Epic fail-baking powder biscuits



Last night I made yet another attempt to make biscuits.  Like my pancake fails, this is another food that is really hard to replicate into gluten free.  I did finally crack the pancake debacle, but I am not sure I will be able to crack biscuits.

When you think of biscuits, you think of tender, flaky and hot from the oven.  My biscuits are like hockey pucks.  I tried a new recipe last night, to no avail.  I was convinced that using King Arthur measure for measure gluten free flour would work.  I even emailed them and asked it I could use it in their biscuit recipe.  They said I could.

One of their expert bakers posted on Facebook yesterday that you could use your stand mixer to incorporate the fat into the flour, instead of using a pastry blender.  She also said that you could flip the dough onto parchment, and use it to pat the dough together, while spritzing with water to address any dry spots.  I thought this was intriguing.  But, the recipe I chose also stated I could bake the biscuits in a muffin tin.  I have never heard of this before.  I always thought that biscuits should be baked on a baking sheet, slightly touching to help them rise.  Thinking King Arthur knows what it is doing, I decided to try the recipe out.


  • 3 cups King Arthur Unbleached All-Purpose Flour*  I used gf measure for measure
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 1 to 4 tablespoons sugar, to taste*  I used one tablespoon
  • 4 to 6 tablespoons butter or shortening   I used 6 tablespoons crisco butter sticks shortening
  • 1 cup milk, buttermilk, or water  I made dairy free buttermilk

I thought that the liquid to dry ratio was a bit off.  3 cups of flour is an awful lot.


  1. Preheat your oven to 425°F.
  2. Mix together the dry ingredients. With two knives, a pastry blender, or your fingertips, cut or rub the butter or shortening in until the mixture looks like bread crumbs.    I used my stand mixer here-it actually worked pretty well
  3. Add the liquid all at once, mixing quickly and gently for about 20 seconds until you have a soft dough.
  4. To make drop biscuits: Drop the dough by the spoonful onto a lightly floured baking sheet; or for tidier shapes, fill the cups of a greased muffin tin about two-thirds full.
  5. To make cut biscuits: Pat the dough into a rectangle about 3/4″ thick. Fold it into thirds like a letter and roll gently with a floured rolling pin until the dough is 3/4″ thick again.
  6. Cut into circles with a biscuit cutter for traditional round biscuits. Or, to avoid leftover dough scraps, cut the dough into squares or diamonds with a bench knife or bowl scraper.
  7. Bake the biscuits for 15 to 20 minutes, until they’re lightly browned. Remove them from the oven, and serve warm.

My dough was much too dry to “drop”.  Perhaps I should have used the cut method and formed the dough in the parchment paper.  I did add more water as I went but I think it was too late.  I formed the dough into balls and put them into the muffin tin, flattening them down.  Maybe that’s where I made my mistake.

I think that I will contact King Arthur and let them know what happened.  Perhaps they can give me some tips.

I’m not ready to give up yet.  As a Yankee girl living in the South, I feel almost obligated to make a good biscuit.

If you have any tips on making a flaky gluten-free biscuit, please share them.

8 Comments Add yours

  1. Although I’ve never made what we’d call American Biscuits here in Ireland. I’ve had amazing success using raw apple in baked goods. It’s not a catch all technique, but when blended with egg and mixed into breads, muffins, scones etc I’ve found it brings a wonderful lightness and no apple taste most times. Like I say it might not be what you’re looking for, but I thought I’d share any way. Good luck on your quest for GF Biscuits.


    1. glutenfreelady says:

      That’s an interesting idea. When you say raw apple do you grate it and how do you use it? I have used applesauce in place of oil but you have to be careful with gluten free baking. I’d love to know more.


      1. I first got the tip from https://cookingwithoutgluten.wordpress.com/ a really amazing site featuring recipes I’ve never seen the likes of any where else. The basic idea with the apple is to peel it, chop it and blend it with the egg in either a blender or food processor until smooth, billowy and cream coloured. It’s not guaranteed how it’ll affect the baked goods, but I’ve had great success with it. I don’t know why it works so well, but like most GF techniques it’s a helpful mystery.


      2. glutenfreelady says:

        I’m definitely going to check that out. Thanks for sharing!

        Liked by 1 person

  2. I have to agree, three cups of flour (particularly gluten-free flour) is an awful lot. GF flours tend to be drier, soak up more liquid, etc. It might be worth experimenting with reducing the mount of flour, or upping the amount of liquid. What I often do is bake the recipe once, to see how it comes together. Then I might bake it a couple more times, upping liquid, reducing flour, etc. Some recipes are simply no good, and others just need a lot of TLC. It’s all a process of trial and error. But you’re doing so well! Good on you for persevering!


    1. glutenfreelady says:

      Thanks so much. Biscuits are not something easy to work with. Part of it is my technique but practice makes perfect.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s