Orange Biscuits with Orange Filling

2 orange biscuits with orange filling

When browsing through hundred-year-old magazines, sometimes a recipe just jumps out at me. Orange Biscuits with Orange Filling was one of these recipes. Back then, there were few photos in magazines, but there was a picture of the biscuits. This recipe was obviously one that the magazine editors really liked, so I decided to give it a try.

orange biscuits with orange filling on plate
Source: American Cookery (April, 1920)

This recipe did not disappoint. The Orange Biscuits with Orange Filling had just the right amount of sweetness, and a bright, sunny, citrus flavor. They are perfect with coffee or milk. The Biscuits would also be a lovely brunch pastry. This recipe is a keeper, and I feel certain that I’ll make it again.

Here’s the original recipe:

Recipe for Orange Biscuits with Orange Filling
Source: American Cookery (April, 1920)

One teaspoon of salt seemed like a lot, so I only used 1/2 teaspoon of salt when I made the recipe. I cut the slices about 3/4 inch thick because it was difficult to cut 1/2 inch slices, and that just didn’t seem quite thick enough. I also could not figure out why the filling needed to be cooked when it was then cooled – and would again become a butter and sugar spread – so I did not cook it prior to spreading on the biscuits. This worked fine.

And, here is the recipe updated for modern cooks:

Orange Biscuits with Orange Filling

  • Servings: approximately 15 biscuits
  • Difficulty: moderate
  • Print

Orange Biscuits

2 cups flour

4 teaspoons baking powder

1/2 teaspoon salt

3 tablespoons lard, shortening, or butter

3/4 cup milk (may need to use slightly more)

orange filling (see below)


Preheat oven to 400° F.

Combine flour, baking powder and salt in mixing bowl. Cut in the lard, shortening, or butter. Add milk, and gently stir to combine using a fork. If too dry and does not cling together as a dough, add a small amount of additional milk. Place the dough on a prepared surface and roll into a square about 12″ by 12″. Spread with the Orange Filling, then roll like a jelly roll. Cut into 3/4 inch slices. If needed, gently reshape so that each slice is round. Put in a greased cake pan(s) about 1/2 inch apart. Sprinkle with sugar. Put in oven, and bake about 20-25 minutes or until lightly browned.

Orange Filling

2 tablespoons butter, softened

1/4 cup sugar

1 tablespoon orange juice

grated rind (zest) of 1 orange

Put butter, sugar, and orange juice in a small bowl; stir to combine. Add grated orange rind, and stir to evenly distribute throughout the butter mixture.


52 thoughts on “Orange Biscuits with Orange Filling

  1. I was looking at the instruction to bake in a hot oven. You really had to know your stuff back then. I am passing the recipe along to my kids as they have been baking a lot now.

    1. Cooks a hundred years ago had to be very skilled and talented to figure out to successfully make baked good (probably using a wood or coal stoves) – though I suppose it became second nature to them since that is just it was done back then.

    1. Crisco vegetable shortening would work well–it makes a tender and flaky biscuit without the taste lard can have. Butter would need less salt, too, and that may have been why the original recipe called for more salt?

        1. Crisco was the pure vegetable shortening for “modern cooks” like my mother. LOL. I grew up learning to cook with it–and only it! It really does make a difference in the taste and texture. I rarely use it now since I no longer cook the way my mother did, but every once in a while, you need it for something that does not work any other way…like mother’s recipe for sugar cookies. It is interesting to learn how different cultures and locations prepare food. I spent 3 months in South Africa once, and prepared most of my own meals–now that was an adventure!

    2. I agree – butter sound like the best option today. Preferred fats to use in recipes have changed a lot over the last hundred years.

  2. These look absolutely delicious, as well as visually appealing. I like the idea of smaller ones for tea. I am not much into baking right now, but these look lovely enough to take the time.

    1. They are tasty. It’s really easy to adjust the size of these by either rolling the dough wider (or narrower), so each biscuit ends up being larger (or smaller) when rolled like a jelly roll.

  3. Pillsbury orange rolls with orange icing have been a breakfast treat as long as I can remember. They showed up in the 1960s, and they’re still being sold. They may or may not be as good as these, but they’re pretty darned good! It would be fun to try this recipe and compare the results.

    1. I had forgotten those, but yes, they were yummy. We used to eat them often for Sunday breakfasts, but it has been years now since I have had one. I may have to try Sheryl’s recipe now for sure!

  4. Thank you Sheryl for posting these heirloom recipes. Very impressed on your interests in those amazing recipes. Thanks for these shares.

    1. I don’t think that I’ve ever had the orange-flavored biscuits that come in a can, so I can’t really compare, but these are tasty.

  5. Wow, this looks good! It seems like it would be a refreshing thing to eat on a warm, summer day, too.

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