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Thursday, November 4, 2010

Skillet Biscuit Bread

Despite the fact that Nate and I used to be addicted to the show Good Eats, we actually hardly ever watch any food shows on TV. One of the cooking shows that has had staying power for us, however, is Jacques Pépin’s More Fast Food My Way on PBS. Jacques shares low-key, simple food and I especially like it when his daughter is on the show with him. Their interactions are so, I don’t know, un-produced and we love it. On a recent episode, Jacques made a simple skillet bread. I paused the TV, got out a pen and piece of paper and wrote down everything he did. The result? Today’s recipe for skillet biscuit bread.

Quick and easy biscuit skillet bread recipe, inspired by Jacque Pepin, from This Week for Dinner

I am so happy I took notes and tried out this skillet biscuit bread. It was really good. By the way, Jacques did not call this skillet biscuit bread himself. I’m renaming it because the bread tasted a lot like biscuits, minus all the stress that goes into making biscuits! This bread is really so easy to throw together and my 2-year-old Anna couldn’t stop eating it! Three cheers for skillet biscuit bread!

How to make biscuit skillet bread like Jacque Pepin from This Week for Dinner

Here’s a side shot so you can get an idea of the texture. The outside is quite crusty and cripsy, while the inside is very moist and biscuity (how’s that for an adjective?). So, if you’re tight on time and ingredients and want a simple biscuit-like bread to go with dinner, give this a try.

Jacque Pepin's Skillet Biscuit Bread, easy and tasty weeknight bread!

Skillet Biscuit Bread
As described by Jacques Pépin on More Fast Food My Way
Recipe type: Side Dish, Bread
  • 1½ cup flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 cup water + a few more tablespoons
  1. Mix the dry ingredients, then add water and mix.
  2. Pour about 1 tablespoon of olive oil (I have also used butter with great success) in a 9-inch non-stick skillet over medium heat. Immediately pour the batter into the pan, spreading evenly and letting some of the oil come on top as you press the dough down. Add a few tablespoons of water around the edge of the bread then cover with a lid.
  3. Cook for about 7 minutes (until browned), flip and and then cook covered about another 7 minutes or so. Bread should be browned on both sides.
  4. Cut up, butter the bread and enjoy! Would also be delicious with a bit of honey!





  1. 1

    Oh, this looks like an awesome savory breakfast bread too. Definitely going to add this to our repertoire.

  2. sounds good! 🙂 might have to try it if I can borrow a pan from my sister or mom. we only have stainless steel pans

    • Jane Maynard

      you know…if you buttered your stainless steel pan a lot it might work. it’s such an inexpensive bread, might be worth the test…and if you DO test it (I don’t have a stainless steel pan this size), let us know if it works! 😉

    • MeShell

      Your skillet biscuits …
      You think they’d work using spelt flour? In a skillet?

  3. This looks delicious! I love a quick bread recipe, especially since every time I make some, I want it right away. Do you think it would hold up to adding other items to it (like for a savory breakfast mentioned above)?

    • Jane Maynard

      yes, I do think it would hold up. it’s quite hearty. if you experiment, please report back! 🙂

  4. 4

    I will take a slice with honey! Thanks Jane:)

  5. I think I may add some herbs to this, maybe a little shredded cheese and serve it with some soup or beans…will probably try this for dinner tonight, thanks!

  6. i love that show too and was intrigued by this recipe – i put my own spin on his gnocchi n eggs a while ago:

  7. 7

    This looks wonderful and so quick and easy. I’m trying it tonight!

  8. 8

    Yum! I bet it would work really nicely in a cast iron skillet as well. I’d like to see how it works out with a whole grain flour, like spelt or whole wheat as well. I often do a flat bread on my pizza stone, but it’s a yeasted dough, so you’ve got to factor in rising time. I’ll try this one for sure!

    • Heidi

      I was thinking of the cast iron and whole grain flour too!!! Worth a try!!

    • April

      Katie, actually a cast iron pan in the perfect way to cook this!! Trust me, I know this 😉 Please see my comment under Chris’ post 12 comments down from yours. 🙂

  9. 9

    Looks terrific, and so simple – I love that!

  10. 10
    Janna M

    I would add some fresh herbs like dill and chives and make cucumber sandwiches with it. What an awesome recipe!
    I don’t watch much TV… I’ll have to look up that show. It sounds great.

  11. WOW this looks great! I love Jacques Pepin !

  12. 12

    I just want to reach into that last photo and take that bread.

  13. 13

    An ardent breakfast eater…(Only have breakfast at times)I am..Just love the bread in it…I am sure will fulfill my carbohydrate frenzy in the morning…

  14. 14

    Delish + easy = winner! Can’t wait to try it. Thanks!!

