Sourdough Biscuits - The Best Sourdough Discard Recipe! (2024)

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Sourdough Biscuits - The Best Sourdough Discard Recipe! (1)

These quick, easy, and buttery sourdough biscuits are the perfect way to use up some sourdough discard when feeding your sourdough starter.They can be mixed, baked, and on the dinner or breakfast table in less than 30 minutes!

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Sourdoughbiscuits are evenmore flavorful thantraditional buttermilk biscuitsbecause of the delightful sourdough tang. They are just as easy to make as regular biscuits as long as you have a sourdough starter hanging out in your refrigerator. This is the only sourdough biscuit recipe you will ever need!

Post updated 2/16/22.

Why You Should Make Your Own Sourdough Starter

Even if you don’t have the time or inclination to make sourdough bread from scratch, asourdough starteris the secret to the most delicious pancakes, waffles, and biscuits you’ll ever taste!

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Sourdough startercan also be used in dessertslike my easy Pumpkin Maple Sourdough Cakeor rich and decadentSourdough Chocolate Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting.I’ve also experimented with adding it toquick breads like my favorite Sourdough Banana Bread. One of my very favorite ways to use sourdough starter is in my Sourdough Pie Crust. The sourdough possibilities are endless!

Although it takes a bit of time to make a sourdough starterfrom scratch, it’s easy to do.And once you have a sourdough starter going, you can keep it for a lifetime or even longer if your family decides to carry on the tradition – how cool is that!?

I also think that creating a sourdough starter could be a really fun and educational science project to do with kids. I’m really looking forward to sharing these things with my daughter when she is old enough.

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I will be sharing easy everyday sourdough recipes here on the blog onSundays. Welove to eatsourdough biscuits or sourdough waffles on Sunday mornings so I thoughtit wouldbe fun to start a Sourdough Sunday series to share these easy and delicious recipes with all of you.

Next, you’ll find lots of step-by-step photos to show you just how easy it is to make these biscuits from scratch. If you’d prefer to jump straight to the printable recipe, just scroll to the very bottom of the post. Enjoy!

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How to Make Sourdough Biscuits

In addition to the sourdough starter, you’ll need just a handful of everyday pantry items to make these biscuits. Start with one cup of flour – either all purpose or a mixture of half all purpose and half cake flour for an extra light biscuit.

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In a large bowl, measure out some baking powder, baking soda, and salt. You can use whatever type of salt you happen to keep on hand, just make sure to read the recipe notes for a tip on using the correct amount of salt if you prefer kosher or fine grain sea salt.

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To keep things simple, I use a whisk to combine the dry ingredients. But you can also run everything through a sifter or sieve a couple times to make sure it’s well blended.

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Next, add some very cold butter that you’ve chopped up in advance.

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Blend the butter into the flour mixture using a pastry cutter or your fingertips. I like to use a combination of both methods. Just work as quickly as you can so the butter stays cold.

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This is what the flour and butter should look like when it’s blended enough. It will look like a mixture of coarse crumbs with little chunks of butter about the size of peas mixed in.

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Measure out a cup of unfed sourdough starter straight from the fridge.

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Add the starter the to the flour and butter mixture. One cup of sourdough starter equals about a cup of flour plus half a cup of water. So half the flour in the recipe was blended with the butter and the other half is delivered in the sourdough starter. Does that make sense?

Do Sourdough Biscuits Need Buttermilk?

The water in the starter is the only liquid we’ll need to bring the dough together. There’s no need for buttermilk because the sourdough starter is acidic and works just like buttermilk to react with the baking soda. And I think it adds just as much flavor as buttermilk, if not more!

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Mix everything together with a big spoon. If your starter has been fed more recently and is thicker than mine, it might be a little more difficult to combine everything with a spoon. In that case, just jump in with clean hands and quickly mix everything together.

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Mixuntil the dough just comes together and most of the flour has been absorbed. Since sourdough baking isn’t an exact science, feel free to add just a splash more liquid if the dough seems way too dry (anything will do – water, milk, buttermilk) and if it’s way too wet and sticky, just add a bit more flour.

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Knead the dough in the bowl a couple times just to finish bringing everything together.

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Now dump the dough out onto a lightly floured work surface.

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You can either roll or pat the dough out into a circle that is about 3/4-inch thick.

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If the dough is too sticky, sprinkle just a bit more flour on top and underneath. I love keeping a little shaker container filled with all purpose flour in my pantry. It works perfectly and I use it all the time for baking bread, making pie crusts, biscuits, and scones.

