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How to make gluten-free cornbread

How to make gluten-free cornbread

Everything about comfort food – its subjectivity and its power to summon nostalgia – is perfectly expressed by the Pixar film Ratatouille.

In the pivotal scene of the film, vindictive restaurant megacritic Anton Ego decides to re-review a famous restaurant he once publicly shamed with a scathing critique after hype begins to build around its food once again.

The kitchen, run by rat-chef Remy, serves Ego a high-brow version of the country’s classic vegetable dish, ratatouille. His first bite arrests him where he sits; his eyes bulge, and through them the viewer travels back in time with him to his childhood, where we see Ego as a boy standing in the doorway of his mother’s quaint cottage, eyes on the verge of tears, broken bicycle wheel spinning on the ground and a graze on his knee, in golden magic-hour light as the sun sets over a lush countryside. His mother invites him to the table, and from a copper pot serves him her homemade ratatouille, which immediately brings a smile to the boy’s face.

In a single flash of memory, everything that comfort food can conjure comes rushing back to him. He drops his pen to the ground and digs ravenously into the dish, forgetting the review and his purpose, lost in the taste and joy of ratatouille.

As the film aptly shows, comfort food isn’t universal, since its very nature is rooted in place and personhood, culture, childhood, and time. Comfort food for a New York native like me is different from that for a Parisian, Brit, and Californian. Even in our globalised food culture, we grow up locally – although there does seem to be something in the genetics of human beings that makes us all love mac ‘n’ cheese.

Thus, for people living on special diets, the loss of gluten or dairy may or may not mean a loss of comfort food indulgences, depending on where you’re from (ratatouille, for instance, would still be totally kosher).

For me, the loss of pizza and bagels has been the greatest blow to my experience of comfort food, and I’ve strived in times of distress to discover something that gives me that yummy feeling without the (literal) gut reaction.

That’s where gluten-free cornbread comes in. My spouse introduced me to this southern classic years ago as part of his own version of comfort food, and I fell in love with the crisp exterior and soft, moist inside, covered in a thick layer of creamy butter and honey; from my first bite, I was hooked. Now, when I’m in need of the warm fuzzies, I bake a loaf and eat way too many pieces while it’s still warm from the cast-iron skillet.

Pairing it with a warm bowl of chilli elevates it even further, but it’s great by itself, as dessert with tea, for a snack, or as the base of a stuffing.

So, this is my gluten-free comfort food – I hope it does the same for you.

Gluten-free cornbread recipe


  • 1 1/2 cups gluten-free all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 cups gluten-free cornmeal
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 2 tbsp honey
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 1/2 cups milk (buttermilk, whole milk, or almond milk work great)
  • 6 tbsp unsalted butter
  • 1 tsp bacon fat (optional)
  1. Preheat the oven to 200°C/400°F/gas 6. Grease a medium-sized cast-iron skillet (or 8×8 baking dish) with bacon grease or butter, and place inside the oven while you prep the other ingredients.
  2. In a large mixing bowl, add the flour, cornmeal, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Whisk until well combined.
  3. Melt the butter and let it cool slightly while you whisk together the eggs and milk in a separate bowl. Once the butter is cool, add it to the wet ingredients.
  4. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry and stir gently together with a wooden spoon or spatula. Don’t over-mix, but let everything become incorporated.
  5. Remove the heated skillet (or baking dish) from the ove and pour the batter in. Turn the oven down to 180°C/350°F/gas 4 and bake for 25-30 minutes, or until the top is brown and an inserted toothpick comes out clean.
  6. Let cool slightly before slicing and serving. Serve with butter and honey for maximum comfort food feeling!

If you want more info and inspiration on what to do with corn, check out the Vegepedia!

Simple Gluten Free Cornbread

Cornbread is a delicious bread that goes with any dish. This gluten free cornbread recipe has a very unusual twist in how you make it. I took my Grandmother's cornbread recipe and converted it to gluten free!

Eating these little gluten free cornbread muffins warm, with melted butter is my favorite way to eat these! If you love muffins as much as we do, you will want to check out all of my delicious gluten free muffin recipes!

