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Skip the store-bought and make summertime strawberry shortcake completely from scratch with this recipe! Biscuits recipe updated in 2021. Using less flour and baking powder, adding a bit of baking soda, and including a dough folding step, these sweet biscuits are better than ever. They’re simply perfect for holding juicy strawberries and fresh whipped cream!

strawberry shortcake with whipped cream

Today is real food and real flavor brought to life without any peanut butter swirls, caramel drizzles, rainbows, chocolate chunks, candy bar pieces, sprinkles, or unicorn magic. Strawberries + sweet biscuits + whipped cream. Every summer has a different song anthem with the latest chart-topping hit, but the summer dessert anthem stays the same year after year. And that dessert we just can’t get out of our heads, tastes delicious any time of day, and soothes our summertime soul is most definitely strawberry shortcake

strawberry shortcake on a silver plate

Here’s What You Don’t Know About Strawberry Shortcake

Completely homemade strawberry shortcake is easier than you think. Skip the store-bought biscuits and whipped topping. Instead, have fun making strawberry shortcake at home. Load the homemade biscuits up with juicy strawberries and homemade whipped cream that, again, is so simple. If you can reach for store-bought whipped cream in the dairy aisle, you can make fresh whipped cream at home.

I hope I’m not overwhelming you with all this homemade goodness– I promise it’s all very doable. And that’s what summer is about, right? Simple, happy, pure homemade goodness that celebrates the season’s fresh flavors.


Fresh Strawberries for Strawberry Shortcake

You only need two ingredients for the strawberry filling: sugar and fresh strawberries. Chop up the strawberries and mix with a little sugar. The sugar helps strawberries release all their delicious juices, which will seep down into the sweet biscuits and whipped cream. (Aka the best part about strawberry shortcake!) I recommend mixing the strawberries and sugar together before you make the biscuits; this gives the strawberries some time to juice up.

strawberries in a glass bowl for strawberry shortcake

Use Cold & Cubed Butter in the Biscuits

Use a food processor or pastry cutter to cut the cold butter into the dry ingredients, as detailed in the printable recipe below.

butter cubes and flour for biscuit dough in a glass bowl

How to Make & Shape These Biscuits

Biscuits for this strawberry shortcake are not nearly as tall and fluffy as regular biscuits. Just to set your expectations appropriately! Don’t expect a super tall biscuit.

The shaping process is exactly like our regular biscuits using the fold and flatten method. Flattening and folding biscuit dough creates multiple flaky layers, just as it does when we make homemade croissants. This step is a lot easier than it looks. First, pour the crumbly dough onto a floured work surface:

dough on marble counter

Flatten the dough to about 3/4 inch thick with your hands or use a rolling pin:

flattened dough on marble counter

Fold both ends into the center:

folded dough on marble counter

Turn it:

folded dough on marble counter

Flatten again and repeat 2 more times.

flattened dough on marble counter

Use a biscuit cutter to shape them. You can use a 3-inch biscuit cutter or 2.75-inch biscuit cutter. You can bake the biscuits on a lined baking sheet, cast iron skillet, or round cake pan. A brush of heavy cream and sprinkle of coarse sugar gives the sweet biscuits a delightfully crisp top.

biscuit dough and cut biscuits in cast iron skillet

Homemade Whipped Cream

Just 3 ingredients here: cold heavy cream or heavy whipping cream, sugar, and vanilla extract. The colder the heavy cream, the more volume your whipped cream has. Unlike store-bought whipped cream, you can control the amount of sugar. I prefer lightly sweetened whipped cream with strawberry shortcake, so we’ll only use 2 Tablespoons. And another thing! Homemade whipped cream tastes 100x better than store-bought.

With its light and billowy texture, whipped cream is the perfect topping for pies, cakes, cupcakes, cheesecake, trifles, and so much more.


Let’s Assemble Strawberry Shortcake

After the biscuits bake, it’s time to assemble the strawberry shortcakes. Strawberry shortcake is fantastic with warm biscuits, cold strawberries, and cold whipped cream– but you can also wait for the biscuits to fully cool.

