This buttermilk skillet cornbread is true to its Southern roots; flavorful, decadent, moist and buttery. Grab your cast iron skillet and make this delicious sweet + salty cornbread to accompany your next dinner!

buttermilk skillet cornbread in black cast iron skillet

Whew, there is truly nothing like a good ole slice of cornbread, y’all. And I’m talking about rich, buttery, moist, and crispy-edged Southern cornbread. You know, the kind that is more than just a side item. Cornbread that is so dang good that you could eat it up all by itself, ha! It’s an essential and vital component to a lot of both traditional and Southern recipes alike. Needless to say that it is a type of food we associate with comfort too.

Listen, I gotta have me some cornbread to go along with my beef chili and most certainly served up with my fave collard greens, ya know. Cornbread is quintessentially Southern with also deep relevance within African American/Black soul food cuisine. With an origin dating back to Native Americans when they used maize; cornbread has become one of the most prominent breads among Americans to date.

melted butter on top of cornbread slice on speckled plate

The Ultimate Buttermilk Skillet Cornbread

I’m going to just come out and say it- this is one damn good skillet cornbread recipe, peeps! Certain and very specific criteria needs to be checked off in order to say this, trust, I know. We’re loving this cornbread recipe so much because it’s easy to make, flavorful, moist, crispy, buttery, and tender.

Some like their cornbread sweet and some prefer theirs nice and salty. One thing I love about this recipe is that it’s hitting beautifully on BOTH the sweet + salty factors, best of both worlds. This skillet cornbread is one that aims to please all tastebuds while balancing different elements of flavor, love this!

Buttermilk Skillet Cornbread Ingredients

(Note: the full ingredients list, including measurements, is provided in the recipe card directly below.)

  • yellow cornmeal
  • all-purpose flour
  • brown sugar
  • kosher salt
  • baking powder
  • baking soda
  • buttermilk
  • honey
  • eggs
  • butter

>>> Loving how the use of brown sugar gives this cornbread recipe some molasses flavor and added richness. The combination of brown sugar + honey makes up the sweetness within this skillet cornbread and the salt adds balance. Buttermilk, like in many recipes, helps to ensure a nice moist and tender crumb.

sliced buttermilk cornbread in black cast iron skillet

Why Make Cornbread In A Skillet?

There is cornbread and then there is skillet cornbread. The two are vastly different, lemme ‘splain. Truly delicious and perfect cornbread will be tender/moist in the center but will have buttery crispy edges. In order to achieve this a cast iron skillet is crucial! If you do not own a cast iron skillet already, I couldn’t recommend one enough. In my home they’re used almost daily- a home cook’s trusty companion.

Furthermore, a cast iron skillet conducts more heat which really makes those cornbread edges all the more crispier. There is a ton of food history that emphasizes the use of skillets being the vessel of choice for making cornbread in an oven or over an open flame. Nothing compares to homemade skillet cornbread.

Can I Make This Cornbread Recipe In Another Vessel?

Yes! While I do recommend making this recipe as it is written there are some alternative options in case you need them. For example, you could make this skillet cornbread recipe exactly the same but empty the batter into an 8×8 square baking pan, in a 9 or 10-inch cake pan, and even make cornbread muffins!

Don’t Miss These Other Cozy Recipes

black hand holding a piece of buttermilk cornbread over black cast iron skillet

How To Make The Best Cornbread

>>> These tips + tricks will help you make the best homemade skillet cornbread! <<<

  1. Preheat your cast iron skillet: This is crucial and of utmost importance, yes, I’m being dramatic but this step is one that I’d hate for you to miss. Why preheat the skillet beforehand? When you grease the skillet with butter and when you pour the cornbread batter into it, you want that skillet to sizzle and sing. Before the skillet even enters the oven, the cornbread edges are already crisping up nicely. Absolute perfection.
  2. Whisk the dry ingredients very well: Make sure that when whisking all of the dry ingredients together that you mix them well to combine so that they’re free of any lumps. I even recommend whisking more than you think because packed brown sugar tends to be clumpy. That way when you combine the wet with the dry, everything blends seamlessly. While mixing thoroughly with this step, you don’t with the next ˅˅˅
  3. Careful not to over mix the batter: Over mixing the cornbread batter can yield a more tough/dense skillet cornbread and no one wants this. We want fluffy, tender, and almost cake-like cornbread not a hockey puck, ew. Be mindful to mix everything just until combined and then you’re golden, boo.
  4. Butter Be Ready: Listen, we stay ready with butter on deck over here 24/7, 365 days a year but you likely knew this already, ha! What I mean by this one is…as soon as that buttermilk skillet cornbread comes out the oven, go on and slather a bit more butter on top (to your desired preference). The butter will melt right into that piping hot cornbread, swoon. Then slice it up and serve expeditiously, mmm.

Swaps/Add-Ins For Skillet Cornbread

  • Flour: The only alternate flour I’d recommend here is white whole wheat flour.
  • Brown sugar: No brown sugar? No biggie, use regular white granulated sugar.
  • Honey: A good alternate would be agave, molasses, and maple syrup.
  • Butter: I love me some good ole butter but you could also use bacon fat/grease for this skillet cornbread- and man, it will give this cornbread even more flavor!
  • Corn kernels: If you’d like to add more texture, throw in some fresh corn kernels into the batter.
  • Jalapeños: Like spice? Toss in a little freshly + finely diced jalapeño pieces!
  • Cheese: Some like it cheesy- you can add in about 1/2 cup of your fave shredded cheese too.
melted butter on top of buttermilk cornbread

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UNTIL NEXT TIME…LOVE AND BUTTER,

Q.

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buttermilk skillet cornbread in black cast iron skillet

Buttermilk Skillet Cornbread

  • Author: Quin
  • Prep Time: 10 mins
  • Cook Time: 25 mins
  • Total Time: 35 min
  • Yield: 68 1x
  • Category: Appetizer
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: American, Southern

Description

This skillet cornbread is true to its Southern roots; rich, decadent, warm and buttery. Grab your cast iron skillet and make this sweet + salty cornbread to accompany your next dinner.


Ingredients

Scale
  • 1 cup yellow cornmeal
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/3 cup packed light brown sugar
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 4 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 1/2 cups whole buttermilk
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) + 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted and divided

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 425°F. Place your cast iron skillet in the oven to preheat as well.
  2. In a large bowl, combine the cornmeal, flour, brown sugar, salt, baking powder, and baking soda together. Whisk the dry ingredients very well to thoroughly combine and then set the bowl aside.
  3. In another medium bowl, combine the buttermilk, honey, and eggs together. Whisk the wet ingredients super well to combine. 
  4. Pour the wet ingredients into the cornmeal/flour mixture and use a rubber spatula to mix together until just combined. Be careful not to over mix to avoid super tough/dense cornbread! 
  5. Pour in the 1/2 cup melted butter and use the same rubber spatula to fold the melted butter into the batter, again, until just combined without over mixing.
  6. Use oven mitts to carefully take the preheated skillet out of the oven. Baste the skillet with the remaining 2 tablespoons of butter and use a pastry brush (or something similar) to brush the butter all over the bottom and up the sides of the cast iron skillet.
  7. Pour the batter into the prepped skillet (you should be able to see/hear the batter sizzling as it hits the preheated skillet due to the skillet being hot) and use an offset spatula to smooth the top.
  8. Bake the cornbread until set, about 20-25 minutes. Once done, top with more butter, if desired. Slice the cornbread into wedges and serve warm. Enjoy!

Notes

  1. Please read the blog post in its entirety for more tips + tricks.

Keywords: cornbread, southern