Full of flaky layers, these cinnamon raisin biscuits are to die for. Plump, juicy raisins and layers of cinnamon sugar fill these fluffy homemade biscuits. Top them off with a delicious vanilla glaze and enjoy them warm!
If you are thinking these look familiar, then you are correct! These cinnamon raisin biscuits are my rendition of the famous Hardee's biscuits. My childhood was filled with that little cardboard box containing two piping hot cinnamon raisin biscuits with drippy vanilla glaze.
I'm not even sure if Hardee's still has these, but if they don't, you're welcome! These are sure to become a new breakfast favorite. They are quick, easy and everything you'd want in a special breakfast treat.
Tips for perfect biscuits
The perfect biscuit for me is one that is flaky but still moist, light and fluffy and full of flavor. Check, check and check. Follow these tips to make the best cinnamon raisin biscuits.
- Grated, Frozen Butter-Put sticks of butter into the freezer for at least 20 minutes and then grate the butter on the large holes of a box grater. This allows you to mix the butter into the dry ingredients quickly and evenly, leaving small pockets of butter throughout the mixture, creating moist, flaky and fluffy biscuits. It's also a lot easier than cutting the butter in the traditional way. Check out this brief article from Epicurious for the "why" behind this technique.
- Cold Ingredients- Keeping the butter and milk cold will help pockets of butter stay intact when mixing all the ingredients together. These pockets of butter will melt once baked and form steam which helps with the rise and flakiness of the biscuits.
- Don't Overmix- Once those pockets of butter form, you want to make sure they stay there. Overmixing the dough and working it too much with your hands can incorporate the butter into the flour too much, and you'll lose those pockets of steam when baked. This will lead to tougher, shorter and less flaky biscuits. Don't do it!
- Push the Biscuit Cutter Straight Down- When cutting out the biscuits, push the cutter straight down into the dough without twisting it. Twisting the dough can seal the edges preventing the biscuits from rising.
The secret to flaky layers
While the grated butter trick helps with creating flaky layers in these cinnamon raisin biscuits, one more simple step takes the flakiness to the next level. I first saw this technique on Half Baked Harvest.
After mixing all the dough ingredients together, turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface. The dough will be crumbly so work it together into a cohesive square about 1 inch thick. Watch how much you handle the dough and just handle it enough to barely get a cohesive dough.
Cut the dough into 4 squares. Sprinkle the cinnamon sugar on 3 of the squares. Stack the 4 squares on top of each other, ending with the plain dough.
Press down on top of the dough to squish the stack down and then use a rolling pin to roll it out to a 1 inch thick disc. If the dough is sticky, lightly coat the rolling pin or top of the dough with flour.
Now you are ready to cut the biscuits!
How to store biscuits
The biscuits should be stored in an airtight container. They will keep for 3-4 days. The biscuits are best served warm so to rewarm them, place them in a 325 degree oven for 5 min. They can also be microwaved for 10-15 seconds.
Can they be frozen?
Yes, these biscuits can be frozen. You can freeze the baked biscuits for 2-3 months. Let them defrost on the counter for a few hours and they can be rewarmed in the oven as above.
If you'd prefer to freeze the unbaked biscuit dough, simply cut the the dough into biscuits and place them on a baking tray or plate in the freezer. Let them freeze for about an hour and then transfer the biscuits to a zip top freezer bag.
They can be baked from frozen. Add 1-2 minutes to the baking time. This method is great for portion control and for having biscuits whenever the craving hits!
For more breakfast ideas, check out:
- Chocolate Pop-Tarts with Strawberry Glaze
- Apple French Toast Casserole
- Chocolate Cherry Almond Scones
- Strawberry Scones
Tag me on Instagram @themarblekitchenblog if you make this and leave a star rating and comment below! Thank you and enjoy!