  15. This bread is amazing! I tried it tonight and me and my boyfriend couldn’t stop eating it! Thank so much for the recipe! I documented my experience here:

  16. 16

    I’m always looking for a fast bread recipe for side dishes!

  17. 17

    This looks absolutely delicious! I just found your blog – and love it!

  18. 18
    Maria Teresa

    I try this bread recipe, and didn´t work for me. I put the mix into the skillet and then turn it 10 min later and wait another 10 min. I thought it was ready because the crust was brown but in the inside was gluey and sticky. I wait for another 20 min and never get cook enought. I am wandering what happened!!.. I will keep trying… Any suggestions?

    • Robert Tolman

      Try turning down the heat. I cooked mine at 350°f. Turned out PERFECT! Good luck!

  19. 19

    I made this as a late night snack and it was pretty good. Tasted like a giant tortilla to me.

  20. 20

    The picture looks a lot like what my mom made for us as kids; she called it “hoe cake”. Mom has Alzheimer’s and can’t remember the recipe. I so regret not getting it sooner. But I will try this one for sure.

    • April

      I was born in New Orleans, La and my family is from the bayou in lower La (Cajun & Creole). I grew up on this every morning with coffee (yes we were given coffee(with chickory) at a very young age) and although according to the dictionary its not the correct term, we call it short cake. My maw maw (great grandma) always fixed this especially when we didn’t have much to eat…I’m 29 now, & I actually just fixed some with coffee for breakfast this morning!!! First time I’ve heard of anyone outside our family both speak of & truly appreciate this stuff! The only difference is we add a little oil to the “dough” and we don’t add baking powder (didn’t always have stuff like that in the house when you were poor lol).

    • Jane Maynard

      chris and april – I love BOTH of your comments, getting a peak into your lives and your family’s lives…thank you for commenting!

  21. 21

    Wow!!! First time at your blog and I’m definitely trying this recipe out tonight!!!!

  22. 22

    I was very thrilled to find this recipe here. My grandmother made this for me as a young boy. I tried the recipe exactly, but the dough didn’t cook on the inside. Any idea where I went wrong?

    • Jane Maynard

      my best guess is that your stove may run hotter than mine, so I would try it at a bit of a lower heat and maybe try cooking longer…sounds like the outside cooked to quickly before the middle could cook through. try adjust the heat and let us know if that works!

  23. 23
    Angela Ballard

    I made this tonight to eat with some breaded chicken breasts, parm noodles and gravy. I was looking for a hearty bread to dip in the gravy and boy was this it! I am so thankful that I found this recipe. I made one plain and one with cheddar and garlic. yum yum!

  24. 24

    My Mom use to fix this daily for breakfast with eggs and Sausage or Bacon i rember her fixing it over 30 years ago Toss some Gravy on it and u good to go

  25. 25

    I make a bunch of versions of this on a regular basis… it started as an experiment and quickly became a staple. Not sure I have exact measurements, but the idea is the same, although I make more of a dough than a batter. Tends to be less chewy that way. I go back and forth between the backing powder/salt and sugar/yeast for the leavening. If you try the yeast, you can mix it right into the dry mix and then add enough warm water to mix it all together. Add additional flour to make it pizza-dough like and you’ll get an awesome fried dough like thing. Also mix any of these into the dry stuff for some variety: thyme, rosemary, curry powder, masala, cinnamon, nutmeg, chopped nuts, dried fruit, shelled seeds like sunflower seeds, garlic/onion powder, an egg, various greases cut in… I usually fry it in butter, but also use olive oil, chicken fat, or beef fat gleaned from stock preparation. I think the chicken fat is best with plain or rosemary – it tastes awesome. I don’t render the fats first, either… just scoop it right off the top of the soup stock after refrigerating! Another thing that comes out phenomenally well is to mix up plain or spiced and sprinkle cajun spice into the frying grease of your choice. Sprinkle a bit more in when flipping. Adds a nice kick. You could also sprinkle coarse salt in the pan when pressing the dough in, or any number of things. I have added cheese to the dough, as well. Sometimes I press the dough into the pan while hot and then spread it a bit, other times I flatten it and then put in the hot pan. We never really know what we’re having any given night… I just look for stuff. Tonight we had a wheat flour version with chopped pecans and walnuts, cooked in chicken fat. It was hearty, a bit heavier than packaged wheat bread and much tastier. Anywho, good post. I wondered what other pan breads might be like!

  26. I had the same problem with the outside browning but the inside still unbaked. Don’t know how to get it to cook all the way thru

  27. Why does my bread never cook all the way thru?? I’m using an 8″ teflon pan and spreading it all the way to the edge, but the inside is still kind of raw. Is it the size of the pan?