Assembling the strawberry shortcakes is the fun part! You can totally set up a “strawberry shortcake bar” where everyone makes their own stacks. And you could definitely add blueberries to the sweet strawberries for a patriotic treat in the summertime.

spooning strawberries onto biscuit and assembling strawberry shortcake
strawberry shortcake on a silver plate

More Fan-Favorite Summer Desserts

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strawberry shortcake on a silver plate

Homemade Strawberry Shortcake

  • Author: Sally
  • Prep Time: 30 minutes
  • Cook Time: 15 minutes
  • Total Time: 1 hour
  • Yield: serves 1012 1x
  • Category: Shortcake
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: American

Description

Fresh summer strawberries shine in this simple homemade strawberry shortcake recipe. The biscuits don’t rise super tall, but you’ll enjoy their crisp crumbly texture paired with the soft whipped cream and juicy strawberries.


Ingredients

Scale

Strawberries + Whipped Cream

  • 67 cups quartered strawberries
  • 1/4 cup + 2 Tablespoons (75g) granulated sugar, divided
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1 cup (240ml) heavy cream

Biscuits

  • 2 and 3/4 cups (345g) all-purpose flour, plus extra for hands and work surface*
  • 1/4 cup (50g) granulated sugar
  • 4 teaspoons aluminum free baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt (I recommend fine sea salt)
  • 3/4 cup (180g) unsalted butter, cold and cubed
  • 1 cup (240ml) cold buttermilk*
  • 2 Tablespoons (30ml) heavy cream or buttermilk
  • coarse sugar, for sprinkling

Instructions

  1. Start with the strawberries: Stir the strawberries and 1/4 cup (50g) granulated sugar together in a large bowl. Cover and set in the refrigerator until ready to use. This time allows the strawberries to release their delicious juices.
  2. Make the biscuits: Preheat oven to 400°F (204°C). Mix the flour, granulated sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt together in a large bowl or in a large food processor. Whisk or pulse until combined. Add the cubed butter and cut into the dry ingredients with a pastry cutter or by pulsing several times in the processor. Pulse until coarse crumbs form. If you used a food processor, pour the mixture into a large bowl.
  3. Pour buttermilk on top. Fold everything together with a large spoon or rubber spatula until it begins to come together. Do not overwork the dough. The dough will be shaggy and crumbly with some wet spots. Pour the dough and any dough crumbles onto a floured work surface and gently bring together with generously floured hands. Have extra flour nearby and use it often to flour your hands and work surface in this step. Using floured hands or a floured rolling pin, flatten into a 3/4 inch thick rectangle as best you can. Fold one side into the center, then the other side. Turn the dough horizontally. Gently flatten into a 3/4 inch thick rectangle again. Repeat the folding again. Turn the dough horizontally one more time. Gently flatten into a 3/4 inch thick rectangle. Repeat the folding one last time. Flatten into the final 3/4 inch thick rectangle.
  4. Cut into 2.75 or 3-inch circles with a biscuit cutter. (Tip: Do not twist the biscuit cutter when pressing down into the dough.) Re-roll/flatten any scraps and cut more circles until you have around 10-12 biscuits.
  5. Arrange in a 10-inch cast iron skillet (see note) or close together on a parchment paper or silicone baking mat lined baking sheet. Make sure the biscuits are touching.
  6. Brush the tops with 2 Tablespoons heavy cream or buttermilk and sprinkle with coarse sugar. Bake for 18-22 minutes or until biscuits are golden brown on top. Remove from the oven, then cool in the pan for at least 10 minutes before assembling.
  7. Make the whipped cream: Using a hand mixer or a stand mixer fitted with a whisk attachment, beat the heavy cream, 2 Tablespoons granulated sugar, and vanilla on medium-high speed until soft-medium peaks form, about 3 minutes.
  8. Slice the biscuits in half and layer with strawberries and whipped cream. Serve immediately.

