Homemade Cheddar Biscuits

cheddar biscuits

Remember when we established that there are a few types of Thanksgiving people? Like, some people are turkey people, side people, pie people? Well, who are these turkey people? Must be a very small portion of the population because we all know the BEST part about Thanksgiving is the pie. And coming in second are the SIDES.

As far as Thanksgiving sides go, tradition reigns supreme in this family. The typical line-up includes green bean casserole, sweet potato casserole, and apple sausage stuffing. I hope that they’ve found a spot on your Thanksgiving table too!

cheddar biscuits in a skillet after baking

Biscuits are a quick bread like my banana bread, no yeast bread, and Irish soda bread. I love making them because they’re quick, don’t require any yeast, and satisfying all your carb cravings. Remember when we discussed biscuits at length? Today we’re making biscuits again, but this time we’re adding garlic, cheddar, and even more butter. These homemade cheddar biscuits are too good to be real. No. They’re too good to be legal. Ha! They taste similar to Red Lobster’s version.

By the way, if you enjoy adding flavor to plain biscuits, you’ll love my everything biscuits too.

cheddar biscuit dough in a glass bowl

This is my go-to recipe producing tall biscuits with a million layers of flakes inside. It’s easy, quick, requires minimal ingredients, and guarantees biscuit success. Today we’ll add a cup of sharp cheddar cheese and a sprinkle of garlic powder. Mingling with butter, buttermilk, and a little honey, cheese and garlic feel right at home. Once the biscuits come out of the oven, we’ll brush them with melted butter, garlic, and parsley. All good things here.

I have 2 quick tricks for flaky biscuits and 2 quick tricks for tall biscuits. First, flakes!

Cold Fat = Flakes

For flaky layers, use cold fat. This is very important. When little crumbs of butter melt as the biscuits bake, they release steam and create little pockets of air – this makes the biscuits flaky on the inside while remaining crisp on the outside. You don’t want to butter to melt BEFORE hitting the oven because then there would be no steam. No steam means no pockets of air. No pockets of air means no flakes.

Flatten + Fold = Flakes

For the flakiest cheddar biscuits ever, flatten and fold the dough. Flattening and folding creates layers of flakes. Pour the scrappy, crumbly dough onto a work surface and work it together with your hands. Form into a rectangle, then begin folding. Let me show you.


cheddar biscuit dough rolled into a rectangle


folded cheddar biscuit dough

Turn the folded dough horizontal:

folded cheddar biscuit dough

Then press it down into a rectangle and repeat the folding process 2 more times before cutting into circles.

Now let’s move onto the tricks for tall biscuits.

No Twisting = Super Tall Biscuits

When cutting the dough with a biscuit cutter, don’t twist the cutter. Twisting it will seal off the biscuit edges, preventing the biscuits from rising.

Snug as a Bug = Super Tall Biscuits

Biscuits rise up nice and tall when they’re pressed snuggly against one another. Arrange them tightly in a cast iron skillet or on a lined baking sheet/baking pan. A cast iron skillet helps produce a super crisp bottom, so I prefer it over a baking sheet or pan.

biscuit cutter and rolled out cheddar biscuit dough with biscuits cut out

cheddar biscuits in a skillet before baking

Before baking, brush the biscuits with a little extra buttermilk. Why? Helps achieve a slightly crispier crust.

After baking, brush with garlic butter. Why? Because yum. The garlic butter seeps down into all the crevices and, obviously, makes the tops extra buttery.

melted butter with garlic and herbs in a bowl with a pastry brush

brushing butter topping onto cheddar biscuits

So let’s get all this straight. There are 2 things we need to remember for flaky biscuits and 2 things we need to remember for tall biscuits. We will (1) use cold butter in the dough and (2) fold the dough together a few times to help guarantee lots of flakes. We (1) won’t twist the biscuit cutter and (2) we’ll place the biscuits super close together so they rise super tall in the oven.

And 2 things to remember for delicious biscuits: cheddar + garlic.

EASY! You got this!

cheddar biscuits in a napkin lined bowl

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cheddar biscuits in a napkin lined bowl

Homemade Cheddar Biscuits

  • Author: Sally
  • Prep Time: 20 minutes
  • Cook Time: 15 minutes
  • Total Time: 35 minutes
  • Yield: 8-10 biscuits
  • Category: Bread
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: American


These delicious homemade cheddar biscuits easily rival Red Lobster’s cheddar bay biscuits. Made in only 20 minutes, they’re a must try at dinnertime.


