Flaky, tender, buttermilk biscuits brushed with a honey butter hot from the oven and topped with flaky sea salt. These biscuits have layers for days and made all the better with the warm honey butter slathered on top.
Add a bit of your favorite jam or even use as a breakfast sammie—your options are endless really!
Find plenty of tips on how to get the flakiest biscuits possible below, friends. Let’s bake!
How to Make Biscuits More Flaky
Want the flakiest biscuits possible? Who wouldn’t?! To get the most rise and flakiest layers possible for your buttermilk biscuits, here are a few things you’ll want to focus on: your butter, your leaveners, and how you cut out your biscuits. I’ll break each down:
- Butter: You want to keep your butter as cold as possible throughout the entire process. The colder your butter is going into the bake, the more your scones will rise. Cold butter releases steam during the bake which puffs everything up and creates those desirable, flaky layers. This is why chilling the dough before the bake is key!
- Leaveners: Your leaveners are the ingredients that help give your baked goods more rise. Buttermilk is particularly acidic and, when combined with baking soda & powder, will help give your scones the best rise possible. The small bit of baking soda reacts with the buttermilk to give your biscuits a good lift right at the beginning of the bake and then your baking powder keeps things going from there (along with the steam from your cold butter).
- Cutting out you Biscuits: How you cut out your biscuits has a direct affect on how much they’ll rise. During the process, you get to a stage of creating more layers by stacking and pressing down your dough. When you go to cut out your biscuit pieces, you want to press up and down without twisting your cutter at the bottom. Go straight down, straight up, and that’s it. Twisting has the potential to seal the dough together, undoing the layers you’ve just worked so hard to create.
The Consistency of Your Biscuit Dough
Much like it would be when you’re making pie, you want your dough to be a little crumbly. It’s a balance between too dry and too wet, often a fine line. With that said, don’t stress yourself out trying to achieve a perfect consistency and strive to be on the side of crumbly over wet.
In the case of these buttermilk biscuits, you’re already working with a lot of butter which may start to get warm or sticky as you work with it. Which is why you don’t want to add too much buttermilk because then things may start to get real, real messy. A few things can help make sure you end up with the right consistency:
- Always start with less buttermilk and add more as needed—it’s much easier to add more liquid gradually than it is to add more flour after the fact.
- Make sure you spoon and level your four—don’t scoop it! Scooping gives you way more than you actually need because it gets packed into your measuring cup.
- Don’t skip the freezing step before you bake the biscuits! This helps firm up your butter again and keep it cold, which is essential in getting your biscuits to rise more and have those layers be flaky.
Adding the Honey Butter
The honey butter is a much-welcome flavor with each bite into these buttermilk biscuits. Make sure to add it immediately after these babies come out of the oven. This ensures it sticks and even seeps into the dough a little—yes please!
I like to make it when the biscuits have about 5 minutes or so left in the oven. That way it’s all ready to go and still a bit warm as I go to brush it on.
Materials You’ll Need:
- Large mixing bowl
- Wooden Spoon
- Measuring cups/spoons
- Bench scraper or knife
- 4in. round biscuit or cookie cutters
- Large baking sheet with parchment paper
- Pastry brush (or something to brush tops of biscuits with)
- Cooling rack
I hope these buttermilk biscuits brighten up your next breakfast or brunch! Share with and tag me over on Instagram (@joshisbaking) if you make them, friends and happy baking!Print
Flaky, tender, buttermilk biscuits brushed with a honey butter hot from the oven and topped with flaky sea salt.
- 4 cups all-purpose flour (510g), spooned & leveled
- 2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder (10g)
- 1 tablespoon coarse kosher salt (14g)
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda (2g)
- 1 cup (2 sticks) cold, unsalted butter (22g), cut into 1in. cubes
- 1 1/4 cups cultured buttermilk (300 mL)
- 2 large egg yolks for egg wash (~30g)
- Granulated sugar to sprinkle on top
- 1/4 cup (1/2 stick) unsalted butter (56g)
- 1/4 cup honey (50 mL)
- Flaky sea salt to sprinkle on top
- Before you do anything—make sure you’ve cut your butter into those 1in. cubes and place them in a small bowl in the freezer until ready to use. Cold butter is key!