  • 1 ¼ cups gluten-free yellow cornmeal
  • ¾ cup gluten-free all-purpose flour blend
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 ½ cups low-fat milk
  • 3 tablespoons butter, melted
  • 1 tablespoon honey

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Coat an 8-inch-square baking pan with cooking spray.

Whisk cornmeal, flour blend, baking powder and salt in a large bowl. Whisk egg, milk, butter and honey in a medium bowl. Add the liquid ingredients to the dry ingredients and stir until just combined. Scrape the batter into the prepared pan, spreading evenly.

Bake the cornbread until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, about 35 minutes. Let cool for 10 minutes before serving. Serve warm.

How to Make Gluten-Free Jalapeño Cornbread

  • Heat the Oven.
  • Mix the Batter.
  • Bake. (It’s that easy!)

Heat the Oven

Preheat the oven while you prep the other ingredients. And if you have a cast-iron pan, throw it in the oven while the oven preheats. Pouring batter into a hot skillet gives the cornbread a lovely crust.

If you don&rsquot own a cast-iron pan, don&rsquot preheat the pan. (And consider getting a cast-iron pan. They&rsquore wonderful!)

Chop the Jalapeños

I like to get this step out of the way first. Grab a jalapeño or two and cut off the stem. Now you&rsquove got options. If you like things spicy, leave in the seeds and chop the pepper into small pieces. Take care when chopping as seeds can sometimes make a knife slide on a cutting board.

If you prefer a milder heat, cut the jalapeño in half lengthwise. Use a spoon and scoop out the seeds. (The seeds contain the heat) and then chop.

No matter which you prefer, seeds in our out, remember to wash your hands after chopping jalapeños. You don&rsquot want to touch your eyes or other parts (ahem) with pepper spice on your fingers. You&rsquoll remember the burn for a long time. Trust me.

Grate the Cheese (Or Not)

I prefer the texture of freshly grated cheese but, for this recipe, pre-grated cheese works well. As always, read labels to ensure the cheese is gluten-free.

And if you want to skip the cheese, that works too.

Make the Batter

This batter combines gluten-free flour and cornmeal to make a cornbread that has a soft, cake-like texture.

Whisk together the gluten-free flour, cornmeal, baking powder, and salt together in a medium bowl. This step helps to distribute the baking powder so your cornbread rises evenly.

Then add the milk, eggs, and oil. Stir until the batter is smooth. No need to use a handheld mixer for this recipe, a wooden spoon works great. (Unless a handheld mixer is easier for you to use.)

Add the jalapeños and grated cheese. Stir until evenly distributed and you&rsquore all set.

Homemade cornbread is perfect on its own with just some butter, but there are other ways to enjoy it too. In fact, some in the United States like to eat it smeared with molasses, while others enjoy a combination of butter and honey. You could even consider mixing some softened butter with some spices or finely chopped jalapenos for a savoury spread with some kick. Alternatively, you could whip the butter with some honey for a honey butter or honey and sriracha for another unique spread.

This is the best cornbread because it pairs particularly well with saucy chili or Southern barbecue, as it can mop up the remaining sauces. I love how its slightly sweet, cornmeal taste contrasts a savoury and spicy chili. Whatever you serve this bread with will be delicious, though, from your homemade chicken soup to your roast chicken dinner.

Gluten Free Cornbread Muffin Mix Recipe

This recipe makes a sweet cornbread muffin mix so use less sugar or none at all if you prefer a traditional Southern Cornbread. One thing I have noticed about this mix it doesn’t rise like traditional cornbread. While our Broccoli cornbread was tasty, it wasn’t as tall and crusty as traditional cornbread. That was okay with me since I am a fan of the inside and not the crust.

You can use several variations of the recipe. For the cornmeal, you can substitute corn flour, although it will not rise as well. You can also mix half corn flour and half cornmeal together to make a thicker, richer version. The corn flour and cornmeal mixture is my personal favorite.

