How to Make Light and Flaky Buttermilk Biscuits

I went to breakfast with blogger friends Kathy and Amanda at Hash House a Go Go in San Diego (Hillcrest) the other day. If you ever visit San Diego and you’re very, very hungry for breakfast, Hash House is the place to hit up. The plates are humongous… I mean seriously big. The food is amazing. The girls sampled French Toast and Sage Fried Chicken. I attempted to eat light with an egg white scramble, a rather large mound of mashed (instead of fried) potatoes, and a giant buttermilk biscuit. Picture a nicely risen biscuit and stack 4 of them together- that was the size of this biscuit. The biscuit was delicious, but it wasn’t the light and flaky biscuit I’d been craving. I decided to make it my mission to create Light and Flaky Buttermilk Biscuits.

The biscuit dough can be made in the food processor or by hand. Butter is cut into the dry ingredients and then mixed with buttermilk.

I’ve made flaky pastry many times by using the dough-folding method so I thought it might be a good idea to try this for the biscuits. The dough is rolled out and then folded into thirds like you’d fold paper to put into an envelope.

Then it’s rolled out again and you repeat the folding.

Roll it out one last time.

Punch out your biscuits with a biscuit cutter (or the bottom of a glass).

Place biscuits on a baking sheet…

…and bake them until they have risen nicely and are golden brown.

If you eat them right away, you can take advantage of the ease of melting butter and the soft, tender, flaky insides.

A little dollop of jam or a drizzle of honey completes these perfect little biscuits.  And they turn out light and flaky, just as I was hoping.

Yield: 12 to 14 biscuits

Prep Time: 25 min

Cook Time: 12 min

Flaky Buttermilk Biscuits

There is nothing better than a light and flaky, melt-in-your-mouth buttermilk biscuit… topped with a smear of butter and a drizzle of honey.


2 cups all-purpose flour
2 tsp. granulated sugar
2 1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt
4 Tbsp. chilled butter, cut into pieces
1 cup buttermilk


1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Lightly spray baking pan with nonstick spray (or line with parchment paper).

2. Mixing with the food processor: Place flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt in the bowl of a food processor. Pulse the dry mixture together a few times to blend. Add butter and continue to pulse until fine crumbs form. Scrape the mixture into a bowl and stir in buttermilk with a wooden spoon until the dough is mixed together and a little sticky.
Mixing by hand: In a large bowl, whisk together dry ingredients. Add butter and use a pastry cutter (or use your fingers) to work the butter into the dry mixture and form fine crumbs. Stir in buttermilk with a wooden spoon until the dough is mixed together and a little sticky.

3. Turn dough out onto a floured surface; knead lightly and form into a small round. Roll dough into a 9×5-inch rectangle (1/2 inch thick); dust the top of the dough lightly with flour. Fold dough crosswise into thirds (as if you’re folding a piece of paper to slide into an envelope). Re-roll dough into another 9×5-inch rectangle (1/2 inch thick). Fold into thirds again; roll into another rectangle. Cut dough with a 2 3/4-inch biscuit cutter to form 12 to 14 dough rounds. Gather scraps and gently pat the dough together again to cut more biscuits.

4. Place dough rounds, 1 inch apart, on prepared baking sheet. Bake 12 minutes, or until biscuits are golden. Remove from pan; cool 2 minutes on wire racks. Serve warm.


*Reader tip- use White Lily Flour to get the rise and flakiness of the perfect biscuit.


To see photos of the breakfast I had at Hash House a Go Go & additional San Diego food tour photos, see this post on Amanda’s blog.

Other biscuit recipes on the blogs that you might enjoy:
Sweet Potato Biscuits by Cookin’ Canuck
A Biscuit Tip Sheet by Dorie Greenspan
Blue Cheese Scallion Drop Biscuits by Smitten Kitchen
Bacon- Cheddar Drop Biscuits by Two Peas and Their Pod
Light and Flaky Gluten-Free Biscuits by Gluten Free Cooking School