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Black Pepper Biscuits with Bourbon Molasses Butter

  • Author: adapted from Food & Wine May 2014
  • Prep Time: 10 mins
  • Cook Time: 15 mins
  • Total Time: 25 minutes
  • Yield: 12 1x


Units Scale
  • Bourbon-Molasses Butter
  • 4 Tbsp unsulfured molasses
  • 1 Tbsp bourbon
  • small pinch of cinnamon
  • 1 1/2 sticks unsalted butter, room temperature
  • Biscuits
  • 4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 Tbsp plus 1 tsp. baking powder
  • 1 Tbsp coarsely ground black pepper, plus more for topping
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 stick plus 6 Tbsp unsalted butter, cubed and chilled
  • 2 cups cold buttermilk, plus more for brushing


  1. To make the butter, combine the molasses, bourbon, and cinnamon in a small saucepan over low heat. Bring to a simmer, whisking, and cook for two minutes. Remove from the heat and let cool completely.
  2. When cool, combine the molasses mixture with the butter in a food processor. Blend until smooth, and add salt to your taste. Transfer to a bowl, and let refrigerate.
  3. For the biscuits, preheat the oven to 450F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  4. In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, salt, pepper, and baking soda. Cut in the butter with your fingers or a pastry cutter until the largest chunks are no bigger than peas.
  5. Add the buttermilk, and gently fold together until a shaggy dough forms. Turn the dough out onto a work surface and gently knead together, folding over on itself to make a layered dough. Pat the dough down to 1" thick, and cut out out your biscuits. Combine the scraps to again make a 1" thick piece of dough, and cut more biscuits.
  6. Arrange the biscuits on the baking sheet, brush lightly with more buttermilk and sprinkle with extra black pepper. Bake for 15 minutes, or until puffed and golden on top. Serve warm with the molasses butter.


I used a mini-biscuit cutter, and ended up with near 30 biscuits — and reduced my baking time. If you are making normal-sized biscuits, I'm guessing you'll end up with around 12 biscuits and should stick to the baking time listed here.