This buttermilk cornbread isn’t typical. It’s moist and sweet, thanks to buttermilk, butter, olive oil, and honey. Although it’s decidedly not traditional Southern style, we love it. So will you.
This buttermilk cornbread isn’t your typical cornbread. It’s unspeakably better. And it’s prompting folks who’ve tried it to say stuff like, “Wow!” “Heavenly.” “The best cornbread we’ve ever had.” “It is so worth the calories!” “Almost like eating cake.” “Stop me before I make another!”
A large part of the reason why it’s drawing such accolades, we suspect, is because it’s completely the opposite of your typical dry cornbread, explains author Zoe Nathan. So much so that it can stand on its own without needing to be slathered with butter, she continues. A word to the wise: This cornbread is sorta sinfully sweet. As such, it’s definitely not Southern. But it’s wildly versatile and pretty darn irresistible. And most everyone who we’ve shared it with has immediately asked for the recipe. Sorta makes you want to drop everything and run to the kitchen to try it, yeah? Originally published July 2, 2015.–Renee Schettler Rossi
- Quick Glance
- 30 M
- 1 H, 30 M
- Makes 16 squares
- 6 tablespoons unsalted butter (3 oz), somewhere between cold and room temperature
- 1/3 to 1/2 cup granulated sugar
- 1 3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
- 4 large eggs
- 1 cup cornmeal
- 3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- 1/4 cup whole-wheat flour (or substitute all-purpose flour)
- 1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 cup whole milk
- 1 cup full-fat buttermilk
- 1/2 to 3/4 cup mild olive oil
- 2 tablespoons honey
- 1. Preheat your oven to 350°F (180°C) and line an 8-by-8-inch (20-by-20 cm) metal pan with parchment paper.
- 2. In a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the butter, sugar, and salt on medium-high speed until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Incorporate the eggs, 1 at a time, beating well after each addition. Be sure to scrape the sides of the bowl well.
- 3. Pause the machine and add the cornmeal, all-purpose flour, whole-wheat flour, and baking powder. With the mixer on low speed, mix until incorporated. Then pour in the milk, buttermilk, oil, and honey and mix just until combined. This should yield a very loose, runny batter. (Small lumps of butter are no problem, but avoid any lumps of flour. If you see them, mix the batter just a little longer or work them out with your fingertips or the tines of a fork.)
- 4. Pour the batter into the pan and bake for 45 to 50 minutes, or until a tester comes out clean. You’re going to want to start checking the cornbread after 30 minutes, and if the surface turns perfectly golden brown before the time is up, loosely cover the pan with aluminum foil. Let the cornbread cool ever so slightly in the pan on a wire rack prior to slicing. This buttermilk cornbread is best served the day it’s made but keeps for up to 2 days if wrapped well.
- Cheddar and Jalapeño Cornbread
- Increase the salt to 2 teaspoons, omit the honey and in its place stir in 1/2 cup grated Cheddar, 2 seeded and finely chopped jalapeños, and 2 tablespoons chopped cilantro.
- Fresh Corn Cornbread
- Stir 1 1/2 cups fresh corn kernels (from about 3 ears) into the batter just before scraping it into the pan. (Beware that the added moisture from the corn kernels has the tendency to turn the cornbread quite pudding-like.)