My Favorite Cornbread Recipe

I was never a fan of cornbread until this recipe. After lots of recipe testing, I found the perfect ratio of ingredients for soft, moist, and buttery cornbread with crisp-crunchy edges. I guarantee this is the best cornbread recipe you’ll try!

Cornbread

If I’m being honest, I’ve never been a huge fan of cornbread. However, my husband and I went out to lunch the other day and I was quickly converted. I had the best cornbread EVER. We’re talking thick slices of buttery yellow cornbread with sweet honey served on the side. From the delicious corn flavor to the moist texture and crunchy crust, this was a recipe I had to recreate at home.

Cornbread was never my thing UNTIL NOW.

Cornbread with honey

My Favorite Cornbread Recipe

Cornbread is like coconut macaroons. Random comparison, but I promise it’s true. Both classics are very easy, but their success depends on the ratio of ingredients. When done wrong, cornbread (and macaroons!) is dry, crumbly, and flavorless. But when done right, this comfort food staple is rich, tender, moist, flavorful, and very buttery.

I used my mom’s cornbread recipe as a starting point. I played around with butter vs oil, regular milk vs buttermilk, and the ratio of flour to cornmeal. Here’s what I learned:

  1. Butter: Butter is one of the main flavors in this cornbread recipe. While oil leaves the cornbread luxuriously tender, I find the bread lacks flavor if butter isn’t present. Since butter doesn’t make the bread as moist as oil, I pair it with buttermilk.
  2. Buttermilk: Buttermilk makes cakes, muffins, and breads extra moist.
  3. Cornmeal: Cornmeal is another main flavor. Equal parts cornmeal and flour makes the BEST cornbread. With 1 cup of cornmeal, you get lots of flavor and mega crunchy edges.
  4. Brown Sugar: A little brown sugar and honey complements the corn flavor. Regular white sugar is fine, but why use flavorless white sugar when you can used molasses-spiked brown sugar? Because it makes a difference.

Cornbread

What is Cornmeal?

A lot of readers ask about cornmeal. What is cornmeal? Is cornmeal the same as cornstarch? What about polenta? It can certainly be confusing. Cornmeal is dried and ground corn. It’s found in the baking aisle of grocery stores. If you’re curious, here’s what I found. You learn the differences between many corn products including cornmeal, polenta, and cornstarch.

Why This is the Best Cornbread

Let us count the ways!

  • Easy to make
  • 10 simple ingredients
  • No mixer required
  • Sweet corn flavor
  • Crunchy crisp edges
  • Moist, not too crumbly
  • Extra buttery

After 1 taste, you’ll wonder why you don’t make homemade cornbread more often. And try it in a cast iron skillet! My skillet cornbread is a forever favorite recipe too.

Cornbread muffins

What to Serve with Cornbread:

And here’s my cornbread muffin recipe. I love adding jalapeño for heat!

Print
Cornbread

My Favorite Cornbread Recipe

  • Author: Sally
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 20 minutes
  • Total Time: 1 hour
  • Yield: 9 servings
  • Category: Side Dish
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: American

Description

I was never a fan of cornbread until this recipe! After lots of recipe testing, I found the perfect ratio of ingredients for soft, moist, and buttery cornbread with crisp-crunchy edges. I guarantee this is the best cornbread recipe you’ll try!


Ingredients

  • 1 cup (120g) cornmeal
  • 1 cup (125g) all-purpose flour (spoon & leveled)
  • 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 or dark brown sugar
  • 2 Tablespoons (30ml) honey
  • 1 large egg, at room temperature
  • 1 cup (240ml) buttermilk, at room temperature*

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 400°F (204°C). Grease and lightly flour an 8 or 9-inch square baking pan. Set aside.
  2. Whisk the cornmeal, flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt together in a large bowl. Set aside. In a medium bowl, whisk the melted butter, brown sugar, and honey together until completely smooth and thick. 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 over-mixing.
  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, or whatever you like.
  4. Wrap leftovers up tightly and store at room temperature for up to 1 week.

