This easy honey cornbread recipe is super moist and comes together quickly. A buttermilk cornbread recipe, sweetened with honey is something I always grew up on. And this cornbread recipe uses melted butter for maximum flavor and simplicity! So easy no mixer required!
Honey cornbread is something that I grew up on. In fact, when I was younger and a member of 4-H I entered a honey cornbread recipe passed down from my grandmother. It won me a blue ribbon and a chance to go to the State Fair.
So yea me and cornbread go way back. It was why I when I was working on my cookbook last year, I knew I would submit a honey cornbread recipe for the quick bread chapter.
And so you might be asking is that this recipe? It’s not….however, I took that recipe and decided to make a few simple changes to it so it would be even easier to whip up. A few rounds of testing and a few batches of “good but…” happened in this household. But I finally landed on this super moist and easy buttermilk honey cornbread recipe.
So good that I had to give half of it away to stop myself eating it.
What Does Cornbread Taste Like?
Cornbread is a bread that originates from ‘native’ American settlers. It can be sweet or more on the plain side, crumbly and has a slightly grainy texture due to the cornmeal.
It can be a wonderful side dish. Great to serve with chili, barbeque, or just enjoy on its own!
Why You Will Love This Honey Cornbread
- Quick To Throw Together – I simplified the cookbook version and used melted butter. It still has all the butter flavor, but with half the effort. That means it takes just a few minutes to throw it together.
- Moist – Oh yeah I used the M word. I used buttermilk in this cornbread recipe and it helped make it super moist!
- Freezes Well – You can eat it all over a few days, or go ahead and freeze some for later.
- No Fancy Equipment Required – It’s a simple quick bread. So that means whisk your dry together, then your wet, then stir to combine. That’s it!
So you ready to make some crazy good cornbread? I thought so.
Ingredients For This Buttermilk Cornbread
- Flour – Just some good old all purpose flour is all you need. Of course you could make it a whole wheat, and try using white whole wheat flour. Or try swapping out half of the flour with whole wheat flour. Just be sure to measure your flour accurately if you are using dry measuring cups. I do always recommend using a scale and weighing your ingredients. But if you are measuring by volume, then be sure to measure your flour accurately. Start by stirring up your flour, then spoon the flour into your cup. And level off with a flat edge. Don’t pack it down or you will end up with too much in your cup!
- Cornmeal – Of course cornbread wouldn’t be cornbread without cornmeal! I used finely ground cornmeal from Bob’s Red Mill.
- Baking Soda – This is what makes a quick bread a quick bread. Unlike yeast, baking soda reacts right away so that means we can get the bread in the oven immediately. Just be sure your baking soda hasn’t expired. If you’re not sure, mix a little baking soda with a little vinegar (or lemon juice) and see if it bubbles. If it does, then you’re fine! If not, time to throw it out and get fresh. And don’t mix it up with your baking powder. Baking soda and baking powder are not the same thing and should not be used interchangeably.
- Baking Powder – We use both baking powder and baking soda in this recipe. The baking soda will help to balance the acid (buttermilk) and the baking powder will help to leaven the flour in the recipe giving us together the perfect combination that will result in a light and fluffy cornbread. Baking powder can expire as well so be sure to test it out if you’re not sure how long it’s been sitting in your cupboard. Just mix a little with hot water to see if it bubbles.
- Salt – Salt is very important to help balance the sweetness in a recipe. So don’t skip it! You can read more here about the role that salt plays in baking.
- Sugar – I used all white granulated sugar in this recipe. Now some cornbread recipes call for a little, some call for a lot. I like mine in the sweet side. But if you want to use less, you can try and reduce the amount (but this could change the texture).
- Honey – A honey cornbread recipe of course needs honey in it! I used honey from a local company, Boston Honey company. So fragrant and delicious!
- Butter – I love using melted unsalted butter so it’s easy to throw together and provides lots of richness and moisture.
- Eggs – You need three large eggs at room temperature. I place mine in a bowl of warm water for 10 minutes before using.
- Buttermilk – This is what gives it great flavor and keeps it moist! If you don’t have buttermilk, you can make your own –> How To Make Homemade Buttermilk.
How Do I Make Honey Cornbread From Scratch?
Like I said making this honey cornbread recipe couldn’t be easier….
Step One: Whisk Together Your Dry Ingredients
In a large mixing bowl you want to whisk together your flour, cornmeal, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Then set aside.
Step Two: Combine The Wet Ingredients
Now in a second bowl, go ahead and combine the melted butter, sugar, honey, eggs, and buttermilk.
Pro Tip: Make sure your melted butter isn’t too hot before adding those eggs. If it’s too hot it could scramble them!
Step Three: Combine The Dry And Wet Ingredients
Now you want to make a well (fancy word for push the dry ingredients aside and make a hole in the middle of your dry ingredients) and pour in the wet ingredients.
And then just simply stir the ingredients together just until the last of the flour is combined. And always remember….
Step 4: Pour Into Pan And Bake
Now the batter is ready for the pan! I sprayed and then lined my pan with parchment. I used a 9-inch square pan to bake the cornbread in.