Some containers come with lids, but I just keep mine in a plastic bag to keep the weevils away. I also use these containers for powdered sugar and homemade spice blends or rubs. So handy and inexpensive!

How to Shape Sourdough Biscuits

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Next, cut your biscuits. For these I used a biscuit cutter that was close to 3 inches wide. If you don’t have a biscuit cutter, you can use a glass. Or, if you don’t care about round biscuits, I’m going to let you in on my favorite tip. Instead of rolling it into a circle, pat dough into a thick rectangle. Cut the rectangle into 8 equal squares using a bench scraper or a knife and you’re done! No worrying about re-rolling scraps.

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But if you are cutting round biscuits, you’ll have scraps to deal with. To avoid a really tough biscuit, just gently combine the scraps without working the dough too much.

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Pat it down to the same thickness as before.

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Then cut your last biscuit.

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the last of the scraps and just be hand formed into what I call the ugly biscuit. I eat the ugly biscuit as soon as it comes out of the oven. It’s the baker’s reward for getting up in the morning andmaking biscuits from scratch!

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See the ugly biscuit up in the top right?

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Notice how the ugly biscuit is now gone? Delicious!

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How Long Do You Bake Sourdough Biscuits?

These golden brown flaky biscuits bake up in about 12 to 15 minutes. While they’re baking, you could alwaysmake some sausage gravy and a side of scrambled eggs, which is my husband’s favorite breakfast.

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Or if you’re like me, you could just eat the biscuits with lots of butter and honey.

Whether it’s for breakfast, dinner, or an afternoon snack, I hope you give these biscuits a try soon. If you don’t yet haven a sourdough starter, you should begin here. If you’d prefer to make the best buttermilk biscuits from scratch, I have a great tutorial for that as well.

This post may include Amazon affiliate links. Making purchases through these links won’t affect the amount you pay, but I will earn a small percentage, which helps support this blog and my family. If I write about products I have received for free or am ever paid to write about a product, it will always be disclosed. Thank you.

Kitchen equipment and special ingredients used for this recipe:
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Sourdough Biscuits - The Best Sourdough Discard Recipe! (29)

Yield: eight 3-inch biscuits

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 15 minutes

Total Time: 30 minutes

This flaky sourdough biscuits recipe is a great way to use up sourdough discard when feeding your sourdough starter. They can be mixed, baked, and on the dinner or breakfast table in less than 30 minutes!


  • 1 cup flour
  • scant 1/2 teaspoon salt (or 1 tsp kosher salt)
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 6 tablespoons very cold unsalted butter, cut in small pieces
  • 1 cup cold unfed sourdough starter


  1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees
  2. Sift or whisk together well the flour, salt, baking soda, and baking powder.
  3. Cut the butter into the flour using a pastry cutter or your fingertips until the mixture looks like coarse crumbs with pieces of butter about the size of peas.
  4. Add the sourdough starter and mix with a spoon until most of the flour is incorporated. Knead the mixture in the bowl a few times until it comes together.
  5. Turn dough out onto a lightly floured work surface then roll dough or pat it out to about 3/4" thick.
  6. Cut biscuits, gather scraps, re-roll and cut out one or two more.
  7. Place biscuits on an ungreased baking sheet or in a cast iron skillet. You can use parchment paper if you'd like to keep your baking sheet clean. Place them close together, touching, if you want soft-sided biscuits or space them apart for crisper sides.
  8. Bake biscuits at 425 degrees F for 12-15 minutes, until browning around the edges. If you placed biscuits close together, they will take longer than if they are spaced apart.


You can either use all purpose flour or half all purpose and half cake flour for a lighter biscuit.

If using regular table salt or fine sea salt, use a scant half teaspoon of salt. If using Diamond Crystal kosher salt, use a full teaspoon.

If you want to use salted butter, reduce the salt in the recipe by half.

Nutrition Information:

Yield: 8Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving:Calories: 188Total Fat: 9gSaturated Fat: 5gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 3gCholesterol: 23mgSodium: 335mgCarbohydrates: 24gFiber: 1gSugar: 0gProtein: 4g

Sourdough Biscuits - The Best Sourdough Discard Recipe! (2024)


Does the discard help the biscuit rise? ›

Does The Discard Help The Sourdough Biscuits Rise? While sourdough starter contains wild yeast, the only thing that the sourdough starter or sourdough discard does in this recipe is give the biscuits a more sour flavor. The main leavening agent for sourdough biscuits is actually baking powder and baking soda.

Why are my sourdough biscuits crumbly? ›

If your biscuits are falling apart…

If this sounds familiar, you could be adding too much flour to your dough without knowing it, disrupting the ratio of dry to wet ingredients.

