Perfect Southern Cornbread Recipe for Your Next Cookout!

Greetings fellow foodies! Today, I bring you a recipe that is sure to transport you to the heart of the south – my Southern Cornbread Recipe! This old-fashioned, yet simple dish is a staple in southern cuisine and remains a favorite among all generations.

Cornbread has been used in many different ways in southern cooking for centuries; from savory fried dishes to sweet desserts, it’s versatility knows no bounds. But for this recipe, we’ll be sticking to a traditional, moist and real southern-style cornbread that will leave your taste buds yearning for more!

Imagine yourself devouring a piping hot slice of cornbread, with that sweet aroma tingling your nostrils, then breaking into the soft crumbly texture with a hint of crunchy edges – now imagine having that experience in the comfort of your own home. Trust me – this cornbread recipe will be nothing but a mouth-watering adventure.

As a chef specializing in southern cuisine, I know that food is not just fuel for the body but an emotional connection that brings families and friends together. The simplicity and authenticity of my Southern Cornbread Recipe is proof of this fact! So what are you waiting for? Gather up those ingredients and let’s cook up some southern charm!

Why You’ll Love This Recipe

Southern Cornbread
Southern Cornbread

Get ready for a real treat with this Southern Cornbread Recipe. This simple, yet authentic recipe will transport your taste buds to the heart of southern cuisine. If you’re a fan of moist and sweet cornbread, this recipe is just for you.

What sets this Southern Cornbread Recipe apart is that it strikes the perfect balance between sweet and savory notes. The cornmeal’s sweetness is perfectly offset by the buttery, salty flavor of bacon drippings. Moister than other cornbreads on the market, it is not only perfect for serving as a side dish in your dinner table but also great as an appetizer or a snack anytime!

This recipe’s simplicity is what makes it so special! With just a few simple twists on traditional ingredients like sliced bacon and skim milk, it’s deliciously addictive. Its versatility means it can be paired with any entree or as part of your favorite cornbread dressing recipe.

With Southern Cornbread Recipe, there’s always room for personal interpretation. Add jalapenos to the mix to kick up the heat or throw in cheddar cheese if you’re craving extra flavor. Even if you’re vegan – swap animal fats for vegetable oil and egg substitute in equal parts.

In all, Southern Cornbread Recipé stands out as one of the best cornbread recipes around. Simple, classic, and delicious—nothing speaks more to food nostalgia than this traditional hearty snack.

Ingredient List

 Get ready to dive into a southern classic - warm, buttery cornbread fresh from the oven.
Get ready to dive into a southern classic – warm, buttery cornbread fresh from the oven.

Let’s talk ingredients!

Preparing Southern Cornbread can sometimes feel like a jigsaw containing multiple missing pieces, especially covering the ingredient list. However, with my recipe, you will be surprised to learn that we only require simple ingredients that you probably already have in your pantry.

To make our basic Southern Cornbread Recipe, we’ll need the following:

  • 2 cups of Yellow Cornmeal
  • 1 cup of All-Purpose Flour
  • 1 tablespoon of Baking Powder
  • 1 teaspoon of Salt
  • 1 and ¼ cups of Skim Milk
  • 2 large Eggs or 1/2 cup of Egg Substitute
  • 1/3 cup of Canola Oil

Combining these simple ingredients will lead to a fantastic Southern-style cornbread. Do not worry! If you don’t have some of these ingredients on hand, please read the next section for some potential substitutions and variations.

The Recipe How-To

 In the South, it's not a real meal without a side of cornbread.
In the South, it’s not a real meal without a side of cornbread.

Now that we have gone through the ingredients list, let’s get cookin’! This Southern Cornbread recipe is simple and easy to whip up, making it the perfect addition to any meal. Follow these steps for a savory, moist and traditional cornbread:

Step 1: Preheat the oven

Preheat your oven to 400°F.