Notes

  1. Freezing Instructions: 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.
  2. Buttermilk: Buttermilk is required for this recipe. If you don’t keep it around, you can make a DIY version by adding 2 teaspoons of fresh lemon juice or white vinegar to a large liquid measuring cup. Then add enough regular room temperature milk to make 1 cup total. Whole milk is recommended for moistest, richest texture. Stir and let sit for 5 minutes. This soured milk can be used in the recipe.
  3. 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
  4. Skillet Cornbread: Baking cornbread in a skillet gives it an even heartier, crunchy crust. Bake this cornbread in a 9-inch or 10-inch oven safe greased skillet at the same temperature for the same amount of time.
  5. Cornbread Muffins: Here is the same recipe as cornbread muffins!

Keywords: cornbread

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

316 Comments

  1. Hi Sally! Big fan of your recipes. I keep making them and receiving compliments for the same. I am from India and had a query for you. What is corn bread eaten with? It is not very common here so I am a little curious to know. Hope to hear from you soon.

    1. Hi Supriya!! I know you made your comment almost a year ago, but wanted to still let you know that I grew up eating cornbread as a dessert!! We eat it warm, add a bit of butter on top, and then pour maple syrup over top!! It is soooo amazing this way…a must try if you have never done it before!! Years later when I was living at school, they served it as a breakfast with maple syrup…I thought I had just gone to heaven!!

  2. We’re having a Chili lunch at work next week and I signed up to bring the cornbread. I was thinking about just buying it at the store but decided to try your cornbread recipe after trying your chili recipe (delicious BTW!). OMG! This cornbread is the best! I’m no baker so I was surprised I was able to produce this. My husband loved it too. I will definitely be making another batch for work this week. Thanks! 

  3. Wow, super amazing! I’m not a huge cornbread fan, but this has changed my mind. Thanks to poster who asked about the creamed corn. My husband said it was really good but he’s a ‘purist’ (needs his corn kernels in it lol), so next time I will try the creamed corn addition. Of course his comment didn’t stop him from eating 1/3 of the skillet!

  4. I had a sudden craving for cornbread today and decided to try a new recipe – yours! It turned out so well! The only modifications I made were to use white whole-wheat flour, stone-ground medium cornmeal, and coconut sugar. I read somewhere a long time ago that dredging the cornmeal in the buttermilk leads to a better result, so I did that, and I also heated a buttered baking dish (no cast iron skillet, unfortunately) until the butter was sizzling before adding the batter and it gives a crispy golden crust. So good drizzled with a bit of honey! Thank you! 

  5. Hi Sally!
    I love your recipes, and always come to your website when I want to try something new. This cornbread was great but we found it to be the slightest bit dry. That might just be due to the dry Utah weather or the elevation here but I was wondering if you had a recommendation that might make it just a touch more moist? Thank you!

    1. Hi Katie! How about adding 2 Tablespoons of oil to the batter. I would mix it in with the melted butter + sugar mixture.

  6. My Nephew wants some crawfish cornbread.  How can I adapt your recipe to make this Cajun specialty?
    Thank you,
    Barbara

    1. Hi Barbara- I’m unsure. I’ve never made it before and I don’t want to point you in the wrong direction without any experience. Is there a recipe elsewhere you can use?

      1. Thanks Barbara. Wish I could be more help. Let me know if you find a recipe you love for it!

  7. Hi,

    I love the way you detail out your recipes. Logical, scientific and funny 🙂
    Can I prepare this recipe in bread pan?

    Thanks,
    Prachi

  8. Hi Sally- I seriously love this recipe and it will forever be my go-to cornbread recipe! Do you think it would work as muffins? Thanks.

  9. I made this last night for my boyfriend who is totally obsessed with cornbread…and he loved it. It is simple to make, sweet and delish! I’m fairly new to baking but would adding corn to it make cooking time or anything else different? I was also thinking of putting in cupcake liners, would that change baking time? I love your website its truly the best! I’m learning to bake from you!

    1. Hi Kelly! I make it with corn kernels from time to time and am even posting a recipe like it on my blog this week. Great timing. You can make these as cornbread muffins– I added jalapeño and made them into muffins right here!

  10. I made this amazing bread on 4th of July as a pair with chili from your site. As I said Amazing! Even with me as not a corn bread lover unless it is from Famous Davis restaurant. But it is much much better than FD. Thanks for making the holiday so yummy.

  11. This cornbread is delicious! I’m making now for the second time and my family is eagerly awaiting it! Thank you for all your wonderful recipes. Your website has made me love baking (something I used to be awful at) and made my kids very happy!

