Old-Fashioned Lard Biscuits

Baker Bettie Biscuits, Breads 28 Comments

Classic Sausage Gravy for Biscuits and Gravy
How to Render Lard

These old-fashioned lard biscuits are incredibly easy to make! With only 6 ingredients and a few simple steps the results are perfectly tender and flaky. Stay tuned for my classic sausage gravy to pair with these biscuits coming up! 

How to Make Lard Biscuits | Baker Betttie

I’m a biscuits girl. I like them all which ways. Classic ones with butter and jam. Classier ones with thyme and black pepper or maybe even studded with bacon. I even love quick drop biscuits that kinda feel like cheating because they don’t even get my hands messy, but who cares, cuz biscuits!!!

But lately, lard has been my go to for making my comforting biscuits. If you have never had a biscuit made with lard, you need to. Read: NEED. The overall texture is so much different than those made with butter. They are just softer, more tender, and crazy flaky! I can’t get enough!

A few weeks ago I showed you all how to render your own silky white lard. It is a beautiful thing. If you haven’t checked it out yet, get at it here! But if you don’t want to make your own lard, you can purchase rendered lard online. I love this pure lard from from Fatworks Foods. They also sell it in quite a few stores across the US. You can see where they are selling it here.

You can also easily find other rendered lards in the grocery store, though many of them are hydrogenated so check your labels. I have also seen high quality lard in grocery stores that sell natural foods and sometimes at farmer’s markets. Or do you save your bacon fat? Well, then you already have some lard! Bacon flavored lard!

The process of making lard biscuits is identical to the process of making butter biscuits. We’ll use the biscuit mixing method, which maybe you remember from my tutorial is an incredibly simple process!

The steps include: mixing all of the dry ingredients together, then cutting in the fat, adding the liquid, then gently shaping. Let me walk you through it.

How to Make Lard Biscuits | Baker Betttie

STEP 1: Mix all of your dry ingredients together.

Pre-heat your oven to 375F before you start so your cold biscuits can go right in after shaped.

How to Make Lard Biscuits | Baker Betttie

In a large mixing bowl, whisk together your flour, salt, baking soda, and baking powder. Some people read my biscuit recipes and gasp at the amount of baking powder assuming it is an error. It is not. I understand a tablespoon of baking powder sounds crazy. Just trust me.

STEP 2: Cut in your cold lard.

You may have heard me talk about the importance of this step before, but this process of cutting the fat through the flour is necessary to shorten the gluten strands. All fats in the professional baking world are referred to by the generic term of “shortening” even when not using the specific fat called shortening.

Liquid is the enemy of glutens developing too much when you are aiming for a tender biscuit (or any pastry for that matter). The fat is acting like a little protective barrier between the liquid and the flour.

Now at this point you could make a decision to go with half the amount of lard and use butter for the other half if you are bound and determined to get a butter flavor. They won’t have quite the same soft fluffy texture. I find that just brushing them with melted butter at the end of baking is enough butter flavor for me. But you do you. I’ll make it your call.

How to Make Lard Biscuits | Baker Betttie

I like to use a pasty cutter to cut the fat through. You could use a fork, or even your hands. BUT you want your fat to be very cold and your hands can start lowering that temperature. As soon as the fat/dry mixture resembles coarse meal you are ready to add the liquid.

How to Make Lard Biscuits | Baker Betttie

STEP 3: Mix in your cold liquid.

I am a firm believer in buttermilk for biscuits. You just want the acidity from the buttermilk to assist in the rise and it also plays a key role in the flavor. Luckily, I literally live next door to a grocery store that sells buttermilk in half pints which is the exact amount I need for 1 batch of biscuits. But I definitely understand not wanting to buy buttermilk for just one recipe and sometimes you can only find quarts

. If you do not have buttermilk/do not want to buy butter milk, then you can make your own buttermilk substitute very easily. Put 1 TBSP of either lemon juice or white vinegar in a liquid measuring cup. Add enough regular milk to the measuring cup to measure 1 cup. Stir together and let the mixture sit for at least 5 minutes in the refrigerator (we want the liquid cold for this recipe!). The acid will curdle the milk and will work as a great substitute for buttermilk.