    • it could be the size of the pan for sure. also, try cooking at a lower temperature. but, yeah, jacques pepin used a 9″ pan, so that 1″ could be making a difference. Maybe try using less dough, too! hope this is helpful 🙂

  28. 28
    theresa brownlee

    I dont know if i did it right. Mine didnt seem to cook in the middle.It is kind of gummy. Could i have used too much butter?

  29. 29
    BOb. Biggins

    i had no problem cooking this in my seasoned 9 inch cast iron skillet. I melted 1 tbs of butter in the pan and coated the bottom and sides. I folded shredded cheddar cheese into the batter. Actually you can fold in anything you like. I cooked the batter on medium low for 7 minuted then flipped the batter and cooked the flip side for 8 minutes. With a knife make a small cut into the bread after flipped to check if the batter is fully cooked or not. If so just cook another minute or so. Anyway mine was very tasty with butter and honey. Just be innovative as to your topping. I rate this five star.

  30. 30

    So Jacque lives in our town! I finally had my first sighting of him last year while I was in the produce section of stop n shop! Totally star struck and I wanted to so badly get a picture of him by the citrus without causing a scene.

  31. 31

    Believe it not, the episode for skillet bread with his daughter just aired again. I too jotted down the recipe to try right away. His daughter still looks on in awe like a child when he casually flips the bread with a flick of the wrist. ♡ I had run out of AP flour and used whole wheat. Way too heavy…did not rise but an inch. Will cook again but am thinking of all sorts of sweet and savory options to try!

  32. 32

    Thanks for having this Skillet Bread on your blog just when I needed it! Plan to make it “as is” and then next time add some cheese. Bet some roasted tomatoes would be a good spread for it, too!


  33. 33

    I JUST made this and it’s delicious! I did add a teaspoon of sugar to balance out the flavors. This is one I will make over and over again.

  34. 34

    My skillet bread did not cook through.I would have liked it to, but I rescued it by using my round 4″ cutters,and making buns, sliced them in half and tossed them back in the pan for a while. Not bad!
    I am going to try some other things, turning the heat down, using some oil in the mix. But I remembered my mother used to bake bread for us, she would save some bits of dough to fry in shortening and we would have it for lunch, it was wonderful stuff. She called it Chippewa Fry Bread and I found a recipe here : See what you think of that! Thanks, Jane, for starting all this.


    • I know a few other people have had that issue – so strange how it does that for some and not others! but sounds like you work well on your feet, great fix!

      and thank you for sharing that – I will have to try that!!!

  35. 35
    Kankri Marietta

    .. would this work w/o baking powder??

  36. 36

    Hi. I made it this evening with a small pork roast and mashed potatoes and green beans. I added minced garlic and Italian herb blend. It was memorable and I will try it with other herb combos. Thanks so much for the recipe.

  37. 37
    heather kilgore

    Add some pizza toppings and toss it in the oven on broil a few mins! makes a really good pizza too!

  38. 38

    Its super good. I used half whole wheat flour and half white flour. Also changed and used half water half milk. Came out delicious!!

  39. A commenter left fairly insulting comments on this post, but did bring to my attention that the recipe was not written correctly – that I used butter instead of EVOO and didn’t use the correct technique. I had originally jotted down notes while watching the episode on TV but had no way of watching it again later (it was many years ago), and did miss the fact that Jacques cooked the bread covered and did in fact use EVOO instead of butter (although butter does work and is delicious, but EVOO is great, too!). What I had written originally here in the directions was exactly how I cooked the bread and it came out great, but I have gone back and modified the directions to mirror Jacques more accurately. I wrote the post many years ago, but that TV episode is now online (yay!) so I re-watched it and made more detailed directions accordingly. Hope that’s helpful for everyone!

    That same commenter also left a link to another blogger who wrote about the same recipe, which I will happily share here.

  40. 40
    Diane Watson

    Do you add more water for steaming the bread or more olive oil when you flip it?

  41. 41

    Did you use self rising or all purpose flour?

  42. 42

    I just have to say, I’m pretty sure this is going to be the favorite food in our house for quite a while. It is absolutely delicious!

  43. 43

    Thank you for posting this! I wanted biscuits but didn’t feel like cleaning the pan haha so I thought…what about a pan bread thingy…found your recipe and boom. Perfection. I added fresh garlic and oregano and it went perfectly with my sausage beans and rice!

  44. 44

    Good stuff, turned out perfect. Went perfectly with bbq roadkill and rat gumbo.

  45. 45
    Keith Harvey

    Hi Jane, from the UK! I’m going through a ‘Dutch oven, no knead’ bread craze right now but, as my bro’ gave me a heavy mid-sized cast iron frying pan (skillet) for Christmas, I thought I’d give this a try. Both breads are very simple and super scrummy. I cooked in butter as I’m very wary of heating olive oil nowadays (lipid peroxides, etc.) and I’ve tried covered and uncovered: the middle cooked more completely when covered, though by then I’d reduced from a high to a medium/high gas flame. I intend to try an oven version so will report back. Keep up the good work!

