I grew up in Tennessee, so my taste for southern fare like grits, cornbread, and buttermilk biscuits is understandable. While grits and cornbread can be made without gluten, biscuits are bit trickier. I’ve tried subbing various gluten-free flours and baking mixes for the all-purpose flour in my favorite buttermilk biscuit recipe, but with unsatisfactory results.
A few weeks ago I was lucky enough to snag a big bag of Pamela’s Baking Mix at a good price. Printed on the back I found a recipe for “Bisquick-Type Drop Biscuits” and decided to try them.
Only, I used butter instead of shortening and buttermilk in lieu of just regular milk. I made them as drop biscuits as per the recipe, and they came out really, really yummy! My only complaint was that they were flat, due to spreading during the baking process. I like my biscuits tall enough so I can cut them in half. This way you have two surfaces on which to smother jam.
A few days later I made them again and doubled the recipe, using half shortening and half butter. I wanted to see if I could cut biscuits from this dough, and I thought maybe the shortening might help keep them from spreading.
I had to generously dust my work surface with more Pamela’s Baking Mix and then sprinkle even more on top of the dough to work with it. I arranged the biscuits close together on the baking sheet, just like you would with regular biscuits, hoping they would rise.
I think they still came out pretty flat, but at least they couldn’t spread much. They weren’t quite as yummy as the first batch, and thanks to the additional flour being worked into the dough, these biscuits were denser and had a drier texture. They still tasted good, but in my opinion this recipe is definitely best when made with all butter.
I then had the bright idea (yes, it happens occasionally) to bake these biscuits in a muffin pan, and I think I’ll stick with this method from now on. The biscuits can’t spread because they’re held in place by the pan cavities, and I get a round biscuit without drying out the dough with extra flour.
To make these gluten-free buttermilk biscuits, rather loosely adapted from the recipe on a bag of Pamela’s Baking Mix, you’ll need:
1 cup Pamela’s Gluten Free Baking Mix
1/4 cup shortening/butter or combination thereof
1/3 cup plus 1 tablespoon buttermilk
Preheat oven to 375 degrees and pour baking mix into a large bowl. You may want to spray the cavities of your muffin pan if it doesn’t have a nonstick coating, but I haven’t had any problems with sticking. Cut or rub in the butter/shortening until the mixture looks like bread crumbs. Add buttermilk while stirring mixture with a fork, and then drop into muffin pan cavities. Bake 15 minutes or so, until browned.
Yield is only 5 or 6 biscuits, but the recipe works just as well when doubled. I have even more pictures I took while baking of gluten-free buttermilk biscuits posted on Photobucket.