Copycat Red Lobster Cheddar Bay Biscuits

Unless you live under a rock, I’m sure you’ve heard of Red Lobster. It’s a popular seafood restaurant that is known for events like Lobster Fest, Shrimp Fest, and of course, the biscuits.

I’m not the biggest seafood fan, so I’ve only been to Red Lobster a handful of times, and usually for people I love that are celebrating, like my mom, or for Paul’s birthday. Every time I go, I usually order something salmon. It’s safe, and it’s not shellfish. (I just have an aversion to shellfish. Too fishy. Don’t judge. I know it’s an odd trait.)

The one thing I do love from Red Lobster is those freakin’ amazing Cheddar Bay biscuits. The fact that they never stop coming to the table is heaven for a carb-fiend like me. You can’t have Red Lobster without the biscuits, am I right?

Either way, I always see the Cheddar Bay biscuits box mix in Costco, and I’m always tempted to buy it. (Still haven’t though. Willpower.) I also have a hard time buying mixed for things that I know I can recreate with a little bit of Googling and a trip to my pantry.

So, I was in the mood for something a little savoury, and a little salty, but not too difficult or time-consuming. Cue these biscuits! I had pinned this recipe on Pinterest ages ago, but hadn’t actually got around to making them yet. So glad I did!

It’s been long enough that I can’t really remember the exact taste of Red Lobster biscuits (just the memory of the taste… garlicky, salty, cheese, buttery goodness), so these were perfect. Crisp on the outside, tender and soft on the inside, and of course, garlicky, salty, cheesy, and buttery. Copycat win! I got the recipe here, and holy were they ever easy to make! It took me less than an hour from start to finish (finish as in cramming these beauties into my mouth). The only thing I “changed” in the recipe is that I added a pinch (or less) of the Italian seasoning into the biscuit, and I also sprinkled a teensy bit of kosher salt onto the tops of the biscuits to really make the flavours pop. I’ve reflected these minuscule changes below.

Go make these! You will not be disappointed!

Ingredients

Yield: 8-12 biscuits, depending on size preference

For the biscuit:

1¾ c. flour
¾ tsp. salt
1½ tsp. baking powder
½ tsp. garlic powder
Pinch of Italian seasoning
5 tbsp. butter, softened
1 c. milk
1 c. shredded Cheddar cheese

For the garnish:

2 tbsp. butter, melted
½ tsp. Italian seasoning
½ tsp. (or 1 clove) minced garlic
Kosher or sea salt, for finishing

Preheat oven to 450°F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

In a large bowl, add the flour, salt, baking powder, garlic powder, and Italian seasoning. Cut in the butter, either by mixing everything in a food processor, or with a pastry blender. The mixture should be pea-sized chunks.

Add in the milk and cheese, and stir to combine. The dough will be sticky.

With a large spoon, drop the batter onto the prepared baking sheet about 2 inches apart. If you want larger biscuits, like I did, make 8 fairly large dough balls. The original recipe makes 12 smaller biscuits.

Bake in the preheated oven for 15 minutes, or until the tops of the biscuits turn golden brown. (Mine took about 18-20 minutes.)

While the biscuits are baking, combine the topping ingredients by whisking together the melted butter, garlic, and Italian seasoning in a small bowl.

Remove from the oven, and brush with the butter topping. Lightly sprinkle the buttered biscuits with salt, and cool slightly before serving.

These biscuits are best when warm.

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White Dinner Rolls

I’m a sucker for bread. We know this. So, I came across these dinner rolls and something inside me yelled “WE HAVE TO MAKE THESE RIGHT NOW!”. I’m not one to argue when it comes to bread and baked goods, so I made them.

Let’s just say I am SO GLAD I did. The recipe makes a lot (as in two dozen rolls), but that’s okay. No one ever really turned their nose up at homemade buns…. did they? At least, Paul never has. These were pretty easy to make, and the appealing thing was that they use shortening. I’ve never used shortening in rolls or breads before (that I can recall, that is…), and I was excited because I forgot to take my butter out of the freezer to that last night.

Like I said, super quick to make, and they weren’t that difficult. The rise time is relatively short for bread dough, which also made me happy. I got the recipe from here, and this is a winner in my books.

Speaking of, I am feeling a little peckish as I write this. I think I’ll wrap up, and go get a mid-afternoon roll with butter. My kind of snack!

Ingredients

Yield: 2 dozen rolls

½ c. water
2 tbsp. active dry yeast
2 tsp. sugar
2 c. milk
1/3 c. sugar
2 tsp. salt
¼ c. shortening or butter
1 egg
4-5 c. flour
¼ c. melted butter, for brushing

In a small bowl or coffee mug, microwave the water for 20-30 seconds, until lukewarm, but not hot.

Add the yeast and 2 teaspoons sugar and stir. Let this mixture sit for 5 minutes. Watch it so it doesn’t overflow! (As in, if your yeast is still alive, it will foam and rise very fast! If it doesn’t foam, the water was too hot and killed the yeast. Try again.)

