Best Fluffy, Flakey, Buttery Biscuits Ever

flakey biscuits hot from the oven
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Can you imagine after living “down south” for many years, moving to Australia where biscuits are cookies?   “Oh, you mean scones,” they say.  And scones in Australia is pronounced scons.

I said it wrong once at a party and, “You say it like an aMERican,” someone said and everyone else nodded.  It’s been scons ever since.  Biscuits are not scones.  They might be scone-ish but they are definitely not scones.

Biscuits are flakey, fluffy, high, light and marvelous to eat, especially at breakfast.  After the post about John eating all my tarts, I’m almost embarrassed to tell about the biscuits.

Easy Homemade Biscuits

When I get homesick for my children and grandchildren, I cook something that reminds me of home, whether that’s Knoxville, Tennessee where I lived for a long time or back in Maine where I grew up or Orlando, Florida where I migrated from.  Just the taste of a blueberry pie puts me back at my mother’s dinner table in an instant, with memories flooding back about how I learned to rake wild blueberries when I was about 8 then went home and watched my mother make a pie from them.

The other day I’d had a long chat with my son who’s in Atlanta after receiving photos of my two youngest grandchildren.  After hanging up the phone I was feeling a bit like Miss Crankypants and decided I needed to get in the kitchen for some Americanization.  I wanted a sausage biscuit.

how to make flakey biscuits

American sausage isn’t available down under either but thankfully it’s really easy to make from ground pork and pantry items I always have on hand.  I mixed that up and rolled it into logs and froze 3 logs and put one in the fridge.

Just as I got all my biscuit ingredients out, John walked in and asked what I was making.  “Sausage and biscuits,” I said.  He rolled his eyes with that look that says, “she’s homesick,” and gave me a cuddle and off he went back upstairs to work.  He doesn’t get as excited as I do about cooking memory food.  To be honest, I’m not sure he has any memory food.

I sifted and mixed and put the biscuit mix on the silicone mat and patted them out.  Rather than use a biscuit cutter, I just used a big knife and made them square.  I cut straight down – no sideways back and forth because that action limits how the biscuits can rise and then I popped them in a hot oven in the top third of the oven – that’s where it’s hottest.

As the sausage patties were frying and the biscuits were baking, imagine the wonderful aroma coming out of my kitchen.   That was when I heard a little voice from upstairs yell, “That smells really good, dear!”  When I peeked in the oven, the biscuits were tall, fluffy, flakey, buttery and gorgeous.

homemade sausage patties

I dashed to get some photos before pulling apart the biscuits and sliding in a juicy sausage patty and yelled, “John, want a biscuit?”  He did.  I ate 1 1/2 and shared my other half with Charlie.  John ate the rest and then cleaned up all the leftover biscuits.

“These are NOT scones, you’re right.  More butter, more salt, less sugar and they are wonderful.  Can we have them again soon?”  There you have it.  My husband who is Aussie to his underpants wanted more biscuits with sausage.

homemade sausage biscuits

Next time I’m making biscuits with bacon, egg and cheese.  You Americans know the ones I’m talking about.  No such thing even at McDonald’s here but they’ll be in my kitchen very soon.

This biscuit recipe is foolproof.  I wouldn’t tell you if it weren’t so.  If you follow these directions, your biscuits will be as beautiful as the ones in these photos.  I promise.  Seriously, you can’t screw ‘em up.  It’s a no-fail recipe for homemade biscuits.

