BEST Easy Cornbread Recipe (2024)

Tessa’s Recipe Rundown

Taste: Rich, buttery, slightly sweet, and oh-so-corny 😉
Texture: Moist, fluffy, yet crumbly.
Ease: Extremely easy. It’s almost impossible to mess this up.
Pros: Super simple and great as a side dish for any BBQs or potluck. And perfect for Thanksgiving recipes like stuffing or dressing too!
Cons: None.
Would I make this again? Yes, probably for Thanksgiving.

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This is truly the best easy cornbread recipe I’ve EVER tried.

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The texture of this cornbread recipe is ultra moist, tender, and buttery. The taste is perfectly sweet, thanks to the honey.

I’ve even included a recipe for jalapeño honey butter. You just can’t enjoy cornbread without honey and butter, in my opinion!

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You may never buy pre-made cornbread or a box mix again after you see how simple and quick it is to make cornbread from scratch.

This recipe is also a perfect base for Thanksgiving stuffing and dressing.

The rest of the year, this cornbread is perfect on the side of soups, stews, or hearty, warming chili!

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How to Make the Best Cornbread Recipe

What is Cornbread?

Cornbread is a fairly simple combination of basic kitchen ingredients, plus cornmeal – but it’s always an impressive, delicious side to bring to any gathering, family dinner, or potluck. This moist, flavorful cornbread contains buttermilk and sour cream for so much moistness and flavor. It also uses real corn for an extra pop of flavor, extra sweetness (without too much sugar), as well as extra moisture. Serve with a side of butter (or flavored butter – recipe below!) or a drizzle of honey, and people will be asking you to bring it to every gathering for years to come.

What’s the Difference Between Northern-Style Cornbread and Southern-Style Cornbread?

This recipe is for a Northern-Style cornbread. It’s sweetened with both honey and sugar and contains lots of rich ingredients like eggs, buttermilk, milk, and sour cream. This makes it ultra-rich and more cakey, not crumbly. It stands out all on its own… but with a dollop of flavored butter and/or a spoonful of honey, it’s simply amazing.

Many Southerners would say sugar has no place in cornbread. That’s likely because the first versions of cornbread were made with just cornmeal, salt, and water as a part of many daily diets. Southern-style cornbread tends to be more crumbly.

What Type of Cornmeal Should I Use?

  • I prefer stone-ground cornmeal for cornbread, as it’s generally a slightly coarser product, and typically boasts a corn-forward flavor – which is exactly what we’re looking for in a cornbread recipe.
  • If you don’t have stone-ground cornmeal, or can’t find it at the supermarket, then any yellow cornmeal will work just fine.
  • Cornmeal should be found in the baking aisle of your local supermarket.
  • Just be sure not to accidentally use cornstarch or corn flour, as these are not the same thing and cannot be used interchangeably!

    What Type of Pan Should I Use for This Cornbread Recipe?

    My favorite pan for baking cornbread is my 9×13-inch USA Pan. I don’t recommend baking this recipe in a glass pan or a ceramic pan, as those types of pans don’t conduct heat well, so the edges may dry out before the center bakes through. Check out my full post on Glass vs. Metal Pans for more info.

    How Do I Make My Cornbread Moist? How Do I Prevent Cornbread from Being Dry?

    Buttermilk and sour cream are my secret weapons here!

    • Buttermilk is used primarily for its pleasant tangy flavor, but it also helps to tenderize and leaven baked goods. I always recommend using real buttermilk for this reason.
    • You can read more about buttermilk, and why I don’t prefer buttermilk substitutes, in my Buttermilk 101 article.
    • Sour cream lends extra fat content, combined with its creamy consistency, means it brings another level of moistness to this cornbread.
    • I recommend using a full-fat sour cream for the full textural and flavor benefits.

    Also, be sure to measure your flour correctly, so you don’t end up with chewy or dense cornbread. Learn more about that here.

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    Is Cornbread Gluten-Free?

    Most cornbreads, including Jiffy Cornbread Mix, contain at least some flour (often whole wheat flour). My cornbread recipe contains all-purpose flour, for added structure, so this recipe is not gluten-free. If you experiment with gluten-free substitutions, let me know how it goes in the comments below!

    Can I Use this Recipe to Make Cornbread Muffins?

    Sure! Pour the batter until three-quarters full into about 24 muffin tin cavities and bake for about 25 to 30 minutes.

    How Long Will This Cornbread Recipe Stay Fresh?

    Wrap leftover cornbread in plastic wrap and store in an airtight container for up to 2 days at room temperature.

    Can I Freeze Cornbread?

    Yes! Full slabs of cornbread, or sliced portions of cornbread, can be wrapped well in plastic wrap and stored in an airtight container in the freezer for up to 3 months.

    What to Do With Leftovers of Homemade Cornbread Recipe?

