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The BEST biscuit recipe! These homemade biscuits are buttery, soft and fluffy with lots of flaky layers and delicious crispy edges.

Biscuits stacked together on marble board.

We just can’t get enough of these biscuits! I first shared this biscuit recipe years ago, and since then it has become a reader favorite. With this easy recipe and a few baking tips that I’ve included below, you’ll be making the best biscuits you’ve ever eaten.

These homemade biscuits are buttery, soft and flaky. The tops brown beautifully in the oven, and the bottoms become crisp and golden. They are delicious as is, and even better when you serve them with jam or honey. I’ve made these biscuits so many times that this is likely the recipe on Kristine’s Kitchen that I’ve made most often in my own kitchen!

We’ve been enjoying these biscuits as a side dish at dinner. They complement almost any meal. Try them with Baked Chicken Thighs, Slow Cooker Beef Stew or Butternut Squash Soup. They’re also great for breakfast, alongside some eggs and bacon.

This really is the best biscuit recipe! Just like Grandma used to make ‘em 🙂 I will be making these again very soon. 

Lauren

Does Milk or Buttermilk Make the Best Homemade Biscuits?

You can make these biscuits with milk or buttermilk, or a combination of the two. I’ve tested the recipe all three ways, and the biscuits are delicious no matter which you choose.

When you make this recipe with buttermilk, the flavorful tang of the buttermilk comes through in the buttermilk biscuits. If you use milk, the biscuits turn out especially tender. My favorite is to use half buttermilk and half milk for the best balance of flavor and texture.

Whole milk is best in this biscuit recipe, but you can use 2% if that is what you have on hand. I don’t recommend using skim milk, since you need some fat to make the biscuits flavorful and tender. You can also use this homemade buttermilk substitute.

Homemade biscuits in cloth napkin-lined basket.

How to Make Biscuits

This biscuit recipe is so quick and easy and you’ll need only 6 simple ingredients that you probably have in your kitchen right now:

  • All-Purpose Flour
  • Baking Powder
  • Sugar
  • Salt
  • Butter
  • Milk or Buttermilk

Here’s an overview of the recipe steps, including my tips for success. You’ll find the full printable recipe with ingredient amounts below.

Freeze the butter: At least 20 minutes before you plan to make the biscuits, put the stick of butter in the freezer. Freezing makes sure that the butter is really cold, which is important for flaky biscuits. Frozen butter is also easier to shred using a box grater (more on that below).

Combine dry ingredients: In a large bowl, whisk together all-purpose flour, baking powder, sugar and salt. Be sure to use baking powder (not baking soda), and use the full tablespoon (not teaspoon) called for in the recipe. You can adjust the amount of sugar to your taste preferences. We prefer less sweet biscuits, so I usually use just 1 or 2 teaspoons.

Grate the butter and stir it in: This is my favorite biscuit making trick! Once the butter has gotten really cold in the freezer, you’ll grate it on a box grater. This is really quick and easy to do. Then you can quickly mix the grated butter into the dry ingredients with a fork. If you’re like me and don’t enjoy the process of cutting butter into dry ingredients, you are going to love this trick! The grated butter also gives you perfectly sized pieces of butter throughout your biscuits, which makes them tender and flaky.

Grated butter added to dry ingredients in mixing bowl.

Mix in milk or buttermilk: Pour the milk or buttermilk into the bowl with the other ingredients. Use a fork to mix until a dough forms. It’s ok if a little bit of the dry ingredients aren’t incorporated at this point. If the dough seems very dry and you are having a hard time getting it to come together, you can add 1 to 2 tablespoons more milk or buttermilk.

Biscuit dough in mixing bowl with a fork.

Fold the dough: Turn the dough (and any flour bits) out onto a lightly floured work surface. Pat the dough down into a rectangle that is about 1 1/2 inches thick. Fold the dough in half on top of itself and press it down into a 1 1/2-inch thick rectangle again. Repeat this step, folding and pressing the dough 4 to 6 times total. This is called laminating the dough and it creates those flaky layers that we all love in biscuits.

Cut the biscuits: After you fold the dough the last time, press it out until it is about 1-inch thick. Press a round biscuit cutter straight down into the dough to cut the biscuits. Do not twist the biscuit cutter as you cut. Place the biscuits on a parchment paper-lined baking sheet.