Step 2: Combine dry ingredients

In a bowl, whisk together 2 cups of yellow cornmeal, 1 cup of all-purpose flour, 4 teaspoons of baking powder, and 2 teaspoons of salt.

If you want to add a little sweetness to your cornbread, you can also include 2 tablespoons of granulated sugar or sugar substitute like Equal.

Step 3: Mix in liquid ingredients

In a separate bowl, beat together 2 eggs or replace with an egg substitute like skim milk. Stir in 1 and 1/2 cups of milk or buttermilk or vegan substitute. Add 3/4 cup of vegetable oil, melted bacon drippings or vegan oil.

Step 4: Combine wet and dry ingredients

Pour the wet mixture into the dry mixture gradually and mix them thoroughly but don’t overmix.

For a more fluffy texture, use “6 tablespoons” per “1 extra large egg” by adding “6 tablespoons” of yellow cornmeal extra per ”1 extra large egg”.

Step 5: Bake until golden brown

Pour the mixture into a greased cast-iron skillet, preheated baking dish or Dutch oven (if you want that real old fashioned southern style). Bake for about 20-25 minutes or until golden brown on top.

Once completed, let it cool in on a wire rack before dishing up. Serve it hot with extra butter or honey on top if desired!

Now you’re ready make your cornbread dressing or simply enjoy it with some savory fried foods.

Substitutions and Variations

 This recipe is easy as pie (or should we say, easy as cornbread?).
This recipe is easy as pie (or should we say, easy as cornbread?).

Southern cornbread is a versatile dish that can not only serve as a side dish but also the main attraction at any meal. But sometimes, we’re missing an ingredient or want to switch things up to fit our preferences. Here are some substitutions and variations that you can use in this classic recipe:

– Flour: All-purpose flour is perfect for this recipe, but it can be substituted with gluten-free flour, almond flour, coconut flour or self-rising flour. Just keep in mind that the texture and taste might be different from the original version.

– Sugar: Equal sugar substitute or granulated sugar both work well in this recipe. You can also substitute it with honey or molasses for a more natural touch.

– Eggs: If you prefer egg substitute or vegan options, then you can replace the eggs with applesauce, mashed bananas, silken tofu or flaxseed meal mixed with water.

– Oil: Canola oil is a great option for Southern-style cooking but if you’re out of it, then you can use vegetable oil or bacon drippings instead. Bacon drippings will give your cornbread an extra savory flavor.

– Cornmeal: Yellow cornmeal is traditional but white cornmeal or a mix of both work just as well. Stone-ground cornmeal is ideal for those who want a coarser texture and more flavor.

– Dairy: For moist and real Southern-style cornbread, whole milk or buttermilk are recommended. However, skim milk can be used as a healthier alternative.

– Add-ins: To give your cornbread a sweet twist, add in jalapenos or cheddar cheese. You can also make it savory by adding fried bacon bits or bell peppers.

Whether it’s simple and traditional for a southern-style dinner party dress in cast iron skillet or sweet and moist for breakfast offering on any regular day, these substitutions and variations will allow you to customize the dish to match your mood or meal plan. Don’t be afraid to experiment and have fun making this classic dish your own.

Serving and Pairing

 Nothing beats the aroma of fresh baked cornbread wafting through the kitchen.
Nothing beats the aroma of fresh baked cornbread wafting through the kitchen.

There’s no doubt that Southern cornbread is a versatile dish that serves as an excellent complement to many main courses. Whether you’re whipping up a traditional family meal, such as fried chicken or BBQ pork, or planning a special dinner party with friends, this recipe is the perfect addition to your menu.

One of the great things about this recipe is that it can be served either hot or cold. Straight out of the oven, the cornbread is crisp and savory, making it the ideal side dish for a meal hot off the grill. But if you prefer a more moist consistency, try serving it at room temperature or even chilled.

