Baker Bettie

Old-Fashioned Lard Biscuits

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 of a lard biscuit 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 450F 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. 

How to Make Lard Biscuits | Baker Betttie

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

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!


Old-Fashioned Lard Biscuits

Old-Fashioned Lard Biscuits

Yield: 6-8 Biscuits
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 25 minutes

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. Serve with my Classic Sausage Gravy for a comforting meal. 


  • 2 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting the work surface
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 TBSP baking powder, aluminum free
  • 1 1/4 tsp kosher salt
  • 6 TBSP leaf 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


  1. Preheat your oven to 450°F (230 C).
  2. Whisk together the dry ingredients (flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt) in a large bowl until well combined.
  3. Add the cold lard into the dry ingredients and cut it 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 work surface. With floured hands gently pat out (do NOT roll with a rolling pin) the dough out until it's about 1" thick. Fold the dough in half and then turn it 90 degrees. Pat it out and fold it again. Do this process about 6 times to create layers in the dough. This will create flakiness in the baked biscuit. Gently pat the dough out to a 1 inch thick.
  6. Gently pat the dough out to a 1 inch thick. Use a round cutter to cut into rounds about 2 1/2" (for 8 biscuits) or 3" wide (for 6 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.
  9. Bake at 450 F (230 C) for 12-15 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.


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.

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Nutrition Information:

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 0

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111 comments on “Old-Fashioned Lard Biscuits”

  1. WOW! These biscuits look so flaky! I’m totally waiting for your sausage gravy recipe. I wish I could have some RIGHT NOW! Sharing for sure.

  2. 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.

  3. Just made these and this is an outstanding recipe and method! Thanks for creating this!

  4. 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!

  5. 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.

  6. 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.

  7. 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.

  8. 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.

  9. 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.

  10. Just made these and they came out great! Can this recipe be doubled?

  11. Can you use a food processor to mix the dough?

  12. 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!

  13. 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.

  14. 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.

  15. 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!!

  16. I love this recipe. I think it needs more salt, but salt is kind of a personal preference.

  17. 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.

  18. 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.

  19. 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.

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

  21. Wow. I made head last night and they were absolutely amazing. I’ve never tasted a better biscuit. I couldn’t believe how high they rose- well over twice their original height! The only change I made was that I used whey (leftover from yogurt making) and a small amount of yogurt in place of the buttermilk. So good!

  22. i made these biscuits and i felt so sexy.

  23. looking to use my wonderful leaf lard, I made these last night and were amazing!!  only thing I would say is watch the salt… used Himalayan Pink and resulted a tad too salty. 
    Thanks for sharing

  24. Hi there! I just found your site. My Auntie could make biscuits that were sublime! She has passed and I’m trying to learn to make perfect biscuits. My recurring problem is dryness. I found the 1 Tbsp of baking powder is spot on, but the dryness is overwhelming. I get a crust almost on the outside of the biscuits, and they are very dry. I have noticed I do not let my dough get sticky. Maybe I’m not using enough milk?

    • Hi Mark! Thanks so much for question. I am guessing that it may have something to do with too much flour in your biscuits. Can I ask how you measure it? You want to take a spoon, fluff it up, and then lightly scoop it into your measuring cup before leveling it off. Be sure not to pack it down into the cup. OR if you have a kitchen scale you could weight the flour which would be even more accurate. I need to edit this recipe to include weights, but for 2 cups of flour it should weigh 8.5 oz.

      If you do have the right amount of flour in your recipe and it is still coming out dry, then you can add a bit more buttermilk. Start with a tabelspoon at a time. This dough should be pretty sticky.

      Let me know if you get better results!

  25. I made these biscuits last night, and they were great. I used a food processor instead of mixing by hand, and it all turned out brilliantly.

    Flavour and texture are spot on and without a doubt the best biscuits I’ve ever made.

  26. Greetings from Edmonton, Alberta, Canada!!!!!!!!

    I’ve got to tell you I tried your recipe today for your biscuits, and I LOVED them. I made some up to have with some chili for dinner…..split them in half and spread with some butter and YUM!!!!!! I USED to just make biscuits from a mix, but never again. These were so easy and so good!!!! I got almost a dozen, so clearly I patted my dough too thin; will have to leave it a bit thicker next time…..but I can see the layers, and they are so tender and tasty. There are so many things these would be great with. Thank you so very much for sharing this recipe!!!!!!

  27. My mom was from Tennessee, she made the best biscuits. I tried to copy hers, unsuccessfully, I might add. Your recipe is spot on. She always used lard and buttermilk also. Thank you so much for this. I have kept one thing from my mom, she always pressed out her dough onto newspaper.

  28. Can you use non dairy milk? Some things just don’t cook with non dairy milk.

    • Hi Chriss!
      Yes, dairy free milk will work out fine in this recipe. However you need to make a buttermilk substitute with it. Measure out 1 TBSP lemon juice or white vinegar and add enough non-dairy milk to make 1 cup. The acidity is needed to activate the baking soda.

