Cathead Biscuits - The Southern Lady Cooks - Old Fashioned Recipe (2024)

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Cathead biscuits have been around for years. It is an old-fashioned recipe that never disappoints!

Cathead Biscuits - The Southern Lady Cooks - Old Fashioned Recipe (1)

If you love homemade biscuits like we do (we have over 40 biscuit recipes on this site!), you may want to try our sour cream biscuits and whipped cream biscuits! They are delicious, too.

❤️WHY WE LOVE CATHEAD BISCUITS

Anne and I grew up with these biscuits! Mom made them all the time when we were kids because her mother made them every day. Recipes that go through generations are so special, and this is one of ours. Mom writes:

Plus, these old-fashioned biscuits are only four simple ingredients; you don’t even have to use a biscuit cutter if you don’t want to. It doesn’t get much easier than that.

Judy Yeager shares her childhood memories of these biscuits…
Founder.. aka.. Mom of The Southern Lady Cooks

My mother never made any kind of biscuits except what we called “cathead biscuits” and she made them almost every day. I have seen her make biscuits twice in one day because every kid in the neighborhood loved her biscuits. We never had chips, co*kes or junk food in our house back then. We did have lots of sweet tea, fresh milk right from the cow and plenty of biscuits slathered with real butter and homemade blackberry jam. Honey from my Daddy’s bee hives was always on the breakfast table to go along with our biscuits. The neighborhood kids called my mother, “Parker”. We would hear a knock at the front door and one of our little friends would be there. The first thing they always asked was, “Does Parker have any cold biscuits and jam?” A cold cathead biscuit with blackberry jam was a real treat when I was growing up.

I am sure there are lots of different ways to make these biscuits but the recipe below is the way my Mama always made hers. I watched her many times when she got out the big, old crock and added flour, buttermilk, and lard. She always mixed them up with her hands and pinched off the biscuits. Mama never rolled them out and she put them in around pan. Somehow, her biscuits always came out uniform without using a biscuit cutter. She greased the pan with bacon grease, too. The biscuits were always touching in the pan to make them rise up higher instead of spreading out and being thin. Memories of Mama in her “house dress” and apron always flood my mind whenever I make these biscuits. Oh, how I would love to have one of her cold biscuits with blackberry jam!

⁉️WHY ARE THEY CALLED CATHEAD BISCUITS?

Cathead biscuits got their name because they were said to be as big as a cat’s head!

🍴KEY INGREDIENTS

  • Self-rising flour
  • Shortening at room temperature (Nannie used lard, and about the size of a walnut)
  • Buttermilk
  • Salt, Optional

SWAPS

You can also make them using All-Purpose Flour, but you will need to add 1 tablespoon baking powder, 1/2 teaspoon baking soda, and 1/2 teaspoon salt.

🥣HOW TO MAKE

Step 1: Work the shortening into the flour until it’s like coarse crumbs. (I use a spoon to do this). Add the buttermilk and stir until makes a ball in the bowl. You can either pinch off the dough or cut it with a biscuit cutter. I use a tin can because I like to make these biscuits good size like my mama’s biscuits.

Step 2: Grease or spray pan. Bake in preheated 400-degree oven for 15 to 20 minutes until brown on top.

NOTES: This recipe only makes 8 biscuits, depending on the size you cut/pinch them. I bake them in a cake pan, round pie plate, or on a baking sheet.

TIPS

  • For taller, lighter, and flakier biscuits, cut straight down with the cutter. Twisting makes biscuits uneven.For crusty edges, arrange them 1 inch apart; for softer edges, place them close together.
  • For a higher-rise biscuit, ensure the biscuits are touching so they rise UP and not out.
  • You can brush melted butter on the tops once cooked or even before baking.
Cathead Biscuits - The Southern Lady Cooks - Old Fashioned Recipe (2)

WHAT TO SERVE THEM WITH

Of course, homemade biscuits are served with honey, molasses, jellies, jams, and gravy! We love them with our sausage or bacon gravy or red-eye gravy and country ham. You could also add our homemade pimento cheese!

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

Why are my biscuits always hard? They are never soft and fluffy. What am I doing wrong?

More than likely, you are handling your dough too much. Just mix, pinch them off, or cut them and bake. Biscuits aren’t like baking bread. You don’t need to knead the dough. The less you handle the dough, the better.

I prefer to roll my biscuits out. How thick should I roll them?

We usually do about 1/2 inch or so.

My dough is very sticky and wet? What did I do wrong?

You can always add more flour to any biscuit recipe if it is too wet to make it workable. The consistency can change depending on the brand of flour, humidity, etc. Don’t be afraid to add more if it needs it.

STORING AND REHEATING

These homemade biscuits can easily be stored in an air-tight container or ziplock bag for 3-4 days. Reheat by placing a damp paper towel over them in the microwave for 10-20 seconds. Freezing biscuits is easy, here is our simple method.

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Cathead Biscuits

Cathead Biscuits - The Southern Lady Cooks - Old Fashioned Recipe (12)Judy Yeager

These Old Fashioned Cathead Biscuits are a wonderful way to spoil your family. Save this biscuit recipe! 100's of reviews.

4.58 from 59 votes

Print Recipe Pin Recipe

Prep Time 10 minutes mins

Cook Time 20 minutes mins

Total Time 30 minutes mins

Course Breakfast

Cuisine American

Servings 8 biscuits

Ingredients

  • 2 cups self-rising flour
  • 1 to 2 tablespoons shortening at room temperature (Mama used lard and about the size of a walnut)
  • 1 cup buttermilk
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt Optional

Instructions

  • Work the shortening into the flour until it’s like coarse crumbs. (I use a spoon to do this). Add the buttermilk and stir until makes a ball in the bowl. You can either pinch off the dough or cut it with a biscuit cutter. I use a tin can because I like to make these biscuits good size like my mama’s biscuits.

  • Grease or spray pan. Bake in preheated 400 degree oven for 15 to 20 minutes until brown on top.

  • This recipe only makes 8 biscuits if you make them like I do.

Notes

You can also make them using all-purpose flour but you will need to add 1 tablespoon baking powder, 1/2 teaspoon baking soda and 1/2 teaspoon salt. You can brush melted butter on the tops once cooked or even before cooking if you like.

  • For taller, lighter and flakier biscuits, cut straight down with the cutter. Twisting makes biscuits uneven.For crusty edges, arrange them 1 inch apart, for softer edges, place them close together.
  • For a higher-rise biscuit, ensure the biscuits are touching so they rise UP and not out.
  • You can brush melted butter on the tops once cooked or even before baking.
  • I bake these biscuits on a baking sheet, or in a pie pan or round cake pan.

Keyword cathead biscuits

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Cathead Biscuits - The Southern Lady Cooks - Old Fashioned Recipe (2024)
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