Brush the tops and bake: Before baking the biscuits, brush the tops with milk, buttermilk, heavy cream or melted butter. This helps the tops of the biscuits to brown as they bake. Bake the biscuits until they are lightly golden on top, 13 to 16 minutes.

Drizzling honey on biscuit half with pat of butter.

Biscuit Recipe Tips

  • Use cold butter. When baking biscuits, it is important to keep the butter and milk or buttermilk as cold as possible. Keep the butter in the freezer and the milk in the refrigerator until you are ready to use them. Avoid letting the dough sit at room temperature before baking the biscuits.
  • Freeze and grate the butter using a box grater. The small pieces of shredded butter will create little steam pockets in the biscuits as they bake, giving you great rise and flaky layers.
  • Use fresh baking powder. According to the USDA, once opened baking powder should be used within 3 months for best results. If your biscuits don’t rise, old baking powder could be the problem.
  • Fold the dough. Don’t skip the step of folding the biscuit dough in half and pressing it out 4 to 6 times before cutting your biscuits. The folds help to create flaky layers, much like when making croissants.
  • Don’t twist the biscuit cutter. Press straight down with your biscuit cutter and do not twist or turn it. Twisting the cutter seals off the edges of the biscuits and keeps them from rising as much. If you do not have a biscuit cutter, you can use a small glass to cut the biscuits. Or, make my Drop Biscuits recipe, where you scoop the dough instead of cutting out the biscuits.
Biscuits stacked on top of each other.
4.90 from 160 ratings

The BEST Biscuits Recipe

Servings: 12 biscuits
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes
The BEST biscuit recipe! These homemade biscuits are buttery, flaky and so easy to make with only 6 ingredients. Serve them for breakfast or dinner, with jam or honey.

Ingredients

  • 2 ½ cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 2 teaspoons granulated sugar
  • ¾ teaspoon salt
  • ½ cup unsalted butter
  • 1 cup whole milk, or buttermilk (or ½ cup of each)
  • milk, buttermilk, cream or melted butter, optional, for brushing on biscuit tops

Instructions
 

  • Place butter in the freezer for at least 20 minutes.
  • Preheat oven to 425° F with a rack in the upper third of the oven. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  • In a large bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, sugar and salt. Whisk together until well combined.
  • Grate the frozen butter using a box grater. Add the butter to the bowl and use a fork to mix it into the dry ingredients.
  • Pour the 1 cup milk or buttermilk into the bowl and use a fork to stir until the dough comes together. It is ok if there are a few bits of flour not yet incorporated, but if the dough seems very dry and is not coming together add 1 to 2 tablespoons more milk or buttermilk.
  • Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured work surface. Pat the dough into a 1½-inch thick rectangle. Fold the dough in half on top of itself and pat it down into another 1½-inch thick rectangle. Repeat the folding process 4 to 6 times. Then press the dough down into a 1-inch thick rectangle.
  • Use a biscuit cutter (mine measures 2 ¼-inches) to cut out the biscuits, pressing it straight down into the dough without twisting. Once you've cut out as many biscuits as you can, gather the scraps and pat the dough out to 1-inch thickness a second and third time to finish cutting out all of the biscuits. Place them on the prepared baking sheet.
  • If desired, brush the biscuit tops with milk, buttermilk, cream or melted butter. Bake for 13 to 16 minutes, until the tops are lightly golden brown.

Notes

  • Store biscuits at room temperature for up to 3 days or in the freezer for up to 3 months.
  • Biscuits are best right after baking. Leftover biscuits can be reheated in a 350 degree oven for about 5 minutes.
  • Recipe updated 4/25/23 to increase salt from 1/2 teaspoon to 3/4 teaspoon for even more flavor. If using salted butter, use only 1/2 teaspoon of added salt.
Serving: 1biscuit, Calories: 178kcal, Carbohydrates: 22g, Protein: 3g, Fat: 9g, Saturated Fat: 5g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 0.4g, Monounsaturated Fat: 2g, Cholesterol: 23mg, Sodium: 156mg, Potassium: 162mg, Fiber: 1g, Sugar: 2g, Vitamin A: 269IU, Calcium: 75mg, Iron: 1mg
Nutrition information is an estimate.
Cuisine: American
Course: Bread
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