If you’re looking for pairing ideas, cornbread pairs particularly well with dishes that have some spice in them. For example, try serving your Southern cornbread alongside some smoky jalapeno chicken or spicy chili. The combination of the crisp cornbread and bold flavors of these dishes make for an irresistible taste sensation.

For something on the sweeter side, drizzle some honey or maple syrup over your warm cornbread before serving. Or, consider topping your cornbread with a bit of butter or whipped cream and pairing it with some fresh fruit for a delicious dessert.

No matter how you choose to serve this Southern-style staple, you’ll find this recipe to be simple, versatile, and contagious with old fashioned flavor that will leave your loved ones wanting more.

Make-Ahead, Storing and Reheating

 Don't confuse our cornbread with the sweet, cake-like version - this one's savory and delicious.
Don’t confuse our cornbread with the sweet, cake-like version – this one’s savory and delicious.

Southern cornbread is supremely versatile, which makes it perfect for any meal of the day. Plus, it’s especially great for those who love to plan ahead or make enough for leftovers. If you have any extras, don’t worry. There are several ways to store and reheat them while maintaining the original, delicious taste.

To make-ahead, prepare the cornbread according to recipe instructions and allow it to cool completely. Once cooled, wrap it tightly with plastic wrap or aluminum foil and store in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. Alternatively, you can freeze the cornbread for up to 3 months. Wrap it well with foil or plastic wrap and then place it in an airtight container to avoid freezer burn.

To reheat, preheat your oven to 350°F then unwrap the cornbread and place it on a baking sheet. Heat the cornbread in the oven until warm throughout; approximately 10-15 minutes if refrigerated, and 20-25 if frozen.

If you’re short on time, you can also use a microwave to reheat pre-sliced portions of cornbread. Cover each piece with a damp paper towel and microwave until warm throughout.

Finally, I recommend using leftover southern cornbread for making awesome traditional dressing such as mixing with celery,onions and crumbled sausage or crumbling over greens like collard greens, turnip greens or black-eyed peas for an exquisite southern meal.

Whether you’re baking ahead or reheating delicious leftovers after the fact, these methods guarantee that your Southern-style cornbread stays moist and tasty – just as real Southern food should be!

Tips for Perfect Results

 You'll be transported to a front porch in the South after your first bite.
You’ll be transported to a front porch in the South after your first bite.

If you’re making Southern cornbread from scratch, here are some tips and tricks to help you get the perfect results:

1. Use stone-ground cornmeal – Stone-ground cornmeal is less processed and retains more of its natural flavor, which will give your cornbread a richer taste.

2. Preheat your skillet or oven – Be sure to preheat your skillet or oven before adding the batter. This will ensure that your cornbread cooks evenly and has a crispy crust.

3. Add bacon drippings or vegetable oil – Adding bacon drippings or vegetable oil to your skillet before adding the batter will give your cornbread a rich, savory flavor and a crispy crust.

4. Don’t overmix the batter – Overmixing the batter can cause the gluten in the flour to develop, resulting in a tough and chewy texture. Mix just until all ingredients are combined.

5. Use buttermilk for moist cornbread – Buttermilk adds moisture to the batter, resulting in a tender and fluffy texture. If you don’t have buttermilk on hand, you can substitute with skim milk and vinegar or lemon juice.

6. Experiment with variations – You can vary toppings such as cheese or jalapenos to make flavorful changes in traditional southern Cornbread.

7. Store leftover cornbread properly – Store leftover cornbread in an airtight container at room temperature for up to two days or freeze for later use.

By following these tips, you’ll be sure to make delicious and authentic southern-style cornbread every time!


Now that we’ve gone over the recipe and covered all the bases with essential tips, it’s time to address some common questions you may have about this southern cornbread recipe. Don’t fret, I’m here to ease your concerns and provide additional insights that will make your cornbread experience even better. Let’s dive into the most frequently asked questions about this traditional, simple but delightfully delicious recipe.

What makes Southern cornbread different?

