Flaky Buttermilk Biscuits

Biscuits, Breakfast, Quick and Easy, Thanksgiving

Flaky Buttermilk Biscuits

Even though I was born in the South (hi Fulton county), my love for biscuits didn’t begin until I went to high school and would leave my four hour tennis practices depleted and hungry. Luckily there was a Popeyes right by the courts, but I never wanted to ruin my dinner completely so instead of getting chicken and a whole plate, I’d just order two biscuits with a side of butter and honey. Oh man, they were SO good. I couldn’t be more excited to share these Flaky Buttermilk Biscuits!

That experience turned me into a hardcore biscuit-loving human. I love biscuits of all kinds but to be honest, ones made with shortening are it! And guess what, I’ve never baked them. I’ve always opted for full butter. And yes, they’re good, delicious even, but they’re not like this. I’m here to say that if you’re shy to bake with shortening, so was I but we’re here together, let’s do it!!

Last week I had the pleasure of going to lunch with Carla Hall and she was so amazing. We talked for a few hours about all sorts of things. I’m not gonna lie, I was a little nervous before, but once I sat down I was like, why was I so stressed?! She’s such a beautiful person, even better in person than what you see and know from TV.

I’m so happy to be sharing this biscuit recipe from her latest cookbook, Carla Hall’s Soul Food: Everyday and Celebration. I love how the book traces soul food’s history from Africa and the Caribbean to the American South, giving me context in ways that warm my heart and teach me a whole lot.

Flaky Buttermilk Biscuits

The book feels like her: warm and approachable. The recipes aren’t all heavy and indulgent. The book divides the recipes into “Everyday” and “Celebration.” A lot of the recipes are vegetable-driven, which I love. The Sorghum with Butternut Squash, Onion, Celery and Toasted Pumpkin Seeds looks SO good. The Curried Sweet Potato Salad sounds like a lovely twist on an old classic. But I had to make these biscuits because they looked bomb!

What I do love about this recipe is that it uses shortening and butter so you have the flavor of butter but a texture that you can only get with shortening. It’s glorious. The recipe calls for trans-free shortening. I found some at Whole Foods that is by the brand Spectrum that was fair-trade as well.

These biscuits are SO good. Their texture is dreamy. Like little fluffy clouds. I’m making them for Thanksgiving for sure, and so should you.

Flaky Buttermilk Biscuits

Here’s a link to Carla’s cookbook + Instagram.

And if you make these Flaky Buttermilk Biscuits let me know on Instagram! 

Flaky Buttermilk Biscuits

Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 16 minutes
Total Time: 31 minutes
Serving Size: 16 (2-inch) biscuits or 9 (3-inch) biscuits
Calories: 123kcal
These Southern flaky buttermilk biscuits are perfection. Pair it with softened butter and apricot jam.


  • 8 tablespoons unsalted butter, rozen, plus more; for pan
  • 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for shaping the dough
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon granulated sugar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 2 tablespoons trans fat-free vegetable shortening
  • 1 1/2 cups cold buttermilk


To Make the Dough with a Food Processor:

  • Combine the flour, baking powder, sugar, salt, and baking soda in a food processor fitted with the blade attachment. Pulse a few times, until well mixed. Add the shortening and pulse until fine crumbs form. Switch to the grating disk attachment. With the machine running, push the frozen butter through the feed tube.
  • Transfer the mixture to a large bowl and toss to make sure all the butter shreds are coated with the floury crumbs. Add the buttermilk and fold in using a rubber spatula, running the flat of it through the center of the mixture and then around the edge while you rotate the bowl. Keep at it, being as gentle as possible, until the dry ingredients are evenly hoisted.

To Make the Dough by Hand:

