Tender and light gluten free drop biscuits are ready in 20 minutes, start to finish. You can’t beat the taste or the convenience!
The perfect dinner side, in minutes
I don’t know about you, but I hate making dinner for my family every night. I know it sounds kind of ridiculous, since I cook and bake like it’s my job (because it is). But dinner creeps up on me every day just like it probably does with you.
I don’t want to spend forever making dinner. They’re just going to eat it and forget it, no matter how good it is. And I don’t want to prepare the same meal every night any more than they want to eat the same meal every night.
So when I realized that I was making rice or gluten free pasta night after night, even if the rest of the meal wasn’t a repeat, I found it inexplicably sad. Hel-lo gluten free drop biscuits.
How these gluten free biscuits are different
For so long, I was so obsessed with light and flaky biscuits, with layers upon layers of buttery goodness. So when a super lovely, longtime reader named Jennifer starting asking about nonflaky biscuits, it took me a few moments to actually get it.
You know, like, “Oh right! You mean drop biscuits!” So now, after that gentle reminder, I now present to you these light and fluffy gluten free drop biscuits. They’re not flaky in the traditional sense, because they’re not laminated. But they’re still super tender and light. And there’s no folding or rolling necessary at all.
Before you know it, these gluten free biscuits are looking gorgeous and smelling fabulous. They take literally in 20 minutes flat from start to finish (really).
They’re so quick and easy that I nearly made a real-time how-to video, rather than the more produced kind at the top of this page. But honestly it was just too boring, even thought it was still super fast. :)
How to make drop biscuits that are still light
We still need lightness in our biscuits, but we’re not going to get it from layers of flour alternating with layers of cold butter that puff and expand in the heat of the oven. So we have to get it another way.
With drop biscuits, we go with smaller pieces of butter, just the right ingredients (of course!), a wetter dough, and a light, light touch. In fact, more often than not these days, I grate the butter on a standard cheese grater. So easy!
There’s very little actual hand-on-ingredients action going on here. Keep those ingredients cold!
How to make these biscuits even easier
These are your last-minute biscuits. You probably even have all the ingredients right there in your gluten free pantry right now. And you can make and shape the biscuits, then freeze them on a rimmed baking sheet.
Pile them into a zip-top bag and pop them out whenever you need a biscuit. Bake right from frozen by just adding a few minutes to the baking time.
Let’s be honest, though. You still may not love ❤ making an everyday weeknight dinner. I know I don’t! But a little variety in the menu goes a long way—both for the cook and the eaters!
Ingredients and substitutions
The dairy in these biscuits is in two forms: buttermilk and butter. The buttermilk can easily be replaced with 1/2 cup (129 g) plain dairy-free yogurt + 1/2 cup (4 fluid ounces) unsweetened nondairy milk.
I much prefer that combination to simply adding 1 tablespoon of white wine vinegar to 1 full cup of unsweetened nondairy milk. The chopped and chilled butter is best replaced with 4 tablespoons (56 g) Spectrum brand nonhydrogenated vegetable shortening + 4 tablespoons (56 g) Melt brand VeganButter, but you can use all shortening.
I discuss that combination of shortening in my recipe for vegan biscuits. The melted butter that’s brushed on the biscuits can be replaced with olive oil.
You can replace the 2 tablespoons (24 g) granulated sugar with an equal amount of monk fruit sweetener, or just eliminate it altogether. It doesn’t even need to be replaced, since it’s such a small amount of sugar.
The cornstarch can be replaced with arrowroot (my favorite sub for cornstarch), potato starch or even tapioca starch/flour.
Flour blend/Xanthan gum
If you’d like to make easy drop biscuits that taste just like these, you’re sensitive to xanthan gum and guar gum, try our gluten free biscuit recipe without xanthan gum. It has a different flour blend, and uses something called konjac powder instead of xanthan gum. You’ll love it!
Easy 20-Minute Gluten Free Drop Biscuits
1 3/4 cups (245 g) all purpose gluten free flour (I used Better Batter)
3/4 teaspoon xanthan gum (omit if your blend already contains it)
1/4 cup (36 g) cornstarch (or try potato starch or arrowroot)
1 tablespoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
2 teaspoons (8 g) granulated sugar
8 tablespoons (112 g) unsalted butter, cut into a 1/4-inch dice or grated and chilled
1 cup (8 fluid ounces) buttermilk, chilled
1 tablespoon (14 g) unsalted butter, melted
Preheat your oven to 425°F. Line a large rimmed baking sheet with unbleached parchment paper and set it aside.
In a large bowl, place the flour, xanthan gum, cornstarch, baking powder, baking soda, salt and sugar, and whisk to combine well. Add the diced or grated and chilled butter, and mix to combine. Create a well in the center of the dry ingredients, add the buttermilk and mix until just combined. Working quickly so the dough doesn’t get warm, drop the batter by the quarter cup using two large spoons or a 2-inch ice cream scoop about 1 1/2-inches apart on the prepared baking sheet. Do not pack the dough into the ice cream scoop. Press the mounds of dough down gently to flatten the tops, and brush lightly with the melted butter.
Place the baking sheet in the center of the preheated oven and bake until lightly golden brown all over (about 15 minutes). Remove from the oven and allow to set briefly before serving.
Originally published on the blog in 2015. Video added, recipe tweaked only slightly. Adapted from the Drop Biscuits on page 52 of Gluten Free on a Shoestring Quick & Easy: 100 Recipes for the Food You Love—Fast!