading, rolling out, etc., just clumped some of the dough in my hand and dropped on baking sheet). They do not taste like old-fashioned buttermilk biscuits, but they were quite yummy and VERY easy. I recommend!
I would double the amount on everything in advance. These are so yummy!!!
I definitely want to try my hand at these this weekend! Have you tried gluten free all purpose baking flour it east of regular flour? Also have you tried freezing them at all? Pre or post baking? I am only making them for myself but I like to make batches of things and have in the freezer so it’s easier on me when I am crunched on time. Thank you!
I haven’t tried gluten-free flour, but if you’ve had success using a certain brand that substitutes 1:1 for all-purpose flour then in may be okay. I also haven’t tried freezing them before baking, but I have had a couple readers have success doing that. I have frozen them after baking and they freeze just fine!
Just attempted with Bobs Red Mill 1-for-1 and they were flops.
This recipe is delicious. I’ve added this recipe to my favorites. Thanks for sharing, my family loved this recipe.
Made mine not as thick and the bottoms were deliciously crispy and did real well. Made cinnamon and sugar tiny biscuits from scrap dough.
We made these and were very disappointed. They were not tall and look nothing like picture at all. Picture looks much taller than 1/2 inch. As husband says they were more like hockey pucks. And no we did not over work dough. Suggestions?
Hi, Barb! Overworking the dough is only one reason they won’t rise. I share a lot of tips in the post, but you want to make sure not to twist your cutter (this can seal off the edges), you want your butter to be cold (if it’s not cold the biscuits won’t rise nearly as tall), you also want to make sure to pat the dough out to the correct thickness and place them side by side on the baking sheet.
We may retry. We did twist cutter, butter was cold but wonder if cut in too much. We did not put touching. Thanks for reply!
They will come out better with those few tips. I’m a baker, and these were the best recipe I’ve made. Thanks for it. I love it. Long ago I. Ame across a bakery in Marathon TX. Called Shirley’s burnt biscuit. Cool name, right? I always think of that cool place.
Maybe make sure baking powder and soda are fresh, too.
IHi Danielle– just made this and only have 10 biscuits which are about 1″ thick? I am not sure how you could get 12 biscuits with 2.5″ thick. It tasted delicious–flaky on the outside and soft and fluffy on the inside but I am missing the ‘height’ (tallness) of these biscuits. Please would you advise what did I do wrong?
Hi, Jan! I have a lot of tips in the posts on how to get them to rise taller. You want to make sure not to twist your biscuit cutter, your butter needs to be very cold, and it helps to place them side by side on the baking sheet. These are just a few reasons, but I do recommend reading thoroughly through the post too.
She said to use a 2.5″ cutter, not to make them that thick. For thickness she says 1/2″.
Just a small tip this might help some people I don’t have a biscuit cutter so I use a knife and just cut the dough in even squares it eliminates scrap dough so all the biscuits come out equally fluffy and delicious! I also almost never have buttermilk on hand but substitute with milk mixed with a little less than a tablespoon of white vinegar works beautifully and I’ve used honey in place of sugar as well. Overall love this recipe very versatile and quick to whip up.
These biscuits turned out great. I have tried different recipes as well as different brands of flour, but using Cup 4 Cup multi-purpose flour and this recipe together made my biscuits turn out great. I wouldn’t cook them as long next time. Maybe just 12 minutes. Also my batter only yielded 6 biscuits. I am unsure why.
Good thing I checked them at 13 minutes as the were almost overdone. This hasn’t happened to me before with my oven. Hmmm otherwise easy and tasty
I need a video, or photos. What do you mean by cut the butter into the dry ingredients?
Hi, Cedric! It means to use a pastry cutter or fork to break down large chunks of butter into the dry ingredients until you have smaller chunks. I have some step by step pictures in my cheddar bacon biscuit recipe here that may be helpful for you.
I freeze the butter then use a grater into the bowl
Great recipe! I’ve never had success with biscuits (always ended up with hockey pucks), but I finally did with this recipe.
Couple of things…
-I froze my butter, then grated it and put it back in the freezer to stay cold until I was ready for it. Was easy to stir in without having to handle the dough too much and stayed cold.
-I found the dough a little too crumbly to be able to full gather it together, so I added 2-3 more Tbsp of buttermilk. Worked like a charm and didn’t change the end result.
-The folding was amazing. I’ve never done that with biscuit dough before (with puff pastry dough, yes). You have to be gentle with it, but it gives the biscuits those super flaky layers.
This will be my go to biscuit recipe in the future. Very happy about it.
Hey! I want to make this for Thanksgiving on Thursday, can I make them 1 day ahead or do I have to make them on that same day of serving?
Hi, Mariana! Do you mean fully prepare and bake them a day ahead? If so, that would be fine. They won’t taste quite as fresh, but you can rewarm them in the oven at 300°F or until warmed through.
