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Fluffy Southern Buttermilk Biscuits

These homemade Fluffy Southern Buttermilk Biscuits can be served drizzled with rich sausage gravy or topped with eggs, bacon, country ham or jam. They’re a Southern staple that you can also enjoy simply with a drizzle of honey or a dollop of homemade preserves as a side dish at any meal.

Baked Fluffy Southern Buttermilk Biscuits in a skillet

Fluffy Tender Southern Buttermilk Biscuits

The aroma of homemade biscuits baking is only eclipsed by the first heavenly bite. If you gathered any number of Southern cooks together, none of them would make their biscuits exactly the same way. Each cook would have their own favorite techniques and tricks to give their biscuits the edge that sets them apart. Serve these fluffy biscuits at any meal and enjoy a taste of the South at your own kitchen table.

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Easy Buttermilk Biscuits Recipe

Homemade biscuits are heritage bread of sorts. They’ve been served in the South for eons and are made using simple pantry ingredients. They bridge the gap between modern day cooks and those who came before us. When I bite into a biscuit, I’m instantly transported back to my Mothers and Grandmothers tables and the are widely considered to be the house bread of choice in the South tying only with a skillet of homemade cornbread. Savory or sweet, recipes are handed down for generations by the cooks who came before us, each one claiming that they knew the closely guarded “secret” to the perfect biscuit. The truth of the matter is; that perfecting the art of biscuit making takes practice. Rest assured, you can master biscuit making with my expert tips. How to make simple Buttermilk Biscuits:

  • Prepare the Pan – Preheat the oven to 450°F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  • Dry Ingredients – Use a whisk to sift together the all purpose flour, baking powder, salt and baking soda in a large mixing bowl.
  • Butter – Cube the butter or shortening then cut it into the dry ingredients using a pastry blender or pulse in a food processor. Cut the butter into the flour mixture until it becomes crumbly and resembles peas.
  • Add Buttermilk -Mix in cold buttermilk, just until the crumbs are thoroughly moistened. Add up to 1/4 cup additional buttermilk, if needed. The dough shouldn’t be overly wet but, slightly sticky. 
  • Roll the Dough – Roll or pat out the dough into a circle or a rectangle on a lightly floured surface about 3/4-1 inch thick. Cut into rounds using a 2-inch cookie cutter dipped in flour. Do not twist the dough with the cutter. Cut the dough, then lift the cookie cutter up.  Re-roll any scraps and repeat.
  • Transfer to Pan – Place biscuits 2 inches apart on the baking sheet. Brush the tops with melted butter or heavy cream.
  • Oven – Bake biscuits per the recipe until lightly golden and puffed. (You can broil at the end of baking to make the tops more golden brown, if desired.)
  • Brush with melted butter after removing from the oven. Serve immediately. 
Step-by-Step pictures of preparation of Fluffy Southern Buttermilk Biscuits

How to Make the BEST Fluffy Southern Buttermilk Biscuits Recipe

Follow these expert helpful tips for Making the BEST homemade buttermilk biscuits. The ingredients needed to make biscuits are so basic, it’s important to use the very best for making tender fluffy biscuits.

  • Kitchen tools you’ll need: A large bowl for mixing, measuring cups and spoons, a pastry blender, a non stick surface for rolling or a pastry mat. You’ll also need a food processor, a pastry blender or two forks to cut the cold butter into the flour. A biscuit cutter and a baking pan. A pastry brush for brushing the tops.
  • Ingredients you’ll need to make biscuits from scratch: All purpose flour, cold butter, baking powder, baking soda, salt and buttermilk. Also, melted butter or heavy cream for brushing the tops and a drizzle of honey, jam or butter for serving.
  • Start with quality ingredients. Biscuits require so few ingredients to make it’s worth making sure everything is fresh and top quality.
  • Don’t overwork the biscuit dough or the biscuits could be tough.
  • Use fresh baking powder.
  • Use a sharp biscuit cutter. When cutting the biscuit dough into rounds, dip the cutter in flour, press down, then lift, never twist to make the cut. This ensures the biscuits will have flaky layers.
  • Use cold butter. The butter will melt and create steam while baking resulting in a fluffier biscuit.
  • To make your own buttermilk: To every one cup of whole milk add one tablespoon of white distilled vinegar or lemon juice. Let stand for 5 minutes, then stir and proceed with the recipe.
  • Be gentle when mixing the dough and knead as little as possible to avoid developing the gluten in the flour.
  • I recommend baking the biscuits closer together. Doing so, they will rise upwards while baking.
  • You can bake these biscuits in a cast iron skillet (preferred) or in a similar oven safe skillet, baking dish or pan.
  • Southern Buttermilk Biscuits are best made and served immediately. That being said, you can keep them for 1-2 days then reheat in single servings in the microwave.
  • You can also freeze the biscuit rounds prior to baking. Place them on a sheet pan lined with parchment and freeze solid. Package and store frozen then pull them out to bake when you’re short on time.
  • Bake frozen buttermilk biscuits per the recipe brushing the tops with cream adding 5-10 minutes to the baking time.
Unbaked Fluffy Southern Buttermilk Biscuits on a pan