In a glass measuring cup, microwave 2 cups milk for 1-2 minutes until it is warm but not hot.

In a large bowl or stand mixer, add the second measurement of sugar, salt, and shortening, and 2 cups of the flour. Stir together with a wooden spoon, or use your dough hook. Add the warm milk, yeast mixture, and 1 egg. Mix well and let rest 5 minutes.

Add 2-3 (or up to 3 ½) cups flour, one cup at a time, mixing in between. Once all the flour has been incorporated, knead for 5-6 minutes, using your hands or the dough hook. (I ended up adding the extra 3½ cups of flour.)

Grease a large bowl well with oil or butter. Scrape all the dough into the bowl, shape it together, then turn it over so that the top is greased. Cover loosely with a tea towel or plastic wrap. Let rise until doubled, about 1 hour.

Punch down the dough. Divide the dough into 24 equal pieces. Shape each piece into a ball (pinch one end with your fingers).

Place the rolls in 2 well-greased pans. I used two 9×13 pans.

Cover the pans with tea towels and let them rise in a warm spot for another 30-45 minutes, until doubled in size. When they are almost done rising, preheat your oven to 375°F.

Bake for 12-15 minutes or until golden brown all across the top.

Remove from the oven and brush with melted butter. Serve warm.

 

 

Sourdough Cinnamon Rolls

I know what you’re thinking! The first reaction to sourdough cinnamon rolls is “Ugh! I don’t think that goes well together!”. I thought the exact same thing, but the more I thought about it, the more I came around. I mean, I’ve used my sourdough starter in cakes before. Why couldn’t it work for cinnamon rolls?

This recipe was also very easy. I started these rolls at about 4pm on a Saturday. I followed all instructions, and let the second rise happen overnight. When I woke up Sunday morning, the dough had risen beautifully and was ready and waiting to be rolled out and filled with gooey cinnamon filling.

Like I said, this recipe was very easy. I also found the recipe off of Pinterest, and they have wonderful options, so I was excited! The original recipe is found here. It wasn’t that time consuming, and the results were beautiful! I’d say that’s a win-win situation!

Holy man these were good! The sourdough becomes very subtle, but definitely adds something to the dough. The slight tang of the sourdough with the sweetness of the cinnamon and the the sugar? Oh yes. These are AWESOME!

Considering I’m always on the lookout for new ways to use my sourdough starter, I’d say this is a solid choice. I’ve been making tons of sourdough crackers lately (link here), and I wanted to change it up a bit. I mean, I love to snack on those freakin’ addictive crackers, but I wanted to satisfy my sweet tooth, and did I ever!

Ingredients

Yield: 16-24 cinnamon rolls, depending on how big you cut them

For the dough:

1 c. sourdough starter
1 tsp. salt
½ c. sugar
1/3 c. butter, melted and cooled
2 eggs
¼ c. warm milk
1 tsp. yeast
3-4 c. flour

For the filling:

5 tbsp. butter, softened
1 tsp. vanilla
½ c. brown sugar
1 tbsp. cinnamon

For the frosting:

1 c. icing sugar
1 tsp. vanilla
2 tbsp. milk

To make the dough, add the sourdough starter, salt, butter, sugar and eggs to the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a dough hook. Combine.

Add yeast to the warm milk, mix in and allow to sit for 5 minutes, or until foamy. Once foamy, add the milk and yeast mixture to the starter mix. Combine again.

With the mixer on low, gradually add the flour, 1 cup at a time (when you get to 3 cups, add a small amount at a time. Mine only took about 3 1/3 cups of flour). Dough should be in a soft ball, that is not sticky.

Turn out onto a lightly floured surface and knead until smooth and elastic. Place dough in an oiled bowl and allow to rise until doubled (2-3 hours).

Punch down, and allow to rise again (I let the second rise happen overnight).

Punch down again, turn out onto your work surface and with a rolling pin roll out into a large rectangle.

Preheat the oven to 400°F. In a small bowl, mix the filling ingredients until smooth and cohesive. Spread over the dough evenly.

Roll the long side of the rectangle tightly, and keep rolling until the dough is a log. Using plain, unflavoured dental floss, cut the dough into 1-inch sections. Place in pie plates, and bake in the preheated oven for 10-15 minutes, or until slightly golden brown.

In a small bowl, whisk together the frosting ingredients until smooth. Drizzle the frosting over the cinnamon rolls. Serve warm.

Buttery Sourdough Buns


We all know how much I love bread and all things bread related. It’s been a while since I’ve posted anything sourdough, and I had a hankering to experiment with a recipe I’ve never tried before using sourdough.

I mean, my fall-back recipe using my sourdough starter are my Sourdough Soft Pretzels, except recently, I’ve been turning them into dinner by wrapping the dough around hot dogs and then proceeding with the recipe – BAM! Sourdough Pretzel Dogs.If you think that sounds good – seriously try it! It’s FANTASTIC! It’s also my new favourite way to eat hot dogs… and I was never a hot dog fan.