  • Mix the flour, baking powder, sugar, salt, and baking soda in a large bowl with an open hand, using your fingers as a whisk. Add the shortening and use your fingertips to pinch it completely into the flour until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs.
  • Using a box grater, grate the frozen butter on the large holes into the flour. Toss until all the pieces are coated. Add the buttermilk to the flour mixture. Using your hand as a spatula, gently mix until there are no dry bits of flour left. The dough will be sticky.
  • Lightly coat your work surface with nonstick cooking spray, then flour. (The spray keeps the flour in place.)
  • Turn the dough out onto the prepared surface and gently pat into a 1/2-inch thick rectangle. Sprinkle the dough with flour, then fold it in thirds like a letter. Repeat the patting, sprinkling, and folding twice, rotating the dough 90 degrees each time. Pat the dough to 3/4-inch thickness. It should no longer be sticky.
  • Flour a 2-inch-round biscuit cutter and press it straight down into the dough. Transfer the round to the prepared pan, placing the bottom side up. Repeat, cutting the rounds as close together as possible and spacing them 1-inch apart on the pan. Stack the scraps, pat to 3/4-inch thickness, and cut again. Refrigerate the rounds until cold, at least 15 minutes.
  • Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F. Butter a baking sheet. Or line a sheet pan with parchment.
  • Bake until the tops are golden brown and crisp, about 16 minutes. Let cool for 5 minutes on the pan before serving hot.


To These Biscuits Make Ahead:
You can let the biscuits cool completely, then freeze them for up to 2 months. To serve, thaw them and then bake in a 350 degrees F oven until toasted and warm.
Half Baking Sheet | Round Biscuit Cutter | Mixing Bowls | Liquid Measure
CourseBreakfast, Side Dish
CuisineAmerican, Southern
Keywordbest buttermilk recipe, biscuits using buttermilk, buttermilk biscuit recipe, buttermilk biscuits, homemade buttermilk biscuit
Nutrition Facts
Flaky Buttermilk Biscuits
Amount Per Serving (6 g)
Calories 123 Calories from Fat 54
% Daily Value*
Fat 6g9%
Saturated Fat 4g25%
Cholesterol 15mg5%
Sodium 254mg11%
Potassium 97mg3%
Carbohydrates 16g5%
Fiber 1g4%
Sugar 1g1%
Protein 2g4%
Vitamin A 175IU4%
Calcium 37mg4%
Iron 1mg6%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
Did you make this recipe?Tag @acozykitchen on Instagram and hashtag it #acozykitchen

Flaky Buttermilk Biscuits

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  • Reply Flaky Buttermilk Biscuits – Site Title November 7, 2018 at 12:32 am

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  • Reply Linda Henson November 7, 2018 at 2:04 pm

    I have cubes of Crisco shortening in my frig. Just wanted to check if that would be okay along with the butter. If so they will be on the table tonight. Looks like an amazing recipe. Thanks, Linda in Keno

  • Reply Dana November 7, 2018 at 3:55 pm

    First off, I love Carla Hall too and her chicken pot pie. I will forever add thyme to my crust because of her. Secondly…. where do you get trans-fat free shortening? I’ve never seen it on the shelf? Something new or I’m being silly? I like lard.

  • Reply CJ | A Well-Read Tart November 8, 2018 at 4:15 am

    Biscuits!!! I absolutely love biscuits, though I am complete crap at making them. I have tried about three different recipes and I’ve turned out un-fluffy, heavy flat discs each time. (My husband, however, made angel biscuits for my birthday one year, and they turned out perfectly his very first time. Harrumph.) I do like to try a new recipe for them about once a year, though, so I’ll keep this one in my back pocket for the next time I feel like challenging myself (and can handle a possible kitchen failure, lol). They sure do look delicious!! I love the honey butter sprinkled with salt flakes. YUM.

    • Reply Kolstad May 29, 2019 at 3:48 am

      I usually don’t cook. But I love buttermilk recipes and will definitely try it out.

  • Reply Celia Becker November 8, 2018 at 6:05 am

    I’m a biscuit lover too, especially those from Popeye’s! Shortening scares me as well, so I make my biscuits with cream and that recipe is one of the most popular recipes on my blog. But now I’m going for it, Carla’s biscuits with trans-fat-free shortening here I come.

  • Reply Sasha November 10, 2018 at 9:52 am

    I just made these and they stuck to the pan, the directions mentioned a prepared pan but i couldn’t find where it said to do so. Am i just missing this part? Thank you so much!

  • Reply Easy Thanksgiving Sides that will Impress | Happily Inspired November 14, 2018 at 8:29 am


  • Reply 18 Recipes Ideas to Prepare as a Guest for Thanksgiving - Tweed and Lace November 19, 2018 at 1:38 pm

    […] Flaky Buttermilk Biscuits […]

  • Reply Michael Quare May 1, 2019 at 8:29 am

    I sure will try these yummy sounding biscuit.

  • Reply M4A-music.com August 8, 2019 at 11:58 am

    thanks for the kitchen post….
    flaky butter milk tasty food.
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