up close biscuits
Happy Mornings

The Bs and Gs (Plus Help Nashville!)

As most of you probably know, Betsy is from Nashville and while her family is doing okay from the flood, it’s been kind of devastating to look at the pictures and videos of the flood. I mean, we were just there like three weeks ago getting married and now all the places we went to are underwater or recovering.

Bets asked me to make one of her favorite Southern brunch dishes that she always used to eat in Nashville: Biscuits and Gravy. I was of course happy to oblige!

This also happened to be one of my favorite brunch/late night dishes in high school as well. We had this awesome diner in town that was open 24 hours a day and we’d go there for a late night snack. Biscuits and gravy was one of my favorite things to get. Or as we used to call them in high school: The Bs and Gs.

In my opinion, nothing makes this dish better than homemade buttermilk biscuits. They aren’t that hard and they take this dish to another level of deliciousness.

up close biscuits

Biscuits and Gravy

Just a moment please...

Yield
Serves 6.
Prep Time
Total Time

Homemade biscuits and gravy with pork sausage gravy. This is one of my favorite breakfasts ever.

Ingredients

Buttermilk Biscuits (From a Tyler Florence Recipe)
4 Cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 Teaspoons salt
1 Tablespoon baking powder
2 Teaspoons baking soda
1 Cup vegetable shortening or 1 Cup plus 2 Tablespoons of unsalted butter, cold
1 1/2 to 2 Cups buttermilk
Sausage Gravy:
1 pound hot Italian sausage
1/4 all-purpose flour
4 Cups whole milk, warm
Salt and pepper to taste
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Helpful Equipment

cast iron skillet

Directions

1) Start biscuits by mixing flour with salt and baking soda and baking powder in a large bowl.

2) Cut in cold butter or shortening using your fingers until it resembles small pea-sized pieces in the flour.

3) Add buttermilk and mix until the mixture forms a loose dough. Don’t over-mix the dough.

4) Scoop the dough out onto a floured surface and roll it out in a rectangle shape. Fold it into thirds over itself. Then roll it out gently and do it again. Finally roll it out until it’s about 1 inch thick.

5) Cut the biscuits out of the dough. You can either cut out circles or just slice the dough into rectangles.

6) Add biscuits to an ungreased baking sheet and brush them with some extra buttermilk. Then bake them at 375 degrees for 25-30 minutes until they are golden brown.

7) For gravy, cook sausage in a cast iron pan until it well-browned and cooked through. Remove it from the pan and leave as much of the grease as you can.

8) Add flour to pan and whisk to form a roux. Cook for 3-4 minutes over medium heat until it turns a light tan color.

9) Slowly whisk milk into roux. Work slowly so lumps don’t form. Once the milk is incorporated, continue to cook until it’s nice and thick.

10) Stir sausage back into gravy and season with salt and pepper.

11) Serve biscuits with the gravy!

Making the Biscuits

These are really good biscuits. I used butter but the original recipe from Tyler used shortening so I guess use whichever one you want.

biscuits ingredients

Butter not pictured.

Start the biscuits by mixing the flour, salt, baking powder, and baking soda in a big bowl and then cut in your shortening or butter. You can either use one of those shortening cutter devices or also you can just use your fingers to mix in the butter. You want pea-sized balls of butter. Lumps are good here people.

butter added

You could do shortening also.

Next, add about 1 1/2 Cups of buttermilk and mix it up. If it still looks dry, add a bit more. It should stick together but not be gooey at all. The key thing about biscuit dough is not to overwork it. Once all the dough comes together, pour it out onto a well-floured surface and roll it into a large rectangle about 1/2 inch thick.

Then fold it into thirds by folding the left half over and then folding the right half over the left half. This will create layers in the biscuits and make them really flaky.

dough folded

Be gentle people.

Gently roll out the rectangle again, this time until the dough is about 1 inch thick. At this point, you could cut them into circles if you wanted, but I like squares actually because it doesn’t waste any dough and is a lot easier.