Notes

  1. Make Ahead Instructions: Each part of this recipe can be prepared ahead of time. Make the biscuits up to 3 days in advance and store covered tightly at room temperature– or freeze for up to 3 months. Thaw completely before using. Prepare the strawberries in step 1 up to 1 day in advance. Prepare the whipped cream up to 1 day in advance. Store both in the refrigerator.
  2. Special Tools: KitchenAid Stand Mixer | Pastry Cutter or Food Processor | 3-Inch Biscuit Cutter or 2.75-Inch Biscuit Cutter | 10-inch Cast Iron Skillet | Pastry BrushSilpat Baking MatBaking Half Sheet
  3. Flour: Starting with cold flour is helpful when making biscuits. If you can remember, place the flour in the freezer 30 minutes before beginning.
  4. Baking Powder: To avoid a chemical aftertaste, make sure your baking powder is labeled aluminum free. I usually use Clabber Girl brand and though the ingredients state aluminum, I’ve never noticed an aluminum aftertaste.
  5. Buttermilk: You can substitute whole milk for buttermilk if desired. Acidic buttermilk isn’t needed in order for the biscuits to rise since we’re using baking powder. However if you’d like the tangy flavor, which I highly recommend, you can make your own sour milk substitute. Add 2 teaspoons of fresh lemon juice or white vinegar to a liquid measuring cup. Add enough cold milk to make 1 cup. (You need 1 cup in the recipe, plus 2 Tbsp for brushing– you can use regular milk to brush on top.) Whisk together, then let sit for 5 minutes before using in the recipe. Whole milk is best for the DIY sour milk substitute, though lower fat or nondairy milks work in a pinch. (In my testing, the biscuits don’t taste as rich or rise quite as tall using lower fat or nondairy milks.)
  6. If you’re using a cast iron skillet: If your cast iron skillet isn’t well seasoned, I recommend greasing it with a little vegetable oil or melted butter. Brush a thin layer of either on the bottom and around the sides. No need to heat the cast iron skillet before using, though you certainly can by placing it in the preheated oven for 15 minutes before arranging the shaped biscuits in it.
  7. Older Version of This Recipe: We tested and retested this recipe based on reader feedback in 2021. Old version of this recipe called for 3 cups (375g) all-purpose flour and 2 Tablespoons baking powder (no baking soda). The written recipe above yields better results with more flavorful and taller biscuits.

Keywords: strawberry shortcake

Reader Questions and Reviews

  1. i’m curious if there’s a way to adapt this to make one big cake rather than a bunch of individual biscuits?

  2. I made these today and Holy Moly, these are the best biscuits I’ve ever made. They are perfect for strawberry shortcake and will be great with breakfast as well.
    Thank you so much!

  3. These are great! Also, I made a second round dairy-free for my little boy – I used earth balance and soy milk with a little apple cider vinegar. It was wetter than the recipe as written so I didn’t bother folding and just dropped them on a cookie sheet. Totally worked!

  4. I don’t know what I did wrong, but these were inedible – seriously, we spit them out. They looked absolutely gorgeous, but there was a terrible after taste. It was metallic. I used lemon juice in milk to substitute the buttermilk. I questioned the amount of baking powder, but many folks had said the 4 teaspoons was good. Any ideas what it might be?

    1. Hi Anna, did you use aluminum free baking powder? If you don’t your biscuits can definitely have a metallic taste. Best to stick with aluminum free in the future! Thank you for giving this recipe a try.

  5. I halved the recipe but put in the full amount of sugar by accident. They were a little sweeter than typical biscuits but we loved them. Almost like scones. Very simple to make in the food processer. This is now my go-to recipe for short biscuits.

  6. It does sound like your accidental mistake. This recipe uses 4 teaspoons of baking powder and 1/2 teaspoon baking soda.

  7. I used a 3 inch biscuit cutter and only made 6 biscuits. I even measured the thickness to 3/4 inch. Not sure what happened???

    1. Hi Brenda, how strange! Did you re-roll the scraps? You can always roll them a bit thinner next time to yield more biscuits.

  8. I just baked them but haven’t eaten them yet. They barely rose. How hi should they get? I probably will not be able to split them.

    1. Hi Denise, Our best tips for tall biscuits are in the blog post above in the section “How to Shape Biscuits”. Be sure you are using a sharp biscuit cutter and pressing straight down (no twisting!) and that they are pressed snuggly against each other on the pan to bake.

  9. These were so incredibly good!! I used the aluminum free baking soda and made sure to be quick to get them in the oven once I added the wet ingredients because I learned that the leavening with aluminum free baki g powder starts when you add liquid vs regular baking powder where leavening starts with heat. I also made my own buttermilk by adding tbsp lemon juice to cup of milk and let it sit for at least 5 min. Will defiantly do this one again!! Thanks Sally

  10. And ANOTHER WIN from Sally’s Baking Addiction! I have been making strawberry shortcake with baking powder biscuits for as long as I can remember… but then, tonight…I tried YOURS. HOLY flakey layers of crunchy sweet goodness! They’re soaking up all that fresh, local berry juice and the tops and bottoms are still staying crispy. All three of my kids are gobbling their desserts down right now and all three have exclaimed, “MOM, these biscuits are SO good!” You did it again, Sally’s baking Addiction! Thank you for all your good recipes!

    1. Thank you so much for taking the time to report back, Lisa. How wonderful to hear how much your family enjoyed this recipe!