How to Make Lard Biscuits | Baker Betttie

Pour all of the buttermilk, or buttermilk substitute, into the bowl at once and gently stir together. I like to use a wooden spoon for this but you could use a rubber spatula if you like. Stir just until the mixture is all one mass but not until smooth. You want it to be lumpy and you don’t want to stir very much. It usually only takes me about 5-6 stirs to get here. The mixture is going to seem really wet. Too wet. If it does, then you are good. You want it almost too wet to handle.

How to Make Lard Biscuits | Baker Betttie

STEP 4: Shape the dough and bake.

I never, never ever, use a rolling-pin when making biscuits! You know that scene at the beginning of Pitch Perfect where Anna Kendrick is making biscuits then starts singing Cups. I know you know. Freaking adorable and I love her, but that scene kills me. The whole time I’m watching it I can’t concentrate because of the blasphemy performed on those biscuits!!! She kneads the heck out of that dough then rolls it out with a rolling-pin. Those biscuits were rocks. I just know it! I’m not crazy. Moving on…

How to Make Lard Biscuits | Baker Betttie

Flour a clean work surface and your hands. Gently gather all of the dough and place it on the floured surface. Now, using your hands, pat the dough out to about a 1/2 inch thick disc. You may need to dust a bit of flour on top of the dough. Now, fold the dough in half and then in half again going the other way so that you create layers in the dough. Do about 5 folds, gently patting out in between, to create layers. The layers you create by folding the dough over create the flakiness and layers in the bisuits. Pat the dough out 1 more time to the thickness you will cut them at. I like them about about 1 inch thickness.

How to Make Lard Biscuits | Baker Betttie

Use a biscuit cutter, or cup if you don’t have one, to stamp out the biscuit. I like to use my red wine glass. It is about 3 inches in diameter and gives me 5 very large biscuits. Use whatever size you prefer. I like to place my biscuits in a spring form pan very close together to bake. I believe this helps the biscuits climb on each other and in the pan to rise more. But you can definitely bake them on a sheet pan if you prefer.

How to Make Lard Biscuits | Baker Betttie

Immediately put the biscuits in the oven and then crank up the heat. I learned this little trick from the one and only Alton Brown. The active heating of the oven allows more steam to release from the biscuits which in turn gives them more rise. On the same note, do NOT open the oven for at least the first half of the baking time. You will release the steam trapped in the oven and nobody wants flat biscuits. They are just sad.

How to Make Lard Biscuits | Baker Betttie

Once baked, you can brush with melted butter if you like. OR you can top with sausage gravy. I have that recipe coming up for you in a couple days. Stay tuned! It is just the fall comfort food recipe you need!

Biscuits-gravy

Yields 5

Old-Fashioned Lard Biscuits

10 minPrep Time

12 minCook Time

22 minTotal Time

Save Recipe

Ingredients

2 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting the work surface
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1 TBSP (yes, TABLEspoon) baking powder, aluminum free
11/4 tsp kosher salt
6 TBSP lard, very cold
1 cup buttermilk, very cold (OR see note below for how to make a buttermilk substitute) melted butter for brushing baked biscuits if desired