Whatever shape you decide on, then just set the biscuits on an ungreased baking sheet and brush them all with buttermilk.

biscuits ready

Squares cause I’m lazy.

Baking the biscuits

Bake these guys at 375 for about 25-30 minutes until they are golden brown on top. These are about perfect.

biscuits cooked

Flaky and delicious.

The Gravy

This is a really basic sausage gravy, but I don’t think it’s the kind of thing that needs to be too complicated. Start with your favorite hot pork sausage and remove it from the casing. In my humble opinion, a cast iron skillet is really your best bet for making this gravy.

Add your sausage to the pan and cook it down over medium heat until it’s nice and brown.

sausage cooking

Very important.

Remove your sausage from the pan but leave as much grease from the sausage as you can. It’s okay if some sausage hangs around for the party also. Then add your flour to the grease and stir it to make a roux. Keep it over medium heat and cook it until the flour taste is out and it turns a light tan color. This will take about 3-4 minutes.

roux

Makin’ gravy.

The trick to lump-free gravy

There’s really only two things to remember to keep your gravy lump free. First, make sure you warm up your milk before you add it to the roux. I just nuked mine in the microwave for a few minutes until it was just warm to the touch.

The second trick is just to whisk like crazy as you pour the milk into the roux. Don’t pour all the milk at once either. Pour it slowly and keep whisking. At first it might look like lumps are forming, but just keep pouring and whisking and it’ll smooth out. Once you get all your milk incorporated (you might not need all 4 Cups), then you can whisk your sausage back into the mix.

gravy

Smooth and sausagey

Be sure to give this mixture a good pinch of salt and lots of fresh ground pepper.

You know the rest of the story. Open up a few biscuits and ladle on as much gravy as you want. Sooo good.

up close biscuits

I mean come on…

HELPING OUT NASHVILLE

Besides making a good Southern meal, Betsy and I wanted to help out by making a donation to the Mid-South Red Cross who are helping on the ground with the clean-up and recovery in Nashville.

biscuits and gravy

I surrender to your deliciousness.

So here’s the deal. For each comment this post gets, Betsy and I will be donating $1 to the relief work. We’ll go up to $200, so leave a comment and help out!

Please share this post on Twitter or your social networking site of choice so we can get 200 comments!

169 comments on “The Bs and Gs (Plus Help Nashville!)

    1. I love biscuits and gravy,i can eat it any time of day:)I should try the home made biscuits instead of buying them from the store in the can.Thanks for sharing the recipe and the donation thing is really great as well.

  1. Love love love biscuits and gravy. Looks like a great recipe, and a post for a good cause. Glad that your wife’s family made it out okay.

  2. Mmm biscuits and gravy! KFC in Scotland has neither biscuits, nor gravy which I think is a travesty!

    As a former British Red Cross employee, great job!

  3. What a relief to hear that your family in Nashville is okay — such a terrible loss.

    I love the spirit of this post (and, of course, even this Yankee loves Bs & Gs), and am more than happy to share it (and to donate money to the cause myself — thank you for the link to the Mid-South Red Cross).

  4. You won’t generally find that on a menu up here in the Great White North, but it looks delicious!!

    And as a Red Cross volunteer, kudos!

  5. This recipe takes me back to my first few years away from home..it was a Wednesday night tradition for my boyfriend and me :]

  6. I saw the Nashville Predators against the Ducks as my first hockey game some months ago. I was very entertained, despite the fact that I had no idea what the hell was going on.

    The recipe looks yum! And will attempt it… some day.

    I hope the city recovers soon… and also the bearded hockey men.

  7. I love biscuits and gravy, but I don’t make them so much anymore since I became lactose intolerant. My sausage gravy recipe was largely the same except I never removed the sausage from the pan when making mine. I just put the flour in there with the grease and the sausage and let it do its thing. Man, I miss some stuff. I also have to say I have a personal bias against SQUARE biscuits., but the tri-fold for flaky layers is pure genius.

    Nashville, we’re pulling for ya!