  11. First time I have ever made biscuits and I was a little intimidated, but glad I used this recipe, it wasn’t hard. They turned out perfect and cooked what would fit in my cast iron skillet and the rest in a baking pan. I took them out when the tops looked golden. The cast iron ones cooked a little faster than the regular metal pan. Thank you for the great recipe!

  12. They look amazing but I made them in my Dutch oven and I’m not 100% sure how to get them out now without destroying the biscuits. I did use vegetable oil in the pan wiped around with a paper towel before putting the biscuits in but they seem a little bit stuck? Any recommendations are appreciated

    1. Hi Tama, We recommend lining your dutch oven with parchment paper next time to avoid sticking. Hope you love them!

  13. Sally this shortcake biscuits were delicious! Flaky and the best I ever made. It was Father’s Day dessert. My husband loved the taste. I had picked fresh strawberries to go with it and made your whip cream recipe. Our go to recipe for shortcake from now on. Thank you! All of your recipes are my favorite!

  14. This was the best shortcake I’ve ever made! I’m glad I found this recipe. I’m looking forward to trying some of your other recipes.
    Thank-you!

  15. I used 2 1/2 inch cookie cutter to make for a smaller portion (trying to be reasonable with the sweets). Issue is they are so good we end up having seconds‍♀️
    Golden and fabulously crunchy. Next time I’ll make sure to let my homemade buttermilk rest a little before using. Might help with the rising.

    1. Hi Angie, we don’t usually include nutrition information as it can vary between different brands of the same ingredients. Plus, many recipes have ingredient substitutions or optional ingredients listed. However, there are many handy online calculators where you can plug in and customize your exact ingredients/brands. Readers have found this one especially helpful: https://www.verywellfit.com/recipe-nutrition-analyzer-4157076

  16. OMG! First time ever trying a dough/pastry recipe! (My husband makes my pie crusts and bread) . Thank you Sally; I now have a renewed optimism! These are amazing!

  17. I do not have an iron skillet, what is a good substitute? I have very good 8″ and 10″ heavy duty cake pans.

    1. Hi Teresa! We recommend a parchment paper or silicone baking mat lined baking sheet if you’re not using a cast iron skillet.

  18. There is no better shortcake recipe than this. It is simply divine and will be the only recipe for me, for shortcakes!

  19. This makes the best biscuits! Have made these twice this week to go with strawberries we picked. So good!

    1. Hi Jan, we don’t recommend it. Almond purpose has very different baking properties than all-purpose and would require a bit of recipe testing to ensure results. Here are all of our recipes with almond flour, if you’re interested.

  20. I’m excited to try these today. Question on the whipped cream though, I made a Rosemary simple syrup the other dat with rosemary from the garden, do you think replacing the sugar and vanilla in the whipped cream with flavored simple syrup would work? (Nothing is better than herbs and fruit together IMO)

    1. I haven’t tried that before, but I often add a little liquid to cream when whipping it (such as lemon juice) and it’s never been an issue. Yes, I would leave out the sugar and vanilla if trying that.

  21. I’ve been searching for a great shortcake recipe and this is the one! With butter being so expensive now in Canada, I substituted Becel margarine and it still turned out flaky, soft and tender. I also decided to set the oven to 375 F because I used my cast iron frying pan in the oven. I cooked them for 27 minutes. It says to make sure the biscuits are touching each other in the pan, but they all stuck together and I had to cut each one apart after cooking, so they didn’t much resemble circles anymore. My yield was only 7 biscuits, but I also made the dough 1 inch thick before I cut them with a circular cutter. I think next time I will space them apart to see how they turn out.

  22. Delightful! I made half recipe, added a bit of cardamom, shaped into a rectangle and cut 6 generous squares. Baked just touching on parchment. Rose beautifully, light and flaky.

  23. This is now my go-to shortcake recipe. The entire family was swooning and told me to not lose this recipe! I followed instructions as-is (although I used some cake flour just to use up what I had) and I wouldn’t change a thing. Thanks, Sally!

  24. I want to try this recipe! Can I use coconut flour instead of regular flour for my gluten free son? Thanks!

    1. Hi Katie, we don’t recommend it. Coconut flour has different baking properties than all-purpose flour, and we’re unsure of the results you’ll get using it in this recipe. Here are all of our gluten free recipes, if you’re interested!

  25. These are perfect! I followed the recipe perfectly, using oat milk with 2TB lemon juice in place of Buttermilk. Everything worked as described. I was able to get 12 biscuits. They taste amazing!

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