This quick and easy cornbread recipe is a nice middle ground between a dense and savory Southern-style cornbread and a light and sweet Northern-style cornbread. It has just a hint of sweetness and pairs well with chili or soup. The cornbread is delicious on its own and even more so with a bit of butter and honey spread on top.
You can easily adapt this recipe to create an authentic Southern cornbread by omitting the sugar and replacing all or most of the flour with cornmeal. Replacing the flour with cornmeal will make a denser cornbread. Some Southerners swear by only using white cornmeal. However, use whichever color you like. Some stores even sell blue cornmeal! Another tip for making Southern cornbread is instead of using oil on the pan to brown and crispen the crust, you could use bacon drippings for added flavor. Also, for additional flavor, sometimes crispy pork skin aka cracklings are mixed in when making southern cornbread.
For a spicy cornbread that is popular in Texas, consider mixing in chopped jalapenos or green chiles and cheddar cheese.
Once you learn how to make cornbread you will want to experiment by adding additional flavors!
- 1/3 cup + 3 tablespoons vegetable oil - divided
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 1 cup yellow cornmeal
- 3 and 1/2 tablespoons sugar
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 cup buttermilk
- 1 large egg - lightly beaten
Preheat your oven to 400º Fahrenheit.
Add the cornmeal, flour, baking powder, baking soda, and sugar to a medium-sized bowl. Whisk to combine.
Add the lightly beaten egg, buttermilk, and 1/3 of a cup of vegetable oil to the dry ingredients. Whisk together until incorporated.
Here is a picture of the cornbread dough ready to be baked.
Add 3 tablespoons of oil to either a 10" cast iron skillet or a 10" baking pan. Swirl the oil around the bottom and sides of the skillet or pan until coated. If you find that you have excess oil, you can let some drip out into your waste basket or back into the oil bottle.
Place the cast iron skillet or baking pan into the oven until it becomes hot. Heating up the pan and oil will help develop a cornbread with a crispy crust.
Using an oven mitt, remove the pan and place it on a hot pad or trivet on your kitchen counter.
Using a spatula, scrape the cornbread batter into the cast iron skillet or baking pan.
Once all of the cornbread batter is in the pan, smooth out the top a bit with your spatula. With your oven mitts on, you can shake the skillet or pan back and forth and side to side to get the batter to sit evenly.
Place the hot skillet or pan back in the oven (use oven mitts!) and bake for 18-22 minutes. To check that the cornbread is done, insert either a cake tester or toothpick into the center of the cake. If it comes out clean without any wet crumbs or dough stuck to it then it is done.
Once the cornbread is done remove the pan from the oven using oven mitts and let it cool on the stove or trivet / hot pad for at least 5 minutes. You can then remove the cornbread to a plate or wire rack to continue cooling.
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