I’m willing to bet that when you think of the word buttermilk, the first recipe that comes to mind is pancakes. While buttermilk pancakes are on this list, you may be surprised by just how many different buttermilk recipes there are out there.
Not only does fermented milk, like buttermilk, have a longer shelf life, but it’s easier for those who are lactose intolerant to consume.
Recipes with buttermilk have a lot of advantages because of these reasons.
Wondering what to make with buttermilk? No worries. We got you covered. Here are 34 of the best buttermilk recipes you and your family will love.
1. The Best Fluffy Buttermilk Pancakes
Of course, we have to start our list of the best buttermilk recipes with some tasty, easy-to-make pancakes!
Though this secret ingredient is completely optional, we recommend adding a teaspoon of vanilla to your pancake batter to elevate the flavors. If you don’t have vanilla extract, try almond extract instead.
It’s not a flavor people use in pancake batter all too often, but they really should because it’s so delicious!
When it comes to serving delicious, fluffy pancakes, you have the freedom to get as creative as you want with them. Sprinkle with powdered sugar. Add chocolate chips.
Layer sweet strawberries and tangy mangoes! There’s no wrong way to enjoy buttermilk pancakes, that’s for sure.
2. Southern Buttermilk Pie
Is it just me or does the South always have the most unusual, but totally magical recipes?
While buttermilk pie may not be something you’ve previously heard of, we recommend trying it at least once!
Hands down, the secret ingredient is a teaspoon of packed lemon zest. Not only does this add a refreshing flavor to the pie, but it adds some much-needed crispness and tartness to the otherwise dense dish.
If you don’t have lemon zest or lemon juice, you can swap it out for some line juice instead.
It’ll alter the flavor a little, but not enough to ruin the pie. In fact, it’ll be reminiscent of those old soda pies from back in the day!
3. Chef John’s Buttermilk Fried Chicken
Fried chicken and buttermilk go together like…well…fried chicken and buttermilk!
What I’m trying to say is that it’s a perfect pairing, especially since it makes the chicken meat more tender.
All of the ingredients in this fried chicken recipe are important, but if we had to choose one as the secret ingredient, it’d have to be rosemary.
Rosemary has a lemony, peppery taste to it, which just so happen to be two unique flavors that work perfectly with chicken.
If you don’t have rosemary, you could just add a little bit of fresh lemon juice to give it that lemony flavor.
4. The Best Buttermilk Waffles
Excuse me, but why should buttermilk pancakes get all the glory when waffles are just as impressive and delicious?
Like the recipe for buttermilk pancakes, the secret ingredient in this waffle recipe is vanilla extract.
But, unlike the pancake recipe, we think you should swap the vanilla extract out with a little dollop of honey. Like the vanilla extract, the honey will add a little bit of sweetness that really elevates the basic flavor of the waffle.
Sprinkle with some sweet powdered sugar serve with a chilled iced, mocha coffee and mmm, you’re in for a delightful breakfast treat! Great – now I’m hungry for waffles!
5. Easy Buttermilk Cornbread
Every Sunday, my mom made fresh cornbread and it was always something I looked forward to. Now, as an adult, I crave that sweet, slightly dry cornbread (okay, maybe that was just the way my mom made it).
This recipe, though, will be far from dry and one you’ll want to include in all your breakfasts moving forward.
The secret ingredient isn’t “secret” because of taste, rather it’s a necessary component to making your cornbread all nice and fluffy: baking powder.
If absolutely necessary, you could substitute baking powder for plain yogurt to inject a similar level of moisture and fluffiness into your cornbread.
6. Orange Buttermilk Salad
This unique dessert uses buttermilk to make a dessert that’s a bit more tropical than you expect from a recipe that uses buttermilk (phew, that was a mouthful!)
The secret ingredient here is the orange-flavored gelatin. It provides most of the tangy, tropical flavor and is even a major part of its structural integrity.
If you need to change anything out, try swapping the white sugar with brown sugar if you’re in a pinch.
Both kinds of sugar provide sweetness to the dish that wouldn’t normally be there.
7. Buttermilk Coleslaw
This classic southern take of coleslaw makes for a great side at your next barbeque.
The secret ingredient for this one is apple cider vinegar. It adds a bit of something to the overall flavor by providing just a hint of that tart and bitter apple cider taste.
If you need to change things up, try swapping out the carrots for celery.
Not everyone is a fan of carrots and celery can provide a more neutral flavor that compliments the rest of the dish.
