When air fryers burst onto the scene, they became the gold standard for crisping up foods with minimal oil. However, their full potential was initially overlooked until we all realized they are *excellent* for baked goods, and specifically, for biscuits.
Biscuits in the air fryer take less time than traditionally baked biscuits but are just as flaky, buttery and delicious, plus they’re perfect for when you want to make just a few biscuits and not an entire tray.
Making biscuits in the air fryer is great for quick weekday breakfasts or low-key weekend brunches where attendees roll in and out with no set dining time. With the air fryer, you can quickly and easily serve up fresh biscuits without having to hover around the oven, and they go great with practically everything.
Best of all, the biscuits can be made ahead of time and kept in the fridge or even frozen until you’re ready to cook them, so they’re fresh and warm for everybody!
What You Need to Make Biscuits in the Air Fryer
Making air fryer biscuits don’t require any special ingredients, and it’s likely you already have everything on hand that you’ll need to make them.
While buttermilk is traditionally used in biscuit recipes, cream is used in this recipe since they aren’t baked off immediately. This prevents the biscuits from getting too tangy while they’re resting, but if you’d rather use buttermilk than cream, go for it! You can also use whole milk if you don’t have cream in the fridge.
- All-purpose flour
- Baking powder
- Kosher salt
- Granulated sugar
- Butter – frozen or very cold
- Heavy cream – very cold
How To Make Biscuits in the Air Fryer
As with all biscuit recipes, the most important part of this recipe is making sure the dairy in the biscuit dough stays cold so the biscuits don’t spread and flatten while they’re baking. Since these biscuits are cooked off in smaller quantities (2-3 biscuits at a time), make sure the uncooked biscuits are covered tightly in plastic wrap and stored in the fridge or freezer until you’re ready to use them.
There should be enough space between each biscuit for air to circulate, so make sure the biscuits don’t overlap in the air fryer basket. You should be able to fit anywhere between 2 to 6 biscuits in the basket of your air fryer depending on how big it is, but it’s best to err on the side of caution and cook fewer at a time than can fit.
If the basket of your air fryer tends to stick, give it a light spray with cooking oil before adding the biscuits.
Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside. In a large bowl, whisk together flour, salt, sugar and baking powder until well combined. Cut the butter into ½-inch cubes, and if you didn’t freeze it beforehand, place it in the freezer for 20 minutes so it is extremely cold.
Smash the butter into the flour with a pastry cutter, two forks, or your hands until it is evenly distributed and pea-sized balls have formed.
Pour the heavy cream into the flour and butter mixture, and use a fork to combine. Once a shaggy dough has formed, turn the dough out onto a lightly floured work surface. Working quickly but gently, knead the dough until it comes together, then form it into a rough rectangle. Using a rolling pin, gently roll out the dough until you have a rectangular slab that is approximately ½ an inch thick.
Carefully fold the dough into the thirds until it overlaps onto itself and resembles a letter or a trifold. Using the rolling pin, gently compress the layers, then roll the dough into a rectangle that is ¾ of an inch to 1 inch thick.
Lightly flour the sharp end of a 3-inch round cookie cutter and cut out as many biscuits as you can. Transfer them to the prepared baking sheet. Gather the scraps and reroll the dough and punch out more biscuits until the scraps can no longer be rerolled.
Form the last scraps into a ball and shape into a free-form biscuit. Transfer the biscuits to the freezer and let the butter firm up for 20 minutes.
While the biscuits are resting, preheat your air fryer to 375F. Remove the number of biscuits you’ll be cooking for your first round (2-4) and tightly cover the rest of the biscuits with plastic wrap or cover with an inverted baking tray, and transfer to the fridge.
Brush the tops of the biscuits with heavy cream, and place in the air fryer basket, making sure there is space between each biscuit. Cook for 10-12 minutes until the tops are golden brown and the biscuits are cooked through.
Transfer the biscuits to a wire rack and let them cool for 10-15 minutes. Repeat with the remaining biscuits. Serve with your favorite biscuit topping and enjoy!
Can I use frozen biscuit dough?
Yes! Not only can you use frozen biscuit dough, but it is highly encouraged that you do! The great benefit of biscuits in the air fryer is that you can cook the biscuits as you need them.
To fully utilize the efficiency of this method, make the dough and form the biscuits, then freeze the raw biscuits, uncovered, until they are frozen through. Transfer them to a freezer-safe bag and cook them off as you need them.
You may need to increase the cooking time by 2-3 minutes depending on your air fryer, so do a test run first. The frozen biscuit dough will stay good in the freezer for up to two months.
Does the size of my air fryer matter when making biscuits?
No. Air fryers come in multiple shapes and sizes, and this recipe will work with any air fryer. The most important thing is to not overcrowd the air fryer basket. If you have a particularly small air fryer, just make 1-2 biscuits at a time.
Do I need to turn biscuits while they cook in the air fryer?
That depends on your air fryer. If you have a deeply loved air fryer that has developed a proneness for sticking over time, then turning the biscuits halfway through cooking is a good idea. If your air fryer doesn’t stick, there is no need to turn the biscuits unless you prefer them golden brown all over and not just on the tops.
Biscuits in the Air Fryer
- Air fryer
- 3 ½ cups all-purpose flour plus more for dusting
- 1 tbsp baking powder
- 1 tsp salt
- 2 tbsp granulated sugar
- 1 cup very cold heavy cream
- 1 cup butter (2 sticks or 1 large block) frozen
- Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside.
- In a large bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, salt and sugar.
- Cut the butter into ½ inch cubes, and if it isn’t already frozen, place it in the freezer for 20 minutes so it’s extremely cold.
- Smash the butter into the flour using a pastry cutter, two forks or your hands until the butter is evenly distributed and pea sized balls have formed.
- Slowly stream the heavy cream into the flour and butter mixture while using a fork to evenly distribute the liquid.
- Gently mix the flour mixture and heavy cream until a shaggy dough has formed.
- Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface.
- Quickly but gently knead the dough until it just comes together, and form it into a rough rectangle.
- Using a rolling pin, roll the dough into a ½ inch thick rectangular slab.
- Carefully fold the dough into thirds until it overlaps onto itself like a letter or trifold.
- Gently compress the layers, then roll the dough into a rectangle that is ¾ of an inch to 1 inch thick.
- Lightly flour the sharp end of a 3 inch round cookie cutter and punch out as many biscuits as possible and transfer to a parchment lined baking sheet.
- Gather and reroll the scraps and punch out more biscuits until the remaining scraps can’t be rerolled, and press the last scraps into a free-form biscuit.
- Place the biscuit tray in the freezer for 20 minutes to firm up the butter.
- While the biscuits are resting, preheat your air fryer to 375F.
- Remove the amount of biscuits you’ll be cooking for the first round and tightly cover the rest with plastic wrap or an inverted tray and transfer to the fridge.
- Brush the tops of the biscuits with heavy cream and place in the basket of the air fryer, making sure there is enough space between each biscuit for the air to circulate.
- Cook for 10-12 minutes or until the biscuits are golden brown on the top and cooked through.
- Transfer biscuits to a wire rack and let them cool for 10-15 minutes.
- Repeat with the remaining biscuits, top with your preferred toppings and enjoy!
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