Impossibly soft, fluffy pillow like biscuits, made with the richness of buttermilk and all the softness that only a shortening biscuit has to offer.
is butter or shortening better for biscuits?
Shortening style biscuits, are way softer, and fluffier than a butter biscuit, which has a more crumbly texture. Using shortening (Crisco, or any brand works) instead of butter in a biscuit recipe will give you a very tender, pillow-y biscuit. Perfect to pull apart while still hot and slather butter and jam over.
There are few scenarios in which shortening is preferred over butter, but if you want a soft biscuit--this is one of them. The flavor of butter is not lost, because they get brushed with melted butter before and after baking. This biscuit recipe also calls for buttermilk--further adding a buttery like richness to the finished product.
Choose shortening and follow this recipe for angel-soft biscuits.
To make as a "drop-style" biscuit, follow the instructions to form the dough, then use a fork to drop portions on the baking sheet.
Combine the flour, baking powder, salt and sugar until evenly mixed. (As shown in step 1 above.)
Use a fork, pastry cutter, or your mixer's paddle attachment to incorporate the shortening until it resembles coarse crumbs. (As shown in step 2 above.)
Then, add the buttermilk to form a soft, slightly sticky dough. (See consistency of dough shown in step 3 above.)
Turn that dough out onto a generously floured work surface. (The flour helps prevent sticking.)
Use a flour dusted rolling pin to roll the dough into about a 1 1/4" slab. You can also just use your hands to press it if you don't have a rolling pin.
Using a biscuit cutter or round glass, cut biscuits out of the slab, gathering the excess scraps and re-rolling it out again to cut more until little to no scraps remain. (Step 4 above shows the process of biscuit cutting.)
Brush with melted butter, and bake on a baking sheet at 400 degrees for 17-22 minute, until golden brown. Remove from oven, and brush again with melted butter.
Try these fluffy biscuits, "drop-style" with Creamy Chicken and Dumplings. Or, if you like them warm with butter and jam like I do, here is an easy SMALL BATCH homemade jam recipe (THAT WORKS WITH ANY FRUIT, AND NO CANNING REQUIRED!!).
Happy biscuit baking 🙂
- 4 1/2 cups all purpose flour
- 2 tablespoons baking powder
- 1 1/2 tsp salt
- 2 tablespoons sugar
- 1 cup shortening like Crisco
- 1 3/4 cups buttermilk
- 1/2 stick melted butter for brushing biscuits
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
- Combine 4 1/2 cups all purpose flour, 2 tablespoons baking powder, 1 1/2 teaspoons salt, and 2 tablespoons of sugar in a bowl until evenly mixed.
- Cut in 1 cup of shortening until mixture resembles coarse crumbs.
- Add 1 3/4 cups buttermilk and mix until soft and combined.
- Turn dough out onto generously floured surface.
- Roll out into a 1 1/4" slab.
- Use a biscuit cutter or glass to cut out biscuits; roll up excess scraps and re-roll another slab to cut more biscuits until little to no dough remains.
- Brush with melted butter.
- Bake on a baking sheet for 17-22 minutes until golden brown.
- Remove from oven, brush again with melted butter while still hot.
- Any brand of vegetable shortening will work, however Crisco is a popular and trusted brand.
- Recipe makes a large batch, about 2 dozen biscuits so cut in half to make a smaller batch.
- If you don't have buttermilk, you can make a buttermilk "substitute" by combining the milk with a tablespoon of white vinegar or lemon juice; stir and let sit for 5 minutes to thicken. Use in place of buttermilk called for in recipe.
- If you do not have a biscuit cutter, use a small glass. Dust the rim with flour to prevent sticking.
- These biscuits are so very soft and are great served straight up; with butter and jam.