Mom’s Homemade Biscuits (Crisco Biscuits)

by Alli

Mom’s Homemade Biscuits are the best I’ve ever tasted. She always uses White Lily Flour and Crisco. They have a slight crunch on the outside and are tender on the inside.

My mom is famous well known for her homemade biscuits. She should be. She’s been making them since she was 8 years old – for 76 years!  

That’s right. She grew up on a big farm – working in her dad’s cotton fields and in her mom’s kitchen. She learned to make biscuits at the side of her mom (my namesake).

Her biscuits are really homemade or from scratch as they used to say. Growing up, she made them in their special wooden biscuit bowl that her mom had promised would be hers someday.  

We don’t know what happened to that old biscuit bowl, but Grandma’s biscuit-making skills live on through my mom and my daughter (hey, it’s OK to skip a generation, right?). And that’s all that matters!

Mom’s Homemade Biscuits Are Made From Scratch

Mom makes her biscuits entirely by hand – no rolling pin, no biscuit cutter, nothing but her hands. She’s always used White Lily self-rising flour and Crisco. Mom’s biscuits are always the exact same size. Every single one of them has the ridges on top from her perfect three-finger pat.  

My daughter has mom’s biscuits down pat. She has become an expert.

I’ve tried and tried to duplicate her biscuits. Well, I haven’t tried too often because the results have always been dismal at best and caused me to throw in the towel, stomp it and shake my fist at it.

To me, the perfect biscuit is not too thick, but crusty and flaky on the outside and tender in the middle.  It’s the perfect vehicle for my mom’s homemade jams and jellies. My mouth is watering just thinking about mom’s biscuits with homemade blackberry jam.

I finally realized that one of my many problems with biscuit making was the fact that I don’t like to do it by hand. I don’t like the squishy feel of combining that shortening and flour with my fingers.  

So, I adjusted my biscuit making to include my pastry blender, a fork, and a biscuit cutter and now they are pretty decent. Not my mom’s, mind you. But decent.

Mom’s 81 Year-Old-Hands Making Biscuits

Once, when I was visiting my mom, I purposely made sure I had my camera to capture each step of my mom’s process. Mom’s great-grandkids were with me, so she made biscuits for breakfast every single morning. The lighting was not good at all, but that’s okay too. 

My mom, of course, doesn’t really have a recipe, but she measured everything that morning so I could share it all on my blog. My mom is the best! And I’m so excited to present mom’s homemade biscuits.  Remember:  Practice makes perfect!

Mom’s Homemade Biscuits AKA Crisco Biscuits

Preheat oven to 500º F and grease a baking pan. 

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Place flour in a large bowl. Make a well in the center and mix in shortening with your fingers or a pastry blender until blended well. If using a pastry blender, mix until the mixture resembles small peas.

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Add milk, a little at a time, and mix until just blended, kneading a few times. (Don’t overwork the dough or the biscuits will be tough). You want a soft dough and all of the flour will not be used. 

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Wash hands with cold water, dry, and sprinkle hands with flour. According to mom, cold water keeps the dough from sticking to her fingers.

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Pinch off dough, roll, and place on a baking pan. 

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Pat with three fingers to get that perfect indention. 

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Bake at 500º F. for approximately 10 minutes or until golden brown. 

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How to Make Self Rising Flour

Self-Rising flour is all-purpose flour with baking powder and salt already added. To make your own, add 1-1/2 teaspoons baking powder and 1/2 teaspoon of salt to a cup of all-purpose flour. For this recipe, you will need two cups of flour. 

How to Store Leftover Biscuits

Store leftover biscuits in an airtight container at room temperature. If I have any leftovers, I like to slice the biscuits and toast them in a skillet for breakfast the next morning. I add a little butter and toast them on medium heat. 

Update: My mom passed away unexpectedly in 2016. I’m so glad I took these photos of her making biscuits. She wouldn’t let me get her face because she didn’t have on makeup – typical southern woman. I’ll cherish these photos always. 

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I’ve Been Practicing Making Mom’s Biscuits

I decided to throw caution to the wind and I’m trying to duplicate mom’s biscuits. The photo below is of the biscuits I made. They aren’t quite as thin as mom’s and not quite as good but you know how that goes. Practice makes perfect!

Mom's Homemade Biscuits In A Baking Pan

Yield: 20

Mom’s Homemade Biscuits

Mom’s Homemade Biscuits

Mom's Homemade Biscuits are amazing. They are tender and soft on the inside and slightly crispy on the outside - the perfect biscuit!

Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 25 minutes

Ingredients

  • 2 Cups Self Rising Flour
  • 1/2 Cup Crisco Shortening
  • 1 Cup Milk (or buttermilk)

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 500º F. and grease a baking pan.
  2. Place flour in a large bowl. Make a well in the center and mix in shortening with your fingers or a pastry blender until blended well. Pull in flour, a little at a time, from the sides of the bowl as you mix in the shortening. If using a pastry blender, mix until mixture resembles small peas.
  3. Add milk, a little at a time mix until just blended, kneading a few times. (Don't overwork the dough or the biscuits will be tough). You want a soft dough and all of the flour will not be used.
  4. Wash hands with cold water, dry, and sprinkle hands with flour.
  5. Pinch off dough, roll, and place on a baking pan. Pat with three fingers to get that perfect indention. Bake at 500 for approximately 10 minutes or until golden brown.