And it bakes at 400F for about 45 – 50 minutes.
Step 5: Test With A Toothpick And Cool
When the timer goes off, be sure to test with a toothpick. You want some moist crumbs clinging to the toothpick, but not wet batter.
Then be sure to let the pan cool before cutting into it. I know it’s going to take some patience!
Can I Bake This Honey Cornbread In A Cast Iron Skillet?
Yes you can! I baked one batch in a cast iron. I did find it was a bit darker on the edges, but I was perfectly fine with that. If yours is getting too dark around the edges, just cover with foil.
It might not take as long in the oven if you bake it in the skillet, so start checking it a few minutes earlier.
What Can I Add To Cornbread?
I mean a slice of plain cornbread on its own with an extra drizzle of honey and a slather of butter is all I need. However I get it. You might want to get creative and throw some fun stuff in. Try adding:
- Bacon – 4 slices of cooked chopped bacon
- Jalapenos – 1 or 2 (depending on how spicy you like!) chopped fresh jalapenos
- Cheese – try adding a 1 cup of shredded cheddar cheese
- Herbs – try 2 tablespoons fresh chopped chives, sage, rosemary, or thyme
- Corn – 1 cup fresh or frozen corn
- Fruit – Add some fresh fruit into the batter like 1 cup of blueberries!
Or try mixing and matching a few of the add-ins! Maybe bacon jalapeno cheddar cornbread anyone?!
Honey Cornbread Recipe FAQ’s
Here are some of the common questions that might come up as you are making this honey cornbread.
Can I Reduce The Sugar In This Cornbread Recipe?
I grew up eating sweet honey cornbread. And I’ve seen many recipes use a lot less (not all! some use more) so if you like yours a little less sweet then you can try reducing the amount of sugar.
What If I Don’t Have Buttermilk?
I get it. I don’t always either. And there’s no way I’m making a special grocery story run for one ingredient. Buttermilk is one of my substitutions in my Ultimate Guide To Baking Substitutions.
First let’s just state it: Do NOT use regular milk in its place. Regular milk will react differently than buttermilk and throw off the “chemistry” of the baking reaction going on with the baking powder and baking soda. But you can make your own buttermilk. Will it be exactly like storebought buttermilk? No. However, it will do in a pinch.
For this recipe:
Add 1 1/2 tablespoons to a liquid measuring cup. Pour in your milk to the 1 1/2 cup line. Stir and wait 10 minutes before using.
Can I Make This Cornbread Gluten Free?
You can definitely swap out the regular all purpose flour and use your favorite gluten free flour instead.
Can I Bake These Into Muffins?
I haven’t baked these into cornbread muffins, but you certainly can. I would recommend baking these for about 18-20 minutes. Set your timer for a few minutes early to check on them and be safe.
How To Store Cornbread
Be sure to allow the cornbread to cool completely. Then wrap any leftovers and store at room temperature. It will keep for 2 days. Or you can store it wrapped up in the fridge for up to 1 week.
Or freeze it! Wrap it up well. I like to wrap it in plastic wrap, then place in a plastic bag. And then freeze for up to 3 months. When ready to eat, unwrap and thaw at room temperature.
More CornBread Recipes
Tools Needed To Make This Cornbread Recipe:
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Buttermilk Honey Cornbread
- 2 cups (240 g) all purpose flour
- 1 1/2 cups (225 g) cornmeal
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 12 tablespoons (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter melted and slightly cooled
- 1/2 cup (99 g) sugar
- 1/2 cup (170 g) honey
- 3 large eggs
- 1 1/2 cups (360 mL) buttermilk
- Preheat the oven to 400oF. Butter a 9-inch round pan, square pan, or cast iron skillet.
- In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, cornmeal, salt, baking soda, and baking powder.
- In a second large mixing bowl, whisk together the sugar, eggs, butter, buttermilk, and honey.
- In the second bowl, make a well in the dry ingredients. Pour in the wet mixture. Stir just until combined. Do NOT overmix!
- Pour the batter into the pan. Bake on center rack for 45-50 minutes (If baking in a cast iron, I found mine took about 5 minutes less) until golden brown and toothpick inserted comes out clean. Remove from oven allow pan to cool on a cooling rack.
- Storage: Be sure to allow the cornbread to cool completely. Then wrap any leftovers and store at room temperature. It will keep for 2 days. Or you can store it wrapped up in the fridge for up to 1 week. Or freeze it! Wrap it up well. I like to wrap it in plastic wrap, then place in a plastic bag. And then freeze for up to 3 months. When ready to eat, unwrap and thaw at room temperature.
- Reducing The Sugar: I grew up eating sweet honey cornbread. And I’ve seen many recipes use a lot less (not all! some use more) so if you like yours a little less sweet then you can try reducing the amount of sugar.
- Buttermilk substitution: Add 1 1/2 tablespoons to a liquid measuring cup. Pour in your milk to the 1 1/2 cup line. Stir and wait 10 minutes before using.
- Can I Bake These Into Muffins?- I haven’t baked these into cornbread muffins, but you certainly can. I would recommend baking these for about 18-20 minutes. Set your timer for a few minutes early to check on them and be safe.