Berry Cobbler with Sweet Biscuit Topping

A delicious berry cobbler ideal for any combo of fresh or frozen berries. berry cobbler

The lightly sweetened drop biscuit topping has a beautiful golden crust on the outside and a soft texture inside that’s perfect for soaking up the fruit filling below. Individual dollops of biscuit batter create the look of “cobbles”, you know, like a cobbled street – hence Cobbler! The cobbles allow the filling to peek through and make perfect serving sizes – although who’s to say you can’t have two or three cobbles per bowl!

berry cobbler
A classic cobbler with the look of a cobbled path made by dollops of thick biscuit batter.

It’s super easy to make and bakes up in 45 minutes. Your friends and family will love it!

Recipe for Berry Cobbler 

Continue reading after the recipe for:

  • Tips on Using Frozen Berries
  • Cobbler Tips & Trivia
Print Recipe
5 from 2 votes

Berry Cobbler with Sweet Biscuit Topping

A classic, easy to make dessert made with your choice of berries and a sweet drop biscuit topping. A delicious way to enjoy fresh or frozen fruit.
Prep : 20 mins
Cook : 45 mins
Servings: 6

Ingredients

Berry Filling

  • 6 cups mixed berries fresh or frozen
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 1 ½ Tbsp cornstarch
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 Tbsp butter

Biscuit Topping

  • 1 cup flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 2 Tbsp sugar
  • 4 Tbsp cold butter diced
  • ½ cup buttermilk*
  • 1 Tbsp turbinado or large crystal sugar optional

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 400°F (205°C).
  • Clean fresh berries and cut any large fruit into bite sized pieces.
  • Thaw frozen fruit completely, drain and remove half of the liquid. (Otherwise, if use frozen berries, increase cornstarch to 2 tablespoons and add 40 minutes or more to baking time.)
  • Pour berries into a 9x9 inch (2 L) baking dish with sides at least 2 inches (5 cm) high to prevent filling from bubbling over.
  • In small bowl, mix sugar, cornstarch and cinnamon. Mix into berries.
  • Dot fruit with butter cut into small pieces.
  • For biscuit topping, mix flour, baking powder and sugar in large bowl.
  • Cut in butter with pastry blender or two knives until mixture forms large crumbs.
  • Add buttermilk and stir with fork until batter comes together. If batter is too thick add extra tablespoon of milk.
  • Drop batter into 12 even dollops on top of fruit filling. Spread out slightly to avoid overly thick mounds that will underbake.
  • Sprinkle top of batter with turbinado sugar.
  • Bake for 45 minutes or until top is golden and baked through.
  • Cool for 30 minutes to let filling set.
  • Serve with freshly whipped cream, yogurt or ice cream.
  • Makes 6-12 servings

Notes

*To substitute for buttermilk, pour ½ Tbsp lemon juice in measuring cup, add enough milk to make ½ cup. Let sit for 3-5 minutes.
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Cobbler Tips 

Those dollops of sweet biscuits on top of the fruit filling gives this dessert a cobblestone appearance, hence the name cobbler. It’s also what makes this dessert different than a crisp (made with a crunchy, crumbly oat topping) and a crumble (made with a flour and butter crumb topping).

berry cobbler
Use a deep dish. The filling will bubble and you definitely don’t want it to escape the baking dish.

Use Butter

Butter makes it better. I cook and bake with all types of fats, but when it comes to biscuits, I prefer butter for taste and texture. Remember to use cold butter and avoid overworking the dough. The crumbs of butter coated in flour provide the soft texture of the biscuits. Your finished batter will have bumps in it.

I also use little dollops of butter on top of the fruit filling for flavor and to bind with the starch.

peaches and blueberries with butter
Fresh peaches and blueberries also make delicious in cobbler.

 

Stiff Biscuit Batter

Like any biscuit batter – don’t overwork it! It will be thick and lumpy from bits of cold butter. That’s the way it should be. If it’s really too thick, add a tablespoon of milk and adjust in small increments.

Make Cobbles

Use a tablespoon or ice cream scoop to drop 12 roughly even sized dollops on top of the filling. Smooth them out a little to avoid overly thick spots that will take longer to bake through. It’s okay to have fruity gaps, the dough will rise and spread a little, remember we’re looking for a cobbled effect.

berry cobbler

Let It Rest

Let the berry cobbler rest for at least 30 minutes before serving. This gives the filling a chance to set. Serve with freshly whipped cream, ice cream or yogurt.

berry cobbler

Use a Deep Dish

You can bake a cobbler in any oven proof dish – just make sure it’s deep enough! That filling is going to get very bubbly and will spill over any dish that doesn’t have high sides. I recommend at least 2 inch walls. If you’re cutting it close, bake with a sheet of foil underneath to catch any drips.

Store Leftovers

Finally, if you have any leftovers, store cobbler in the fridge for up to 3 days. Hint: Serve it with yogurt and call it breakfast!

Tips on Using Frozen Berries

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This berry cobbler works beautifully with frozen fruit, especially if you follow these tips.

  • Measure fruit while it is frozen. It’s hard to squeeze frozen strawberries into a measuring cup, but for this recipe, it’s okay to eyeball it and err on the side of too much fruit.
  • Thaw fruit completely after measuring. By thawing the fruit completely, you have the best control over the liquid content of your filling and the overall bake time of your cobbler. Frozen or partially frozen fruit will greatly increase the overall baking time.
  • Thaw fruit overnight. Ideally, thaw fruit in a colander with a dish overnight. If you forget, thaw fruit in a microwave in short bursts to avoid “cooking” the fruit.
  • Drain and remove half the juice from frozen fruit. I recommend removing about half the juice that’s left when you thaw and drain the fruit to avoid a liquidy filling. We use the juice to mix into smoothies.

The biggest risks of not thawing the fruit are undercooked biscuits and runny filling.  If you run out of time and can’t thaw your fruit, use 2 tablespoons cornstarch and increase baking time by 40 minutes or more. The frozen fruit prevents the bottom of the biscuits from baking as quickly as the top.  Check that the biscuit dough has baked all the way through by lifting one of the biscuits with a fork, if it’s doughy, continue baking. You may need to cover the top of the cobbler with aluminum foil to prevent the top from becoming too brown.

If you really want to be precise, use an instant read thermometer in your biscuit topping and aim for 200-205°F (93-96°C).

Berry cobbler of any kind is a big hit with my family. But then, so is berry pie, berry crisp and berry crumble. We can’t decide which is our favourite. Do you have a preference for one over the other?

  • berry pie
  • berry crisp
  • berry crumble
  • berry cobbler

Let me know your favorite and if you make a berry cobbler, please take a photo, post it on Instagram and tag #getgettys so I can see it and like it!

Sign up to get articles by Getty delivered to your inbox. You’ll get recipes, practical tips and great food information like this. Getty is a Professional Home Economist,  speaker and writer putting good food on tables and agendas.  She is the author of Manitoba’s best-selling Prairie Fruit Cookbook, Founder of Fruit Share, a mom and veggie gardener.

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