    • Make Cornbread Stuffing
    • Cornbread Dressing – crumble or dice the cornbread to make dressing/stuffing.
    • Cornbread Croutons – to make croutons, brush cubed cornbread with butter and season with a little salt and pepper, and bake in a low oven until crispy.

    BEST Easy Cornbread Recipe (5)

    BEST Easy Cornbread Recipe (6)

    More Recipes You’ll Love:

    • Potato Salad
    • Homemade Burger Buns
    • Cheesy Green Bean Casserole with Bacon
    • Easy Chocolate Zucchini Cake

    BEST Easy Cornbread Recipe (7)

    How to Make

    Easy Cornbread Recipe

    4.67 from 6 votes

    Yield: 10 servings

    Prep Time: 10 minutes mins

    Inactive Time: 1 hour hr

    Cook Time: 40 minutes mins

    Total Time: 1 hour hr 50 minutes mins

    Review Print


    Easy Cornbread recipe is moist, buttery, fluffy, and so delicious. Topped with jalapeño honey butter. Your friends and family will love this recipe at any summer BBQs or as a side dish for Thanksgiving!


    For the cornbread:

    • 3 large eggs, at room temperature
    • 1 cup (237 ml) buttermilk, at room temperature
    • 1 cup (237 ml) milk, at room temperature
    • ½ cup (114 grams) sour cream, at room temperature
    • 2 tablespoons (42 grams) honey
    • 1 1/2 cups (274 grams) yellow cornmeal, preferably stone-ground
    • 1 1/2 cups (191 grams) all-purpose flour
    • 1 tablespoon baking powder
    • 3/4 teaspoon baking soda
    • 2 tablespoons (25 grams) granulated sugar
    • 3/4 teaspoon fine salt
    • 4 tablespoons (57 grams) unsalted butter, melted
    • 8 ounces (227 grams) fresh or canned sweet corn, drained and rinsed

    For the whipped jalapeño honey butter (optional):

    • 1 stick (113 grams) unsalted butter, divided, at room temperature
    • 2 fresh jalapeños, diced (remove seeds for less spice)
    • 2 tablespoons (42 grams) honey


    Make the cornbread:

    • Adjust an oven rack to the middle position and heat oven to 375°F. Grease a 9×13-inch baking dish with butter or cooking spray.

    • In a medium bowl, whisk together the eggs, buttermilk, milk, sour cream, and honey. Set aside.

    • In a large bowl, whisk together the cornmeal, flour, baking powder, baking soda, sugar, and salt. Push the dry ingredients up the sides of the bowl to make a well, then pour in the wet ingredients. Stir with a rubber spatula until just combined.

    • Gradually stir in the melted butter. Fold in the sweet corn, being careful not to overmix.

    • Pour the batter into the greased baking dish. Bake until the top is golden brown and the edges have pulled away from the sides of the pan, 30-40 minutes.

    • Transfer the baking dish to a wire rack and sit for 30 minutes-1 hour, until just warm. The cornbread is best served warm. Place leftovers in an airtight container and store at room temperature for up to 2 days.

    Make the whipped jalapeno honey butter:

    • While the cornbread is baking, in a small sauté pan on medium heat, melt 1 tablespoon (14 grams) of the butter. Add the diced jalapeños and sauté for 1 minute. Set aside to cool.

    • In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, or with a hand mixer, whip together the remaining room temperature butter with the honey until fluffy, 2-3 minutes. Fold in the cooled, sautéed jalapeños. Serve with cornbread. If making ahead of time, remove to an airtight container and store in the fridge for up to 1 week.

    Show us!If you make this recipe, be sure to snap a picture and share it on Instagram with #handletheheat so we can all see!

    Recipe Notes

    To Make Cornbread Muffins: Pour the batter until three-quarters full into about 24 muffin tin cavities and bake for about 25 to 30 minutes.

    This post was originally published in 2011 and was updated in 2022 with new photos and recipe improvements. Photos by Joanie Simon.

    BEST Easy Cornbread Recipe (2024)


    What's the difference between Southern cornbread and regular cornbread? ›

    Northern cornbreads tend to be more cake-like, on the sweet side, with a finer crumb due to more flour in the mixture. Southern cornbread is flavored with bacon grease, and cooked in a cast iron skillet, a perfect side for barbecues, or chili. It also tends to be rather crumbly.

    What ingredient keeps cornbread from crumbling? ›

    Cornmeal gives cornbread its classic color and flavor, but too much can make your bread crumbly. Try replacing a little bit of cornmeal with flour. The specific measurements will depend on how much cornmeal and flour is in your recipe, but you should try to have more flour than cornmeal in your batter.

    What's the best cornmeal for cornbread? ›

    As for the best cornmeal for cornbread, either fine- or medium-grind cornmeal is a great choice. Medium-grind cornmeal will bring slightly more texture and grittiness to the batter, which you may or may not want (it's up to you!). You can use fine or medium cornmeal in these extra corny muffins.

