Biscuits are a staple of southern cooking. Without them, no meal is complete. This becomes a problem when southerners travel above the Mason-Dixon line, since up north no one seems to know how to make a biscuit.

Every southern family has its own biscuit recipe, and each one believes that theirs is the best. Our family’s recipe was the brainchild of my great-grandmother, and has been passed down through the generations. Now it is my pleasure to share with you my own family’s recipe. I hope y’all enjoy it. After all, it’s the best.

Grandma Ruby's Tennessee Yeast Biscuits

  • Prep Time:1 hour 30 minutes
  • Cook Time:15 minutes
  • Total Time:1 hour 45 minutes
  • Servings:14 biscuits
  • Medium

    Ingredients

  • 2 cup buttermilk
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 4 1/2 teaspoon (2 packages) RapidRise yeast
  • 5 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 tablespoon fine salt
  • 1/2 cup shortening
  • Melted butter (for brushing)

Step 1

Heat buttermilk and sugar just past lukewarm. Sprinkle yeast on top and stir to dissolve, then set aside.

#SpoonTip: Don’t have buttermilk? Use this buttermilk substitute.

Photo by Spenser Protasewich
Photo by Spenser Protasewich

Step 2

Sift flour, baking soda, and salt together.

#SpoonTip: If you don’t have a flour sifter, don’t worry. You can push the ingredients through a strainer, or you can simply stir them together using a fork.

Photo by Spenser Protasewich
Photo by Spenser Protasewich

Step 3

Mix shortening with the flour mixture.

#SpoonTip: My great-grandmother used her hands for this, but I find that a pastry cutter works just as well, if not better.

Photo by Spenser Protasewich
Photo by Spenser Protasewich

Step 4

Combine dry and wet ingredients. Mix until a stiff dough is formed.

Photo by Spenser Protasewich
Photo by Spenser Protasewich

Step 5

Separate dough into two equal parts.

Photo by Spenser Protasewich
Photo by Spenser Protasewich

Step 6

Roll one half out to 1/4 inch thickness.

#SpoonTip: If you don’t have a rolling pin, use one of these rolling pin alternatives.

Photo by Spenser Protasewich
Photo by Spenser Protasewich

Step 7

Cut biscuits and place on a baking sheet with about 1 inch of space between biscuits, and brush the tops of biscuits with melted butter.

#SpoonTip: DO NOT twist the biscuit cutter. If you do this, you will stunt the rising process.

Photo by Spenser Protasewich
Photo by Spenser Protasewich

Step 8

Repeat steps 6 and 7 with the second half of the dough. Placing these biscuits on top of the ones that have already been cut.

Photo by Spenser Protasewich
Photo by Spenser Protasewich

Step 9

Cover with wax paper and let rise until the biscuits have doubled in size.

Photo by Spenser Protasewich
Photo by Spenser Protasewich

Step 10

Remove wax paper and bake at 325°F for 15 minutes or until lightly browned.

Step 11

Enjoy! I like slipping a piece of country ham or sausage in the middle for a delicious breakfast or snack.

Photo by Spenser Protasewich
Photo by Spenser Protasewich