homemade biscuits with sausage patties

4.8 from 64 reviews
Best Fluffy, Flakey, Buttery Biscuits Ever
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
If you haven't made biscuits because you were afraid you could use them as the foundation for your new house - these biscuits are for you. Easy and delicious!
Author:
Recipe type: Bread
Cuisine: American
Serves: 12
Ingredients
  • 2 cups plain flour - sifted
  • 3½ tsp baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon cream of tartar
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 113 grams butter (1/2 cup) cold butter cut into ½ inch cubes
  • ⅔ cup milk
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 230C/450F
  2. Place dry ingredients in a food processor and whiz to combine.
  3. Add butter and pulse til the butter looks like peas.
  4. Dump into a mixing bowl and add the milk and honey and stir until it comes together.
  5. Place on a lightly floured surface (I use a silicone mat because it's easy to clean) and knead several times to work the gluten
  6. Then pat the dough with your fingers to about ¾ inch high. You can go lower and get more biscuits but they won't be as high.
  7. You can cut them with a biscuit cutter, a tin can or a glass but don't use a seesaw approach as that will reduce the rise.
  8. If you want soft edges like I do, place them about an inch apart on a baking sheet covered with baking paper.
  9. I used a knife and cut them square and had no leftovers.e biscuits on a baking sheet about two inches apart. If you like softer edges from a “pull-apart” biscuit, put them close together in a pan.
  10. You may brush the tops with melted butter or milk before baking but I always brush with butter right after they come out of the oven.
  11. Bake for 10 minutes or until golden brown.
  12. I like to let them rest for about twenty minutes before baking, but, seriously, my babies don’t sleep that long, so I usually just throw them in the oven. Bake at 450 for 10 minutes or until they are done to your liking.

As a funny aside.  I go to a local cooking demonstration every Friday morning at a cooking shop not far from home.  My friend Iris who owns the shop is in England learning more cake decorating and chocolate making but her staff keeps everything humming along in her absence.  This week one of her American employees made Southern Biscuits.  Now this is the same woman who when I asked where she moved from she said, “North Carolina, it’s a state in the United States in the south.”

Everyone roared because she hadn’t realized that I have an American accent.  Then she said, “I went to the University of Tennessee for my degree in food science.”  To which I replied, “Go Vols!”  She still didn’t get it and looked at me and said, “Have you visited Tennessee?”

Laughter again.  I told her I WAS a Vol a million years before she was born.  She said she never picked up my American accent.  Now we had loud guffawing because I sound VERY American to everyone else.

Anyway, here are the biscuits she made.  They were flat and tasted like a mouthful of flour.  Don’t make her recipe.  :)  BUT her tomato and chilli jam was to die for.  Coming up soon!

southern biscuits the wrong way

 

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Comments

  1. Anna says

    These are amazing! My boyfriend has only ever liked his grandmother’s homemade biscuits and his children are very picky eaters. Your biscuits were the first I have ever tried making from scratch and all four of them would not stop raving about how delicious they were. I’m making them again this morning, but I’m DOUBLING the recipe!

  2. tspeigner says

    Thank you for this recipe! I have a happy family today because I finally got decent homemade biscuits! I’ve tried 3 different recipes and they never rise, aren’t flaky, and are always hard as rocks! These came out perfectly and had super easy instructions. Thank you, thank you, thank you!

  3. Kimberly says

    This is my go to recipe! I get asked to make biscuits and gravy almost every weekend because the biscuits are so amazing!

  4. Ana says

    Loved these! Although I did manage to screw up one of the batches by leaving it in the oven for 20 mins. :(
    Quick question, can you substitute the butter for vegetable shortening?

  5. lisa g. says

    Ive read alot of biscuit recipes. But to find honey as an ingredient is unusual to me! Cant wait to make these and thanks for the post!

  6. Mama Allen says

    Hi Maureen! Can’t wait to try this biscuit recipe. Sounds wonderful! About how many biscuits does your recipe make?

  7. Rebecca says

    LOVE this recipe! thanks for sharing! I did convert to drop biscuits, because i didn’t have a way or enough space to roll the dough out but was still good and quite fluffy, my family loved the buttery, slightly sweet flavor

  8. Jeanette says

    Just wondering if you could share your sausage recipe? We’ve acquired a lot of local honey and my husband wants biscuits. After reading this entry and looking at your photos I’d love to make a sausag and egg buscuits sandwiches.

  9. Don Birdsall says

    Very Good!