  8. I grew up in the South and haven’t had biscuits and gravy in way too long! I think I’ll be doing this one :D Thanks for sharing

  9. My favorite breakfast place in my college town of Salem, OR makes the best biscuits and gravy. Being in Ireland for the semester, its one of the things I have missed most.

    Good luck to all the family in Nashville!

  10. mmm my stomach will need relief from eating so much. Happy mothers day and thank you for helping out!

  11. Great recipe but do you want to know how us moms make it? its super easy and delicious….(I am talking about the gravy here)…..the sausage you need to use is pork sausage with SAGE in it…none else compares – do everything else you have posted here, but to get that flavorful gravy we all know and love, you have to use the sausage that comes with SAGE in it…its not always easy to find, but I am not kidding when I say this, it WILL be the absolute best B&G you have ever tasted! It was handed down to me from an older, southern, dear friend I used to call my surrogate mom….and I have served this hundreds of times with the same reaction – it IS the best!

  12. Your breakfast pictures are making me drool! The recipe looks fantastic…can’t wait to make it!

    Glad to see you’re blogging for a good cause!!!

  13. I love biscuits and gravy! My hubby loves it also. But my kids never developed a fondness for Bs and Gs. The best gravy for it is to use Jimmy Dean Original Sausage for it to be truty Southern.

  14. I love biscuits and gravy, and I love anything that helps out the Nashville Red Cross!

    My only concern is that using a metal whisk on a cast iron pan might damage the seasoning!

  15. Isn’t weather exciting. Not fun for the cleanup and kudos to you and your new (lovely) wife Becky for helping out. I usually lurk, but thought I’d spend a minute or two boosting your cause. Can’t say I’d be fond of B&G (never liked soggy bread) but I do love biscuits with other additions (Cheddar, herbs & garlic).
    Cathy, Gravenhurst, Ontario, Canada

  16. Thoughts are with you Nashville. I always hear such wonderful things about the city – I have to get there to visit once things dry out.

  17. What you guys are doing is great! Here in BG (Bowling Green, not biscuits and gravy) we had some road camcelations and school closures, but the sadder part is that most of us know people personally who lost their homes. Thanks for being willing to help them!

  18. What a great cause, and an excellent post, the B’s and G’s are one of my very favorite “completely indulgent” brunch choices.

  19. I’m not gonna lie. Biscuits n’ gravy is not my thing. I dunno. Where I come from, gravy isn’t white. I just can’t wrap my head around it. But Betsy’s mom is adorable and I hope she and the puppy don’t have eX-treme mold growing all over them. :(

  20. Thanks for the great instruction. I have never made buttermilk biscuits because I didn't know how to make them flaky, but I'm on it now!

  21. Those biscuits look delicious. I never thought to fold the dough. I hope you get all the comments! I had an idea to pick out a random address from the flood zone and mail an anonymous donation.

  22. Hey Nick & Betsy,
    Congratulations on getting married. I love your great recipes and all the helpful “how to” information. My son thinks B & G are one of the best foods on the planet. I will make these for him soon. Thanks for your help to the Nashville Red Cross too.

  23. Great recipe, biscuits are so intimidating because they’re either really good or awful, there is no in between.

  24. Hi!
    I just ran across your site while looking for a new recipe and wanted to say thanks for the support! I live in Nashville and really appreciate you sharing some light on our recent devastation. My family and I’s home did take some damage; but we made it through safe and sound so that’s all that matters! I’ll definitely be sharing your info on my blog to bring as many comments as possible! Cheers!

  25. Congrats on your tying the knot…happy future to both of you.
    Wishing Nashville a speedy recovery.

  26. LUUUUUUUUUUUUV biscuits and gravy!!! Moved to Boston area a few years ago (from Nashville) and no one has any idea what a treat these are! May have to make some :)

  27. Mmm, nothing beats biscuits and gravy. I have always noticed I could only get them in the South and in the West (as I’m sure you’ve noticed as a Wyoming native). Wonder what the connection is there…

  28. Nick,
    The flooding is really devastating….it hit in my area too..but not as bad. One little in particular was hard hit.

