This Southern-style buttermilk biscuit makes an even softer biscuit then a classic layered recipe by the addition of cream cheese. Still tall and flaky but with a softness that is scrumptious. Cold butter and cream cheese, along with a layering technique, are the keys to getting tall incredibly soft biscuits in just 30 minutes.
Make Incredibly Soft Biscuits for Dinner
When you’re looking for soft, melt-in-your-mouth biscuits, this recipe for cream cheese biscuits is the one to try. The cream cheese gives the biscuits an unbelievably soft, tender texture that makes them perfect for when you want a biscuit to top with butter, honey or jam.
If you want to add a filling, like ham or pimento cheese, then you might want to go with a traditional buttermilk biscuit which is a little sturdier. The soft texture sets these apart from any other biscuit recipe.
As with all biscuits, this recipe is easy to make. I prefer using a food processor , but you can use a pastry blender or even two forks. As long as you have a bit of cream cheese on hand, you probably have all the ingredients in your pantry. If you don’t have buttermilk, you can make your own buttermilk with pantry staples.
Is it better to use milk or buttermilk in biscuits?
Buttermilk definitely gives your biscuits an edge. The flavor gives your biscuits a slight tangy taste but the real reason to use buttermilk is that it reacts with the baking powder to give you a taller lighter biscuit.
Milk or half-and-half can make reasonable substitutes just add some lemon juice or vinegar to it if you don’t have buttermilk on hand.
Tips for Light and Fluffy Biscuits
- Use very cold butter – you can even cut it in cubes and put it in the freezer until you’re ready to use it. If the butter gets too warm, it will not create the air pockets you need for tall flaky biscuits.
- Don’t over mix the dough, it can look shaggy.
- Layer the dough – roll out the dough and cut it into rectangles and stack them on top of each other. Roll out and repeat. This creates layers as they bake.
- Try not to touch the dough with your hands any more than you have to. The warmth from your hands will melt the butter.
- When you cut the dough with a biscuit cutter or knife, go straight down.
Why You’ll Love Biscuits with Cream Cheese
- Perfect softness: These cream cheese biscuits take ‘soft’ to a whole new level with light, flaky layers that melt in your mouth.
- Easy, classic biscuits: These take just about 15 minutes to get in the oven, so it’s easy to put tender cream cheese biscuits on the dinner or breakfast table.
Cream Cheese Biscuit Recipe Ingredients
- Cream Cheese – Use the full fat version for the best biscuits, the kind that comes in a block, not spreadable.
- Butter – Always use real butter (not margarine) to make biscuits. Cut up the butter into small pieces. Add them while it’s hard and very cold.
- Buttermilk – This is the key ingredient for almost all types of Southern biscuits.
- Pantry Staples – flour, salt, baking powder, baking soda
How To Make Cream Cheese Buttermilk Biscuits
Step 1: Mix your dry ingredients with the cold ingredients.
In a food processor, pulse to combine flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Add the cold butter cubes and cream cheese pieces, and pulse until the mixture has formed tiny pea-sized pieces. Finally, add in the buttermilk and process again, just until it forms a ball.
You can also use a pastry cutter instead or two forks to incorporate the butter and cream cheese.
Step 2: Roll and shape the biscuits.
Place dough on a lightly floured surface. Form it into a large rectangle. Cut the rectangle into thirds and stack each strip on top of one another. Roll into a rectangle and repeat the process of cutting and stacking 2 more times.
Finally, roll into a rectangle about 1 inch thick. Either use a circle biscuit cutter or a knife to make square biscuits and place them on a baking sheet. Brush the tops with a bit of butter and sprinkle with flaky salt.
Step 3: Bake.
Preheat the oven to 500º but turn down your oven and bake at 450°F for 15-18 minutes or until they’re golden brown.
How to Store Biscuits
Biscuits are best when eaten right out of the oven. If you have leftovers, here’s how you can store them:
Room temperature: If you plan to eat these the next day, store them in an airtight container or Ziploc bag on the counter. This will keep them fresh and soft.
In the fridge: These have dairy in them, so they can’t stay on the counter for too long. If you need 2-3 days to eat these, store them in an airtight container in the fridge, the fridge will cause them to dry out though.
In the freezer: I recommend freezing biscuits as soon as they have cooled. It keeps them the freshest. Store in a Ziploc freezer bag for up to 2 months. Thaw on the counter before serving again.
What can you do with leftover biscuits?
Day-old biscuits can sometimes be dry, but you can still enjoy them! Even if your biscuits are getting a touch dry, you can salvage them. Sprinkle a little water on them and pop them in the toaster oven. Don’t microwave biscuits, they will get rubbery.
If they are really dry, cut them in half and toast them like you would an English muffin.
More Homemade Biscuit Recipes to Love
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Soft and Fluffy Cream Cheese Biscuits (with Buttermilk)
- 2 cups all purpose flour
- 1 tablespoon baking powder
- ¼ teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 4 tablespoons cold butter
- ¼ cup cream cheese 2 ounces
- ¾ cup buttermilk
- Preheat oven to 500º. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
- In a food processor, combine flour, baking powder, soda, and salt. Add cold cubed butter and cream cheese and pulse until you have butter pieces the size of peas.
- Add buttermilk and process until it just comes toghether. Remove to a floured surface and form a rectangle. Cut it into thirds and stack each strip on top of each other. Roll out into a rectangle and repeat 2 more times.
- Roll the dough into a large rectangle about 1 inch thick and cut into circles with a biscuit cutter or into 2-inch squares using a knife. Place on a parchment-lined baking sheet and brush the tops with butter. Sprinkle with flaky salt.
- Place the unbaked cut biscuits in the oven and turn it down to 450º. Bake for 15-18 minutes until golden brown.
Barbara’s Tips + Notes
- Don’t overmix the dough, it can look shaggy.
- Make sure the butter and cream cheese are cold before starting.
- You can refrigerate the biscuits prior to baking for a few hours.
- If you don’t have buttermilk, use whole milk or half and half and add lemon juice or vinegar to it. You can easily make buttermilk with pantry staples.