Real Cornbread

Real Cornbread

21 Reviews
From: EatingWell Magazine, October/November 2006

This traditional cornbread is made without flour, isn't sweet and has a crumbly texture. You can change the adaptable recipe to suit your cornbread preference. For a variation, substitute ½ teaspoon baking soda for the baking powder and use buttermilk instead of milk. If you're looking for a more muffinlike texture, substitute flour for half the cornmeal.

Ingredients 8 servings

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Original recipe yields 8 servings
Nutrition per serving may change if servings are adjusted.
  • 3 tablespoons canola oil
  • 2 cups yellow or white cornmeal
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 large egg, beaten
  • 1½ cups nonfat milk or nonfat buttermilk


  • Active

  • Ready In

  1. Preheat oven to 450°F. Place oil in a 9-inch cast-iron skillet or similar-size glass baking dish and transfer to the preheating oven.
  2. Mix cornmeal, baking powder and salt in a medium bowl. Add egg and milk (or
  3. buttermilk); stir until just combined. Remove the pan from the oven and swirl the oil to coat the bottom and a little way up the sides. Very carefully pour the excess hot oil into the cornmeal mixture; stir until just combined. Pour the batter into the hot pan.
  4. Bake until the bread is firm in the middle and lightly golden, about 20 minutes. Let cool for 5 minutes before slicing. Serve warm.
  • Make Ahead Tip: The cornbread can be made up to 3 hours in advance. Reheat, wrapped in foil, in a warm oven.

Nutrition information

  • Per serving: 186 calories; 7 g fat(1 g sat); 2 g fiber; 26 g carbohydrates; 5 g protein; 13 mcg folate; 26 mg cholesterol; 2 g sugars; 0 g added sugars; 189 IU vitamin A; 0 mg vitamin C; 75 mg calcium; 1 mg iron; 254 mg sodium; 165 mg potassium
  • Carbohydrate Servings:
  • Exchanges: 1½ starch, 1½ fat

Reviews 21

February 26, 2019
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By: Jessie
Great recipe. Turns out beautiful every time. If you're used to sweet cornbread this recipe isn't for you. I do add 1/2 tsp. of baking soda, and I upped the salt to 1 tsp. I have used a cast iron skillet, but we have a big family so I like to bake it in muffin tins. Two reasons: I can make enough to freeze a batch, and it's good portion control.
July 17, 2017
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By: A Roos
Beat my expectations, for sure! I didn't have buttermilk, so I just whipped up a sour milk substitute. I also used a whole teaspoon of salt and added a teaspoon of baking powder for some extra lift. I used stone ground white corn meal, which according to my research is the only corn meal you should use when making a corn bread without flour and sugar. absolutely do not use cheap yellow corn meal! I don't even really like "typical" corn bread much and so I went looking for a new corn bread recipe trying to eat a little healthier and googled "corn bread no sugar or flour." This was the first recipe I tried and I may just whip up a batch of this every day. Smear a little butter on there, or drizzle with some honey. Even plain is still so good. The only thing I would say is watch it closely. I pulled mine out after 13 minutes and it was golden brown and moist, done all the way through and not overly dry at all. It is more crumbly than a corn bread made with flour would be, but that's just the nature of corn meal.
May 14, 2017
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By: Ced1106
I didn't like it as much as other reviewers, but grew up on sweet corn bread, so this recipe was an opportunity to try out "real" corn bread. I had some cornbread and dried buttermilk in the house, so figured I'd give this recipe a try. I don't think I'll make it again, although I suggest that EW adds some variations to this bread (see EW's salsa cornbread) to make it more of a side dish at a meal. I guess I'd use this cornbread for a chili cornbread supper.
April 07, 2017
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By: thegirlwhowaited
I'm flabbergasted this recipe has a 3+ star rating. It was as dense as a rock, and tasted like absolutely nothing. Seriously makes me question whether to follow other recipes on this website. Total waste of time and ingredients.
October 07, 2016
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By: llamaqueen
Used half and half, increased salt to 1.5 tsp, added 1 TB unbleached sugar, added at least 1/2 tsp of fresh cracked black pepper, greased pan with butter, also used butter instead of canola and upped to 4 TB but 3 would probably be good. Was very moist. The black pepper made it. Next time I'll add red pepper flakes too.
June 28, 2016
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By: EatingWell User
From Japan I have made this cornbread 3 times and it has come out GREAT each time. Love it for it is super-easy and delicious. The only cornbread recipe I will every need to use.
December 23, 2015
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By: EatingWell User
Very pleased! This cornbread was a great pairing with the homemade venison stew made from leftover roast we had for a warm winter meal last night. I sub'd 1/2 cup flour for 1/2 cornmeal, used olive oil in place of what was recommended and added 1/2 cup stevia. 8 inch cast iron skillet I used made a beautiful presentation, but I may subtract 2-3 minutes from cooking time next time. it was a bit browner than I prefer. But despite that, my family, especially my cornbread expert husband, loved it! Will be posting this to the inside of one of my kitchen cabinets today! Pros: When baking soda is added, it raises very well for a very appetizing look, unlike many healthwise re Cons: I was a bit dry, and not sweet. Some Stevia added to the mix helped with that.
March 18, 2015
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By: EatingWell User
Watch out for Broken Glass! This sounded so good. I followed the method exactly, using a glass pie pan b/c I don't have a cast iron pan. When it got to the point where I had added the hot oil to the batter and started adding the batter to the pan, it shattered. Imagine my surprise. Nothing like this has ever happened to me before. I was able to salvage enough batter and decided to bake it in two tin pie pans, like the kind you get from a pie shop. There were no issues with those.
February 18, 2015
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By: EatingWell User
The Real McCoy My family hails out of Louisiana, and this is exactly how we do it down there. Really can't screw this up unless you burn it. I use a full teaspoon of salt, and a tablespoon of baking powder as it helps fluff it out a little better. Certainly want to use whole buttermilk if you can get it. And for a real treat you use bacon grease on the skillet and in the mix. Pros: The Best Cornbread Cons: Eight servings is never enough.....
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