    The biscuits and gravy look great….I have never attempted either…but grew up helping my mother make both. She always uses an iron skillet….and uses half milk and half water in her gravy….it always turns out delicious.

    Thanks for helping those in need….
    Kim

  29. This looks delicious! My grandmother makes her gravy similarly, but adds chopped, hard-boiled eggs at the end. It makes it unique, and really delicious.

  30. I am soooo glad you posted a biscuit and gravy recipe!!! I have been searching for one and this looks fantastic. Thank you! : )

  31. This reminds me… I need to make your savory breakfast rolls. I keep meaning too, but this just jogged my memory again. Those rolls made me think of gourmet bs and gs when I first saw them… one day in the future they will be in my tummy!

    (Here’s to commenting for a dollar towards Nashville too!)

  32. I love B&G but I never really make the gravy right (or most gravies for that matter).. I’m saving this recipe for when I’m out of finals :)

    I like my B&G with some diced or sliced tomatoes and cream corn… and bacon. I want to make sure I get as many calories in as possible :P

  33. Oops… I've ignored my reader feeds all weekend! These look excellent! My boyfriend just had the B & G's at the Mother's Day brunch we went to this weekend – I might have to go and show him that I can beat any buffet line's food! Thanks for this post (and you're generous donation to Nashville!)

  34. Hi, I’ve never heard of this dish before it sounds a bit weird to me!

    I’ve been reading your blog for a while but never felt the need to post, but seen as you are donating to a good cause I thought why not

    Good luck and keep up the good work

  35. Your biscuits and gravy look fantastic! That was one of my favorite childhood dishes too. Haven’t made it in awhile, but your photos have inspired me to make it again soon! Also, here’s my comment to contribute to Nashville’s recovery.

    ~ B. :)

  36. Hey guys, great post I was sent here through FIMB and lived in Nashville for a bit. I only spent about a year there but it became home! I have a bunch of family still there and they are doing well but looking at pictures of all that history lost in the flood devastates me. Thanks for helping out and just seeing the B&G recipe warms my heart!

  37. Aaaah B&G is my fiance’s favorite. We usually do a mushroom gravy, but this looks amazing. Also: square biscuits are not lazy, they’re efficient. No wasteful scraps to throw away from round cuts!

    Good luck!

  38. I’m from the Nashville area – not hit by floods – but it’s been devastating watching what has happened to families and businesses in Nashville and throughout Middle Tennessee. It is awesome that you’re donating to help the relief efforts.

    And…those biscuits look delicious!

  39. Macheesmo, I started reading your blog a few months ago and get giddy everytime I see my reader has a new post from you. Thanks from those who are learning how to cook… the explanation and pictures for each recipe helps tremendously for a newbie like me. I like that you are blogging from DC (I’m from Baltimore) so it feels kind of close to home. Here’s to $200!

    Congrats on being married!

    Jen

  40. What a great idea! Here’s another comment–one more dollar for Nashville. Good luck on the fundraiser!

  41. I love Nashville! My friends and I go every year for the Americana Music Festival. The pictures from there are heartbreaking. I came from FIMB, and am happy to have found your blog, too!

  42. I’ve been following your blog for some time now, all way from South Africa. I love your cooking style. B’s and G’s are not big here, I might just try the B’s on their own. Congrats on getting married and good luck with the fundraiser.

  43. Mmm… as a newly preggo girl (14 weeks) with a big appetite, I gotta say this looks very very delish! As in, do you deliver? Good luck with the fundraising, what a lovely gesture!

  44. This is the best dinner food in the world though when I make it myself I will try to make homemade sausage to go with it.

  45. That little place in your home town wouldn’t by chance be Patty’s would it? Or maybe Ember’s? Either way this recipe looks delish! I love B’s and G’s, I just never thought to use whole milk! I always just use my normal skim milk….. I guess I’m missing out on the creaminess! Can’t wait to try it! Anyway, what a great cause you are donating to! Hope you make it to $200!