    Is butter better than oil for cornbread? ›

    Butter adds flavor and color, while oil keeps the crumb tender and moist. Brown Sugar: We add some sugar to our cornbread and prefer to use brown sugar. The flavor combination of cornmeal and brown sugar works well. If you only have white sugar, that's okay.

    Why do Southerners not put sugar in cornbread? ›

    The most common theory is a change in cornmeal itself. Until early in the 20th century, Southern cornmeal was made with sweeter white corn and it was water-ground. When industrial milling came along, that changed. The steel-roller mills used yellow corn that was harvested before it was ripe, so it had less sugar.

    Which makes better cornbread white or yellow cornmeal? ›

    Southerners, on the other hand, tend to prefer white cornmeal. Many people believe that it is because, in the old South, families used white cornmeal as it more closely resembled “fancy” European wheat flour. In any case, today it remains a main component in traditional Southern buttermilk cornbread.

    Will an extra egg make cornbread less crumbly? ›

    Eggs, or egg substitutes help add structure to the cornbread. Without an egg or substitute, the cornbread may crumble and fall apart easily.

    Should you let cornbread batter rest? ›

    Cornbread Best Practices:
    1. LET the batter sit for 15-20 minutes before baking. ...
    2. BE gentle!! ...
    3. START preheating your oven as soon as you set aside the batter to rise, by the time it's preheated, your batter should be ready to go in.
    4. HEAT your skillet. ...
    5. SUBSTITUTE regular salt for this amazing Smoked Salt.
    Jul 7, 2019

    Should you soak cornmeal before making cornbread? ›

    Soaking the cornmeal in buttermilk for a few hours, or even overnight, tenderizes the large grains of cornmeal, making the bread more moist and tender. This step is optional, however, and the bread is still delicious without the soaking step.

    Can cornbread batter sit before baking? ›

    The beauty of this cornbread is that you can leave the fully prepared batter in the refrigerator for 2 days before baking it. In a medium bowl, using a wooden spoon, stir the corn flour and cornmeal with the buttermilk until there are no dry pockets remaining.

    Is Jiffy cornbread the same as cornmeal? ›

    Are cornmeal and cornbread mix the same thing? No, but cornmeal is one of the ingredients present in cornbread mix. The mix will have additional ingredients like flour, sugar, and salt for additional body and flavor, as well as a leavening agent like baking soda for a fluffier texture.

    How do you make Jiffy cornbread less crumbly? ›

    1. 1Adjust the proportion of flour to cornmeal. Cornmeal gives cornbread its classic color and flavor, but too much can make your bread crumbly. ...
    2. 2Try a different brand of flour. Not all bags of flour are the same! ...
    3. 3Add a handful of frozen corn. ...
    4. 4Add shredded cheese.
    Oct 29, 2021

    Is it better to use salted or unsalted butter for cornbread? ›

    Both chefs agreed that when it comes to cooking and baking, salted butter is not the way to go because you can't control the amount of salt that will go in the recipe. But, salted butter is a great option to use after the cooking and baking process—like slathering on cornbread or blueberry muffins.

    Can I use olive oil instead of vegetable oil to make cornbread? ›

    Olive oil can be substituted for vegetable oil or butter in any recipe. After creating our Little House inspired olive oil cake, we decided to try olive oil in cornbread. This recipe is a hit! This cornbread is sweet, moist and with the help of a pre-heated cast iron pan, crispy on the edges.

    Can I substitute melted butter for oil in cornbread? ›

    It couldn't be easier to substitute butter for oil using a 1:1 ratio. This should work with olive, canola, vegetable, and coconut oils. Simply melt and cool the butter to room temperature, then continue with your recipe. (If the recipe calls for ½ cup oil, use ½ cup melted and cooled butter.)

    What is the difference between New York cornbread and southern cornbread? ›

    While both styles generally use the same ingredients -- cornmeal, flour, eggs, and baking powder -- the variance lies in the flavor and texture. Northern-style cornbread tends to be sweeter, moister, and cake-like compared to its Southern counterpart.

    What is the difference between Yankee cornbread and Southern cornbread? ›

    There are some basic differences between Southern corn-bread and what many people call "Yankee" cornbread. Southern cornbread, besides being made from white corn meal, has very little sugar in it - between a teaspoon and a tablespoon. And it is made with buttermilk.

    What is Southern cornbread made of? ›

    In a large mixing bowl, mix dry ingredients: cornmeal, flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt; Set aside. In a small bowl, whisk together the egg and buttermilk. Pour the mixture into the dry ingredients and mix well. Take the cast iron skillet out of the oven and pour the batter into it.

    What does Southern cornbread taste like? ›

    The verdict: While on its own, Southern cornbread may be underwhelming, it's neutral flavor and crumbly texture make it the perfect vessel to soak up liquidy foods, like cranberry sauce or turkey gravy. Or, it can be eaten on its own, perhaps mixed with gooey cheese or spicy jalapeños.


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