It's taken me years to perfect this Skillet Cornbread recipe and I'm so excited to share it with you! It's tender and light in the middle and buttery crisp on the outside. I've included ingredient weights and a step by step video tutorial so that your cast iron skillet cornbread will come out perfect every time!
My mother-in-law, MaryHelen, introduced me to southern skillet cornbread. She grew up in Chattanooga, Tennessee and in Chattanooga, cornbread is made from scratch with little or no sugar. With a sparkle in her eye she said, "No self respecting Southerner makes cornbread from a box."
I grew up eating Jiffy corn muffin mix - which is somewhere between cornbread and cake. I still think it tastes good, but the ingredient list is a little scary. Even though skillet cornbread isn't sweet, it makes up for it with the richness of melted butter, a little crunch from medium grind cornmeal, and a slight nuttiness from whole grain flour.
Ingredients You Need to Make Skillet Cornbread
- Cornmeal: whole grain preferably medium grind
- White Whole Wheat Flour: or regular whole wheat flour
- Baking powder
- Baking soda
- Salt: sea salt or kosher salt
- Sugar: white sugar or brown sugar
- Plain Yogurt: mixed with water (¾ cup yogurt to ¼ cup water for 1 cup) or buttermilk
- Frozen Corn: or fresh corn kernels cut from the cob
- Eggs: large or extra-large
- Butter: if using unsalted butter, add an additional ¼ teaspoon of fine salt or ½ teaspoon kosher salt
- Avocado Oil: or other high heat oil
I started with this recipe from Cook's Illustrated many years ago and after dozens of changes and tweaks, I believe I've perfected it. If you can find white whole wheat flour, it works well in this recipe. It gives the cornbread a delicate texture, similar to all purpose flour. Regular whole wheat flour makes it more dense, but just as delicious.
Enjoy this with a spread of butter and maybe a swirl of honey along with a simple pot of beans or one of my favorite chilis: White Chicken Chili, Chorizo Chili, or White Bean Turkey Chili. Or serve it with wilted greens and pan roasted pork for a classic southern combination. If you're lucky enough to have some leftover, you absolutely must try this Cornbread Salad, Cornbread Dressing or this Cornbread Pudding! And for a version kicked up with jalapeños, green onions and cheddar cheese, try this Mexican Cornbread.
How to Make Skillet Cornbread
Step 1: Place a 10-inch cast iron skillet in a cold oven and preheat to 400°F.
Step 2: Melt butter and set aside to cool. Combine remaining wet ingredients in a blender. Whisk dry ingredients together and fold in wet ingredients including melted butter.
Step 3: Pour oil into preheated pan and swirl to coat; spread batter in an even layer.
Step 4: Bake at 400°F for 25 minutes. Remove from oven and let cool slightly; serve with a slab of butter!
Skillet Cornbread Recipe Video
- 1 ½ cups whole grain cornmeal preferably medium grind
- 1 cup white whole wheat flour
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- ¼ teaspoon baking soda
- ½ teaspoon salt or 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- ¾ cup plain whole milk yogurt
- ¼ cup water
- ¾ cup frozen corn
- 2 large eggs
- 8 tablespoons butter (stick) melted and cooled slightly
- 2 tablespoons avocado oil or other high heat oil
- Place a 10-inch cast iron skillet on oven's center rack. Turn oven to 400°F, allowing the pan to preheat.
- In a medium bowl, whisk together cornmeal, flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and sugar. Set aside.
- In a blender or combine yogurt, water, and frozen corn. Mix until smooth. Add eggs and blend for a few seconds, just until combined.
- Pour yogurt mixture and melted butter into cornmeal mixture. Fold ingredients together with a rubber spatula or wooden spoon until combined; don't over-mix.
- With an oven mitt, remove preheated skillet. Add oil to hot skillet and swirl to coat bottom and sides of pan. Pour batter into skillet, scraping the bowl with a rubber spatula. Smooth top and place on the oven's center rack.
- Bake for 25 minutes or until knife or toothpick comes out clean. Let cool 5 minutes or more before serving.