    This was my first try at making biscuits. After looking at several, I picked this recipe because it used cream of tartar. I knew that this would chemically react with the baking powder and guarantee rising. The recipe was really quite easy ro prepare. and the resulting biscuits were simply delicious. I will definitely be making these again.

  10. Jessica Q says

    Do you think if I made these with buttermilk (for the acidity) I could skip the cream of tartar? I don’t have any now, and don’t go for groceries again for another week, but we’re almost out of freezer biscuits, and yours look awesome! I do have baking powder, if that would help.

  11. Patricia says

    Unfortunately I have a funeral tomorrow for our piano player at church. I am bringing all kinds of bread for the reception. Since we are having fried chicken-biscuits are in order. When I googled, “Best biscuits” your recipe was the first 5 star to come up. Though I like my old recipe, this looks much better. Like the idea of cutting into squares. Love your site. Bookmarked for sure!

  12. Sarah says

    Thank you so much for this recipe! I have tried so many different recipes, techniques, tips, and tricks for the past 20 years without luck — but this recipe came out great! Thank you so much from the biscuit lover (who can now make descent biscuits :D)!!

  13. lauran says

    Very tasty biscuits with great texture! Next time, I will heat up the honey and mix it with the milk first so it dissolves throughout the dough better. Additionally, I will absolutely let them rise for 20 minutes. The batch that went straight into the oven is about 1/2 as tall as the second batch. Thankfully, they both taste great.

  14. Dawn Clift says

    Wow, I’m a southern girl- a cornbread girl. Fell in love with cream scones (even when I made them) while living in the UK…but never could make a decent biscuit; never really “loved” a biscuit — until this morning. Oh my goodness!!

    I ate 3!!!! I’m doomed, I’ll be a little butterball turkey by November.

    Thank you so much for sharing.
    I live in Marietta, GA by the way. I saw your remarks about your son and grand babies here in the Atlanta area. :)
    Blessings! Cheers! Etc!
    Dawn, the Texas Pecan, in the Peach State

    • says

      Hi Dawn! I felt the same way after my first sausage, egg and cheese biscuit. No turning back! My son and his clan live in McDonough, just south of Atlanta.

  15. Tifa says

    I just made these, but didn’t have any cream of tartar. I brushed the tops with butter and they taste amazing, but they don’t have that beautiful golden top. In fact, they looked kinda dry, but didn’t taste that way. Other than that, they’re perfect! Is the cream of tartar the trick to that golden crust?

    • says

      No, the cream of tartar shouldn’t make that difference. If you put all the ingredients in the same amounts, you should have similar results. What sort of butter did you use?

  16. Laura Maurer says

    Yum, yum, YUM!! Thanks to you Maureen, I finally made a fluffy, hi-rise biscuit! And by the way, did I mention … They are Yummy?!?!

  17. Ali Gonterman says

    This was about the third biscuit recipe i have tried. The former recipes always came out like hockey pucks, no matter how vigilant i was about not over-working them. These are delicious; light, flaky, and buttery :) My family and friends love them! I use raw honey and double the amount since my fiance and daughter are honey fiends.

  18. Johnette says

    I love a good biscuit, grew up on my mother’s, but enjoyed a lot more along the way.
    I made these and since I know she won’t be seeing this, gosh, I have to admit I loved them! Extremely easy to make and beyond buttery. One question, do you use salted butter or unsalted? I used unsalted and thought it needed a pinch more.
    Thanks bunches!

  19. Trisha says

    I’ve been searching for the PERFECT biscuit recipe forever and the are surely it!
    Taste and look fantastic, super easy…..and I don’t even have a food processor.
    I didn’t part them out very thick and didn’t get nearly as many as you do …..
    whats the trick? Thanks for the great recipe!