Instructions

  1. Preheat your oven to 375°F.
  2. Combine the dry ingredients (flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt) in a large bowl and whisk together.
  3. Add the cold lard into the dry ingredients and cut into the flour, using a pastry cutter or a fork, until it resembles coarse meal.
  4. Add the cold buttermilk into the bowl and stir with a spoon or a rubber spatula JUST until combined. This should only take a few turns. The dough will be pretty wet and sticky.
  5. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured board. With floured hands gently pat out (do NOT roll with a rolling pin) the dough out until it's about 1/2" thick. Add a tiny bit of flour over top if needed and fold the dough over itself about 5 times, gently pressing down in between each fold. Gently pat the dough out to a 1 inch thick.
  6. Use a round cutter to cut into rounds about 3 inch wide. You can go smaller for more biscuits.
  7. Gently pat the scraps together to cut out the rest of your biscuits.
  8. Place the biscuits in a cake pan or springform pan close together. Alternatively, you can use a sheet pan. Place in the oven and immediately turn the heat up to 450ºF.
  9. Bake for about 10-12 minutes until golden brown. Do not open the oven door for AT LEAST the first half of baking time. You want the steam to stay trapped in the oven to help with the rise. For smaller biscuits, you may not need to bake as long.
  10. Brush biscuits with melted butter if desired.

Notes

*If you do not have buttermilk on hand you can make "soured milk" by adding 1 TBSP of lemon juice or white vinegar to a measuring cup and adding enough regular milk to make 1 cup liquid. Combine and let it sit for about 5 minutes. You need to acid in this recipe from either the buttermilk or the soured milk to activate the baking soda.
*You can flavor these biscuits with herbs or spices by adding them in with the dry ingredients.

6.8
http://bakerbettie.com/old-fashioned-lard-biscuits/

Products I used for this recipe…

Disclaimer: Please note that the links below are affiliate links and I will earn a commission if you purchase through those links.

RSVP Endurance 4 Piece Stainless Steel Biscuit Cutter Set (Kitchen)


List Price: Price Not Listed
New From: $10.95 USD In Stock
Used from: Out of Stock

OXO Good Grips Stainless Steel Bladed Dough Blender and Cutter (Kitchen)


List Price: $11.99 USD
New From: $11.95 USD In Stock
Used from: Out of Stock

Nordic Ware Leak Proof Springform Pan, 10 Cup, Assorted Colors, 9 Inch (Kitchen)


List Price: $33.38 USD
New From: $18.37 USD In Stock
Used from: Out of Stock

 

Classic Sausage Gravy for Biscuits and Gravy
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Comments 28

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  1. Yum Girl

    Welcome to Yum Goggle! I LOVE these biscuits – just like my Nana used to make! We are now following you on all social media and hope you will do the same. We will tag you as we promote your posts on up to 14 social media platforms including a nightly full color Top Ten Newsletter as well as our wonderful Recipe Roundups – I’m putting yours in a Big Family Breakfast one coming up in several weeks! Kelli at YG.

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  2. Scott

    These are as good as any biscuit that I have ever eaten! Great taste, great flake. This recipe is ‘spot on’. The only thing I did, in addition to the recipe, was to place a small amount of water in the oven in the beginning to help with moisture. Well done!

  3. Penny old school

    I use self rising to trim a step..but animal lard and butter milk for sure…always good eating…just cooked a country ham, making 100 mini ham biscuits in the morning, once my deboned ham tied firms up for slicing…and saved my pot liquor for Christmas collard.

  4. Rina

    LOVE, LOVE, LOVE this recipe! They melt in your mouth. I used homemade lard that I purchased from a Mexican meat market and used 1/2 whole wheat pastry/unbleached flour. Me, my two college boys and hubby devoured them. Thank you so much for sharing this. This is definitely a must keep and pass it down to generation recipe.

  5. Maurice Kemp

    I read your recipe carefully and my biscuits turned out great. Now that I have a great baseline biscuit, I plan to experiment by substituting two TBSP of lard with unsalted butter and to add about 1 TBSP of sugar. By the way, I found a cute mistake that you’ll probably find funny. You wrote, “Use a biscuit “butter” or cup…” 😉 I didn’t even notice the first couple of times I read through your instructions.

  6. Windflower

    I had high hopes for these but went wrong somewhere…new baking powder but they hardly rose and it’s the predominant flavor. I followed the recipe to the letter, checking and double checking, because of my past failures. I know it’s my fault and not the recipe’s, but I don’t know where I’m going wrong.

