Flaky Biscuits

Flaky Biscuits

The Spruce / Cara Cormack

Prep: 25 mins
Cook: 12 mins
Total: 37 mins
Servings: 9 servings
Yield: 9 biscuits
Nutrition Facts (per serving)
264 Calories
18g Fat
23g Carbs
4g Protein
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Nutrition Facts
Servings: 9
Amount per serving
Calories 264
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 18g 23%
Saturated Fat 10g 50%
Cholesterol 38mg 13%
Sodium 341mg 15%
Total Carbohydrate 23g 8%
Dietary Fiber 1g 3%
Total Sugars 1g
Protein 4g
Vitamin C 0mg 0%
Calcium 122mg 9%
Iron 1mg 7%
Potassium 63mg 1%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

This recipe for flaky biscuits is really foolproof, but each batch you make will be better than the last. Practice really does make perfect in this case. 

Making biscuits is an art form, a science, and an acquired skill. The two most important factors for making the lightest, flakiest, most delicious biscuits are measuring accurately and handling the dough as little as possible. Gluten development is necessary for the biscuits to have structure, but too much gluten will make them tough. The dough has to stay cold to keep the flour mixture separate from the fat until the biscuits go into the oven.

Notice the different ingredients and proportions in this biscuit recipe. The bread flour is necessary because, for flaky layers, you need more gluten, or protein, in the biscuits. Some shortening is used for more tender biscuits; since these biscuits are handled more, they need a different fat combination to make sure they aren't tough. Bread flour biscuits require an especially light hand.

Enjoy these easy flaky biscuits right out of the oven, with butter melting into every crevice.


  • 1 2/3 cups all-purpose flour

  • 1/3 cup bread flour

  • 1 tablespoon baking powder

  • 1/2 teaspoon salt

  • 6 tablespoons (3 ounces) unsalted butter, chilled

  • 3 tablespoons vegetable shortening, solid, chilled

  • 1/2 cup cold milk

  • 1/4 cup buttermilk

  • 3 to 4 tablespoons (2 ounces) unsalted butter, melted

Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients. Preheat the oven to 425 F and make sure the rack is in the center of the oven.

    Flaky Biscuits ingredients

    The Spruce / Cara Cormack

  2. In a large bowl, combine flours, baking powder and salt and mix well.

    In a large bowl, combine flours, baking powder and salt

    The Spruce / Cara Cormack

  3. Add the butter and with your fingertips, 2 knives, or a pastry blender, cut in the cold butter and shortening until the mixture resembles cornmeal.

    add butter to the flour mixture

    The Spruce / Cara Cormack

  4. Stir in the cold milk and buttermilk and mix just until dry ingredients are moistened.

    dough ball in a bowl

    The Spruce / Cara Cormack

  5. Gather the dough into a ball and place on a lightly floured work surface.

    dough ball on a floured surface

    The Spruce / Cara Cormack

  6. Roll the dough into a 4 x 10-inch rectangle. Brush lightly with some of the melted butter. Fold one-third of the long side over on the dough, then fold the other side on top to make three layers.

    dough shaped into a rectangle

    The Spruce / Cara Cormack

  7. Roll the dough into an 8-inch square and cut into 9 biscuits. (This prevents scraps of dough and re-rolling, which makes tough biscuits.) If you prefer round biscuits, cut with a 2-inch biscuit cutter, flouring the cutter in between cuts. Make sure that you press straight down with the biscuit cutter so your biscuits will have straight sides.

    dough cut into pieces

    The Spruce / Cara Cormack

  8. Place biscuits 1 1/2-inch apart on an ungreased cookie sheet and brush tops with melted butter.

    brush biscuit dough pieces with melted butter

    The Spruce / Cara Cormack

  9. Bake at 425 F for 11 to 14 minutes or until golden brown. Serve immediately.

    Flaky Biscuits served with butter

    The Spruce / Cara Cormack