  • 2 and 1/2 cups (313g) all-purpose flour, plus extra for hands and work surface
  • 2 Tablespoons aluminum free baking powder (yes, Tablespoons)
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick; 115g) unsalted butter, cubed and very cold (see note)
  • 1 cup + 2 Tablespoons (270ml) cold buttermilk, divided
  • 2 teaspoons honey
  • 1 cup (125g) shredded cheddar cheese


  • 1/4 cup (4 Tablespoons; 60g) unsalted butter, melted
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 1 teaspoon dried parsley


  1. Preheat oven to 425°F (218°C).
  2. Make the biscuits: Place the flour, baking powder, garlic powder, 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. Cut/pulse until coarse crumbs form. See photo above for a visual. If you used a food processor, pour the mixture into a large bowl.
  3. Fold in the shredded cheese. Make a well in the center of the mixture. Pour 1 cup (240ml) buttermilk and drizzle honey 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. See photo above for a visual.
  4. Pour the dough and any dough crumbles onto a floured work surface and gently bring together with generously floured hands. The dough will become sticky as you bring it together. 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.
  5. 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– this seals off the edges of the biscuit which prevents them from fully rising.) Re-roll scraps until all the dough is used. You should have about 8-10 biscuits. Arrange in a 10-inch cast iron skillet (see note) or close together on a parchment paper-lined baking sheet. Make sure the biscuits are touching.
  6. Brush the tops with remaining buttermilk. Bake for 15-20 minutes or until tops are golden brown.
  7. Make the topping: Mix the topping ingredients together. Generously brush on the warm biscuits.
  8. Cover leftovers tightly and store at room temperature or in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.


  1. Make Ahead & Freezing Instructions: Baked biscuits freeze well for up to 3 months. Thaw at room temperature or in the refrigerator, then warm up to your liking before serving. You can also freeze the biscuit dough. Prepare the dough in steps 2 through 4. Wrap up tightly in plastic wrap (plastic wrap is best for freshness) and freeze for up to 3 months. Thaw overnight in the refrigerator, then continue with step 5. Also, after step 4, you can wrap the dough in plastic wrap and refrigerate for up to 2 days before continuing with step 5.
  2. 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. Alternatively, you can reduce the baking powder down to 1 Tablespoon and add 1/2 teaspoon baking soda.
  3. Butter in biscuit dough: Cut into 1/2 inch cubes. Keep butter as cold as possible until you need it. I recommend placing the cubed butter in the freezer for about 15 minutes before you begin.
  4. Buttermilk: You can substitute whole milk for buttermilk if desired. 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 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.)
  5. 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. Place in the preheated oven for 15 minutes before arranging the shaped biscuits in it.
  6. Special Tools (affiliate links): Pastry Cutter or Food Processor | 3-Inch Biscuit Cutter or 2.75-Inch Biscuit Cutter | 10-inch Cast Iron Skillet | Pastry Brush

Keywords: cheddar biscuits, cheese biscuits


  1. Thank you for breaking down the steps so clearly and explaining the reasoning behind each element of the biscuit-making process. You transform the recipe from daunting and delicious into doable (and delicious). L

  2. Thank you Sally for your writing. I smiled and giggled so much in this post. I needed that. I’m going to try this recipe soon “because yum”! These look amazing!! I’ve got a box of the red lobster mix. I think I’ll make that and this and see if anyone can tell the difference. I’ll try to remember to report back on Thanksgiving. I truly appreciate your writing. Thank you! I hope you have a great week!

  3. Yummm! These look amazing! I would love to make these this week but every time I make biscuits without any egg in them the finished cooked product always has the consistency of a under baked dough even though they are completely cooked through! Do you have any idea of why this keeps happening and any tips to stop this from happening?

    1. Hi Raya! I know the issue you are referring to when it comes to baking biscuits. The culprit is overmixing/overworking the dough. The butter has broken down too much. You want nice chunks of butter in the dough so that it can help establish layers of flakes.

  4. I agree with the young lady above who states that you take the directions from daunting to doable. Your pictures and step-by-step instructions are also above and beyond helpful and really make the recipe approachable. Thank you from all of us who need the extra teaching.☺

    1. Thank YOU, Wendy! I appreciate it.

  5. Patricia @Sweet and Strong says:

    I’ve always wanted to try making my own biscuits!  Making breads always intimidates me a bit because there are so many steps.  I love how you break every thing down though!

  6. Can you make these without the skillet?

    1. Yep! A baking sheet– see the recipe 🙂

  7. These look SO good! My mom has a classic cheddar biscuit recipe we all love, but none of us ever thought about adding that brush of melted butter with garlic & parsley on top. DEFINITELY going to try that next time we make cheddar biscuits 🙂 I like how yours use a touch of honey instead of sugar though – there’s a 1/2 cup of white sugar in ours and it feels a little much. Maybe now I’ll try experimenting with the honey!

  8. Sally,  I am excited to try these!  They look fabulous!  I am loving your Cookie Addiction book and choosing new recipes for family gift baking!  My son (who just turned 23!! Don’t blink!)  was only 2 weeks old at his first Thanksgiving and I remember the deep level of thanks we had that year.  Enjoy your holiday!!

  9. Yum this looks so good. I will give a try. I have found a few others with cheddar cheese that are good but yours is making me drool. I found one that adds bacon and no garlic. They are wonderful for breakfast. You can put in more bacon slices or a slice of ham.

  10. Hi Sally!

    These biscuits look great! I’m thinking about adding chives to mine to make them cheddar chive biscuits — how much chives do you think I should add to the recipe?