Southern-style cornbread differs from its Northern counterpart in several ways. It has a distinct sweetness and buttery flavor and is commonly made with either white or yellow cornmeal. This recipe also requires a higher amount of eggs which contributes to its soft, cake-like texture.

Do Southerners put sugar in cornbread?

Southern cornbread has evolved over time and no longer has the authentic flavor of the original versions. To recapture that traditional taste and texture, Serious Eats suggests using stone-ground cornmeal and excluding sugar and flour from the recipe.

What is the best Southern cornbread mix?

Here are some popular brands of cornmeal mix for making southern-style cornbread and muffins: Tenda-Bake, Martha White, White Lily, Zatarain’s, Causey, Jiffy, and Krusteaz.

Is it better to use milk or buttermilk in cornbread?

If you’re wondering why buttermilk is used in this cornbread recipe instead of regular milk, let me fill you in. As a chef specializing in southern-style cuisine, I highly recommend using buttermilk in your baked goods for a richer and buttery taste. Moreover, buttermilk also helps to make the finished product more tender and moist.

What is cornbread called in the South?

Hoecake is a rustic and simple version of cornbread. It’s an unleavened, thin round that is made from the most basic batter of cornmeal, water, and salt. The edges of the hoecake are crispy and both sides are coated with a glistening layer of fat from frying. Some areas of the hoecake turn golden-brown, which adds to the dish’s charm.

Bottom Line

Now, after reading through this recipe article for Southern Cornbread, I hope you’re excited to give this delicious and traditional dish a try in your own kitchen! Whether you opt for traditional buttermilk cornbread or experiment with jalapeños, cheddar cheese or other variations, the Southern-style cornbread is a staple comfort food that can be enjoyed year-round.

Not only does this dish boast simple ingredients and easy prep, it’s also incredibly versatile. You can serve it as a savory side for dishes like fried chicken or stew, or even use it as a base for a hearty cornbread dressing on Thanksgiving. The possibilities are truly endless!

But despite all its potential variations and uses, at the core of it all, Southern Cornbread is simply real, wholesome food made from scratch. So go ahead and skip that boxed mix – grab your cast iron skillet or trusty Dutch oven, pick up some stone-ground cornmeal and whip up a batch of this delicious dish using my recipe! Trust me when I say that once you’ve tasted the real thing, nothing else will ever quite compare.

Southern Cornbread

Southern Cornbread Recipe

This is an easy, traditional, slightly sweet Southern cornbread. I often make a batch to use in my homemade stuffing/dressing casserole. It freezes well after cooking.
No ratings yet
Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 20 mins
Course Side Dish
Cuisine American/Southern
Servings 1 9x9 inch pan
Calories 188.6 kcal


  • 1 cup flour
  • 1 cup yellow cornmeal (can use white)
  • 3 tablespoons sugar or 1 1/2 teaspoons Equal sugar substitute (from packets)
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 whole eggs or 1/4 cup egg substitute
  • 1 cup skim milk
  • 1/4 cup canola oil


  • Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
  • Spray 9x9-inch baking pan with Bakers' Joy or grease and flour.
  • In large bowl, add all dry ingredients and mix well.
  • Add liquid ingredients and stir by hand just enough to mix; do not over-mix.
  • Pour into prepared pan.
  • Bake 20-25 minutes or until top is lightly browned.
  • Cut into nine 3-inch squares.
  • Variation: Substitute non-fat buttermilk for the skim milk and add 1/2 tsp. baking soda.

Add Your Own Notes


Serving: 71gCalories: 188.6kcalCarbohydrates: 27.1gProtein: 4.2gFat: 7.2gSaturated Fat: 0.7gCholesterol: 21.2mgSodium: 278.2mgFiber: 1.4gSugar: 4.4g
Keyword < 30 Mins, Breads, Christmas, Freezer, Grains, High In..., Inexpensive, Oven, Thanksgiving
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

Recommended Recipes Just For You