- In a large mixing bowl, whisk together your flour, baking powder + soda, and kosher salt. Add in your cold, cubed butter and squish each piece between your thumbs and index fingers to create flat little “shingles” of butter. Toss the mixture afterwards to make sure the butter gets evenly coated in flour.
- Make a well in the center and pour in half of your buttermilk. Gently mix it in with a wooden spoon (or your hands). Once most of it has been incorporated, add in the other half of your buttermilk. Mix this in as well until no visible liquid remains. Then, begin pressing/squeezing the dough until it comes together (avoid kneading). It may be a little crumbly, but generally keep its shape (see notes below if it seems dry).
- Dump out your dough onto a floured surface and shape into a large disc (roughly 9 in). Using a bench scraper or knife, cut the disc into fourths and stack each piece on top of each other. Squish the stack down and shape into a disc again. Repeat the cut/stack/squish process one more time.
- Lightly flour the surface + top of of your dough and roll it out into a disc about an inch high. Using a 4-in. round biscuit or cookie cutter, punch out 4-5 biscuits from the dough—push the cutter straight up/down and don’t twist it at the bottom, as this can seal the sides. Press the scrap dough together and roll out again (using more flour if needed) to get 3-4 more biscuits.
- Place your biscuits on a small sheet or plate in the freezer for 30 minutes (to firm up the butter). Preheat the oven to 400°F (200°C), lightly whisk your two egg yolks together in a small bowl, and prep a large baking sheet with parchment.
- Take your biscuits out of the freezer and space a few inches apart on the baking sheet. Generously brush the tops of each with your egg yolk wash and sprinkle granulated sugar overtop. Bake for 25-30 minutes on the middle rack, until desired browning.
- WHILE THEY BAKE: When your biscuits have about 5 minutes left, make your honey butter to brush overtop as soon as they’re out of the oven. In a small saucepan over medium heat, melt your butter and honey together until the butter is fully melted (it helps to cut the butter into tablespoon-sized pieces), stirring every so often. Set aside.
- As soon as the biscuits come out of the oven, generously brush your honey butter over the top of each, letting it drip down the sides too. Sprinkle flaky sea salt overtop. Let cool on the sheet for 10 minutes and then dig in—these are best enjoyed warm, but you can transfer to separate racks to cool completely. These will keep for up to 5 days stored in an airtight container at room temperature, but if you’re like me—they won’t last past two. Enjoy!
- Keep the Butter Cold: colder butter going into the bake is key more maximum rise and flakier layers—so don’t skip the freezing step and put your dough into the fridge for 15 minutes before you cut out the biscuit pieces if it ever feels too wet or sticky.
- Dough Consistency: the dough should be somewhat crumbly when you go to cut/stack the layers and will come together more—you don’t want it to be wet! It’ll be better as you add more flour and go to roll it out before cutting.
- Dough Seem Dry? If your dough seems too dry when adding the buttermilk, you can gradually add more by the teaspoon—just be careful not to make it wet. You want the dough to be on the side of crumbly over wet. It’ll come together as you create layers and go to roll it out!
- Punching out Biscuits: like I mention in the instructions, be careful not to twist your butter after punching it down into the dough. This can seal the edges/side of your dough and undo all the gorgeous layers you’ve just worked so hard to create.
- Baking & Glazing: there’s a range of 25-30 minutes for two reasons. One is that everyone’s oven is a little different, so 25 minutes may look different from one to the next. The other is that you might prefer a different stage of browning or crispiness to the tops/bottoms of your biscuits! I like mine to be a bit darker, so I keep them in there closer to 30 minutes!