How to make dairy free buttermilk

The buttermilk used in this recipe is actually almond milk and the souring agent is distilled white vinegar. Those two together make for some great (and easy!) buttermilk.

  • In a 1 cup measuring cup, pour 2 Tablespoons of distilled white vinegar.
  • To the vinegar, and filling the rest of the cup up to the 1-cup mark, pour in the almond milk. No stirring needed. Just set it aside for about 5 minutes to 'sour'.
  • Then use as you would store bought buttermilk.

Our Best Gluten-Free Baking Recipes

Adopting a gluten-free diet has become easier than ever, even when it comes to baked goods that traditionally rely on wheat flour. With these delicious alternatives you’ll be baking everything from classic cookies and cakes to savory breads and muffins — and all without the gluten!

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Make this easy gluten free cornbread recipe for your next cookout. This is the best gluten free cornbread recipe made in a skillet.


  • 2 cups fine ground white cornmeal
  • 1 cup gluten-free all-purpose flour
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 3 tablespoons molasses
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 3/4 cups coconut milk
  • 1/3 cup dairy-free butter, melted (divided)
  • 1 1/2 cups cooked corn


  1. Place 8-inch cast-iron skillet in the center rack of the oven. Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.
  2. In a large bowl, whisk together the cornmeal, gluten free flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.
  3. In a small bowl, whisk together the molasses, eggs, coconut milk, and 4 tablespoons of the melted buttery spread.
  4. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and stir to combine thoroughly. Add the cooked corn and stir until the corn is incorporated throughout.
  5. Remove the hot cast-iron skillet from the oven and carefully add the remaining melted buttery spread into the skillet. (It will pop and bubble, so stand back!) Swirl the butter so the bottom and as much of the sides of the skillet are coated as possible.
  6. Pour in the batter and place back in the oven. Bake for 35-40 minutes. The molasses will give the cornbread a dark color, so don't be alarmed that it is burning. It will also crack &ndash don't worry about it.
  7. Serve with extra buttery spread and drizzle with molasses, if you wish.

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Nutrition Information:


Serving Size:

Nutritional information is automatically calculated per the ingredients list. Serving size may not be accurate. Please double-check with your preferred nutritional app for the most accurate information.

Originally published on May 17, 2015. Updated with new pictures and information.

Baking cornbread in a cast iron skillet

As you can see here, I baked the cornbread* in a cast iron skillet. But only because, well, I love baking in a cast iron skillet.

Nothing heats as evenly or bakes as well as a cast iron skillet. It creates the most distinctive, lovely crust all on its own. But this recipe happens to be incredibly versatile.

Over the years, you have written to me, telling me that you made it with granulated sugar instead of honey, milk instead of buttermilk or yogurt, shortening or coconut oil (or even vegetable oil!) instead of butter. And they’ve all turned out!

*If you’re just getting started on a gluten free diet and you’re wondering if corn is gluten free, for example, it is! Please check out my Ultimate Guide to the Basic Rules of a Gluten Free Diet. Everything you need to know is in that guide, along with plenty of links for a deeper dive into some important information.

How do you make gluten-free southern cornbread?

From what my very southern Aunt has told me. Gluten-Free Cornbread that uses bacon grease instead of oil, and buttermilk instead of milk or dairy-free milk is considered "southern". You can swap those out in this recipe easily, if you'd like. Or you could try this recipe for Gluten-Free Southern Cornbread.

I've tried gluten-free cornbread recipes that have more of a cake texture. These don't. These are hearty, thick, and corn-bread-like (if that makes any sense). Sure, I love gluten-free cornbread that is actually cake - fluffy and sweet, enough that you could lather on some buttercream frosting and devour with a fork.

These gluten-free cornbread muffins are the kind that you ladle chili over, the kind that you mop up the last of your stew with. It's my tried and true gluten-free cornbread that we serve to our family. I hope you like it as much as we do.

Looking for more sides, try my Gluten Free Gravy Recipe. My Gluten Free Gravy is also super easy to make.

If you make this recipe please leave a starred review and comment below! It helps other see that the recipe is great.