8. Gordon Ramsey’s Buttermilk Fried Chicken
Who would know better about a recipe like this than a world-renowned chef-like, like Gordon Ramsey? This recipe is definitely not an insult to your taste buds.
The secret ingredient to this dish is the cayenne pepper. It adds a bit of heat without burning your mouth and provides extra flavor.
If you need to swap anything out, try swapping the garlic powder for minced garlic. It should provide the same amount of garlic flavor and blend in just as easily.
And don’t worry – this substitution is Gordon Ramsey approved (I hope).
9. Buttermilk Cucumber Salad
You might be scratching your head right now and wonder how exactly you can add buttermilk to a salad. Don’t worry, you’re definitely not alone!
When you combine it with other ingredients, buttermilk can actually make for part of a great salad dressing that is creamy and rich.
The secret ingredient for this salad recipe is Greek yogurt. This combines with the buttermilk to create a thick and creamy salad dressing that compliments the rest of the ingredients well.
If you’re looking to change things up, try swapping out the shallot rings for chopped onions. They’ll provide a similar flavor profile.
10. Buttermilk Ice Cream
This extra creamy alternative to froyo is a tasty treat that you should serve up the next time you’re looking for a delicious dessert with fewer carbs.
The secret ingredient for this one is the heavy cream. While the buttermilk provides the creaminess of this treat, the heavy cream creates its thickness of it.
If you’re looking to make some changes, we recommend adding either apple brandy or some other sort of fruity spirit to add some extra flavor while making it a more adult dessert.
11. Buttermilk Mashed Potatoes
Here’s a recipe you wouldn’t normally expect to be associated with buttermilk.
This is a delicious take on mashed potatoes that we highly recommend. The secret ingredient here is the potatoes.
You might think that isn’t much of a secret, but they provide the base for everything else in the recipe and makes up nearly all of the flavor.
If you need to change things up, try swapping the milk for half-and-half. It’s a little thicker but it should still get the job done without changing anything too drastically.
12. Homemade Buttermilk Biscuits
There’s nothing quite like warm buttermilk biscuits to go along with dinner. With this recipe, you’ll have the perfect flaky biscuit to go with your meal.
The secret ingredient for these biscuits is honey. It adds a touch of flavor without overpowering the overall taste of the biscuits.
If you’re looking to change anything up, try swapping out baking powder for yogurt. Be careful because too much yogurt can make the dough liquidy and cause it to not be able to cook properly.
13. Buttermilk Cinnamon Rolls
You don’t have to go to the food court to enjoy nice, flaky, delicious cinnamon rolls. With this recipe, you can make them in the comfort of your own home!
The secret ingredient for these is cinnamon. That might not sound so secret, but think about how important it is to the overall flavor. Without it, it would be just a roll.
If you’re looking to change things up, we recommend swapping out butter for shortening.
Your rolls will be extra fluffy and flaky if you decide to go this route.
14. Homemade Buttermilk Bread
There’s nothing quite like homemade bread to serve up on your favorite sandwich or as toast.
This recipe is perfect if you’re looking to make your own tasty bread. The secret ingredient is yeast.
This will allow the bread to rise and create that thick and fluffy texture that you come to know from bread.
If you need to change things up, you can always try changing out the all-purpose flour for a healthier alternative like whole wheat or rice flour.
If you’re looking for buttermilk recipe ideas to spice up your weekend, we highly recommend this one.
15. Buttermilk Brownies
Who doesn’t love a nice soft brownie filled with chocolatey goodness? We sure do and this recipe is a great take on a classic brownie everyone knows and loves – especially if you’re looking for something to bake with buttermilk.
The secret ingredient for this one is the semi-sweet chocolate morsels. These not only make for a great additional texture to an already great brownie, but they also provide a little extra bit of chocolatey goodness.
If you need to change anything out, try swapping your all-purpose flour for a healthier alternative like whole wheat or rice flour.
16. Ridiculously Easy Farmhouse Buttermilk Cake
This next recipe is so easy that you shouldn’t have any problems making it, even if you’ve never baked a cake before!
This ridiculously easy take on a buttermilk cake is sure to leave everyone you serve begging for more. The secret ingredient here is the pecans.
They provide a nice crunchy top and give that nutty flavor that this dish is known for.
If you need to change anything up, try swapping out the half and half with regular milk. It won’t be as thick but it should get the job done just the same.