More Variations and Southern Biscuit Recipes to Make

Whatever your preference, a classic Southern buttermilk biscuit and a few simple technique tips will put you on the path for biscuit making success. Biscuits come in many flavors, but this basic buttermilk biscuit recipe is probably the one that people most often make and clearly one that will never go out of style.

Baked Fluffy Southern Buttermilk Biscuits in a skillet

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How To Make Fluffy Southern Buttermilk Biscuits
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4.92 from 143 votes

Fluffy Southern Buttermilk Biscuits

Prep Time15 minutes
Cook Time15 minutes
Total Time30 minutes
Course: Bread
Cuisine: American, Southern
Keyword: fluffy-southern-buttermilk-biscuits
Servings: 10
Calories: 254kcal
Author: Melissa Sperka

Ingredients

  • 3 cups all purpose flour i.e. White Lily Flour
  • 5 tsp baking powder
  • 1 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 cup cold unsalted butter or vegetable shortening
  • 1 – 1 1/4 cup cold buttermilk
  • melted butter or heavy cream to brush the tops

Instructions

  • Preheat the oven to 450°F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  • Use a whisk to sift together the all purpose flour, baking powder, salt and baking soda in a large mixing bowl.
  • Cube the butter or shortening then cut it into the dry ingredients using a pastry blender or pulse in a food processor. Cut the butter into the flour mixture until it becomes crumbly and resembles peas.
  • Mix in 1 cup cold buttermilk, just until the crumbs are thoroughly moistened. Add up to 1/4 cup additional buttermilk, if needed. The dough shouldn’t be overly wet but, slightly sticky. 
  • Roll or pat out on a lightly floured surface about 3/4-1 inch thick. Cut into rounds using a 2-inch cookie cutter dipped in flour. Do not twist the dough with the cutter. Cut the dough, then lift the cookie cutter up.  Re-roll any scraps and repeat.
  • Place biscuits 2 inches apart on the baking sheet. Brush the tops with melted butter or heavy cream.
  • Bake biscuits at 450°F for 13-15 minutes until lightly golden and puffed. (You can broil at the end of baking to make the tops more golden brown, if desired.)
  • Brush with melted butter after removing from the oven. Serve immediately. 

Notes

  • Whole fat or low fat buttermilk preferred, not fat free.
  • To make your own Buttermilk: To every one cup of whole milk add 1 Tbsp of white distilled vinegar or lemon juice. Let stand for 5 minutes, then stir and proceed with the recipe.

Nutrition

Serving: 1serving | Calories: 254kcal | Carbohydrates: 32g | Protein: 6g | Fat: 11g | Saturated Fat: 3g | Cholesterol: 6mg | Sodium: 570mg | Potassium: 320mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 3g | Vitamin A: 495IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 158mg | Iron: 2mg
Tried this recipe?Mention @melissassk or tag #melissassk!

429 Comments

  1. 5 stars
    My oldest son is a biscuit snob. The only biscuits he prefers are the Pillsbury biscuits. Those have soy in them so I can’t have them. I have tried other recipes and got a yucky face from my son when he tried them. When he tried these, he said they were “okay”(which is huge for him!), and then had two more. Thank you thank you thank you! These were delicious!!

      1. You can freeze the dough prior to baking, yes. Freeze on a sheet pan until solid then pop into a container for storage. Bake from frozen adding a few minutes to the baking time.

  2. 5 stars
    Made these this morning and they came out great! The recipe was easy, not alot of tools required and I agree with Mr. Adams, I didn’t have to read a 1,000 word article to get the recipe. Keep up the good work and keep it short and sweet.

  3. 5 stars
    These biscuits are so dang good!!! I hardly ever have buttermilk but it really makes such a difference. So tender and really fluffy!! Love this recipe. Will make again (and again and again).

    1. Make your own buttermilk! I take any extra buttermilk and freeze it in an ice cube tray. When I need buttermilk again, I thaw a few cubes, add that to a quart jar of regular milk. Cover with a coffee filter and rubber band (or jar band) and let it sit on the counter for 4-6 hours until it thickens. Shake it well, cover, and store in the fridge. Makes the most thick and delicious buttermilk that is perfect in biscuits.