  46. I have several friends in the Nashville area that were hit pretty hard. One family watched their dog get washed away, as they were bundling the kids into the car to leave. Thankfully, when they returned, the house was not under water, and the dog came running out from under the porch. So glad there are some happy stories.

    Love your blog and your food ideas are wonderful.

  47. Thanks for helping out where it’s really needed. Biscuits & Gravy are the best, besty homey meal ever. I’ve not made them in ages, thanks for the reminder of their wonderful existence!

  48. Biscuits and gravy are one of our Saturday morning favorites. We usually build the roux with the sausage still in the pan; it works out great.

  49. Biscuits and gravy are one of my favorites, too! I recently discovered the most amazing biscuit hack, which is replacing about 2/3 of the AP Flour with cake flour. The lower protein content yields unearthly light & fluffy biscuits.

  50. My son since a little boy performed in Nashville and was always welcomed and remembered there. It is the most welcoming city we had ever been to and we returned many times. My son since grown, now 18 and our trips have more or less ceased as he now performs mostly in NYC since he is more of a rocker. But Nashville is in all of our hearts forever. We have made many many permanant friends there and have heard of the mess they are dealing with. So in addition to what we are doing we are adding to your post as well. And I will ask you, my son since for 4 years has been a vegetarian and biscuits and gravey had been his favorite dish previously, any ideas for a vegetarian version? Our hearts go out to all of our friends and the whole city who always opens their hearts to all.

    1. Karen, you should look into making a mushroom gravy to pour over the biscuits, it's delicious and still has those "hearty chunks" that give a gravy like this good texture.

  51. Great idea! Posted it on Facebook and already had a response from a south Georgia friend who now lives on Fire Island off NYC’s coast…!
    Stay the course, my friends!

  52. Great recipe and a great idea to help out Nashville, thanks for doing this. I was in the process of moving out of Nashville last weekend when the floods hit. I drove all night Saturday to Wash. DC, stayed for a day and then turned around and drove back to Nashville to volunteer last week. It's unreal the devastation that city has experienced and I know what I did was a drop in the bucket of volunteer man hours but it felt good to be able to help out a little. Nashville is such a special place and the people are amazing, they will come back from this stronger than ever but they are going to need help rebuilding for a long time.

  53. We made biscuits and gravy a few weeks ago.
    [http://porkandnoodles.tumblr.com/post/551128282/breakfast-of-crazylegs-champions]
    The sausage gravy looks amazing. We’ll have to try it sometime.

  54. High five for the donations! I live in Nashville and it is really bad down here. Thanks for you help!

  55. this looks fabulous! thanks for the biscuit recipe, looks easy enough even i could handle it. and props to you and betsy for helping Nashville!!!!!!!

  56. Thanks for the love for Nashville everyone! Can’t wait to eat leftover B’s & G’s tonight…yum.

  57. I haven’t tried your recipe yet, but look forward to doing so. My husband loves B and G and orders it when we go out for breakfast. We both grew up eating this special treat. The recipes sound easy to follow. I have made B and G many times for my family.

  58. Thanks for posting the recipe I have always used country sasuage instead of Italian. I will be giving it a try soon. Hope you get your 200 replies.

  59. These biscuits look awesome! Can’t take my eyes from the sixth picture, I love how flaky they are.
    Sorry for the flood in Nashville. Hope they get better soon.

  60. This is so great of you guys! Also, thanks for the B&G recipe…for something so simple, it takes a true pro to execute non starchy, lumpy, gluey biscuits and gravy!

  61. My Grammie Duffer used to make this!! (I remember the square biscuits too) I want to try this at home.

  62. Thanks a ton for doing this! I am from just north of Nashville and today my son is working with a church in Madison to distribute clothes and supplies, and help move furniture from flooded homes. It’s good to know I’m not alone finding Bs and Gs as a favorite!

