Addictive Recipes from a Self-Taught Baker

My Favorite Cornbread.

With its full flavor, tender texture, and crunchy/honey/buttery edges, it’s easy for me to say that this is my favorite cornbread recipe!

With its full flavor, tender texture, and crunchy/honey/buttery edges, it's easy for me to say that this is my favorite cornbread recipe!

Aka the cornbread of my dreams.

Let me explain.

With its full flavor, tender texture, and crunchy/honey/buttery edges, it's easy for me to say that this is my favorite cornbread recipe!

Kevin and I had lunch at the cutest little cafe the other weekend in Philly. It was one of those few and far between weekends where you have no plans, the weather’s perfect, and the hardest decision to make all day is craft beer or wine with lunch?

????

Life is hard today.

Wine - Lunch

The waitress brought out a basket with warm slices of raisin walnut oat-y bread and thick pieces of golden cornbread. Ordinarily I would choose the hearty looking raisin bread (c’mon, you know me), but the smell alone of that sweet cornbread had me reaching for a slice faster than you can say pinot noir, please.

Omg.

It was so full of flavor and texture. From the unmistakable corn flavor and the subtle notes of honey to the moist interior and slightly crunchy texture, this was a recipe I had to recreate at home. Cornbread isn’t usually my thing, but I am now converted FOREVER.

With its full flavor, tender texture, and crunchy/honey/buttery edges, it's easy for me to say that this is my favorite cornbread recipe!

My cornbread is kind of like my recent coconut macaroon recipe. Both classics are extraordinarily simple, but it really depends on the ratio and combination of ingredients in order for the baked goods to impress. When done wrong, cornbread can be dry, blah (technical terms), and flavorless. When done right, this comfort food staple can be rich, tender, moist, flavorful, crunchy-edged, and buttery. In other words, this favorite cornbread is a side dish that will steal the show at your table.

I got to work in my kitchen and churned out 4 different batches of cornbread. I used my mom’s trusty recipe as the base and I played around with butter vs oil, the ratios of cornmeal to flour, regular milk or buttermilk, white or brown sugar, honey? no honey?, 1 egg, 2 eggs, and should I add more salt? Is that cornmeal in my hair? What?

My entire day was…that. Here’s what I learned.

Butter is key for flavor. While oil left the cornbread luxuriously tender, I found the bread was lacking flavor. Since melted butter won’t make the bread just as moist as oil, I paired it with buttermilk. It’s my little secret weapon in cakes, muffins, breads, and other baked goods. I found that my ideal cornbread texture comes from equal parts cornmeal and flour. Not more flour than cornmeal or vice versa. With this amount, you get so much corn flavor and little bites of crunch here and there. And don’t get me started on the slightly crunchy, honey buttery edges. (!!!!)

It should come as no surprise to you that I preferred the batch of cornbread made with brown sugar as opposed to the batch made with granulated sugar. Why use flavorless white when you can used molasses-spiked brown? That 1/3 cup of brown sugar adds a small touch of molasses in every piece. Likewise, a very scant 2 Tablespoons of honey adds even more flavor. I loooooove honey and cornbread.

With its full flavor, tender texture, and crunchy/honey/buttery edges, it's easy for me to say that this is my favorite cornbread recipe!

Oh! And stay tuned for my cornbread muffin recipe!

Oooooh! And check out all of my optional add-ins listed in the recipe like cheese, jalapeño, cranberries, blueberries, and more. And the notes for SKILLET cornbread.

It’s dreamy.

Follow me on Instagram and tag #sallysbakingaddiction so I can see all the SBA recipes you make. 

My Favorite Cornbread

With its full flavor, tender texture, and crunchy/honey/buttery edges, it's easy for me to say that this is my favorite cornbread recipe.

