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Biscuits | Quick & Easy Homemade Bread for Any Meal

Bis­cuits are the eas­i­est way to put home­made bread on the table for any meal. They are but­tery and deli­cious — crisp tops and bot­toms — soft, ten­der lay­ers inside. They are mouth­wa­ter­ing­ly deli­cious and you can have them on the table in 30 minutes!

biscuits on a plate with butter and honey - easy homemade bread - easy homemade biscuits
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Easy home­made bis­cuits can be mixed up quick­ly. They only need 12 min­utes in the oven. When­ev­er I make this scrump­tious bread, I kick myself for not doing it more often. You’re going to love bring­ing pip­ing hot bis­cuits to the table.

Two Tips for Perfect Biscuits

biscuits on a plate with butter and honey - easy homemade bread - easy homemade biscuits

For the best home­made bis­cuits, there are two key things to remember:

how to cut butter into pea-sized cubes for homemade biscuits
  1. Keep the but­ter SUPER cold. Using uten­sils instead of your hands, when­ev­er pos­si­ble, will pre­vent the heat from your hands from melt­ing the but­ter. Cut the but­ter into pea-size cubes before start­ing the recipe. After cub­ing, keep the but­ter in the freez­er until you are ready to add it. You are keep­ing it cold so there will still be lumps of but­ter through­out your fin­ished dough. Just like with pie crust, that but­ter will cre­ate pock­ets of steam as your bis­cuits bake and help to form the flaky layers.
  2. Don’t over­work the dough. Stir only until things are com­bined. Press only enough to bring the dough togeth­er. You don’t want to overde­vel­op the gluten in the dough. Over­work­ing cre­ates tough biscuits.

Prepping Ingredients for Easy Homemade Biscuits

Quick­ly cut the but­ter into small cubes.  Once the but­ter is cut put the cubes into a small bowl and toss it into the freez­er until you’re ready to work with it. 

Care­ful­ly mea­sure the dry ingre­di­ents. I rec­om­mend weigh­ing the flour to be most accu­rate. 4 cups of all-pur­pose flour should weigh 500 grams.

weighing flour

Mixing Up the Homemade Biscuit Dough

In a mix­ing bowl, stir togeth­er the flour, bak­ing pow­der, sug­ar and salt. 

Remove the but­ter cubes from the freez­er. Toss them into the dry ingre­di­ents. At this point, you’ll want to change tools for a bit. Set the wood­en spoon aside and grab a *pas­try blender.

adding butter cubes to flour for making biscuits and easy homemade quick bread

Cut the but­ter into the dry ingre­di­ents.  “Cut­ting in” is a method of dis­trib­ut­ing the but­ter with­out over-warm­ing it.  It will leave small chunks of cold but­ter through­out your mix­ture that will release steam as the bis­cuit bakes and cre­ate the flaky tex­ture you are look­ing for. 

Use a *pas­try blender (my pref­er­ence), fork or two but­ter knives can be used for this.  Try not to use your hands, since that will warm up the but­ter. Cut and com­bine the but­ter with the flour mix­ture until many small, irreg­u­lar pieces (about pea-sized) are coat­ed with the dry ingre­di­ents and dis­trib­uted even­ly through the mixture.

biscuit mixture with a pastry blender - easy homemade bread

At this point, you can store the whole mix­ture in the fridge, if you’re not ready to bake the bis­cuits.  Cov­er it and keep it cold until you are ready.  Don’t add liq­uids until you are ready to bake.  Liq­uids will acti­vate the bak­ing pow­der and start the leav­en­ing.  Bake the bis­cuits imme­di­ate­ly if the liq­uids have been added. That’s a good rule of thumb for any home­made quick bread recipe.

Flour to Fat to Liquid Ratio

The ratio of flour to fat to wet ingre­di­ents is impor­tant when bak­ing. It is espe­cial­ly impor­tant when bak­ing bread. The prop­er ratio is crit­i­cal to the tex­ture and mois­ture con­tent of the fin­ished baked goods. For easy home­made bis­cuits, the basic ratio is 3 parts flour: 1 part fat: 2 parts liq­uid.

