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Perfect Berry Shortcakes

Perfect Berry Shortcakes

USA WEEKEND columnist Pam Anderson

You don't need a food processor, pastry cutter, rolling pin or cookie cutter to make these sweet biscuits. This shortcake recipe I've developed yields a simple, foolproof biscuit that's crisp yet delicate.

Ingredients {{adjustedServings}} servings

Serving size has been adjusted!

Original recipe yields 6 servings



Amount per serving ({{servings}} total)

  • Calories:
  • 669 kcal
  • 33%
  • Fat:
  • 34 g
  • 52%
  • Carbs:
  • 85.6g
  • 28%
  • Protein:
  • 8.6 g
  • 17%
  • Cholesterol:
  • 138 mg
  • 46%
  • Sodium:
  • 592 mg
  • 24%

Based on a 2,000 calorie diet


  1. Adjust oven rack to lower-middle position and preheat to 425 degrees. Mix flour, salt, baking powder and 3 Tbs. sugar in a medium bowl. Grate 2 Tbs. of the butter on the coarse holes of a box grater into dry ingredients; toss to coat. Repeat grating and tossing with remaining butter. Combine egg and half-and-half; pour into flour mixture. Toss with a fork to form large clumps. Lightly press clumps into a ball; add a teaspoon more half-and-half to the bowl if dough won't come together.
  2. Turn dough onto work surface; press into an 8-by-4- to 5-inch rectangle. Cut into 6 squares, placing them 1 inch apart on a small baking sheet. (Can be refrigerated up to 2 hours before baking.) Before baking, brush tops with optional egg white for a particularly attractive sheen. Sprinkle with remaining 2 Tbs. sugar. Bake until golden brown, about 12 to 14 minutes. Let cool until warm, 5 to 10 minutes.
  3. Mix thawed and fresh berries with sugar in a bowl; let stand until sugar dissolves. With a hand mixer, beat cream to soft peaks, gradually adding 1 Tb. sugar, then vanilla.
  4. Split each cake crosswise; spoon a portion of berries over each cake bottom, then a dollop of whipped cream over berries. Cap with cake top and serve immediately.
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I have never grated butter before, but it was a good idea for this recipe. These turned out so good my husband doesn't usually like sweets but he raved over this. I didn't use frozen berries, just fresh and by the time they sat in sugar they had made a really nice juice on their own. I served this with Easy Whipped Cream from this site and it was one of the best desserts I've made. Update: I made this a second time for the fouth of July and doubled the recipe. Make sure to freeze the butter before grating. I tried it both ways and it is much easier to grate the butter when it is frozen. It took a lot less time and it was a lot less messy!


Oh. My. God. This is the best shortcake I have EVER tasted!!! I didn't follow the berry instructions (I just used fresh strawberries with sugar & topped w/ whipped cream), just the biscuit instructions. A couple minor changes: I didn't have 1/2 and 1/2 so I used 2% milk - it worked perfectly. I didn't freeze the butter, but I did used very cold butter. Loved the grating technique. I also added to the recipe a bit of vanilla extract and about a scant 1/2 tsp of ground cardamom. I had never tried the cardamom before but had seen it in other shortcake recipes. Wow, was it ever a great addition. Anyway, this was soooo yummy. I will never look for a shortcake recipe again. One other thing - use cooking spray on the baking sheet. Thanks for a great recipe!

inactive user

I only used the shortcake part of this recipe and they were so good! I just dropped the dough in little flattened balls to save time. The egg white and sugar were a really nice touch too. Sprinkling two tablespoons of sugar over six cakes felt like a lot of sugar, but it wasn't at all once they were baked. I served it with homemade whipped cream and fresh strawberries. Yum!