  63. I’ll have to try this biscuit recipe… I’m still puzzled as to why whenever I make biscuits they seem to do more spreading out than they do puffing up!

  64. Never been to Nashville, but I like people and I like gravy. Please do what you can to help those people out.

  65. I now officially have to make biscuits and gravy. I’ve never had it! It also looks like something the boyfriend would eat :P which is always a bonus. haha

  66. Since I am Nick’s mother in law in Nashville I had better leave a comment! The city and churches here have been amazing in the recovery. I am proud of the city. Just got the internet back (still no phone…) and have all but the crawlspace clean up done.

  67. Yum to t he Bs & Gs and I hope you get $200 because Nashville is gorgeous and can use all the love, help and support as they can get!

  68. yum! few things better than biscuits and gravy!! totally wish i was at your house now

    bless you for your charity to others :)

  69. I'm normally just a devoted lurker, but appreciate what you're doing to help Nashville. (Oh, and great recipe, too.)

  70. Hey Nick!

    I’m glad to hear your extended family is alright.

    Betsy should do a guest post! She sounds really awesome and I’d love to know what it’s like to have a cooking spouse. My boyfriend made his own breakfast the other day and was just so *proud* to have cooked it from scratch. Cute! I’ll make a chef out of him yet!

  71. I L-O-V-E biscuits and gravy! I think it's the 1 breakfast food my 5yo will eat without complaining. When I moved to Maine after college I found that they don't really do biscuits and gravy there… I was astonished! lol I think there's like 1 truckstop in the entire state that serves it and it's listed on the back at the bottom or something – insanity!

  72. Sounds very tasty! I will have to show my mom your recipe for gravy…she has never had success with making it. Hopefully that will change this time! Also, I hope you get 200 comments. That’s a really cool thing you and Betsy are doing.

  73. I have never eaten “b&g”, and probably never will. It is not something that appeals to me personally, but was an interesting post to read.
    I am happy to help you guys reach the 200 comments, and to say Good Luck to the folks in Nashville, as they begin to rebuild.

  74. Square biscuits – that is truly brilliant! I love biscuits and gravy – and from now on I’m making square biscuits! Wonderful of you and Betsy to donate and help Nashville.

  75. SAVE NASHVILLE. Great idea guys. The city has been good to us – now let’s be good to the city!

  76. Thanks for the donation. what is better than B and G? We are also missing our "Biscuit Lady" from the Loveless Cafe.

  77. SOOOO GOOD! :D

    Loving every bit of them, eventually got round to making them and they were, and I quote, “om nom nom.. dee-lish!”

    Thanks for the recipe!

  78. I have a lot of german chicken sausages… Any changes you would make to the recipe in order to utilize this flavor?

    1. The only thing might be that chicken sausage tends to not be as fatty as pork, so you might have to add some extra butter before you start making your gravy. If your pan is dry, just toss in a few Tablespoons and you should be all set ;)

  79. Big fail on this recipe; very disappointed. The sausages did not render the required fat I needed to make the roux; So in a panic, I added some water …. sauce never thinking — had to dump it out =[

    1. Sorry for the fail man. For future reference, I'm not sure what kind of sausage you used but sausages have hugely different fat content depending on brand, type, etc. So if the sausage you used was lean or pre-cooked then it probably wouldn't make enough fat to make the roux.

      If you try it again, or any roux recipe really, just remember that most roux mixes are usually 1 part fat to 1 part flour. So if I have 1/4 Cup of flour, I need 1/4 Cup of fat as well (you can eyeball this. It doesn't have to be perfect.) So water will actually do the opposite of what you want. If you don't have enough oil from the sausage you can add in butter or any kind of oil (veggie/lard/olive/etc) and it should get you there.

      Sorry it didn't work out man. Let me know if you try it again with better results.

  80. we are utilizing your recipe to make gravy for 100! wish us luck! (unfortunately, we aren't providing the "b"s but yours sound delicious and we can't wait to try them at home later.)

  81. I am going to make this! Never made biscuits before or gravy, but its my boyfriends favorite!

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