  12. Hi Sally!  Just a quick fyi. . . my husband decided to make stew this weekend and wanted to make a corn bread. Of course I said, “Sally has a cornbread recipe and her recipes don’t fail!” (you’re my recipe authority so I use your first name like a dear friend even though we had never met). So I printed this one for him. It came out sooooooo good. I had a nice crumb and just the right amount of sweet. It paired so well with the stew! The my little ones loved it too!! 
    Thank you for sharing. I love your blog and tell my friends to check it all the time and I give you props when they taste my baking – – Sally’s Baking Addiction!

  13. Sally, I love your recipe! I had to adjust temp, as my muffin tins are only about 2 1/2 inch size. Since you used jalapeno, which I love spicy, I added about 1/3C of Trader Joe’s Corn Salsa. It was awesome! One time, along with the Corn Salsa, I shaved half an ear of corn and added to the mix. These little fellas are addictive!

  14. Made this lactose free for my son by using a vegetable butter substitute for the butter and almond milk soured with apple cider vinegar for the buttermilk It was great! I would use the smaller amount of sugar next time, but I loved how mist it was compared to some other cornbreads I have made. Thanks so much!

  15. My new favorite homemade cornbread recipe! Absolutely delicious and so, so easy to make. I made my buttermilk with almond milk and apple cider vinegar and was pleasantly surprised – it turned out perfect! 

  16. This turned out really wonderfully! It’s a little crumbly but it’s worth it for the nice flavour and it isn’t dried out!

    1. Baking with ingredients that are all at similar temperatures ensures easy mixing and an overall even texture. If you’re ever curious about reading more, here you go: https://sallysbakingaddiction.com/2016/01/26/baking-basics-room-temperature-ingredients/

  17. My daughter is severely allergic to dairy so we make this with “smart balance” butter substitute and almond milk with vinegar instead of buttermilk and it turns out great every time. Even our dairy eating family loves it! Definitely the best I’ve ever had!

  18. Hi Sally,

    I made cornbread following your recipe. It turned out really tasty but very very crumbly. Could you possibly tell what went wrong and the solution?

    Thanks!

      1. Hi Sally,

        I followed your recipe to a T when making it. I’ll try again and reduce the baking time.
        Thanks!

  19. Hrrrrmmmm is it important the kind of material of the pan that you use?

    I baked this and I had it in a 8×8 pyrex. After 20 minutes at 400 degrees F, the outside looked delicious and golden and crispy but it seemed like it was totally liquid on the inside (it even jiggled like there was liquid underneath the crust when I took it out of the oven, toothpick test confirmed liquid suspicions). Which is weird because it did have a more muffin-like texture when I initially put it in the pan? I ended up putting it back in for 15 min at 400 degrees and I covered it with foil hoping that it would prevent over-browning, after this it was completely cooked and delicious but it did seem like covering it caused the crisp crust to become….uncrisp. I think next time I’d try it in a muffin tin or in my cast iron skillet.

    Anyway, when you make this in a square pan, is the pan metal? I feel like I’ve heard somewhere before that dark metal pans conduct heat differently/better than other materials so I wonder if thats what went wrong

  20. Sally, You’re my go to for baked goodies. I found this recipe recently and all this is hands down the most delicious, moist corn muffin recipe I have ever eaten!!!. And I have made quite a few.

  21. 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!

1 2 3 4 5 6 7

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

With kitchen-tested quality recipes and step-by-step tutorials, my goal is to give you the confidence to bake and cook from scratch.

Recipes You’ll Love

Archives

Categories

Sally's Baking Challenge

Join the community on the 1st of every month as we tackle a new challenge recipe.

View More

Sally's Cookie Palooza

A tradition since 2013, every December we countdown to Christmas with 10 new cookie recipes in a row!

View More

Sally's Pie Week

The first week of every November is all about Thanksgiving Pies.

View More

My Cookbooks

About Sally

Welcome to my Kitchen!

I’m Sally, a cookbook author, photographer, and blogger. My goal is to give you the confidence and knowledge to cook and bake from scratch while providing quality recipes and plenty of pictures. Grab a cookie, take a seat, and have fun exploring! more about Sally

×