If you use a dif­fer­ent type of flour, i.e. whole wheat, all pur­pose, nut flours, coconut flour, the amount of liq­uid nec­es­sary to prop­er­ly hydrate the flour will be dif­fer­ent. Hydra­tion lev­el may also affect­ed by humid­i­ty. The more you bake a recipe, the more accus­tomed you will become to the way it should look and feel. You will intu­itive­ly be able to adjust flour or liq­uid to achieve your desired outcome.

weighing whole milk

For this recipe, I use unbleached, all pur­pose flour and whole milk. I use the amounts list­ed in the recipe shared below (by gram). The liq­uid I use is slight­ly more than the basic ratio of 3:1:2. The basic ratio would call for 333 grams of milk. I use 366g, (about 2 Table­spoons more). I pre­fer that tex­ture and how well the bis­cuits rise. 

Bis­cuits are much more for­giv­ing than yeast bread doughs. If you don’t have a *scale to mea­sure every­thing, you are still going to be able to make fab­u­lous bis­cuits. The results may not be as con­sis­tent batch to batch to batch, but they will be deli­cious. Use the stan­dard recipe mea­sure­ments I’ve pro­vid­ed and you’ll be amazed at your results!

If you’re inter­est­ed in more infor­ma­tion on the Sci­ence of Bis­cuits. Check out this web arti­cle. For the basic ratios chefs use for bak­ing, I high­ly rec­om­mend the book *Ratio | the Sim­ple Codes Behind the Craft of Every­day Cook­ing.

Mixing the Homemade Biscuit Dough

Make a well in the cen­ter of the flour/butter mix­ture. Pour the milk into it. You could use water or skim milk. You could also use dairy sub­sti­tutes for milk. Just be aware that the fla­vor and tex­ture of the bis­cuits will not be as good as when whole milk is used. Whole milk also con­tains the nec­es­sary fat to keep the bis­cuits tender.

well in the center of dry ingredients for homemade biscuits

With a wood­en spoon, gen­tly fold the flour mix­ture and milk togeth­er.  Stir only until they are com­bined and a ragged dough begins to form.  Resist the urge to over­work the dough, even though it won’t be ful­ly com­bined at this stage..  Over­work­ing the dough can cause tough biscuits.

shaggy biscuit dough - an easy homemade quick bread dough

Turn the ragged dough out onto a floured coun­ter­top and using your hands, quick­ly and gen­tly work the dough togeth­er, into a more cohe­sive mass.  You will still see flecks and lumps of but­ter through­out the dough which is per­fect!  (If the dough seems too sticky, you can add a lit­tle extra flour as you work it together.)

biscuit dough gathered together on counter

Pressing Out and Cutting the Dough

Press the dough to about 1‑inch thick and then gen­tly fold­ed it in half, so you begin build­ing more lay­ers into the bis­cuits.  Use your fin­gers to gen­tly press it out again to about 1‑inch thick­ness.  Then, fold it one more time and after that, press it out, again.  Repeat the fold­ing process 4 or 5 times.  You are cre­at­ing lay­ers with­out work­ing the dough too much.

Press the final dough out to an even 1‑inch thickness.

folding and flattening biscuit dough

Use a cookie/biscuit cut­ter to cut bis­cuits in the shape you desire.  Go straight down into the dough.  Lift the cut­ter.  Try to make your cuts as close to each oth­er as pos­si­ble, so you don’t have much scrap left between bis­cuits.  The less work­ing of the dough, the better.

The num­ber of bis­cuits you get will be affect­ed by the size and shape of the cut­ter you use. I used a *2 3/4′ round cut­ter. Place the cut bis­cuits onto the pre­pared bak­ing sheet, leav­ing ½‑inch of space between them.

cutting biscuits

Gen­tly gath­er the scraps togeth­er, so you don’t work the dough more than is nec­es­sary to bring it back togeth­er and pat it to a 1‑inch thick­ness.  Cut the rest of the dough.  If there is enough left for anoth­er bis­cuit, then bring it togeth­er and pat it into a bis­cuit shape with a 1‑inch thickness.

biscuit dough cut and on tray for baking  -  easy homemade bread

Bake and Enjoy Easy Homemade Biscuits

Bake at 425° for 12–14 min­utes.  Easy Home­made Bis­cuits will be a pale gold­en brown when done.