    In an attempt not to overwork the dough, maybe I didn’t work it enough? Patted very gently but they have the knobbly texture of butter dips or drop biscuits. The inside is more like a roll than a biscuit – no discernible layers – I used a pastry cutter and a metal scraper to turn it, patted as gently as I could. I’d say they’re on the tough side, so does that mean I overworked it? I don’t know how to work it less! My pieces of lard were a bit bigger than yours appear and it seemed a bit wetter. I know my oven temp is correct and I used a springform pan. Perhaps they were too tight in the pan?

    Any tips or ideas? I’d really like to try this recipe again and get it right, despite the outcome I think it’s my biggest success. I can make cookies, cakes, breads without any problem but biscuits seem impossible.

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      Baker Bettie

      I would say that it sounds like you had too much flour in your dough, but then you said the dough seemed more wet than mine so I’m a bit stumped. Just to double check, did you change anything at all about the recipe?

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  7. John Bivings

    Incredible biscuit method. I have been on a crusade for the perfect biscuit for the past 3 months. This one was dead on. Perfectly layered flaky biscuits. Thank you so much.

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  8. Gigi

    Made these yesterday, and baked them off this morning. Amazing! I don’t even love biscuits, but these are the best we’ve ever had. I made them kindof small and they were tender, just the right amount of doughy, and layered. Would’ve believed someone if they told me they have yeast. So glad to have found your blog!

  9. Lauren

    I realize this is an old post, but THANK YOU!! I made these last night with some great local pastured lard, and your sausage gravy as well. They were so delicious and melt-in-your-mouth flaky, and were equally tasty the next morning with butter, jam, and a side of coffee.

    I’ve never actually made biscuits that were really good before – and what do you know, I was following recipes that have you overwork and roll out the dough. I think I’ll be making biscuits more than once a year now since I know they can turn out so well.

  10. Larry

    I’ve been trying to make biscuits with butter for 30 years, always a fail. I discovered a source for lard and thought I’d give these a try. They turned out better than I thought possible. I followed the directions to a t except I had to cook for about 15-16 minutes. I have to say that they turned out perfect. Great texture, taste, and look. Wife and son also loved them.

    Thanks for the recipe.

  11. Brenda

    These biscuits are the best biscuits on the planet!! I followed your recipe EXACTLY and they turned out AMAZING!! I did have to bake them a couple of minutes longer because I don’t think my oven cooks at the temperature it reads but they are great!! Thank you for a perfect biscuit recipe!!

  12. Brian K

    Please read first! Thanks for the recipe but I need you to clarify the salt measurement. On the Pinterest cover page you have 2-3/4 tsp salt and on the make it page it looks like 11/4 tsp.
    I know that 11/4 is not an actual measurement so I decided that it must be 1-1/4 tsp.
    That would have been the right measurement, however I referenced the cover page for the salt and 2-3/4 tsp was way to salty in the final product. I will make the adjustments going forward but since this was my first attempt at homemade biscuits… I got a few snickers from my girls and not any seconds for biscuits.

  13. Keith Kalaukoa

    These biscuits remind me of my great aunt’s. I had fond memories of her making these biscuits and of course eating them. I never had the privilege to write down her recipe because I was young then. For many years I have been experimenting with biscuit recipes and to my disappointment, it never matched up to my aunt’s, until now. Thank you for this delicious and easy to follow recipe. I wouldn’t change a thing.

  14. Lisa

    These are hands down THE BEST biscuits I have ever made or eaten. I doubled the recipe and followed it exactly as written and they are perfection. Better than my granny used to make. Thank you oh SO much for this recipe.

  15. Scott

    I followed your directions exactly and the biscuits were perfect! Love this recipe. Reminds me of my grandmother’s biscuits. Thank you for sharing.

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