Cinnamon Raisin Biscuits
- 3 cups all-purpose flour
- ¼ cup sugar
- 2 ½ teaspoons baking powder
- ¼ teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 12 tablespoons unsalted butter frozen and grated on large holes of box grater
- ¾ cup raisins soaked in hot water for 15 minutes and drained
- 1 cup buttermilk cold
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- 1 teaspoons cinnamon
- 2 tablespoon unsalted butter melted
- 2 cups powdered sugar
- 3 tablespoons milk
- ⅛ teaspoon kosher salt
- ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
- Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
- In a large bowl, combine flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt.
- Add in the grated frozen butter and use your hands or a spoon to coat all the butter with flour until it’s evenly mixed. Do not overmix the butter.
- Add the raisins and mix until combined.
- Pour the milk into the mixture and mix together just until a shaggy dough forms.
- On a lightly floured surface, pour out the biscuit mixture. Use your hands to bring the dough together into a 1 inch thick square. Again, just do this until the dough comes together and be careful not to overmix. You want to still be able to see pieces of butter in the dough.
- Cut the square into 4 equal pieces.
- In a small bowl, mix together the sugar and cinnamon. Sprinkle the cinnamon sugar evenly over the top of 3 of the dough pieces, leaving one piece without the topping.
- Stack the four pieces on top of each other leaving the unsprinkled dough for the top.
- Push down on the stack of 4 dough squares to flatten it using more flour as needed if the top is sticky.
- Use a rolling pin to roll out the dough into a 1 inch thick disc. Use a 2 ½ inch biscuit cutter to cut the biscuits out making sure not to twist the biscuit cutter when cutting through the dough. Just push straight down. Combine the scraps of dough together and cut out the remaining biscuits until no more dough is left.
- Place the biscuits on the prepared sheet pan about 2 inches apart. Bake for 14-15 minutes on the middle rack until the biscuits are golden brown.
- Let the biscuits cool for about 5 minutes and then spoon the glaze over the top of each biscuit. Enjoy the biscuits warm.
- Combine all glaze ingredients in a medium bowl and stir until mixed together. If the glaze is too thick, add more milk by the ½ tablespoon until you reach the desired consistency. It should be thin enough to drip off the spoon onto the top of the biscuits. If it is too thin, add more powdered sugar by the tablespoon.
- To prevent the biscuits from browning too much on the bottom, place the sheet pan on top of another sheet pan for extra insulation while baking.
- The biscuits will keep for 3-4 days tightly covered at room temperature. To rewarm them, place in a 325-degree oven for 5 minutes.
- If you don’t have buttermilk, you can make your own. In a one-cup measure cup, pour in 1 tablespoon of white vinegar or lemon juice and then add regular milk to the top. Let it sit for 10 minutes until it looks slightly curdled. Stir it and then use this as your buttermilk substitute.
Beth Wilkes says
These biscuits are delicious and fun to make! I was going to share them but selfishly kept them for myself. I froze them and now can enjoy a yummy biscuit every morning!
Patricia Slater says
Can you use butter flavored crisco shortening
Tara Kringlen says
Hi Patricia. I haven't tried these with any kind of Crisco before but they should work with it. Of, course, nothing can replace that taste of an all-butter biscuit 🙂
These are SO GOOD. I had almond milk (1 tablespoon white vinegar into the measuring cup, then adding almond milk to the 1 cup mark and setting aside in the fridge 15 minutes ahead to make buttermilk) so I used that and they came out great. Thank you!
Tara Kringlen says
Thanks for the comment and I’m happy that the almond milk substitution worked out!
Lauren Czawlytko says
I’ve been trying to make biscuits my entire life. My biscuits don’t rise. Do you know why? These were delicious but flat. I’m frustrated.
Tara Kringlen says
Hi Lauren. There are a couple of reasons why they may not rise. 1. old baking powder 2. cutting and twisting the biscuit cutter-just slice straight down into the dough when cutting out biscuits. Don't twist the cutter around the dough.
Let me know if either of these help!
Patti Teeters says
Thank you for this delicious recipe. I just love these biscuits! And thanks for all the wonderful tips for making biscuits. I never could make biscuits or pie crusts before. But now that I am almost 70 years old I am finally learning. Thank you sooooo much.
Tara Kringlen says
So happy to hear this! I'm craving these now!