Flaky Buttermilk Biscuits

Skip the can of refrigerated biscuits! You can make flaky layers all on your own.

Flaky Buttermilk Biscuits

I have to admit, the canned refrigerated biscuits is a brilliant idea. They are easy to make, fun to eat, and provide hours of holiday entertainment. Speaking of entertainment, I loved smacking those cans against the side of the kitchen counter to get them to open.  Tell me I’m not the only one to do that…

On the other hand, the ingredients list is pretty atrocious and the regular price is fairly high for what you get. (Yes, I know, sales plus a coupon gets you a better price, but still, it’s junk.)

As I mentioned early in this series, convenience foods are not always convenient to make. That’s why food manufacturers make the big bucks producing them. Sure, the trail mix is a no-brainer, but other items take some time to make or leave a mess in their wake. Their rewards, however, are usually worth it.

Such is the case with these flaky buttermilk biscuits.

food processor to make biscuits

 

Making buttermilk biscuits yourself.

To speed up the process, I use my food processor, one of my three top time-saving gadgets. You can use a pastry blender, two knives held together, or a fork, but the food processor makes biscuits happen in less than half the time.

If you have six children, I recommend making a double batch.

I found this recipe in the The New Doubleday Cookbook (affiliate link) that my sister bought me as a wedding present 20 years ago. She liked the cover. That’s how she chose it. It’s proven to have some great recipes in it. This biscuit recipe being one of them.

I have always thought that the trick to giving these biscuits their flaky layers was the fact that you sift the flour twice. However, Amy says that her trick is the folding. So, I’m not sure. Maybe it’s both.

Biscuits with Flaky Layers

Making it cheaper.

It’s been a while since I bought the refrigerated biscuits in a can, so I had to do some homework to find out. I asked on Facebook. The consensus is that you can get 8 biscuits for about $2.68 when not on sale. This makes them 33 cents a piece. Sale price plus coupons gets your price point much lower if you want to buy the prepared kind.

My ingredients costs broke down like this:

  • unbleached, non-bromated flour $0.30
  • hormone-free butter $0.36
  • buttermilk $0.32
  • allowance for salt, powder, soda $0.25

The full batch of 12 biscuits cost $1.23 or about 10 cents a piece. Making your own biscuits from scratch is clearly the better deal, especially when you take into consideration the better quality of ingredients.

My kids were thrilled with these biscuits. And since I made a double batch, they each got three, much more than they would have gotten if I had merely opened a can. I’d say our satisfaction meter was off the charts.

Flaky Buttermilk Biscuits Good Cheap Eats

diy-convenience-150This is part of the DIY Convenience Foods series.

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Comments

  1. Do you think these could be frozen?

    • We’ve been chatting about this on the facebook page. I have never frozen these, however, if I were going to, I’d freeze them unbaked. I know they will be good, I’m just not sure how flaky they will. Wanna be the guinea pig and let us know how it goes? Freeze them on a lined sheet until firm, then package in a freezer bag. Bake as directing, adding five minutes if needed. That’s my rec.

      • I make my own with a similar recipe and have tried freezing with poor results. I froze cut biscuits and baked them from frozen, just like Pillsbury’s. The biscuits turned out flatter than the fresh baked, so much different that we would either try freezing baked biscuits or stick to enjoying them fresh.
        The folding makes the flaky layers!

    • I’ve still not tried using a food processor for biscuits, but need to do so. It sounds so easy and yours look gorgeous!

      I’ve had mixed results baking frozen biscuits, but just had a really great experience. I’m not sure if there was something different about the recipe I used or not, but I baked them at a lower temp. 375 degrees for about 20 minutes. They rose really well!

      • Lynette W. says:

        I was gonna ask about freezing too! To my surprise, its the first comment! I was gonna say, probably lowering the temperature (just like the Pillsbury) with a longer cooking time, say 375 for 22 – 25 minutes should help them to rise up after being frozen and still flaky!

  2. Two things… #1) Yes, I think the biscuits could be frozen. I have a similar recipe that I have frozen several times before. They’re always best fresh, but still very good after freezing. You do have to up the baking time a few minutes.

    #2) I must be missing something. I don’t see when to add the butter. Am I assuming correctly that you add it after sifting the flour in the food processor?

  3. Oh boy, I’d love to try these with the chicken recipe from a few days ago. I think I’d better hit the gym…

  4. I’m with Amy — I think it’s the folding too! I’ve recently started folding my biscuits, and they’re so flaky now, whereas they weren’t before. I’m pretty sure that’s the only change I’ve made!

  5. I have frozen un bake biscuits before. They turned out wonderful. I thawed a little first then baked. Yours loo in s perfectly flaky!!!!

    The half & half, does it just brown the tops?

  6. I love this series. Question does not pertain to this. When you make your homemade tamales what kind of a masa do you use? We tried making some and was very dry? Thanks in advance.

  7. What size biscuit cutter do you recommend? I halved the recipe and made these tonight and got about 5 but I had to use a tall drinking glass as I would’ve maybe gotten 3 and a half with my 3 inch cutter. My husband loved these. I said, well, these are from the same woman who has the pizza recipe we love (the pan pizza)…maybe I should make more of her recipes. His response? “There you go.” :-) Thanks!

  8. Ha! Love it. Send him the link to the book. ;)

    Great question, by the way. My cutter is a 2 1/2-inch biscuit cutter. I bought a set of three from Walmart awhile back. It’s the smallest of the set.

  9. Made this recipe Tuesday night to go with the turkey pot pie pasta for dinner. I doubled it. Oh, I’m glad i did! We are a family of 9 and we ate them all!

    I folded and they actually came out flaky!!!!! Who knew? I wish I did sooner :-)

  10. I use a recipe that is very similar–I think the only difference is that mine calls for a whole stick of butter (1/2 cup) instead of 1/3. I would say the secret to getting lots of layers and height is definitely in the folding. I NEVER sift my flour–for those of you looking to save some time, you really don’t have to. I measure it into the bowl, add the rest of the dry ingredients, cut in the butter, and mix in the buttermilk. I fold it over a bunch of times as I’m kneading, and then leave them nice and thick to cut. They always rise sky high and have tons of flaky layers. YUM!!

  11. These sound great, I think the kids and I will make them tonight. My husband is famous in my parents’ house for eating up a pan of those nasty (but tasty) flaky refrigerator biscuits when we first started dating. I don’t think he’ll ever live that down :D

    I’d love to know where you get hormone-free butter for $2.16/lb. I need to get myself there!

  12. How many times do you fold?

  13. Just made these with half whole wheat pastry flour and half all purpose flour. My kids have been subjected to 100% whole wheat everything when we eat at home, and when we go out, they get junky white bread with hydrogenated oils. These are much lighter and flakier than any other biscuit recipe I’ve tried, and hopefully this will convince my family that we can eat “junk food” from home that is both tastier and better for us.

  14. Going to try this in a dumpling recipe that calls for refrigerated biscuits. Trying to avoid pre-processed foods from the grocery store.

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