Nutrition Information

Yield

20

Serving Size

1 biscuit

Amount Per Serving Calories 97Total Fat 5gSaturated Fat 2gTrans Fat 0gUnsaturated Fat 3gCholesterol 4mgSodium 156mgCarbohydrates 10gFiber 0gSugar 0gProtein 2g

Did you make this recipe?

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18 comments

Melinda Snavley January 22, 2014 - 8:49 am

Sure wish I had one this morning. My kids love Them!!! Sure wish we could find that bowl for her.

Reply
Crystal January 22, 2014 - 10:38 am

Yummy!!! They look amazing. Tell your mom thanks for showing us how to make them.

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Kelli January 22, 2014 - 10:59 am

I am so excited! I am going to try this soon. I have been looking for a good homemade biscuit recipe! Thank God for your blog, now I have ALL of the good recipes!!!!

Reply
Kristen from The Road to Domestication January 22, 2014 - 4:10 pm

These look so good! I do love a good recipe that’s been tested by generations!

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Shirley @ Intelligent Domestications January 22, 2014 - 4:43 pm

You know what they say, “It’s the finger that stir’s the pot” You and I have something in common, almost, I can’t make biscuits either. I quit trying, at least you are still doing it 🙂 My husband makes good biscuits!! My mother did the finger print on top of her biscuits also. I don’t know if people outside of the south can make good biscuits but I know those Southern ladies like your Mom sure can! LOVE the pics of her hands in the dough <3

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Annamaria @ Bakewell Junction January 22, 2014 - 7:56 pm

Alli,
I’ve made biscuits once or twice and they were okay but not like the really good ones. I love family recipes and can’t wait to try this one. Pinned.
Annamaria

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Laurie January 23, 2014 - 6:44 pm

They look delish. This post reminded me of my grandmother’s Angel Biscuits, she made them from scratch…nothing like them. And my mom has a cabinet with a biscuit contraption…that’s all I know but it looks cool…

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Kelli February 6, 2014 - 8:48 pm

I attempted to make these delicious biscuits, though I was a little scared, they were a complete SUCCESS!!!! This is my new recipe! I’m so excited!

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Giovanna @ Love, Thyme and Honey October 9, 2014 - 10:17 am

I love eating and making biscuits! Your mom’s recipe is very different from what I’ve been making. I’m super curious and will be trying this out soon! 🙂

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Lauren Johnson March 13, 2019 - 2:55 pm

This is so special to have. My Nanny made these biscuits all of her life and was well known for them. But there was never a recipe. She passed away at age 90 in December. Thank you so much for sharing this special recipe!

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Suzanne June 22, 2019 - 11:17 am

This makes me so happy
I could cry! I watched my Mamaw for years make these, but didn’t get the training to do it myself. This is such a great help! Just like my Mamaw, you have to use the special bowl (plastic clear lime green, and the pan was black as could be from the smearing of a Crisco to brown the bottoms! And the precious indentations made by her loving fingers!
Thank you so much!

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Alli June 22, 2019 - 4:42 pm

Thanks for your sweet comment! I could cry too! I sure do miss watching my mom make biscuits.

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Eric June 23, 2019 - 7:37 am

My Granny, great grand mother, taught me to make biscuits like this when I was about 7, but she never measured anything. If there were s lot of people she would just add a little more. That’s the way I still make them today, but it would be close to this recipe. She has long gone on to be with the Lord, I sure miss her, but she taught me a lot about life, and biscuit making.

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Adam September 15, 2019 - 3:21 am

Thank you for this. I was looking how to make biscuits like my Grandma used to make who is in heaven now. I think this is exactly how she made them! Thank you again!

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Jane Adamson December 28, 2020 - 11:24 am

My mom made biscuits just like your mom. She passed away in 2013. I have pictures of my mom in the kitchen and she was just like your mom about “ no makeup”. I haven’t been able to make biscuits as well as she but I keep trying. I think it must be the mom’s touch that I’m missing. Thank you for the trip down memory lane.

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Alli December 31, 2020 - 6:40 am

I was in my hometown, visiting my dad this week and I read him this comment. It made him smile. I keep trying with the biscuits, too. I don’t think mine will ever be as good as my mom’s. Thanks so much for stopping by and sharing a sweet memory of your mom!

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Michael August 23, 2021 - 3:25 pm

I’ve been trying to figure out how my great grandmother made these biscuits for years. I’ve looked at thousands of photos of biscuits and stumbled on this recipe. After reading some of the comments I am convinced that this must have been a standard published recipe somewhere because my great grandmother was also born around the same time the other grandmothers/mothers mentioned. I’m curious if anyone else had a connection to East Tennessee/ Southwest Virginia. No one seems to make them like these.

Reply
Alli August 26, 2021 - 10:53 am

I think they were just all incredible cooks back then. My mom didn’t have a recipe at all until I measured everything as she went along. I’m so glad I did because she passed only a year or so after I got her recipe. I’m still trying to perfect it! 🙂

Reply

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