  20. Amanda says

    I just made these this morning. I am putting together freezer breakfast sandwiches for The Hubs. I think that next time I will let them rest the recommended time. I put them straight into the oven and was able to get a little bit of rise out of them but not as much as I hoped. They taste DELICIOUS

  21. Mona helmer says

    Oh my gosh, I am a biscuit lover, and just never seem to get them just right! Ohhh my, this is Just right. I did use full fat buttermilk for the milk, melt in your mouth, mile high wonderfulness!! Thank you, I made homemade apple butter and slathered it on ! ????????

  22. Mandy says

    Omg! They really are the best biscuits. I’ve tried making biscuits before and they were too floury. My food processor was too small so I grated frozen butter to achieve the pellet quality! So amazing. Thank you. I’ll be making these from now on!

    Mandy

  23. Gina says

    Just made these and they are perfect! I have never had success with biscuits so always buy frozen. Never again! This came together fast and my husband was like these are really good. Loved cutting into squares. Brilliant.

  24. David Kinsey says

    WOW these are amazing. I’ve tried a lot of biscuit recipes, because I’m so picky about them, and this is the best. I’ve made them in a stand mixer as well with nearly the same results. I also did not sift the flour, omitted the honey, added 2 tablespoon of sugar, added another 1/4 cup of butter and reduced milk to 1/2 cup and they were still amazing. They are fool-proof. Thank you so much for sharing. This is my goto biscuit recipe now.

  25. Caitlin says

    These were great! Definitely gonna be my go to recipe for biscuits :) Also, how crumbly should the dough be after you’ve mixed everything together? I ended up having to add a little more milk since there was still a lot of flour at the bottom of the bowl that just wouldn’t incorporate.

    • says

      This is a rather wet dough for me. I’ve never had to add milk but if you had a lot of flour, adding more milk was the right thing to do! I add the milk and it’s still crumbly when I tip it out of the bowl onto the silicone mat. I knead it together from there.

  26. Maximus says

    Maureen, Maureen Maureen. I am a veteran home cook/Baker who NEVER comments on recipes. However, EXCELLENT recipe! (Yes i did raise my voice). Forget my tried and true recipe. I’m tossing it. And thank YOU very much.

  27. Jason Templeton says

    I’ve been scouring the Internet for years for a good biscuit recipe. All the ones I’ve made have always been really dense. I believe you have a winner mam. I will save this one to my favorites. Thank you for posting your recipe.
    Will only let me give it 3 stars.

  28. hippytea says

    These ate very good. I don’t have anything to judge them against, being in Scotland, but they are very light and lovely to eat. What puzzles me is, what exactly is the difference between biscuits and scones? Scone recipes vary a lot – these are different from mine, but very like my mother’s, just a bit lighter (and simpler -her recipe uses eggs). If someone made these for me and told me they were scones, I’d be fooled.

  29. hippytea says

    Just to add that my biscuits came out looking exactly like the photo, so props for that – and your tip about cutting straight down, no sawing, is going straight into my archive of kitchen lore – it certainly seemed to work and is one to try for scones and puff pastry too. Thanks for that!

  30. May says

    Hello!

    I am so excited to make these biscuits for Sunday brunch! Do you think I can use buttermilk instead of milk?

    Thank you!

    • says

      I don’t see why it wouldn’t work just fine but I’ve never tried it so I couldn’t tell you for sure. It might affect the way the baking powder works.

      • May says

        Maureen,

        I tried this recipe out yesterday for Sunday brunch… And it was perfect! I just used regular milk and I had let it sit in the fridge for about 20 mins.. They were sooo yummy! My hubby and friends loved it. Thank you so much for the awesome recipe :)

        ~May

        • says

          May, thank you so much for telling me about your biscuits. I think I’ll make some tomorrow. I use regular milk too and I’ve never been disappointed.

  31. Vincent Woska says

    Awesomeness! Fool proof is an understatement. In my haste I failed to mix the dry ingredients prior to adding butter and totally forgot the cream of tartar. I chose to pat the dough out and cut with a sharp knife. I did let them rest for 20 minutes while I prepared bacon gravy and scrambled eggs.

