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.