Biscuit Hacks: the Secrets to Making the Perfect Biscuits

By: Toby Kuhnke, Editor,
Secrets to Making the Perfect Biscuits
Secrets to Making the Perfect Biscuits

Finding the perfect biscuit recipe can be a challenge, but these Secrets to Making the Perfect Biscuits will help! Whether you like your biscuits sweet with a honey sauce or savory with sausage gravy, biscuits are an essential part of Southern cooking, and they usually find their way onto the table at some point for every meal. For that very reason, knowing all the tips and tricks for making the perfect biscuits is so essential. But biscuits can be fickle pastries, and one wrong move can result in biscuits that are flat, too dense, or even flavorless!
Avoid these cooking catastrophes by keeping these biscuit tips in mind when you’re developing your recipe. Many cooks have been known to go to extreme lengths to perfect their biscuits and insist on following some outrageous secret tricks; however, there is often some truth to them. Try out the tips below, and you might just have a biscuit breakthrough!

Biscuit Tips and Tricks

It’s all in the technique

With biscuits, every part of your technique is important. These tips will help you cover all your bases when you're trying out a new biscuit recipe and will ensure that your biscuits turn out flaky and fluffy the first time!

  1. Don’t twist your cookie cutter when you are cutting your dough. When you twist, the dough on the sides of the biscuits will seal together, and they won’t rise properly. No one likes a flat biscuit!

  2. Make a well in the dry ingredients and pour the wet ingredients into it. This makes folding the ingredients together much easier, and it helps to get the ingredients more evenly distributed.

  3. Cutting in the butter is common advice given to biscuit beginners. Essentially, it just means making the fat that you are using for your recipe -- butter, shortening, margarine -- into small flakes, usually with a cheese grater. If you use melted or even room temperature butter, mixing it in with the dry ingredients will make your mixture doughy instead of grainy and sand-like.

It's all in the temperature

Temperature is an element that many cooks forget to take into consideration, but when making your biscuit dough, the temperature and conditions of your ingredients can make the different between warm, fluffy biscuits and dull hockey pucks.

  1. Frozen butter is a key part of biscuits. You want to make sure all of your ingredients are cold when you are putting your dough together, but this is especially true for the butter.

  2. Hands off! The heat from your hands can have a bigger effect on your biscuits than you might think. As mentioned before, you want to keep your ingredients cooler than normal when making biscuits, and a good way to do this is to use wooden spoons and spatulas instead of your hands whenever possible.

  3. Check the weather before you start baking your biscuits! Humidity can have a big effect on your ingredients, especially flour. If it’s extra humid outside, just add a tiny bit more flour than you normally would, especially if you’re someone who likes to cook with the windows open.

It's all in the ingredients

As with all recipes, choosing the right ingredients will determine the final product more than anything else. Do not cut any corners with your biscuits, and follow these tricks!

  1. Fresh baking soda and baking powder are important with biscuits. Using all fresh ingredients is always ideal, but if your baking soda and baking powder are expired, they won’t do their job as well.

  2. The egg wash is one of the most important steps of making biscuits. It’s the last thing you do before these tasty treats go into the oven, and it gives the biscuits that great golden-brown color on the top!

What's your favorite cooking secret?

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