    • Hi Keith!

      Aren’t those no-knead dutch oven bread HEAVENLY?!?!?!?!? it is a craze worth joining.

      Thank you so much for your input – super helpful. I think butter would probably even taste better than olive oil, so I may just do that from now on myself. Love the comparison between covered and uncovered. Thank you!

      thanks for your comment!

  46. 46

    I made this Skillet Bread tonight (although I used an all purpose gluten free flour blend) and it turned out amazing. It’s been years since I’ve had a biscuit and this bread fit the bill perfectly.

    The fact that Jacques Pepin made this bread, encouraged me to make it. Jacques has never steered me wrong over the years.

  47. 47
    John Miller NZ

    Thank you so much Jane. I made this to have with soup last light and it worked perfectly. Next morning, I’ve toasted and buttered leftover slices for breakfast. Extremely yummy!

  48. 48

    I bake most of the bread we eat, but my oven stopped working and I needed to do something. I didn’t expect to find any good recipes to fill in the gap. Thankfully I was wrong. After reading the comments I decided to make one to go with the beans and rice we had for lunch, and it was so good as written. We’ve decided also to try it with herbs to use as sandwich bread. The comments also made it clear the the recipe is good as a base for creativity. So this afternoon my sweet tooth kicked in and I whipped up another version… kinda like a cinnamon bun. I added chopped pecans, raisins, cinnamon, and a little brown sugar to the dry ingredients; used butter in the pan; and after transferring it to a plate I drizzled it with a little powdered sugar icing and topped with more chopped pecans. Smiles all around. Thank you for a great recipe that’s good as-is or as a starting point for other options.

    • I cannot tell you how happy your comment makes me! This is exactly what I hope people will get from the food and recipes I share! And I love you sharing your modifications with us so we can try it, too. Anyway, thank you so much for commenting, this is what the blog is all about!

  49. 49

    I wanted something to go with a stew and so made this but added a bit of onion and garlic powder, a few herbs and some grated sharp cheese. Turning was precarious but it came out great!

  50. 50
    Vicki Ribal

    So I got first say thank you! I’ve searched high and low for this recipe. My family thru tight times lived on this bread to the point of being burnt out. As time went by memories fade I had forgotten the amounts until now. Thank you again times are a bit hard.

  51. 51

    Perfect, thank you. So easy to do. My days of kneading and proofing are over.

  52. 52

    Just what I was looking for! My mama called this “hoe cake” as well. Its delicious to eat with beef vegetable soup and she also made with “tomato gravy”. We are from the south, lol! Thanks again for sharing!!!

  53. 53
    Linda Cerisano

    Just made this bread using sprouted white wheat flour, beer instead of water and topped with Everything But The Bagel seasoning…it is awesome! Light and fluffy, and best of all, ready to eat in less than 20 minutes! Wish I could add a pic. Thank You!

  54. 54
    Linda Cerisano

    Just thinking…this would be great for a muffaletta…

  55. 55
    Pri Merc

    I tried this recipe and it did not work for me. I live 12,500 feet above sea level. It’s hard to make most things with flour. I even tried tweaking it without success 3 times.

  56. 56
    Edwin Meyer

    Will surely try this recipe, I spent 9 months in the real wilderness,(not some national park campsite), and my staple food was from self rising flour….My attempts at bread generally “fell flat,(literally)…or were far too hard to eat without a mothers chewy regurgitation LOL. Love the fact that there are only 2 key ingredients,(considering I used self rising flour). I made my own wild jellies and spreads…this would and will work out wonderfully on my next excursion!

  57. 57

    I made it and it was terrible. Heavy dense and flavorless. Cooked wallpaper paste

  58. 58

    I made this in a cast iron skillet and used milk instead of water. It reminds me a little of a pancake but more chewy. Loved it! Thank you

  59. 59

    Made the recipe in a stainless steel pan , just add a bit more of olive oil and double the time but in low heat. Love it ( im from chile)

  60. 60

    Hi Jane,

    Oh my gosh, this looks so amazing! I can already picture dipping it into a big bowl of chili. I’m going to make the two together for sure. Thank you so much for sharing!

  61. 61

    Sorry if I missed it in the comments, but has anyone mastered a gluten-free version? I was thinking of trying a mix of 1-to-1 GF flour (like Bob’s Redmill) and oat flour . . .

    • Hi Mary! Nope, I don’t think anyone has tried a GF version. This is kind of heavier bread to begin with, so I think trying a 1-to-1 GF flour could work nicely…if you give it a try, lmk how it goes!

  62. 62

    Looks delicious and easy to make.

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