    They came out marvelously. Took one straight from the oven split it, put a pat of Challenger butter in between and took a bite. Light, moist and flakey. It was then I realized my quest for the perfect bisquit was over. Sorry Hardys.

    Thanks!

      • Izabell says

        Hi :) I’ve made these 3 times now and I’m just wondering how you cut them? And mine don’t seem to brown like yours do and I’m not sure why

        • says

          I don’t chop the butter too finely and I cut the biscuits with a bench scraper or dough scraper. I cut straight down. I’ve used a round biscuit cutter too but I find that wastes dough so I just make mine square or rectangular. Then I brush just a little milk on top and when they come out of the oven I brush a little butter on top.

  32. says

    25 years…let me say that again…25 years I have failed! I have been searching and trying biscuit recipes since I failed so miserably cooking for my new mother in law. Until today!!!!! You did not lie. These are by far the BEST biscuits I have ever made. Our favorite weekend breakfast is biscuit and gravy and every once in a while I would try yet another recipe promising to be ‘it’. Well, this cook has finally found it. Thanks you!!!

    • says

      Felecia, I just woke up and read this comment and my day is already starting out better. I think I love you. :) I’m so glad your biscuits turned out well.

  33. says

    I have tried many biscuit recipes through the years, and I have to say, I am terribkle at them! Always hit the garbage can. Finally, with your recipe; success! Thank you so much, and from my husband too! :)

    • says

      Without seeing the biscuits all I can guess is that it has something to do with how you cut in the butter. I chopped my butter into the flour and left small pieces of butter. Maybe your butter wasn’t chopped fine enough. I honestly don’t know.

  34. JohnW says

    Like many of the other posters have commented upon… great basic recipe! I looked this biscuit page up a couple of days ago and finally was going to have a good meal that biscuits would go great with… having been so disappointed in previous attempts (besides box mixes), I couldn’t even locate my sifter, so a trip to the store just so I could make this attempt (again) at a edible biscuit.
    My wife whom had been my test platform a dozen times previous, had already attempted to talk me out of this but resigned as I headed out the door, that she was again going to have some doorstops sitting around the house… possibly something the door would go fetch.
    By the time I returned with a sifter in hand, she had already made supper (most likely hoping I wouldn’t take the time to make the biscuits if it was going to make everything get cold… too bad… I was determined, and we are both happy I was! I didn’t let them rest prior to baking, but afterwards she told me to make sure to put the leftovers in a bag so they wouldn’t go stale… something she hadn’t said on any attempts before.
    I do have a question though.
    Do you sift your flour prior to measuring or measure 2 cups of flour then sift?
    Thanks again for the great recipe!
    JohnW

    • says

      I measure the flour and toss it in a sieve or fine mesh strainer and whack it against my hand until it all goes in. I have a sifter but the sieve is much faster. :) I’m glad you liked the biscuits!

  35. Shauntel says

    I definitely think that this is the best biscuit recipe I’ve come by. I’ve never used cream of tartar or honey in a biscuit recipe, so I’m guessing that’s what sets these apart from others.
    The only change I made was adding more milk since the one cup wasn’t enough for me. Bacon grease on the bottom of the pan only makes them better
    Thank you for a great recipe!

  36. BettyC says

    he Aussies pronounce scone in the Scottish style, which is ‘skahn.’ But curiously, the Scots call the city named “Scone” as ‘skoon.’

  37. says

    I recently had to make 10 dozen biscuits for a hunt breakfast, and after days of rolling & turning and spending a mint on butter which I got all over myself and everything else while following the angel biscuit recipe from Anson Mills, I finally just gave up and tried yours. And it was better. Much better. Took a fraction of the time and effort, and yours were the biscuits everyone scarfed down! Well done, and thanks!!!

    • says

      Hi Jean, even McDonald’s sausage biscuits are English muffins. It’s home made or no way around here. I lived in Tennessee for many years but never made biscuits as good as this recipe can. :)

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