  4. 5 stars
    My daughter went to school in Bama and I became biscuit obsessed during my stays there. Although I felt confident in my biscuit making technique, I have been experimenting w the ratio of ingredients ( WhiteLily flour of course ). This recipe nailed it! My search is over! Thank you!

      1. 5 stars
        I tried these this morning and to my surprise they came out really good. I used mostly Crisco with a little butter added. My mixture did not become little “peas” at all. I used the two fork method to combine the lard and flour mixture and it looked slightly crumbly at best. Also, even with an extra 1/4 cup of buttermilk, the mixture was dry and hard to keep together. Like I said they managed to come out tasty, but a little wonky. Any suggestions?

      2. Depending on the tools used to cut in the fats, it may take more time to bring it all together. If they baked wonky, they weren’t rolled out evenly and likely the fat wasn’t evenly distributed in the dry ingredients.

  5. 5 stars
    Such a refreshing change to not have to read through a 10,000 word article just to find the recipe as is the trend nowadays. Simple, short and sweet, Thank you

      1. 5 stars
        I have tried all kinds of recipes on Pinterest,this is by far the best biscuit recipe..They are fluffy,soft,moist,and taste wonderful..thank you for sharing your biscuits with everyone..Beverly R LeBlanc

  6. Thank you so much Melissa, awesome recipe. I made them in muffin tins they turned out beautifully and my children loved them, I doubled the recipe and they disappeared so quickly. Will be making these often.

  7. 5 stars
    2nd time making these biscuits. The recipe is so delicious. The inside texture is buttery and fluffy, tops and bottoms nicely browned but I’m just not getting the outside texture I’m seeking. Mine are hard and crumbly. What am I doing wrong.

    1. Often if they are fall apart crumbly it’s due to the fat (butter or shortening) being overworked. I have the same problem. Mine turn out delicious and soft on the inside, but they fall apart when eating. Tru cutting your butter into pieces and freezing before use. You can also freeze the butter then grate it before adding to the dry mixture. Good luck. I need much more practice as well. Hope this helps.

  8. Hi! Looking forward to trying this recipe after reading all of these positive reviews 🙂
    My questions:

    do you recommend table salt, fine sea salt, or coarse kosher salt for these biscuits?

    Should the butter be frozen before pulsing or is fridge-chilled sufficient?

    1. There’s no need to fuss over the kind of salt, table salt will do. I wouldn’t recommend using coarse kosher salt for biscuits. Chilled cold butter not frozen, to cut into the dry ingredients.

      1. Made them this morning- these are phenomenal. I had to add a tad more buttermilk to get my dough to come together but all in all what a perfect recipe. Made my Texan bf very happy 😊

  9. Hi Melissa! I live at elevation 8000 ft. Do I need to do anything differently? I am about to try your recipe, but I am not sure they will come out right due to the high altitude.
    Thank you for your reply!

    Agi

    1. Hi Agi! You will need to make adjustments at that elevation, and unfortunately I haven’t tested those changes. It likely would effect baking time, temperature and perhaps ingredients, too. I wish I could tell you with certainty, but I can’t. If you try it, please come back and let us know how it goes.

      1. I tried the recipe this morning. Flat not high and fluffy as desired. I did use frozen butter but cold after sitting 10 min. Used self-rising flour so cut baking powder to 3 teaspoons.

      2. You adapted this recipe quite a bit making major changes. Perhaps it was those changes OR you rolled the dough too thin. This recipe works, keep trying.

    2. 5 stars
      Wow, this is a great recipe! I just finished baking and they taste amazing! I had tried other recipes but this is the best. The biscuits turned nice golden color both top and bottom.

  10. THANK YOU. I am in the Philippines do I had to use milk+vinegar but these reminded me of my KNOXVILLE MOM who adopted me fr College every Christmas. Biscuits and Gravy🥰These are so much like ‘home’. Amazing! Teary-eyed singing, TENDER TENNESSEE CHRISTMAS.

  11. Do I need to thaw out the biscuits if I freeze them before hand? Or can I put them in the oven frozen? Which is best?

  12. 5 stars
    These biscuits are the very best I have ever made. They baked up nice & tall, nicely done on the outside with a fluffy interior with perfect brown bottoms. I got 12 biscuits, lucky us. I made this recipe exactly as stated. Thank you for sharing your recipe for the perfect biscuit,

      1. 5 stars
        Made these Biscayne they turned out really light and fluffy, but a little salty. Can I cut the measurement of salt in half? Other than that this is a fantastic recipe. Love the biscuits

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