17. Mom’s Buttermilk Cookies
This recipe for buttermilk cookies tastes just like how mom used to make them.
The secret recipe for these is the walnuts. They’re an excellent way to top these delicious cookies and add a nice crunchy texture.
If you need a substitution, we recommend swapping out the all-purpose flour for whole wheat or rice flour if you’re looking for a healthy alternative.
Serve these up to your family for a tasty snack or bring them to work and impress your co-workers!
18. Buttermilk Scones
How would you like some sweet-tasting scones to go with your favorite cup of coffee? With this recipe, you have the perfect treat to go along with your morning cup of joe.
The secret ingredient for these is the caster sugar.
They provide the overall sweetness to the scones, making them a perfect sweet treat to enjoy with a hot cup of tea, hot chocolate, or even apple cider!
If you need to change anything out, try swapping out the butter for shortening. The scones will bake faster and you’ll get an extra amount of flakiness to them.
19. Buttermilk Onion Rings
These savory rings of oniony goodness are taken to the next level when buttermilk gets involved.
The secret ingredient to these is the cayenne pepper, which may not be something you think of adding to onion rings.
But, they add a whole lot of flavor to these rings while adding a bit of kick. If you have to substitute something, we recommend swapping out the kind of onion you use.
A Vidalia onion is usually recommended for this recipe, but if you go for something like a Spanish onion, you keep the size and add a bit of flavor to each ring.
20. Buttermilk Fried Chicken Burger
Have you ever gone to one of your favorite fast food places and ordered a tasty, crispy chicken sandwich? If so, this is the recipe for you!
The secret ingredient for these is the smoked streaky bacon. The bacon adds a whole other level of flavor and texture to this burger. Plus, who doesn’t love bacon?
If you need to change things up, try swapping out the gherkins for dill pickles or any other kind of pickle you may prefer.
Try this recipe out for your next family dinner and save money on delivery.
21. Buttermilk Pie
This old-fashioned pie recipe is a great dessert for your next family dinner or for when you need to bring something to a party at a friend’s house.
The secret ingredient here is lemon juice. It provides a hint of lemon flavor and helps bring out the other flavors in the dish. If you need to change anything up, try swapping out the nutmeg for cinnamon.
The flavor might be a little bolder but it shouldn’t do much to disrupt the overall flavor of this pie.
22. Mom’s Chicken ‘n’ Buttermilk Dumplings
Talk about a delicious, savory meal that reminds you of home. It’s one of our favorite recipes that use buttermilk and it reminds us of chicken and dumplings the way mom used to make them.
The secret ingredient for this dish is the half-and-half cream. This provides the thickness for the dumplings that they need. Without this cream, the dumplings wouldn’t be nearly as thick.
If you need to substitute anything out, recommend swapping the paprika for red pepper. It might add extra heat so you should try to use it sparingly.
23. Old Fashioned Buttermilk Fudge
Imagine you’re by the beach and you’re walking on the boardwalk.
You happen to pass by a sweet shop and look in their display case to find the most appetizing pieces of fudge you’ve ever seen.
With this recipe, you’ll be able to bring that experience home and you won’t even have to wait in line!
The secret ingredient for this recipe is toasted nuts. They add a bit of texture and flavor to these pieces of fudge, providing a bit of crunch with the chewiness that the fudge itself brings.
If you need to change things up, try swapping out the corn syrup for honey. It’ll add a touch of extra sweetness to your fudge.
24. Buttermilk French Toast
Here’s a fun and delicious take on a breakfast classic.
The secret ingredient for this recipe is the sugar that makes up the sweetness of this dish. If you need to change anything out, try experimenting with different kinds of bread.
This recipe calls for challah, but you can try your favorite kind of bread in this recipe for several different kinds of flavors and textures.
If you’re looking for a different take on french toast, try this recipe out for breakfast.
25. Homemade Buttermilk Ranch Dressing
When you think to yourself, “What can I make with buttermilk?” I’m sure you don’t immediately think of ranch dressing.
This thick and tasting dressing goes great on just about any salad you want. The secret ingredient for this one is tabasco sauce.
It adds just a hint of heat without setting your mouth on fire and it adds flavor to the dressing.
If you need to change anything out, try swapping the sour cream for Greek yogurt, if you’re looking for a healthy alternative.
26. Buttermilk Sheet Cake
Who doesn’t love a good sheet cake? These sweet confections are sure to impress at your next party or family get-together.