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup (120g) cornmeal1
  • 1 cup (125g) all-purpose flour (measured correctly)
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup (115g) unsalted butter, melted and slightly cooled
  • 1/3 cup (67g) packed light brown sugar2
  • 2 Tablespoons (30ml) honey
  • 1 large Eggland's Best egg, at room temperature
  • 1 cup (240ml) buttermilk, at room temperature3
  • optional add-ins: 1-2 chopped jalapeño peppers, 1 cup blueberries, 1 cup total dried cranberries and walnuts, 1 cup shredded cheddar cheese, or 1/2 cup bacon crumbles

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 400°F (204°C). Grease and lightly flour an 8 or 9-inch square baking pan. Set aside.
  2. Whisk together the cornmeal, flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a large bowl. Set aside. In a medium bowl, whisk the cooled melted butter, brown sugar, and honey together until completely smooth and thick. There should be no brown sugar lumps. Then, whisk in the egg until combined. Finally, whisk in the buttermilk. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and whisk until combined. Avoid overmixing.
  3. Pour batter into prepared baking pan. Bake for 20 minutes or until golden brown on top and the center is cooked through. Use a toothpick to test. Edges should be crispy at this point! Allow to slightly cool before slicing and serving. Serve cornbread with butter, honey, jam, whatever you like. Wrap leftovers up tightly and store at room temperature for up to 1 week.
  4. Make ahead tip: For longer storage, freeze baked cornbread for up to 3 months. Allow to thaw overnight in the refrigerator and heat up in the microwave or bake in a 300°F (149°C) oven for 10 minutes.

Recipe Notes:

  1. My preferred cornmeal is Indian Head Stone Ground Yellow Cornmeal.
  2. For less sweet cornbread, reduce brown sugar to 1/4 cup. You can use dark brown sugar instead, for a slightly stronger molasses background.
  3. Buttermilk is required for this recipe. If you do not keep it on hand, you can make a DIY version by adding 2-3 teaspoons of fresh lemon juice or white vinegar to a large liquid measuring cup. Then add enough regular room temperature milk (whole, skim, 1%, 2%-- whole milk is strongly recommended for moistest, richest texture) to make 1 cup total. Stir and let sit for 5 minutes. This soured milk can be used in the recipe.

Skillet Cornbread: Baking cornbread in a skillet gives it an even heartier, crunchy crust. Bake this cornbread in a 9-inch oven safe greased skillet at the same temperature for the same amount of time.

Here is the same recipe as muffins!

Did you make a recipe?

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© Sally’s Baking Addiction. All images & content are copyright protected. Please do not use my images without prior permission. If you want to republish this recipe, please re-write the recipe in your own words, or link back to this post for the recipe.

Here are more bread recipes for you!

With its full flavor, tender texture, and crunchy/honey/buttery edges, it's easy for me to say that this is my favorite cornbread recipe!

A couple other recipes you’d love:

Crispy Baked Onion Rings

How to Make Crispy Baked Onion Rings

Pretzel Crusted Chicken Bites

Super crunchy Pretzel Crusted Chicken Bites on sallysbakingaddiction.com. These are SO easy and delicious!

Eggland’s Best provided me with eggs to bring you this recipe.

I tested several cornbread recipes and it ALWAYS comes back to this one. Best cornbread ever!

221 comments

  1. Hi Sally! I made this this morning for Easter brunch. I doubled the recipe and baked it in a 9×13 pan. It worked out perfectly and got rave reviews!! Thank you!

  2. This is my favorite cornbread recipe. It is moist and full of flavor. Thanks for the great recipe.

  3. Wow sally! Your blog never disappoints me 🙂 I was searching for a good recipe but it’s hard to find THE best one… then I remembered there’s you and nothing that I ever made from this blog EVER turned out bad. And it keeps going that way! This is now my favorite cornbread recipe as well. It’s so moist, buttery, soft, the crust on top… just yummmm! Killed my craving big time. You’re awesome! Thanks for sharing your passion and your gems 🙂

  4. Tried this today and its delicious! It did take a few minutes longer in the oven, many thanks for another hit!

  5. If I want a non dairy cornbread can swap margarine for butter and soy milk for regular milk? Any advice?

  6. I have self rising cornmeal, will that work if I leave our or lessen the baking soda?

    • I would purchase some high-quality cornmeal that is non-self-rising. Organic, preferably, with only corn as the ingredient.  Then you can simply follow the recipe and use the stated leaveners.  

  7. Can I make it if I can’t buy cornmeal where I live?

  8. Hi Sally!

    If I were to add creamed corn to this, how much would you recommend adding?

    • Hi Jessica! I’m unsure; I’d have to test it out. I’d hate to give you a wrong recommendation! Let me know if you try anything out.