Can I freeze these and bake them frozen?
I’ve had success freezing my scone recipe (which is kind of similar) recently, so I think it would be okay. You will need to increase the baking time though.
They tasted like biscuits but they were super dry.
These were delicious, but there is no way that they made a dozen. What size cutter did you use? I would double the recipe. or at least make 1 and a half times the ingredients.
I use a 2.5-inch cutter.
This is my new go to recipe for biscuits. I even took a picture of my biscuit this morning and posted it in a baking group on Facebook (along with a link to the recipe) because I was so proud! It only took 42 years of trying. Thank you for this easy recipe!
1st time making biscuits, and this was a very easy recipe. Used 1 tablespoon of sugar, and cooked at 17 minutes which burned the bottoms of the biscuits, so next time I’ll cook at 350 for 12-15 mins other than that, great recipe.
I usually get 9 biscuits out of this recipe. I cut the butter with a filet knife on a cutting board before I toss it in. They turn out great!
So easy to make and taste so delicious!! Everyone loved them.
Fantastic as always Danelle! I didn’t have the right cutter size so I used a mini tube. I also used a pie technique of chilling the dough after a rough coming together, and before the second roll out. Just a few minutes in the fridge forgives the over rolling. They rose beautifully and they are so cute; I will call them Mini Biscuit Buttons. Thank you for a wonderful way to start the morning.
Fantastic recipe biscuits are so fluffy. I added crumbled bacon as well. If you don’t have buttermilk use 1 cup milk to 1 tbs lemon juice or white vinegar.
The recipe calls for 3/4 cup of buttermilk. If I use your ration of 1 cup milk to 1 tablespoon of lemon juice or white vinegar, does this mean I have leftover mixture since this will translate into more than 3/4 cup of buttermilk?
Yes, you’ll have 1/4 cup leftover. You can scale the buttermilk substitute down and just use 2 and 1/4 teaspoons of lemon juice, then fill the cup to the 3/4 cup line with milk, stir, and set it aside for 5 to 10 minutes.
Hello there! I made this recipe two days ago and used the classic milk + vinegar substitute for buttermilk since that was hard to find locally. These turned out beautifully. Good rise and perfect amount of flakiness. It was a hit with my family and I wish I didn’t halve the recipe xD Thank you so much!
This is my first time ever making American style biscuits and they came out perfectly!! Because I don’t have a pastry or biscuit cutter I used a fork to cut in the butter and a sharp kitchen knife to cut my dough into squares after it was mixed. Although I used freezing cold butter and buttermilk right out of the fridge, by the time I got ready to cut my biscuits, the dough was pretty moist with melted butter bits. I think also because the kitchen was rather warm given the 450 deg. oven. So after transfering the raw biscuits to my baking sheet and brushing with buttermilk, I stuck the whole thing in the fridge for about 15 mins and then put it in the oven to bake. Another small change – I cut the sugar amount in half and I used light brown sugar because that’s what I had. Excited to be able to make these again and again!!
This recipe is absolutely wonderful! I’ve been searching years for a great biscuit recipe that I absolutely love! This one is the WINNER! I am printing it now and putting it into my binder of delicious recipes.
A couple of notes before using or rating this recipe:
1. This recipe needs a little bit more closer to 1 Cup of buttermilk. You don’t want your dough to be dry or overly wet;
2. You’re a magician you if you can get more than 6 to 7 biscuits out of this recipe;
3. Read ALL OF THE NOTES provided with this recipe. Biscuits are finicky, and the notes provided and tried and true!
4. If at first you don’t succeed, try again.
WAY TOO SALTY!! I never had such salty biscuits.
Maybe use 1/4 or 1/2 a teaspoon of salt
Thanks Danielle! Last year I made homemade biscuits from a old Betty Crocker cookbook I didn’t notice tips on that recipe and I failed to consider asking my 90 year old mom who was here. So they were flat! My mom then informed me that she had an award in high school for making fluffy ones.
She passed back in March of 2021, not from covid thank God, but she was not here for me to find this recipe which I think she would have really been proud of how they turned out. They tasted great and fluffy! Thank you for all the tips!!
Thank you, Betty! I’m so glad you found the post helpful and that the biscuits turned out great for you!
Wondering if I can use sour milk (milk that expired and I froze to save for baking), for your recipe? Thank you in advance
I haven’t tried it, but I imagine that it would work as long as you thaw it and bring it back to a liquid state.
Just made these. Needed a splash more buttermilk (different flours account for this) for dough to come together. Had a nice rise, soft texture, got 5 biscuits from half recipe. So why the 3 start rating? The flavor. It just wasn’t there for me. Used all good ingredients, not sure what the problem was. Maybe a little more salt?