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Anytime Southern Biscuits With a Thanksgiving Day Twist

Even though Abby Slutsky owns a bakery business, she likes to find a balance between nutritional foods, interesting side dishes, and sweets.

Transform simple biscuits into special holiday-themed turkeys for Thanksgiving.

Transform simple biscuits into special holiday-themed turkeys for Thanksgiving.

A Little Southern Biscuit History

According to "The Light and Fluffy History of Southern Biscuits," by Shaun Chavis, Southern biscuits were not popular until leaveners, such as baking soda and powder, were created. Additionally, flour became more accessible when improved flour mills helped reduce the cost of flour, so the average person could afford to make and eat products with wheat. Prior to the 19th century, flour was a luxury for that could be afforded only by the wealthy. Today, biscuits are a delectable treat enjoyed by many people, and they are quick and easy to make.

Recently, I was fortunate enough to take a driving vacation to Hilton Head and Myrtle Beach. It had been some time since I was in the southern part of the country, so I had forgotten how delicious warm biscuits are. Usually, I stick to making regular breads, but I decided that the flakiness of a biscuit might be perfect for Thanksgiving instead of the rolls we normally put on the table.

It is likely that these biscuits will get as many comments for their appearance as they do for their flavor. If you do not already have a turkey cookie cutter, consider purchasing one, so the biscuits add to the theme of the holiday. The stainless steel set that I have was reasonably-priced and gives you three sizes of stainless cookie cutters. They handwash beautifully. (If you prefer, you can also make them round. If you do not have a cookie cutter, use a glass to shape them.)

These biscuits are made with rolled dough that contains baking powder to make them rise. They are flakey and delicious. They are a nice alternative to bread if you do not have yeast.

Special Equipment

  • Rolling pin
  • Mini chop or food processor
  • Cookie cutter
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Pro Tips

  • Make sure the butter is very cold.
  • Do not overmix the dough; it should look slightly crumbly.
  • It is okay if you can see a little butter in the dough.
  • Remember, you do not want the dough to be excessively sticky.
  • If you are making these for a crowd, you can easily double or triple the recipe.

Cook Time

Prep timeCook timeReady inYields

15 min

15 min

30 min

4 large biscuits


  • 1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 4 tablespoons butter, very cold, cut in cubes
  • scant 3 ounces buttermilk, if dough is a little dry, add an extra teaspoon
  • 1 tablespoon half and half
  • 1 teaspoon honey
These turkey-shaped biscuits look yummy paired with eggs. You can put them in a pretty basket on your Thanksgiving table too.

These turkey-shaped biscuits look yummy paired with eggs. You can put them in a pretty basket on your Thanksgiving table too.


  1. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees. If you have a convection oven, the oven will heat to 400 degrees when you set it to 425 degrees.
  2. Put the leavening agents and flour in a mini chop and pulse the ingredients for a about 20 seconds until the ingredients are well combined.
  3. Mix the buttermilk and half and half together. Pour most of the buttermilk mixture into the dry ingredients, reserving about 3 tablespoons.
  4. Pulse briefly until the mixture looks crumbly. If it seems a little too dry, add another 1 tablespoon of buttermilk and pulse again.
  5. Place the dough on a floured piece of parchment, and roll it about a 1/2 inch thick. Fold the lengthwidth ends over on each side, toward the center, so the dough appears double in thickness, Then do the same thing with the widthwise ends. (You will have a square or rectangle that is much thicker than your original piece of dough.)
  6. Roll out the dough somewhere between 1/2 ot 3/4 an inch. Dip the cookie cutter in flour and cut out turkey-shaped biscuits.
  7. Spray a parchment lined cookie sheet with nonstick spray. Place the biscuits next to each other on the prepared cookie sheet.
  8. Brush the biscuits with the remaining buttermilk mixture, and bake them for 12-15 minutes. These are best eaten straight from the oven.

Serving Ideas

  • If you make these turkey-shaped, they look impressive in a basket on your Thanksgiving table. Alternatively, you can put one on each person's plate.
  • Serve them as an accompaniment to soup or salad.
  • Use them as a side for breakfast or serve them with gravy as a meal.


  • Cheese: Try mixing one ounce of asiago cheese into the dough.
  • Herbs: Toss a 1/2 teaspoon of your favorite dried herbs into the dough.

© 2020 Abby Slutsky

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