Homemade Bisquick biscuits with freezer jam

How to Make Copycat Bisquick Cheaper, Better, Faster!

Last week, a friend called asking me to send her “That Recipe!” Of course, I was puzzled, but it didn’t take long to figure out what she was talking about when she mentioned homemade biscuits (I make them with copycat Bisquick!), along with strawberry freezer jam. Apparently, I served this for breakfast the last time she visited.

Homemade Bisquick biscuits with freezer jam

“That Recipe” is my Master Mix. It’s like Bisquick but a lot better. Not only does it keep really well, it contains dry milk so at baking time you add water (not milk, as most Bisquick recipes call for). 

While Master Mix makes fabulous biscuits, it’s an all-purpose mix to make everything from dumplings to coffee cake, shortcake, and so much more.

Oh, and that jam you see pictured? Strawberry Freezer Jam recipe. 

What follows is a semi-copycat recipe for Bisquick (you can scroll down for the printable recipe card, which includes lots of ways to use Master Mix). Remarkably, it’s much better than Bisquick, because nearly every Bisquick recipe requires the addition of milk at the time of baking. Master Mix contains dry milk, all you add is water, which makes it so versatile and super convenient to use

Master Mix vs. Bisquick

It’s difficult to make a reliable cost comparison, but what we know is Bisquick costs about 15 to 20 cents an ounce, which makes it pricey. The ingredients in Master Mix cost far less than half—and include the milk.

It makes a lot

Get ready for the amount of Master Mix you will end up with—a full 30 cups, the equivalent of about three and a half large 40-ounce boxes of Bisquick. The recipe can be halved.

Gift basket idea

Master Mix makes a lovely addition to a Biscuits and Jam Gift Basket. Simply package a supply of Master Mix in a tightly covered container or bag, adding a tag that describes the contents. Don’t forget the jam!

A nice idea would be to include the following options for how your recipient can use its contents. Your friend or loved one will probably appreciate the Master Mix recipe, too.

Master Mix

  •  5 pounds all-purpose flour
  • 2 1/2 cups powdered dry milk
  • 3/4 cup double-acting baking powder
  • 2 tablespoons cream of tartar
  • 3 tablespoons salt
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 4 2/3 cups solid vegetable shortening (like Crisco)

Instructions:

Sift dry ingredients together. Cut in shortening using a pastry blender or two knives, until the mix looks like cornmeal. Store at room temperature in a large sealable container. Makes 30 cups mix. Use within six months.

Note: You can use Master Mix in any recipe calling for Bisquick, making sure you substitute water for milk if the recipe calls for milk, because you have already added the milk to the mix.

What to do with all that Master Mix?

I’m so glad you asked!

One dozen biscuits

  • 3 cups Master Mix
  • 3/4 cup water

Blend and knead a few strokes. Roll out and cut biscuits with a round biscuit cutter, into squares or diamond shapes. Bake 10 minutes at 450 F.

Dumplings

Use the same measurements as for biscuits. Drop into hot liquid of choice. Cook 10 minutes uncovered and an additional 10 minutes covered.

One dozen muffins

  • 3 cups Master Mix
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 cup water

Mix water and egg; add dry ingredients. Add optional items such as blueberries, chocolate chips, nuts and so forth, as desired. Bake in muffin cups for 25 minutes at 450 F.

Four dozen drop cookies

  • 3 cups Master Mix
  • 1 cup white granulated sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1/3 cup water
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup nuts or chocolate chips

Place Master Mix, sugar, egg, water and extract in a large mixing bowl. Mix until all ingredients are well incorporated. Fold in nuts and or chocolate chips. Drop by spoonfuls on prepared greased baking sheet, about 2 inches apart. Bake 10-12 minutes at 375 F.

Coffee Cake

  • 3 cups Master Mix
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 2/3 cup water

Blend all ingredients and pour into a greased 9-inch cake pan. Cover with topping: 1/2 cup brown sugar, 3 tablespoons butter, 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon. Optional: Add 1/2 C nuts or raisins to the topping mix. Bake at 400 F for 25 minutes.

Pancakes or Waffles

  • 3 cups Master Mix
  • 1 1/2 cups water
  • 1 egg

Blend only until barely incorporated. Prepare pancakes or waffles as usual.

Gingerbread

  • 2 cups Master Mix
  • 1/4 cup white granulated sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1/2 cup molasses
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ginger
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves

Beat the egg together with the water and molasses. Mix well with dry ingredients until all are incorporated. Pour into a greased 8-inch square cake pan. Bake 40 minutes at 350 F.

Cornbread

  • 1 1/4 cups Master Mix
  • 3/4 cup cornmeal
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tablespoon white granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup water

Mix all ingredients until fully incorporated. Pour into greased pan or muffin cups. Bake 25 minutes at 400 F.

Homemade Bisquick biscuits with freezer jam
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4.88 from 8 votes

Master Mix

Here it is, my homemade version of Bisquick—which is so much cheaper and better than Bisquick. This recipe makes 30 cups of mix so make sure you start with a really big container.
Prep Time30 minutes
Cook Time1 minute
0 minutes
Course: Baking
Cuisine: American
Servings: 240 2 biscuits
Calories: 79kcal

Ingredients

  • 5 pounds all-purpose flour, about 17 cups
  • 2 1/2 cups powdered dry milk
  • 3/4 cup double-acting baking powder
  • 2 tablespoons cream of tartar
  • 3 tablespoons salt
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 4 2/3 cups solid vegetable shortening like Crisco
Makes: 2inch round

Instructions

  • Sift dry ingredients together.
  • Cut in shortening until the mix looks like cornmeal, using a pastry blender or two butter knives.
  • Store at room temperature in a large container that has a tightly fitting cover (like Tupperware) in a cool dark place like the pantry, for up to six months. Makes 30 cups.

