Flaky Buttermilk Biscuits

  • Author: The Kitchen Whisperer

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  • 2 1/2 cups all purpose flour, plus additional flour for work surface
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 2 tablespoon sugar
  • 1 teaspoon table salt
  • 2 tablespoon vegetable shortening , cut into 1/2-inch chunks
  • 1 stick unsalted butter, cold, lightly floured and cut into 1/8-inch slices
  • 2 tablespoon unsalted butter, melted
  • 1 1/4 cups low-fat buttermilk, cold


  1. Adjust oven rack to lower-middle position; heat oven to 450 degrees.
  2. Whisk flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in large bowl. Add shortening to flour mixture.
  3. Use a Pastry Cutter to cut the shortening in to where you have little pea sized chunks.
  4. Add the butter slices into flour mixture and toss to coat.
  5. Use a Pastry Cutter to cut the butter in to where you have little pea sized chunks.
  6. Freeze mixture (in bowl) until chilled, about 15 minutes.
  7. Add all but 2 tablespoon of buttermilk to flour mixture.
  8. Stir briskly with fork until ball forms and no dry bits of flour are visible, adding remaining buttermilk as needed (dough will be sticky and shaggy but should clear sides of bowl).
  9. With rubber spatula, transfer dough onto center of prepared work surface, dust surface lightly with flour, and, with floured hands, bring dough together into cohesive ball.
  10. Pat dough into approximate 10-inch square; roll into 18 by 14-inch rectangle about 1/4 inch thick, dusting dough and rolling pin with flour as needed.
  11. Using Bench Scraper fold dough into thirds, brushing any excess flour from surface.
  12. Lift the short end of dough and fold in thirds again to form approximate 6 by 4-inch rectangle. You are lamenting the dough. This is what will create the flaky layers.
  13. Rotate dough 90 degrees, dusting work surface underneath with flour.
  14. Roll and fold dough again, dusting with flour as needed.
  15. Roll dough into 10-inch square about 1/2 inch thick; flip dough and cut nine 3-inch rounds with floured biscuit cutter, dipping cutter back into flour after each cut. Do NOT twist!
  16. Carefully invert and transfer rounds to a parchment lined baking sheet, spaced 1 inch apart.
  17. Gather dough scraps into ball; roll and fold once or twice until scraps form smooth dough.
  18. Roll dough into 1/2-inch-thick round; cut three more 3-inch rounds and transfer to baking sheet.
  19. Discard excess dough.
  20. Brush biscuit tops with melted butter.
  21. Bake, without opening oven door, until tops are golden brown and crisp, 15 to 17 minutes.
  22. Let cool on baking sheet 5 to 10 minutes before serving.
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