But, back to all things bread and buns. The great thing about bread and bun recipes are that they take so long. However, this is also the downfall. I can’t make a loaf of bread if I’ve got school, or if I’ll be out of the house all day. However, I got up this morning, Thanksgiving Monday, and thought “I need to use my sourdough starter”. I always love looking for recipes that use the unfed “discard” part of the starter – waste not, want not. This bun recipe was great, because it uses pantry staples (if your pantry, like mine, includes a sourdough starter) and didn’t take long to whip together. I was going to spend the day lounging around the house and getting some marking done anyways, so it was the perfect thing to make… also considering it just snowed overnight! Boo. 😦


Either way – I love bread, I love buns. I’m really and truly a carb fan. This recipe is simple, and the longest part is waiting for the buns to rise. Still, one more way to use my sourdough starter, and I’m fine with that!

Ingredients

Yield: 16 buns

½ c. sourdough starter (fed or unfed)
3 c. flour
2½ tsp. instant yeast
1 tbsp. sugar
1¼ tsp. salt
1 egg
5 tbsp. butter, at room temperature
2/3 c. lukewarm water

4 tbsp. butter, melted, for topping

In the bowl of a mixer fitted with a dough hook, or by hand, combine all ingredients and knead until you get a soft, smooth dough.

Transfer to a lightly oiled bowl and cover with plastic wrap or a tea towel and let rise until almost doubled, about 1½ – 2 hours.

Gently deflate dough and transfer to a lightly greased work surface. Roll and pat the dough into a rough rectangle about 12″ x 16″. Brush some of the melted butter over the surface of the dough.

Starting with the long side, roll the dough into a log. Cut 16 buns out of the dough log with a sharp knife or use dental floss. Lightly grease two 8 or 9 inch cake pans, and arrange 8 buns in each pan.

Cover the pans with a tea towel, and let rise for about 1 hour, until they are noticeably puffy. Toward the end of the rising time, preheat the oven to 350° F.

Uncover the buns, brush with remaining melted butter, and bake for 22-25 minutes. They may only darken on the top very slightly. Remove from the oven, and turn out onto a wire cooling rack. Serve warm or hot with more butter as desired. You can also save some of the melted butter to brush over the buns when they come out of the oven.

Flaky Baking Powder Biscuits

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Time is flying right now! I have not been as good as I should in keeping up with trying to give you all a new post approximately every week or so. That’s how busy I’ve been. What with subbing so much, working at the restaurant, and planning this wedding, I feel like it’s an accomplishment to make myself dinner half the time! I do have a couple recipes “on deck” if you will – that I’ve made in the last little bit and haven’t posted yet… so because I didn’t get a sub call today (which is extremely strange to me!) I will probably spend the next little while in front of my computer and type out those posts/recipes, so that I can just click “Publish” and send you all more goodies!

I pinned these biscuits a few days ago, because I just hadn’t had biscuits in the longest time. I love a fluffy, tall, flaky biscuit, and that’s what was advertised in the original recipe, so I decided to give these a go (and make myself something delicious to snack on as well!).

I love buttered biscuits. I know, some people prefer jam, some peanut butter, and the U.S.A. prefers biscuits topped with a white sausage gravy, but I am a sucker for a plain, beautiful biscuit slathered in butter while warm. The butter gets all melty and delicious, and the biscuit layers… I’ll stop. I’m too excited.

The recipe is extremely easy – you don’t even need to drag out your mixer! They took me about 10-15 minutes to whip up, and they bake for as long, so you can have warm, fresh, fluffy biscuits in the next half hour. You’re welcome.
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Ingredients

Yield: 9-10 biscuits, approx. 4 inches each

3 c. flour
1 tbsp. sugar
1½ tsp. salt
1 tbsp. baking powder
¾ c. buttermilk
1  egg, beaten
¼ c. shortening
2 tbsp. cold water
½ c. butter, cold, and cut into cubes

Preheat the oven to 425°F. Line a baking tray with parchment paper or a silicone baking mat.

In a large bowl, combine the flour, sugar, salt, and baking powder. Toss with a fork to combine. Make a well in the dry ingredients, and add the buttermilk, beaten egg, shortening, and water.

Mix with a wooden spoon  to start to combine, but do not overmix.

Add in cubed butter, and with your hands, knead the butter into the dough about 7 or 8 times. The butter should be slightly incorporated, but also in visible chunks in the dough. This will make the biscuits extra fluffy. Again, do not overmix, or the biscuits will become tough.

Turn out the dough on a non-stick surface or wooden cutting board and pat dough into a circle, about 1½ inches high. Using a glass rimmed in flour or a circular cookie cutter,  cut out biscuits, getting as many from the first cut as you can. Do not twist the cutter or the glass, instead going as smoothly up and down as you can. Twisting the cutter’s edge seals off the edge of the biscuit and does not let it rise as high.

Place biscuits on lined baking sheet, with the edges touching. Bake in preheated oven for 12-15 minutes, or until biscuits are light golden brown around tops and bottoms. Serve warm with butter, jam, gravy, whatever your heart desires!