Why use sourdough discard in baking? ›

Tenderizer: The acidity in sourdough discard weakens gluten development and reacts with chemical leaveners which results in soft and fluffy baked goods. Fermentation: Adding sourdough to baked goods also imparts the magic of fermentation.

What does adding an egg to biscuit dough do? ›

With biscuits, however, the goal is to avoid this chewiness. So, by adding hard-boiled egg yolk to a biscuit recipe, you'll thwart the formation of gluten, thereby resulting in a buttery, flakey crumb that'll dissolve in your mouth.

What is the secret to making biscuits rise? ›

By baking at a high temperature it helps your homemade biscuits to rise up quickly in the oven. You want a hot oven that will ensure your homemade biscuits bake up tall and don't fall flat.

Does sourdough discard still have health benefits? ›

Technically, sourdough discard has the same benefits as sourdough starter, since they are both wild yeast ferments. In terms of beneficial lactic acid bacteria, natural yeasts acetic acid and colonies of microbes, they are both full of them.

How do you make sourdough more fluffy? ›

The magic that makes this sourdough so fluffy is a quick oven-rising process under very high heat. The key is to make sure the Dutch oven is fully preheated before baking the bread.

What is the perfect sourdough crumb? ›

Sourdough crumb should be even, meaning there won't be any areas that are super tight or with giant tunnels. The crumb should be light and fluffy - not wet and gummy. The holes inside the sourdough may seem shiny. This is a sign that the gluten is very well developed.

How do you make sourdough airy? ›

Here are some tips to help you make your sourdough bread less dense:
  1. Use a ripe sourdough starter. ...
  2. Knead the dough for the right amount of time. ...
  3. Proof the dough for the correct amount of time. ...
  4. Use the right type of flour. ...
  5. Add the right amount of water. ...
  6. Score the bread properly. ...
  7. Bake the bread at the correct temperature.
Sep 9, 2023

What happens if I forgot to discard starter before feeding? ›

If you didn't discard a portion of your starter each time you feed it, two things would happen: Your starter would grow to an enormous, unmanageable size. Your starter would likely become more and more inhospitable to the bacteria and yeast we want as the mixture would become ever more acidic.

Does sourdough discard need to be room temperature before baking? ›

Store it for future baking: You can store sourdough discard in an airtight container in the refrigerator for future baking with sourdough discard recipes. When you're ready to use it, let the discard come to room temperature before using it to bake. I will keep sourdough discard in the fridge for about one week.

Can I bake with cold sourdough discard? ›

You can utilize a cold starter in any sourdough discard recipe. These recipes don't require a sourdough starter for leavening, so you can use your starter directly from the fridge. These recipes offer a fantastic solution for using excess sourdough.

What happens if you add too much egg to biscuits? ›

If there isn't enough egg, your batter or dough may not be able to hold its structure or could end up overly dry or dense. On the other hand, if there is too much egg, your baked goods could lose their shape due to excess liquid, or have a rubbery (or even overly cakey) texture depending on the recipe.

What does an extra egg do to bread? ›

It makes the bread lighter and fluffier. The reason for that is the fat in the yolk that inhibits gluten formation just as any other fat would. This results in a looser dough that can expand and puff up more.

Why are my biscuits yellow? ›

Therefore, a puff dough with a high degree of expansion is easier to color than a puff dough with a dense structure. Excess base, usually caused by too much sodium bicarbonate in the recipe, can turn the entire biscuit structure slightly yellow, a product that is extremely undesirable when no other colour is present.

Why are my drop biscuits flat? ›

If the fat melts or softens before the biscuits bake, the biscuits will be hard and flat because there's no place for the CO2 to go except out of the biscuits. Don't work in a hot kitchen. If the dough seems to be getting too soft or warm, place it in the freezer for 10 to 15 minutes.

Does baking soda help biscuits rise? ›

To counteract that risk, all we need is a pinch of baking soda to neutralize the excess acidity and give the dough a more powerful rise. That makes for high-rising biscuit with a flavorful and golden crust, with no heaviness or gummy layer in sight.

Does sourdough discard rise? ›

No. Active sourdough starter has an active yeast culture, whereas sourdough discard is inactive. If you're baking with sourdough discard, you will need to use a leavening agent (likely, yeast) to ensure the dough rises predictably.

How do leavening agents influence how biscuits rise? ›

Chemical leavening agents release small amounts of carbon dioxide gas for a short duration of time. The most common chemical leavening agents are baking soda and baking powder. Both release a gas that makes baked goods rise, and they have other common properties.


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