Make Buttermilk Biscuits at Home With Popeyes Founder’s Key Recipe

In January of very last yr, Popeyes opened its to start with locale in Britain and had hundreds of shoppers wait around in line for hrs at a foodstuff court docket inside of an East London shopping shopping mall in East London to get a flavor of American fried hen.

Even though the opening weekend was a strike, there was one menu item that brought on confusion: the buttermilk biscuit. “It seems like a scone, but it doesn’t flavor like one,” buyer Victoria Ubochi told The New York Situations.

The confusion for Ubochi and other first-time clients was mainly because biscuit implies cookies in British English, not the salty, flaky creation Popeyes founder Al Copeland created a recipe for and place on the menu of the chain he founded in New Orleans in 1972 after failing with a further restaurant, Chicken on the Operate, the 12 months ahead of.

Though Copeland, a tenth-quality dropout who usually reported he was far too weak to afford to pay for an apostrophe for his restaurant’s identify, passed absent in 2008, his Creole- and Cajun-inspired recipes dwell on at additional than 3,400 Popeyes spots around the world, as perfectly as in Secrets and techniques of a Tastemaker: Al Copeland The Cookbook.

Remaining introduced in September to coincide with the 50th anniversary of Copeland’s chicken empire, the reserve incorporates a lot more than 100 recipes, some of which are near to, but not correct replicas of, the types that are applied at Popeyes. Among them, together with directions on how to make family members favorites like Ricochet Catfish and Fettuccine Lamborghini, is the biscuit recipe Copeland cooked up in the late ‘70s immediately after acknowledging he could differentiate Popeyes from its chicken competition by offering some thing other than a evening meal roll as a regular aspect. 

“I really considered he was variety of outrageous when he first did it due to the fact he wanted to showcase it,” Copeland’s son Al Jr. tells InsideHook. “He desired the biscuit to be a hero solution just like the fried chicken. It finished up staying a genius move due to the fact it amplified sales by 25% across the board. I under no circumstances would have considered a biscuit would’ve been able to do that, but it did. The entire manufacturer changed and it turned Popeyes Famed Fried Rooster and Biscuits.”

Speaking of names, how did Copeland, who would have all of his managers and crew associates attend a nine-hour biscuit college or university to acquire a certification in baking Popeyes’s signature aspect, appear up with the identify for his rooster chain?

“He was on a double date at the movies with my mom looking at The French Relationship with Popeye Doyle as the badass primary character,” Al Jr, who started doing the job at Popeyes at the age of 14 as a morning biscuit baker, suggests. “He says, ‘What do you consider about contacting it Popeyes?’ My mother mentioned, ‘That’s the craziest matter I at any time listened to of. Popeye eats spinach, not hen.’ He assumed about it and stated, “I indicate, the rooster could be like pop eyes. It pops your eyes. It’s spicy. Which is gonna be the title.’ When he did a little something, he  did it pretty boldly.”

No threat it, no biscuit. Here’s Copeland’s recipe from Tricks of a Tastemaker.

Al Copeland’s Buttermilk Biscuits (would make 10)

Take note: It is crucial that all of the components, which include the dry blend, are perfectly chilled. The outcome is a tight dough and a loftier concluded biscuit. The purpose is for the cold elements to hit the super sizzling oven resulting in a quick billow of the dough, which then remains secure as the biscuits brown. When the extensive disparity involving the temperature of the dough and the sizzling oven is not present, the billow both does not come about or it is not secure. The result is flat biscuits. Who wishes that?


  • 2.5 cups Swans Down Cake Flour 
  • 2 tsp. granulated sugar
  • 1.5 tsp. baking powder
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 1/4 tsp. baking soda
  • 1/2 cup vegetable shortening, frozen
  • 1.5 cups chilled buttermilk
  • 4 tbsp. salted butter (2 softened and 2 melted)
  • Biscuit mix is readily available to invest in in choose Copeland’s of New Orleans areas and online.


  1. Preheat oven to 425°F.
  2. Sift jointly the flour, sugar, baking powder, salt, and baking soda into a bowl. Employing a box grater, coarsely grate the frozen shortening instantly into the flour and gently fold it in with a spoon.
  3. Make a nicely in the middle of this mixture and pour in the buttermilk. Carefully stir the buttermilk into the flour just right up until the dough comes collectively. It will however be a tiny wet and sticky. Cover the bowl and refrigerate it for at the very least 30 minutes, but for no more time than three several hours.
  4. Brush a huge rimmed baking sheet with some of the melted butter, then refrigerate the pan to agency the butter.
  5. Applying a large spoon, scoop the dough into 10 mounds on the baking sheet, spacing the mounds at minimum a person inch apart. Frivolously dollop the softened butter on major of each and every mound.
  6. Bake the biscuits until eventually golden, 10 to 15 minutes. Get rid of the pan from the oven and brush the tops of the biscuits with the remaining melted butter.
  7. Location the biscuits in a basket and address with a tea towel to retain heat until eventually serving.