Recipe - Buttermilk biscuits

Detailed instructions on how to make fluffy biscuits at home.


  • 4 ounces (1 stick) unsalted butter (refrigerated)
  • 1 ½ cups (226 grams) flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • ¾ cup whole milk or buttermilk
  • ¼ tsp citric acid (optional)


  1. Preheat oven to 400 °F and line baking sheet with parchment paper; or grease a baking sheet with butter.

  2. Cut the butter into about 8 small pieces, store in the freezer until ready to use.

  3. Mix milk and citric acid in a small bowl or measuring cup, set aside on the counter for 15 minutes. If you don’t have citric acid, you can use vinegar, or even lemon juice. This is really a substitute for buttermilk, which is ideal if you have some on hand. I never do, though.

  4. Mix flour, baking powder, and salt in a large bowl.

  5. Take the butter out of the freezer and incorporate it into the dough. Your goal is to keep it cold and break it up into small pieces, like the size of a pea. You can use a pastry blender if you have one. Otherwise you might want to use a grater and grate your cold butter. Again, you don’t want to handle the butter too much or it will melt as soon as you put it in the oven, and all your butter will leak out on to the pan and deep fry the bottom of your biscuits instead. Or you can use a food processor if you have one.

  6. Add milk and stir with a fork just long enough to mix the wet and dry ingredients. Do not overmix the dough.

  7. Cover your work surface in a light even dusting of flour and dump the dough out over the work surface.

  8. Cover your hands in a little bit of flour and quickly work the dough into a big flat lump. I usually fold the dough a few times and press it down. I usually just use my hands rather than a rolling pin.

  9. Use a circular cookie cutter (or a can if you don’t have one) to push down through the dough. Do not twist the cutter. Carefully pull the dough away from the cutter, then lift up the cutter with dough, and gently push it out and onto your baking sheet.

  10. Continue cutting discs of dough out of the sheet of dough. You will end up with unused pieces. You can glob those pieces together and roll them out again, cutting another biscuit or two from the remains. Or you can just make a couple blobs and throw them on the baking sheet as a baker’s treat. I usually make 5-6 biscuits out of this dough.

  11. Bake for 20 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack after biscuits have cooled enough to handle. You can finally eat biscuits.


If you can’t serve the biscuits fresh, putting a biscuit in the microwave for about 10 seconds should make it much tastier. Alternatively an oven or toaster oven is ideal if you can wait a bit longer to reheat them. Microwaves won’t preserve the same level of crunch on the exterior. Also, reheating is the perfect time to add more butter! Having the better melt into the biscuit during reheating is lovely.