The Best Buttermilk Cornbread

This really is the best buttermilk cornbread! It’s moist, tender and sweet. No matter how you slice it, it’s always devoured within minutes!

This buttermilk cornbread is moist, tender and oh so flavorful. It’s perfectly sweet and bakes up beautifully every time and pairs nicely with my lentil white bean chili, Instant Pot beef chili, or jalapeno lime chicken chili

Buttermilk Cornbread cut up and on white plate

Buttermilk + Honey

I think it’s safe to say that I’ve made my fair share of cornbread over the past few years but I’ve never found an actual cornbread recipe that I’ve truly loved until now. 

So let’s be real… cornbread isn’t the hardest or trickiest thing to make, but everyone has different tastes. I hate when cornbread is super dry or crumbles to a million pieces as soon as you pick it up. So frustrating!

I prefer mine to be thick, sweet, tender and moist. That is why I love the buttermilk and honey combination in this recipe! 

I’m positive buttermilk and honey were made just to use in cornbread. They provide the extra moisture and sweetness that really make this cornbread recipe a crowd pleaser! However, you can use some variations to adjust this recipe to your preferences (SEE BELOW)!

Cornbread cooked and sliced in pan

How to Make Cornbread

Wet ingredients: Begin by combining the melted butter, sugar and honey in a large mixing bowl. Whisk in the eggs one at a time, beating until the mixture is smooth. Then add the buttermilk and again mix until combined.

Dry ingredients: In a separate mixing bowl whisk together the flour, cornmeal, salt, and baking soda. Gradually add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients, stirring with a spatula until only a few lumps remain.

Bake: Then pour the batter into the prepared pan, smoothing the top with the spatula to create an even layer. Allow the batter to sit for 3 minutes before placing it in a preheated 375-degree oven. Bake for 25-35 minutes or until the top is golden brown. You might also want to test with a toothpick, making sure it comes out clean!

Pro Tip: You may need to place a piece of foil over the top at the 20-minute mark to prevent over-browning.

Finally, once out of the oven,  brush the top with butter and allow to cool for 5-10 minutes before slicing and serving.

Variations

If you are looking for lactose intolerant substitutes, try almond milk or coconut milk instead of the buttermilk and use your usual butter alternative too!

Or you could trade out the buttermilk for plain yogurt or use maple syrup instead of honey!  

Also, many people love to add green chiles, creamed corn, or frozen corn to their cornbread (½ cup of thawed or canned corn would be fine without adding too much moisture to it.) I don’t love the texture, but if you do-Go for it!!

Cornbread in basket

Common Questions + Tips

How would you bake this in muffin tins? I would suggest using cupcake liners and try baking it anywhere from 12-18 minutes. Check it at 12 minutes and then every 2-3 minutes or so.

How to make this in a cast-iron skillet? To make this in a cast-iron skillet like they do in the South put a tablespoon of shortening in the cast iron and place the pan in the oven at 425 until the shortening is melted and you have finished mixing your batter. Carefully remove the pan and place it on a metal cooling rack. Pour the batter into the sizzling pan and then place it back into the oven for about 20 minutes and check it to make sure that it is cooking through an isn’t browning too much on top. Then cut it into delicious wedges!

What is the best type of cornmeal to use in this recipe? Ideally, you would use medium-ground cornmeal because it gives the best texture for a more dense cornbread!

Why do you only use baking soda? Baking soda is used for combatting the acidity of the buttermilk. You don’t use baking powder in this recipe because we want a thicker and denser cake as opposed to a light and fluffy cake.

The Best Buttermilk Cornbread

Storing Tips

Cornbread can be made a day or two AHEAD OF TIME. If you decide to do this make sure to keep the cornbread covered at room temperature with foil or plastic wrap. If it is going to be about a week before you use it then I would place it in a Ziploc bag in the fridge. 

 Cornbread normally FREEZES well for about 2-3 months if it is tightly wrapped in foil or plastic freezer wrap or placed in a freezer-safe Ziploc bag.

Of course, you can always just pop leftovers in the microwave for 20-30 seconds or you can use the oven. TO REHEAT in the oven, place cornbread in a baking dish and cover with aluminum foil (so they don’t burn) and reheat for 10-15 minutes in a 350-degree oven.

As soon as this cornbread comes out of the oven you’ll be dying to cut it up and dig in! I highly suggest whipping up a little honey butter to spread inside, it’ll make it even more incredible. Enjoy & happy baking!

More Cornbread and Bread Recipes Here: 

The Best Buttermilk Cornbread

This really is the best buttermilk cornbread! It’s moist, tender and sweet. No matter how you slice it, it’s always devoured within minutes!

Ingredients:

  • 8 tbsp. (1 stick) unsalted butter, melted
  • ½ c. granulated sugar
  • ¼ c. honey
  • 2 eggs, room temperature
  • 1 c. buttermilk, room temperature
  • 1 c. all-purpose flour
  • 1 c. cornmeal
  • ½ tsp. salt
  • ½ tsp. baking soda

For Topping:

  • ½ tbsp. unsalted butter, melted (for brushing)

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Spray or lightly butter an 8×8 inch glass or metal baking pan, set aside.
  2. In a large mixing bowl, combine the melted butter, sugar and honey. Whisk in the eggs one at a time, beating until the mixture is smooth. Add the buttermilk and mix to combine.
  3. In a medium mixing bowl whisk together the flour, cornmeal, salt and baking soda. Gradually add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients, stirring with a spatula until only a few lumps remain. Pour the batter into the prepared pan, smoothing the top with the spatula to create an even layer. Allow the batter to sit for 3 minutes before placing in the oven to bake.
  4. Bake for 25-35 minutes or until the top is golden brown and a cake tester inserted into the center comes out clean. You may need to place a piece of foil over the top at the 20 minute mark to prevent over-browning. Remove from the oven, brush the top with butter and allow to cool for 5-10 minutes before slicing and serving.

-You need to use actual buttermilk in this recipe, no substitutions. If you’re looking for a recipe with whole milk, try my honey cornbread muffins!

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