  9. Love the recipe. I changed a couple of things..well one really. Instead of a full cup of buttermilk I used 3/4 of a cup of sour cream. The bread turned out delish. Glad I found this recipe!!

  10. This is amazing! I used 2 medium eggs instead of 1 large, and soured half-&-half with vinegar instead of using buttermilk. And of course I added a cup of cheddar. So rich and delicious! Thank you!

  11. Just made this cornbread! Fantastic!! Definitely my new go to recipe.

  12. Hi Sally! I’m looking forward to baking this with your chicken chili next week! I was wondering, can you make this recipe ahead (in the morning) and store the batter in the refrigerator to make that same night?

    Thanks!!

    • Hi Jen! You can, yes, but the cornbread may not rise as high because the baking powder is initially activated once wet. What I suggest is preparing the dry ingredients and wet ingredients separately, storing in the fridge covered, then combining then when ready to bake.

  13. Hi!!! I love your blog and i’ve done so many of your recipes, all turned out great! 
    I’ve intollerance to honey, can this ingredient be avoided? ☹️. Thanks!

  14. If I wanted to make this into muffins what is your recommendation on time and oven temp?

    • Bake for 5 minutes 425°F (218°C) then, keeping the muffins in the oven, reduce heat to 350°F (177°C)4 and continue baking for another 16-17 minutes. The total time these muffins should be in the oven is around 21-23 minutes. You’ll want them baked until the center is cooked through. Use a toothpick to test.

  15. Could this be made in a cast iron skillet? If so, are there any changes I should make?

  16. I used this recipe for my first ever try at making cornbread and it turned out perfect and tasted delicious.

  17. My search is finally over!! Amazing cornbread Sally!!
    The best part of this cornbread is that it’s perfect as is but it’s also a blank slate for so many delicious creations!
    Thanks for the recipes and please keep them coming:-)

  18. I doubled it and baked it in a large foil pan, but the batter was too thick to cook evenly. I added at least 10 extra minutes. It rose nicely, looked great, then fell when cooling. I should’ve used a 9×13 pan and then taken it to my potluck in the foil pan after slicing. Lesson learned! The well done edges tasted awesome though.

  19. A cornbread we can all agree on. My husband has been a “Jiffy” man, so I have been on a search to find the perfect cornbread recipe just for him. He LOVED it and referred to it as “Better than Jiffy”. It was also a hit with the kids. Looks like we have found our cornbread. Next time I’ll have to double the recipe.
    Thank you very much!

  20. Literally just made this recipe this morning. 
    I doubled the recipe, used a 9 X 13 glass Pyrex baking dish. 
    My oven temps correctly I know I have a oven thermometer inside it.
    400 degrees Fahrenheit is TOO hot. My edges burned and the top was WAYYY Beyond a “Golden Brown” I tooth picked the center at 20 minutes & still got moisture towards the bottom so I left it in for another 10 minutes. Probably what upped the TOP color, but at 20 minutes my edges were already burnt. I am glad I did not use a metal pan…. or I am positive the results would have been disastrous. Metal verses glass…. I lean towards the glass baking dish camp lol. I have never had luck baking with metal pans (Dark OR Light).
    HONESTLY I was very disappointed in the actual Height of the cornbread. It did Not Rise as much as I thought it would 🙁

    I think I will always double this recipe since my hubby and I enjoy cornbread. HOWEVER… I plan on baking it in my 11 X 8 glass rectangular dish. It is an Oblong 2 qt pan. It will create a “Thicker” cornbread in My opinion.  I absolutely ADORE my 11 X 8 (2 QT) rectangular glass dish. Makes a massive difference I have found when baking things. Most recipes call for a 9 X 13 baking dish, but really an 11 X 8 works just as well. Less surface area, more height to whatever is being baked.

    For me next attempt at this cornbread will be:
    1. Baking Temp: 350 degrees Fahrenheit for 20 – 25 minutes.
    2. Baking Dish: 8” X 11” (2 QT) Rectangular Glass Baking Pan.
    3. Substitute Plain Greek Non-fat Yogurt for buttermilk. 

    TASTES GREAT! 

  21. I made this recipe for Easter and it LOOKED perfect, but even though I took it out at 18 mins, it was pretty dry. I weigh my ingredients and have two thermometers in my oven so I don’t know what happened 🙁 they were also a little bland. Cultured butter slathered on them helped.

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