The secret ingredient for this recipe is vanilla. It adds just enough flavor and provides the base flavor for the entire dish.
If you need to change anything out, try swapping out the all-purpose flour with a healthier alternative like whole wheat or rice flour. It makes for a great, healthy alternative to this dish.
If you want to have friends and family coming back for more, try this recipe on for size.
27. Buttermilk Shake
When you think of recipes using buttermilk, a shake isn’t usually the first thing that comes to mind. But one sip and it certainly will be moving forward!
In this recipe, you have a gluten-free shake that tastes delicious down to the last drop. Your secret ingredient for this one is going to be vanilla ice cream.
It’s a great base and provides a lot of flavor and texture, which has all the makings of a great shake.
If you need to change anything out, try swapping the lemon zest for lemon juice.
It should provide the same level of flavor and not overpower anything.
28. Best Ever Buttermilk Crepes
These thin, pancake-like buttermilk crepes are a great, sweet dish that we think you can fill with just about anything.
The secret ingredient for this is going to be honey. It provides the hint of sweetness you come to expect from crepes and it doesn’t take over the entire dish.
If you need to change anything out, try swapping the butter for margarine.
The consistency is nearly identical and the flavor isn’t really a factor here. Plus, it won’t make them flaky as shortening would.
29. Buttermilk Fried Chicken Tenders
A lot of the recipes on this list tend to go for something on the sweet end of the flavor spectrum. This next one excels at the savory.
The secret ingredient for these delicious chicken tenders is powdered garlic. It’s not enough to ruin the flavor but just enough to add a little bit of something extra to the flavor of these tenders.
If you need to swap anything out, try swapping the vegetable oil for olive oil.
It will only tweak the flavor ever so slightly but it will provide the same basic function as the vegetable oil.
30. Buttermilk Cake
This wonderfully fluffy buttermilk cake is one of our favorite things to make with buttermilk.
This cake is a delicious, easy-to-make dessert that’s perfect to serve with a nice hot cup of tea.
The secret ingredient for this cake is greek yogurt. It brings some tanginess and creaminess to the dish and balances out the sweetness in the process.
If you’re looking to swap out any ingredients, try swapping butter for shortening for an extra flaky buttermilk cake that you won’t be able to get enough of.
31. Basic Buttermilk Muffins
Who doesn’t love a nice, fluffy muffin?
This next recipe is not only pretty easy but fully customizable. The secret ingredient for these muffins has to be the nutmeg. It adds a hint of flavor to the muffins without being too overbearing.
If you’re looking for a substitution, well, you’re in luck.
This recipe is a base muffin recipe that becomes fully customizable with whatever ingredients you want at the end to turn them into specific kinds of muffins.
Add apples and cinnamon together or blueberries and lemon zest to make some of your favorites.
32. Amish Buttermilk Cookies
These thick, buttery cookies topped with a caramelized glaze are a wonderful take on buttermilk cookies that you and your family should try out.
The secret ingredient in these is the shortening. Not only does its high melting point provide a quicker baking time but it also makes these cookies nice and flaky.
If you need to change anything out, try swapping the milk out for half and half. It’ll provide the same basic role as milk, but make the dough a bit thicker than normal milk.
33. Vanilla Buttermilk Cupcakes
If you want nice, fluffy cupcakes, try these vanilla buttermilk cupcakes on for size.
These sweet treats are a great dessert to bring to your next party. The secret ingredient for these cupcakes is sugar. It provides the sweetness you come to expect from cupcakes such as these and adds to the overall flavor of these treats.
If you’re looking to change things up, try swapping out the all-purpose flour for whole wheat flour if you’re looking for a healthier alternative.
33 Easy Buttermilk Recipes
- 3 c all-purpose flour
- 3 tbsps white sugar
- 3 tsps baking powder
- 1 ½ tsps baking soda
- ¾ tsp salt
- 3 c buttermilk
- ½ c milk
- 3 eggs
- ⅓ c butter
- In a large bowl, mix baking soda, baking powder, flour, sugar, and salt.
- In another bowl, mix the milk, eggs, buttermilk, and melted butter.
- Add a little bit of oil or cooking spray to your pan and place it on the stove on medium-high heat. Once the oil starts to sizzle, it’s time to add your pancake batter.
- Pour the wet batter into the dry mixture and blend. Once fully blended, scoop into the frying pan and cook until brown on both sides.