Remove from the oven and serve your deli­cious home­made bread warm with but­ter, jam and hon­ey or your favorite gravy. Who does­n’t love biscuits!!?!

Look at those beau­ti­ful lay­ers!!! Enjoy!

baked biscuits on sheet tray - easy homemade bread

Bis­cuits are a quick and easy way to put home­made bread on the table any night of the week. 

Try these bis­cuits with some scrump­tious Cran­ber­ry But­ter from Whole Food Bellies. 

And if you’re look­ing for more Fall quick bread inspi­ra­tion, try these Easy Pump­kin Choco­late Chip Scones, for breakfast.

If you’re ready to grad­u­ate to a yeast dough, instead of quick breads, check out this yum­my recipe for Grand­ma’s Home­made Yeast Rolls or this sim­ple machine bread recipe to share over at Food Life and Mon­ey! Hap­py bread-baking!

The Recipe

This is a sim­ple recipe and for those of you who have made bis­cuits all your life, needs no expla­na­tion. How­ev­er, if you are new to bis­cuit-mak­ing, a detailed pic­ture tuto­r­i­al fol­lows the recipe card. You’ve got this!

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Easy Homemade Biscuits


  • Author: Glen­da Embree
  • Total Time: 27 min­utes
  • Yield: 12-13 bis­cuits 1x

Description

Per­fect­ly ten­der bis­cuits, crisp tops and bot­toms, soft inside and loads of fluffy, but­tery lay­ers!  Such an easy recipe means you can put home­made bread on the table for every­day din­ners.  Delish!


Ingredients

Units Scale
  • 4 cups all-pur­pose flour (500g)
  • 2 Table­spoons bak­ing powder
  • 1 Table­spoon sugar
  • 1 tea­spoon salt
  • 3/4 cup ( 1 1/2 sticks) cold but­ter (167g)
  • 1 1/2 cups whole milk (366g)

Instructions

  1. Pre­heat the oven to 425°.
  2. Cut the but­ter into pea-sized cubes.  Put the cubes into a small bowl and stick in the freez­er until ready to use.
  3. In a mix­ing bowl, stir togeth­er the flour, bak­ing soda, sug­ar and salt.
  4. Add the but­ter cubes to the dry ingre­di­ents and cut them into the mix­ture with a pas­try blender, until pea-sized pieces of but­ter are even­ly dis­trib­uted through­out the mixture.
  5. Make a well in the cen­ter of the flour/butter mix­ture and add the milk.
  6. With a wood­en spoon, gen­tly stir the ingre­di­ents togeth­er until it becomes a shag­gy dough.  Avoid over­work­ing the dough, to keep bis­cuits tender.
  7. Trans­fer the shag­gy dough to a floured counter top and with your hands, gen­tly begin bring­ing the dough togeth­er into one mass.  It won’t be per­fect­ly smooth, but the flour an liq­uid will be incor­po­rat­ed enough for it to hold togeth­er in a rough ball.
  8. Press the ball out with your hands to form a disc that is an even 1″ in thickness.
  9. Gen­tly fold 1/2 the dough over onto the oth­er half.
  10. Again, press the dough out to a 1″ uni­form thick­ness and then fold in half.  Repeat this process 5 or six times to cre­ate lay­ers in your bis­cuits.  Be gen­tle and don’t over work it.  You will still see many pieces of but­ter through­out the dough.
  11. Use a 2 3/4″ bis­cuit cut­ter to cut bis­cuits.  Gath­er scraps.  Press to 1″ thick­ness and cut the rest.
  12. Arrange the bis­cuits on an ungreased bak­ing sheet and bake at 425° for 12–15 min­utes.  Tops will be gold­en brown.

Notes

Keep­ing the but­ter very cold will allow it to cre­ate pock­ets of steam in your bis­cuits as they bake.  This will cre­ate light, fluffy and soft bis­cuits with a lay­ered inter­nal texture.

Over­work­ing the dough can make bis­cuits tough.

  • Prep Time: 15 min­utes
  • Cook Time: 12 min­utes
  • Cat­e­go­ry: Bread
  • Method: Bak­ing
  • Cui­sine: Amer­i­can

Dishes to Serve Biscuits With

Magnificent Meatball Stew

Zuppa Toscana

Jalapeno Chicken Corn Chowder

jalapeno chicken and corn chowder

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