Southern Baking Powder Biscuits

Basic biscuits can be great biscuits. These are straightforward, relying only on baking powder for leavening.

These are simple biscuits to make with only five ingredients. If you wish to use self-rising flour, you can make these biscuits with only three ingredients.

Southern Baking Powder Biscuits

They will rise tall and are slightly salty with no added sugar. If you like, you may add a tablespoon or two of sugar—but then they wouldn’t be authentic Southern biscuits.

A baking sheet, preferably a dark one that will not reflect the heat

A pastry knife or pastry knife

The following recipe can be used to make these biscuits.

You can also make biscuits with a mix. We make a buttermilk biscuit mix, a sour cream and chive biscuit mix, and a cheddar cheese biscuit mix.

These mixes are just-add-water and you should have them in your oven in about five minutes.


  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 4 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/3 cup cold shortening
  • 1 1/2 cup milk


  1. Heat the oven to 425 degrees F.
  2. In a large bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, and salt.
  3. Using a pastry blender or 2 knives, cut in the shortening until the mixture forms coarse pieces.
  4. Add the milk and stir the mixture with a fork until most of the dry ingredients have been moistened.
  5. Turn the ingredients onto the counter and knead and fold until the dough is formed. Do not knead longer than necessary.
  6. Roll or pat the dough to about 3/4-inch thickness and cut with a biscuit cutter. Place the biscuits on a greased baking sheet with the edges touching.
  7. Bake for about 15 minutes or until the tops are just golden brown and biscuits sound hollow when gently tapped.
  8. Serve warm.

Yield: 15 large biscuits

Recipe and photo credit: The Prepared Pantry