Baking Powder Biscuits

Can you imagine the original homesteaders not knowing how to make biscuits?! Could they have ever dreamed that something so simple and delicious could be reduced to a can full of chemicals made in a factory and sold in the refrigerated section of a supermarket. Chemicals in food? What’s a supermarket? And what’s refrigeration? Biscuits are so simple! Once you learn how to make them, you will never buy the fake version again. Best of all they are made with ingredients that you probably already have in your pantry.

This is my favorite biscuit recipe. It is one that I have been making since I was a little girl. My family loves them! If you have never made biscuits from scratch, I think you will be surprised at how easy it is. From start to finish, I can get them in the oven in about ten minutes. Please don’t be discouraged if it takes you a little longer the first time you try. Keep practicing and you will get good at it too! Once you conquer the skill of making biscuits, you will never want to buy Bisquick or the refrigerated canned stuff again.

Biscuits are such a versatile food. Once you learn how to make them, you can use them for so many meals. Biscuits and gravy is one of my husband’s favorite meals. Fried egg biscuit sandwiches are common in our house because we often have an abundance of eggs from our chickens. Cheesy garlic biscuits are always a big hit. And everyone loves my biscuit cinnamon rolls. I use this same basic recipe for all these things. Simple!

“An American Homestead” Baking Powder Biscuits

Makes: 15-20 (depending on size and thickness)
Oven Temp: 350 degrees

4 cups soft white winter wheat *(see note below)
2 Tbs. baking powder
1 tsp. salt
1 1/2 cups milk
1/2 cup (1 stick) of butter, melted (vegetable oil could be substituted if needed, coconut oil would be my choice)

Mix dry ingredients (flour, baking powder and salt) together in a mixing bowl. Make sure you don’t have any clumps of baking powder! I always check that it is clump free before I put it in the flour. Make a “well” in the center and pour in milk and then melted butter. I use evaporated milk from a can because without refrigeration (off grid) I often don’t have fresh milk. Any kind of milk is fine! Stir with a scraper spatula just enough so that the dough is combined and pulls away from the sides of the bowl. Don’t over-mix or your biscuits will be tough. Lightly flour your counter and place your dough on top. Press it down with your fingers adding a little flour to the top so that it doesn’t stick to your hands. Pat it down to between 1/2″ and 1″ thick. If you like thicker biscuits, go for 1″. You could also use a rolling pin for this step, but I don’t find that it is needed. When I get out my rolling pin, I often roll them too thin! Cut biscuits with a biscuit cutter and place on a greased cooking sheet. I like using a glass 9×13 pan because I don’t like the chemicals from non-stick cookware to get into my food. Don’t worry if you don’t have a biscuit cutter, a drinking glass works just fine. That’s what I use all the time!

Bake at 350 for 10 to 20 minutes until golden, but not too dark. Baking time will vary according to the size and thickness of your biscuits. I start checking after 10 minutes. If you are unsure if they are done, take one off the pan and split it open. You can easily see if it is done inside. Believe me, you will not be able to resist snacking on this “test” biscuit!

"Well" in dry ingredients.
“Well” in dry ingredients.
Melting butter.
Melting butter.
Milk/butter in the "well".
Milk/butter in the “well”.
Dough mixed together.
Dough mixed together.
Patting dough.
Patting dough.
Cutting biscuits.
Cutting biscuits.
Ready for oven.
Ready for oven.
Baked biscuits.
Baked biscuits.

*Note: I mill my own soft white winter wheat using wheat berries that I purchase in bulk. It is important that you use soft instead of hard white winter wheat because the texture is very different. If you use hard, your biscuits will be like rocks! If you do not have soft white winter wheat, never fear! They can be made with regular all-purpose flour or unbleached flour. I choose whole wheat flour that I mill myself because I believe that it is healthier for my family. But we all have to start somewhere! Making these from scratch even with regular bleached all-purpose flour is still better for you than purchasing Bisquick or biscuits in a can. If you are still getting accustomed to the taste and texture of whole wheat, try using 2 cups soft white winter wheat and 2 cups unbleached flour. This will make a lighter biscuit. But my family enjoys my biscuits using all whole wheat. If that is what you are trying to achieve, start with 2 cups to 2 cups and each time you make them, use more whole wheat. Pretty soon your family will be enjoying 100% whole wheat biscuits too. For more information about milling wheat, please see my article on Why I Mill Flour Myself.

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About JaimieB

Jaimie lives with her husband on their off-grid homestead known online as An American Homestead. They live with their two sons and her parents Tim and Joann on 50 acres located deep in the American Ozark Mountains.

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  1. Do you worry about your children getting enough calcium without a daily glass of milk? I know the health benefits of milk have been in question for some time now, at least in the groups I follow. Just curious about your take on this issue.

    Love your site!

    • That’s a good question and one that I have received before. First I have to say that I think a lot of the calcium in milk connection is a lot of propaganda spread my milk companies to sell their product. The milk sold today is a processed food with much of its nutrition removed and then vitamins put back in. I believe that people were healthier for generations by eating whole foods. Raw whole milk is a very healthy food and my family gets it on occasion. As to the calcium issue, no I don’t worry about it. Calcium is abundant in leafy greens which we eat straight from our garden in the spring and summer. We eat seasonally which means that we are not often eating leafy greens in the winter. But that’s okay! This is the way people have eaten for centuries before foods were shipped in refrigerated trucks around the country to provide produce to supermarkets during the times of the year that this food would have never been available. That’s my take on the issue! Thanks for commenting. 🙂

    • Abby, I have read several articles recently about “The Milk Myth”. It is advertising propoganda! Without a proper balance of vitamins & minerals in our nutrition, milk is actually harmful to our bones. One article I read specifically stated that without enough vitamin D in your diet, milk will actually leach calcium from your bones. I can’t find that specific article now but here is a another that has similar information:

  2. I’m definitely going to try this recipe. The biscuits I make call for flour, salt, baking powder, milk, and shortening and they are very simple to make as well. I try to encourage my friends and family to make their own bread and biscuits as well because it tastes better, it’s healthier than processed foods they would buy from the store, and they are really easy to make. Thank you for sharing!

  3. We do a lot of streaming and recently found you on The Homestead Channel (ROKU) Then found your blog and follow with feedly.

    This recipe is awesome. I have an old, tried and true I used but, never was consistent OR as moist as yours. I cut it in half because there’s just the 2 of us. I tweaked the measurements and used self-rising flour. I love my biscuits and will use your recipe from now on.

    Thanks for sharing. Look forward to more videos and info..


    • Hi Mike, Can you share your measurements with me? I am only cooking for two as well and have no need for so many biscuits at one time! Thank you 🙂

  4. Thank you for your recipes! I look forward to learning more. Can you use Almond Milk instead of regular?

    • Finally read the recipe and you said any milk should work, so I will give Almond Milk a try! Hope it works! Soooo looking forward to some biscuits!

  5. I love home made biscuits, I can’t understand why people buy refrigerator biscuits. This is one thing we learned in our home economic class. Many schools don’t offer anymore home ec, I think it’s sad because to many kids miss out on learning a valuable lessons. Both my children, asked me to stop sending my honemade banana snack cake in their lunches, because their class mates would take it from them to eat 🙁

  6. Hi Jaimie!

    I just made these tonight and they were a huge hit!! My whole family loved them. I just recently began making homemade bread, and I had been wanting to make biscuits as well. Thanks so much for the recipe.


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