Chef Heather Earnhardt's hefty, buttery biscuits are drawing ever-longer lines of hungry customers to her Seattle restaurant, the Wandering Goose. In her cookbook, Big Food Big Love, Earnhardt shares the secrets to their fluffy perfection. Whether you whip up the classic buttermilk version or one of these sweet or savory variations, get ready to have friends gathering outside your door, too.

Makes 1 dozen 3" biscuits


  • 3¼ cups unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 3¼ cups cake flour
  • 3 Tbsp. sugar
  • 2 Tbsp. plus 2 tsp. baking powder
  • 1 Tbsp. kosher salt
  • 1½ tsp. baking soda
  • 1½ cups (3 sticks) unsalted butter, diced and chilled, plus 2 Tbsp. unsalted butter, melted
  • 3 cups buttermilk, chilled

    In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, thoroughly combine flours, sugar, baking powder, salt, and baking soda on low speed. Increase speed to medium-low and mix in chilled butter until it forms lumps the size of small peas. With the mixer running, add buttermilk, mixing just until blended; dough will be shaggy with unincorporated dry ingredients.

    Preheat oven to 450°. Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface. Using a floured rolling pin, gently roll dough into a 1½"-thick circle. Using a 3" cutter, cut out 12 biscuits, dipping cutter in flour between biscuits. Do not twist; that keeps biscuits from rising as much as they should.

    Arrange biscuits on two baking sheets and brush with melted butter. Before baking, reduce oven to 425°. Bake until golden brown, 22 to 25 minutes, rotating sheets halfway through.

    Serve immediately or keep at room temperature until company comes.


    Maple, Bacon and Date Biscuits with Maple Glaze
    After butter has formed lumps the size of small peas, mix in 1 cup (8 ounces) chopped pitted dates and 8 ounces chopped cooked bacon. Add 1 Tbsp. maple extract along with buttermilk. To make maple glaze: In a medium bowl, whisk together 1 cup sifted confectioners' sugar, ⅓ cup maple syrup, and 2 tsp. maple extract. Drizzle on biscuits after they have cooled.

    Everything Biscuits with Baked Egg
    In a medium bowl, combine 1 cup dehydrated onion flakes, ½ cup poppy seeds, and ½ cup sesame seeds. After brushing biscuits with butter, dip tops in seed mix and return to baking sheets. Dip 1 egg in flour and gently press it into a biscuit to make a deep well. Crack egg in well. Repeat with 11 eggs and remaining biscuits.

    Sausage and Sage Biscuits
    In a bowl, combine ½ Tbsp. kosher salt, ½ tsp. dark brown sugar, ¼ tsp. chili powder, ¼ tsp. smoked paprika, ¼ tsp. ground black pepper, ¼ tsp. cayenne pepper, ⅛ tsp. ground coriander, and ⅛ tsp. ground cumin; add to bowl with flour. After butter has formed lumps the size of small peas, mix in 1 pound cooked breakfast sausage; 8 ounces (2 cups) extra-sharp cheddar, grated; and ½ cup chopped sage leaves.

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