Notes

You can substitute Master Mix for any recipe calling for Bisquick. Just make sure you substitute water for any milk required in the recipe (because the milk is already in the Master Mix!)

One dozen biscuits

  • 3 cups Master Mix
  • 3/4 cup water
Blend and knead a few strokes. Roll out and cut biscuits with a round biscuit cutter, into squares or diamond shapes. Bake 10 minutes at 450 F.

Dumplings

Use the same measurements as for biscuits. Drop into hot liquid of choice. Cook 10 minutes uncovered and an additional 10 minutes covered.

One dozen muffins

  • 3 cups Master Mix
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 cup of water
Mix water and egg; add dry ingredients. Add optional items such as blueberries, chocolate chips, nuts, and so forth, as desired. Bake in muffin cups for 25 minutes at 450 F.

Four dozen drop cookies

  • 3 cups Master Mix
  • 1 cup white granulated sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1/3 cup water
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup nuts or chocolate chips
Place Master Mix, sugar, egg, water, and extract in a large mixing bowl. Mix until all ingredients are well incorporated. Fold in nuts and or chocolate chips. Drop by spoonfuls on a prepared greased baking sheet, about 2 inches apart. Bake 10-12 minutes at 375 F.

9-inch round coffee cake

  • 3 cups Master Mix
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 2/3 cup water
Blend all ingredients and pour into a greased 9-inch cake pan. Cover with topping: 1/2 cup brown sugar, 3 tablespoons butter, 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon. Optional: Add 1/2 C nuts or raisins to the topping mix. Bake at 400 F for 25 minutes.

18 medium pancakes or 6 waffles

  • 3 cups Master Mix
  • 1 1/2 cups water
  • 1 egg
Blend only until barely incorporated. Prepare pancakes or waffles as usual.

One 8-inch square gingerbread

  • 2 cups Master Mix
  • 1/4 cup white granulated sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1/2 cup molasses
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ginger
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
Beat the egg together with the water and molasses. Mix well with dry ingredients until all are incorporated. Pour into a greased 8-inch square cake pan. Bake 40 minutes at 350 F.

One 8-inch square cornbread or muffins

  • 1 1/4 cups Master Mix
  • 3/4 cup cornmeal
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tablespoon white granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup water
Mix all ingredients until fully incorporated. Pour into greased pan or muffin cups. Bake 25 minutes at 400° F.

Nutrition

Serving: 0.0625cup | Calories: 79kcal | Carbohydrates: 9g | Protein: 1g | Fat: 4g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 1mg | Sodium: 93mg | Potassium: 123mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 12IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 46mg | Iron: 1mg

First published: 4-24-17; Revised & Updated 4-24-22

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34 replies
« Older Comments
  1. EB says:

    In the past, I used a wonderful cookbook called Make-a-Mix, which contains all kinds of recipes for homemade baking mixes to save time in the kitchen. I still use some of those recipes. However, in recent years, some of my children and grandchildren have developed dairy—and other—allergies and food-sensitivities. I still, however, am able to save money and time by making my own custom dry baking mixes for homemade bread, biscuits, muffins, pizza dough, pancakes, cornbread, etc. I measure out multiple batches of the basics for each recipe (usually flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt) in sandwich zip-top bags, then gather each kind of mix in a larger zip-top bag and label/date them. Later, I can quickly add the liquid ingredients, changing those as needed, according to whom I’m cooking for: regular/non-dairy milk (usually almond milk), along with a quality oil (olive or avocado) and egg (or egg substitute). This still makes things quicker, saves money, and allows me to control the ingredients my family needs. Just an idea.

    Reply
    • Mary Hunt says:

      I haven’t. Although I am looking at the nutrition/ingredients panel of HeartSmart Bisquick and Original Bisquick, side-by-side. have you done that? I see very little difference. HeartSmart has only canola oil, original has a combination of vegetable oils. I’m kinda’ laughing … really they are so close to the same ingredients and nutritional counts. The biggest difference I see is in the sodium count. As for how HeartSmart weighs in against Master Mix, I’ll let you decide. I just found that exercise to be quite enlightening. Hint: You can control the amount of salt you use when you make your own mix.

      Reply
  2. Cally Ross says:

    5 stars
    I love that it is low in sodium, my normal “complaint” on Bisquick is the sodium. great gift idea, great to have on hand for so many recipes!

    Reply
  3. Kdonat says:

    5 stars
    Master Mix can also be used to make gravy or pudding. There are lots of additional recipe ideas found on the “Brand Name” Baking Mix websites. Or, look for cookbooks using Baking Mix at thrift stores. There are several with recipes popular in the 60-80’s. One of my favorites was Crazy Crust Apple Pie.

    Reply
  4. StayingAliveInPittsburgh says:

    Coconut oil is a great substitute for shortening, which is a “bucket of transfats,” although the manufacturer wouldn’t want you to know it.

    Reply
    • Mary Hunt says:

      Not true, SAIP. In 2020 Crisco got a new formula after 95 years in America’s pantries that nearly eliminates artery-clogging trans fats. Now that trans fats are banned in the United States shortenings have been reformulated to be free of these fats. You can learn more at FDA.gov, specifically this article Trans Fats.

      Reply
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