    1. I’d say 1/4 cup chives. YUM!

  11. My husband’s grandmother used to make the best cheddar cheese biscuits and of course she used no recipe, just a little of this, a smidgen of that and pinch of this and that! Your biscuits look absolutely perfectly delicious! Brushed with garlic butter.. Yum!! I appreciate your detailed recipe, instructions and illustrations! Thanks, Sally!

    1. I hope you get a chance to make them and they bring back good memories for your husband!

  12. Hi Sally. Can i make these with parmesan cheese. And how much do you think i need? Perfect for the hollidays.

    1. I don’t see why that wouldn’t work as long as you are using fresh grated parmesan and not the powdered kind. I would stick with one cup of cheese. Let me know how they turn out!

  13. Hi Sally. They turned out great with parmesan cheese. Put them in the freezer for christmas. Will make them soon with cheddar. Thank you for the recipe. Happy Thanksgiving.

  14. I’ve been following you forever on Instagram and this is the first recipe I’ve tried. They were DELICIOUS!!! My fiance loved them too, will definitely be making again. Next to try are those peppermint mocha cupcakes!! Thanks for he recipe!

    1. Thanks for following along! And for letting me know you enjoyed the biscuits. Let me know if you try those cupcakes sometime!

  15. Sally, I’m making these for a large family gathering and there is always too much food present. I was hoping to make smaller biscuits so I’ll have a greater number of biscuits and none of the deliciousness will go to waste. If I cut them at 2in., should I adjust the cook time? 

    1. Hi Lindsey! The cook time will only be slightly shorter, maybe just a couple minutes.

  16. Hi Sally! In one of your photos, I think I see sun dried tomatoes in the biscuits. Can you let me know the amount of  “mix ins” that can be used? Do I need to cut down on the amount of cheese to account for other ingredients? I hope not! Looks like a great recipe! 

    1. Hi Carol! These pictured biscuits just have cheddar cheese– that reddish color is the baked cheese. But you can add some add-ins. I wouldn’t go over 2/3 or 3/4 cup of add-ins in addition to the cheese.

  17. I made these for a bake off my cousins and I did; they were amazing!!!!! Everybody loved them; definitely best biscuit recipe I’ve ever had!

  18. Hi Sally,
    I love the results when folding the dough before you roll it. I’ve made great biscuits for years, but these were amazing. Also, the only cookie cutter I had handy was a Christmas tree, so my husband and I enjoyed Christmas tree biscuits in July.

    1. Haha – I’m laughing at the shape but anything works! Glad you enjoyed them 🙂

  19. Looking forward to making these! Do you grease the skillet before baking?

    1. Hi Kim! If your skillet is seasoned, there is no need to grease it. If not, grease it with a little oil.

  20. Kylie Cochrane says:

    These are so much like what we call scones here in Nz cooked on an oven tray. My favourite way to have them is warm split with butter and raspberry jam Yum. Leftovers are great used to make mousetraps (toasties).

  21. Mary Flannery says:

    Sally, you are a baking scientist! These biscuits are fantastic! My son has been distracted thinking about the next batch. So good. You are the queen of the kitchen. Thanks!

    1. Haha – sorry he’s been distracted 😉

  22. Neota Gewirtz says:

    Hi Sally! I just made these today. They’re delicious and so easy! Thank you so much! Love your recipes!

  23. Just made these biscuits and they are wonderful! Now the challenge will be not to eat them all! Love your recipes, Sally! Your website is MY new addiction!

  24. I made a half batch in a small glass dish – first time making or eating an American biscuit – thanks for your tips Sally – it worked out perfectly, flaky and delicious with homemade mushroom gravy.

  25. Wow wow wow. Just made these and they’re so tasty! I made a batch of 13 and honestly don’t know how I’m going to keep some to show Hubby when he gets home 🙂 Another winner Sally!

  26. My family goes crazy for these biscuits! I am requested to make them pretty much every holiday or get-together and they always turn out amazing! I even like them as leftovers, just put them back in the oven at 350 for a few minutes and they crisp back up and then I brush them with seasoned butter. Yum!

  27. My husband has a card game every so often and I normally cook for about 10-12 men. We were making a big pot of chili beans and I saw this recipe; needless to say they loved the biscuits. I made a double batch along with the bacon wrapped jalapeños. Thank you Sally for the great recipes and the extra pointers that you give!

  28. Rebecca Ladd says:

    I made this recipe Cheddar cheese Biscuits. WOW what a great recipe and a big hit with my family! Thank you again Sally!!

  29. I tried this recipe, my kids loved them, but I felt my biscuits were a bit brown from some side and not enough brown from some side . But overall it was very easy to follow and so delicious that we can’t stop eating .

  30. Another incredible recipe from Sally!! I can always rely on coming here for all things baking. These were AMAZING. The folding was key for wonderful, flaky, layered goodness. Mmmmmmm! Do not look any further for a biscuit recipe.

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