  29. Thank you bakerbettie. I have been searching for my Aunt Ruby’s biscuit recipe since she passed 25 years ago. Finally found it here. These are the best ever and so easy just like hers. I was looking under buttermilk biscuits and baking powder biscuits. Should have been looking under lard biscuits all these years. 

  30. I also just wanted to mention if anyone is having trouble cutting in the lard, or wants to try something different……I used my Magic Bullet with the larger blades. Not for very long, maybe a few seconds at best; just to get the lard cut in easily. I have to do it in two or three portions, because the Bullet cups I have are maybe ten ounce size, but this is faster than cutting by hand and the biscuits are amazing!!!!

  31. I love flat biscuits. I’m actually looking for a recipe like that.

  32. First time I’ve ever made scratch biscuits and they were wonderful! Simple and understandable instructions. Already made them twice with my home made lard. Yum!

  33. I used this recipe as my first attempt at making from scratch biscuits and it was a success! We will never have canned biscuits again. So easy and flavorful. Thank you thank for this amazing recipe. This is probably the 4th or 5th recipe that I’ve tried from your website and I have loved all of them.

  34. Hello! I found this recipe about a year ago and LOVE these biscuits (as do the friends I bake them for)! However, I recently moved from Texas to Denver, CO and have been terrified to attempt them due to the elevation change. Do you have any tips on how to alter the recipe for being 5,280 feet above sea level? 🙂 I greatly appreciate any advice!

    • Hi Jess! I do not have any experience with high altitude baking, but I just referenced my baker’s appendix and this is what is suggests for your elevation. Increase the flour by 2 TBSP per cup, decrease each tsp of baking powder and baking by 1/4 tsp, increase liquid by 2 TBSP per cup. So this would be your recipe: 2 1/4 cups flour, omit the baking soda, 2 3/4 tsp of baking powder, 1 1/4 tsp salt, 6 TBSP lard, 1 cup + 2 TBSP buttermilk.

      Leavening is much more active at higher elevation and liquid evaporates much more quickly. I hope this helps! Let me know if you do try this and how they turn out!

  35. Great biscuits! I have tried to make other biscuits and none were as close to being as great!

  36. Very good thanks 

  37. I don’t review a recipe until I make it several times. Every single time, they turn out fantastic…and this is coming from someone who always used to mess up biscuits. These are so good, I wrote the recipe down just in case it gets taken down online.
    Has anyone experimented with freezing the cut biscuit dough to use later?

  38. I’m a southern gal, and this made the best biscuits I’ve ever ever had! Keeper for sure. 

  39. I’ve tried at least 25 biscuit recipes this is by far our favorite.  It made big fluffy biscuits that retained their texture when reheated in the microwave.  Yummy!

  40. I’ve been trying to learn to make decent biscuits for over a year now—tried these tonight and my wife said they were the best she has ever had anywhere! (I baked them in my iron skillet.) She said I can quit experimenting now and please just stick with these.

  41. ABSOLUTELY the best Biscuits I’ve ever made. So easy and delicious. Thank you for this recipe. 

  42. Well done….. Finally the tips and steps to make lovely biscuits. Made this tonight with steak for dinner. fantastic dough, rise, texture and crumb…. used self rising lilly) added a 1/4 tsp of bp some sugar and vanilla. no glazing of milk or butter these came to the table with 4 of the bakers dozen missing,,,,(Not me LOL) Thanks…( oh used smaller cutter as I wanted more quick Sunday breakfast heading to the beach made 13 not 6.

  43. Nailed it!!!!Finally, after 63 years no more frozen biscuits for this gal

  44. Don’t have aluminum free baking powder. What will happen to the recipe if I use what I have?

  45. Don’t have aluminum free baking powder. What can I do without having to go try to find it in a store where I live since I’ve got my oven turned on to make this?

    • Hi Sharon! If you use baking powder that is not aluminum free, your biscuits will likely have a slight metallic taste to them due to the amount of baking powder in this recipe. Though I haven’t tested it yet, you could swap the tablespoon of baking powder for just a teaspoon of baking soda for this recipe. Since the recipe calls for buttermilk (which is acidic) it will activate the baking soda. Let me know if you do try it!

  46. OMGOSH!! Best Ever Biscuits said my Hubby!

  47. The article says preheat to 375 but the direction say 450. Which is it?

    • Hi Dave, thanks for bringing this to my attention. I recently retested this recipe for the video tutorial and decided that I got a much better rise by putting the biscuits in the oven at a higher temperature to start. I used to preheat to a lower temperature and then raise it up. I thought I had edited it all properly, but it is now fixed. Hope you enjoy them!

  48. Made these this morning and the texture was great. Only suggestion I would add is to include a teaspoon of sugar to cut the saltiness if you’re going to be serving them with anything already salty (ex: gravy)

  49. I was sceptical at first to try anything made with lard but am so glad i finally did. These biscuits are light and very tasty. Very quick and easy to make. Thanks for the recipe. Will definately make again and again.

  50. Can you substitute butter for the lard? If so, please provide the requirements. Thanks!

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