Light, fluffy, buttery, buttermilk biscuits get a savory makeover with cheddar and sage. The sharpness of the cheddar cheese and the earthiness of the sage are a match made in heaven. They are the perfect savory addition to your next brunch!
I grew sage for the first time this year and was surprised at how easy it was to maintain. The sage is still going strong and it's November here on the east coast! If you are in search of the best savory biscuit that is fluffy, salty, and cheesy, then look no further than this cheddar sage biscuit. If you love plain ol' biscuits, you will love these cheesy, herby ones.
The key to making these biscuits is keeping the ingredients nice and cold. The butter and buttermilk are key to those airy pockets so make sure they are kept cold.
- Self-Rising Flour- This flour has baking powder and salt already in it, however, this flour is key for the lower protein count. This means less gluten and therefore a less chewy biscuit. It will help keep the biscuits nice and fluffy.
- Salt- Additional salt is great with savory biscuits.
- Sugar- White granulated sugar to counter the saltiness.
- Buttermilk- Gives biscuits a tang and keeps the dough tender. Make sure the buttermilk is cold.
- Butter- Cold butter releases fat and creates those airy pockets.
- Cheddar- Sharp cheddar was used, but a mild cheddar will work. Be sure to buy a block of cheddar and grate it yourself for a deeper flavor.
- Sage- Fresh sage! Dried sage just won't work here and the flavor will be lost.
- Egg- Mixed with a teaspoon of water, this will create an egg wash that gets brushed on the top to help give the biscuits that golden, shiny color.
See the recipe card for quantities and full instructions.
Instructions for Savory Cheddar and Sage Biscuits
Below is a visual guide to help you make these biscuits.
Using a pastry blender (or 2 forks), incorporate the butter into the dough. It should resemble the size of peas.
Add the buttermilk, cheddar, and sage. Using a wooden spoon, mix the dough so all of the ingredients are incorporated. Do not over-mix.
Fold the dough inward on both sides, rotate and pat down to a rectangle again. Repeat the fold 3 times. You should end with a rough rectangle about 1" thick.
Gather the dough with your hands, and turn it onto a lightly floured surface. With your hands, pat it into a rectangle, about 1" thick.
Using a 3" biscuit cutter, cut out the biscuit shape by pressing straight down. Do not twist the cutter (the edges will seal and will prevent them from rising). Brush the tops with egg wash.
After brushing on the egg wash, let the biscuits hang in the fridge for 5-8 minutes to chill them. Place in the prepared pan and bake for 12-15 minutes until golden brown on top.
Feel free to mix it up or experiment. Here are a few suggestions for swapping out some of the ingredients for a different flavor combination.
- Herbs - You can use any fresh herb in place of the sage. Try some fresh thyme or chives.
- Cheddar Cheese- Try experimenting with different cheeses. I used sharp cheddar, but you can opt for mild cheddar, or even a white cheddar. Any other mild cheese will work, such as swiss or gruyere.
- Spices- Try adding black pepper or smoked paprika for a nice kick!
You only need a few staples to make these biscuits. A mixing bowl, pastry blender, and a cast iron skillet or baking pan. If you don't have a pastry blender, just grab 2 forks and use that to incorporate the butter into the flour. You don't even need a biscuit cutter, instead, try a glass to cut the biscuits.
You can keep freshly baked biscuits at room temperature for 1-2 days. Allow baked biscuits to cool completely, then wrap them in foil or plastic wrap, and place them in a plastic bag for best results. If not eating right away, store in the fridge for 4-5 days.
Alternatively, biscuits can be baked and stored in the freezer. After cooling completely, wrap tightly and place in a freezer-safe plastic bag. Store in the freezer for up to 3 months. To refresh biscuits, allow them to come to room temperature, or place them in a toaster oven to warm up.
The key to tall, flaky biscuits is keeping all your ingredients cold. Make sure your butter and buttermilk are chilled. Try putting the ingredients in the freezer for a few minutes before mixing the dough.
Savory biscuits are delicious on their own, or with a nice slather of butter right out of the oven. They make the perfect side dish for any meal and are even better dunked in soup. Savory biscuits can be paired with a nice salad for a full and satisfying meal.
Savory Cheddar and Sage Biscuits
- 1 10" cast iron skillet or baking pan.
- 2 cups self-rising flour
- ½ teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- ¾ cup + 2 tbsp buttermilk, chilled
- 6 tablespoon unsalted butter, very cold and cut into cubes
- 1 cup grated cheddar cheese
- 2 tablespoon chopped fresh sage
- 1 egg + 1 teaspoon water for egg wash
- Preheat the oven to 425° F.
- In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, salt, and sugar. Add the butter.
- Using a pastry blender (or 2 forks), work the butter into the flour, until the butter is incorporated and resembles the size of peas.
- Add the buttermilk, cheddar, and sage. Using a wooden spoon or spatula, gently mix until the dough is fully combined. The dough will look shaggy but should hold together. Don't overmix.
- Using your hands, turn the dough onto a lightly floured work surface. Flatten the dough into a rough rectangle, about 1" thick. Begin to fold the dough inward on itself. Turn the dough 90 degrees, and repeat the fold 2 more times, each time, flattening the dough gently with your hands. After folding reshape into a rectangle about 1" thick.
- Using a 3" biscuit cutter dipped in flour, press down firmly into the dough and lift out the biscuit shape (do not twist the biscuit cutter as this will seal the edges and won't allow the biscuits to rise). Continue to cut biscuits, until you use up the dough. You should get around 7 biscuits.
- Place the biscuits in a 10" cast iron skillet or baking pan lined with parchment. Brush the tops of the biscuits with egg wash. Bake at 425° for 12-15 minutes until golden brown on top. Remove and allow to cool.
- Serve warm with some butter.