This gluten-free sweet cornbread recipe that is thick and soft, with a hint of honey. Each square is mile-high, delicious and moist with a tender crumb. Easy, and gluten-free! Make it for a mixed crowd: gluten-eaters won't know the difference!
This is the ultimate gluten-free cornbread recipe. It's no-fail, soft and cakey, and doesn't crumble to pieces when you smear honey butter on each slice!
Plus it's so tender and flavorful, even folks who eat gluten will totally love it! You seriously can't tell the difference between this and my regular sweet, homemade cornbread recipe!
Table of contents for this moist gluten-free cornbread recipe post:
Quick-click table of contents:
- No mix needed: GF cornbread recipe from scratch
- How to make golden, sweet cornbread
- How to make it moist and soft
- The best way to store GF cornbread
- My tips for making this recipe from scratch:
- Can I make gluten-free corn muffins?
- Can I make it vegan?
- Can I freeze it?
- Can I make this with fresh corn?
- Double the recipe
- The Chocolate Book
- Add-ins for fun flavor
- Incredible, Moist Gluten-Free Cornbread
No mix needed: GF cornbread recipe from scratch
We make this for family dinner all the time. It's my GF brothers absolute favorite. He loves it so much we double the recipe, always! And we won't tell him I told you, but half the doubled batch is for him!
Everyone should know how to make homemade cornbread, and why not be able to enjoy it gluten-free?
What to serve GF cornbread with:
This cornbread is genius served with all kinds of dinner. Most of my family will even eat leftovers for breakfast! Here is what I like to serve it with:
- Beef Chili With a Secret Ingredient
- Classic Pot Roast for Sunday Dinner
- North Carolina Pulled Pork
- Your Favorite Potato Salad
- Texas Beef Brisket
How to make golden, sweet cornbread
In my opinion, the best GF cornbread is golden and sweet. For this moist cornbread, I use yellow cornmeal.
Is cornmeal gluten-free? It sure is! It is naturally gluten-free and yellow cornmeal gives the cornbread a pretty, buttery yellow color, and has a great flavor.
Yellow cornmeal is slightly sweeter than white cornmeal (also gluten-free), so it's often preferred in baking muffins, bread, or pastries.
You can certainly use white cornmeal if you have it on hand or prefer it. The texture will be the same if you use white cornmeal, if it is the same grind as your yellow cornmeal.
I prefer finely ground cornmeal in this recipe. There is plenty of toothsome crunch, even when you don't use course ground cornmeal.
How to make it moist and soft
Instead of being savory, and dry like a classic, Southern cornbread (delicious in its own right), this easy recipe is soft and moist. So how do you make moist gluten-free cornbread?
There is plenty of liquid in this recipe in the form of eggs and milk. Adding oil and melting the butter help to add to this moisture. The ratio of liquid to dry ingredients is close to 1:1 which results in a moist quick bread.
Baking the recipe in a small, 8-inch square or 1 1/2 to 2-quart pan helps it stay lofty and tall, which also aids in a moist and tender middle. A double batch is perfect in a 9-by-13-inch baking dish and still stays tall and amazing.
The best way to store GF cornbread
Since this cornbread is made to be moist and soft, it's best to store any leftovers airtight so it doesn't dry out.
I store mine at room temperature:
• in the pan, wrapped well with plastic wrap.
• in a plastic bag at room temperature.
• in an airtight plastic or glass container.
If it is in the pan you can reheat it to serve leftovers warm. Simply cover the pan with foil and bake at 350ºF for about 10 minutes. Or place a square in the microwave for a few seconds.
My tips for making this recipe from scratch:
There are a few tips to make note of when making gluten-free cornbread from scratch. Cornbread is easy, so no need to complicate it. And, no need to use a mix! You probably already have the ingredients handy.
- Mis en place your ingredients. That means get out and measure all of the componants of the recipe. This takes only a few minutes and makes the assembly a breeze.
- Whisk together the wet ingredients so everything is blended evenly before going into the dry mixture.
- Keep the mixing process fast! Use a whisk to blend the wet and dry ingredients together quickly, breaking up any lumps. Don't slowly stir and take your time. This is meant to be quickly mixed and get into the oven. You don't want your leavening to lose its power.
- Have your oven pre-heated. This takes at least 20 minutes. Even if your oven rings to signify it is heated after 10 minutes, the elements are still on full power and could cause your cornbread to cook unevenly. Wait the full 20 minutes so the oven is perfectly hot.
Can I make gluten-free corn muffins?
I'm sure you could bake this recipe in muffin tins. I have not tried it so I don't know the proportions.
If you do try it, feel free to leave a comment with your process!
Can I make it vegan?
This recipe is not vegan. You would need to use a plant-based milk and egg substitute. I have not tried the milk or egg substitute in this recipe. You can try. If you do, please let us know in the comments.
For swapping butter for vegan butter, my preference is Miyokos cultured vegan butter.
Can I freeze it?
You can easily freeze this moist and sweet cornbread! Freeze the entire pan, baked and cooled, then wrapped in plastic wrap and foil.
Or, you can freeze the uncut cornbread outside of the pan, again, wrapped in plastic wrap then foil.
Also, freeze individual squares (if you're single like me, this comes in handy!). Wrap the same as above.
To thaw, leave the cornbread wrapped, at room temperature for several hours. The bigger the piece the longer it will take.
To reheat, you must unwrap, and remove the plastic. You can wrap it again in just foil and heat it in a 350ºF oven for 10 to 15 minutes.
Can I make this with fresh corn?
Some folks like cornbread with fresh corn kernels baked right inside. I have to say, I do love it this way if I'm serving it with chili. It just adds a little something!
You can stir in 1 cup of fresh corn kernels or frozen, thawed corn. If you'd like, try the roasted corn kernels from Trader Joe's for a fun flavor.
Because of the moisture the kernels add, you'll want to test the cornbread with a toothpick (to see if wet crumbs come out) before removing from the oven. You may need to bake it a minute or two longer.
Double the recipe
I rarely make this as a single recipe in an 8-inch square dish. I always double it. However, because it makes a lot, I left the original amount here.
A double recipe can be baked in a 9-by-13-inch baking pan or dish and just needs more cooking time.
Mix the batter the same way, in a larger bowl! And add extra time onto the baking time. I put the details on the recipe card.
Check for doneness by gently pressing on the top to see if the cornbread bounces back. You can also insert a toothpick into the center and see if it comes out relatively clean. If the cornbread is done the toothpick will be clean or just have a few little crumbs on it.
The Chocolate Book
Add-ins for fun flavor
Here are some simple, gluten-free cornbread flavor add-ins that you can try:
- Of course jalapenos! Add up to 1/3 cup finely diced, seeded jalapeno to the batter.
- Add 1 small can chopped green chilis to the cornbread batter for a more intense chili flavor.
- Grated cheese is delicious on it's own or with the chili additions above. Choose a strong cheese because you can't add too much without affecting the recipe. Add up to 1 cup grated sharp cheddar if desired.
- Add subtle flavor with fresh or dried herbs. Stir in 1 teaspoon each chopped fresh thyme, sage and rosemary. Or 1 teaspoon of dried herbs.
- Use homemade or store-bought cooked bacon bits to make a savory-sweet version. Add up to 2/3 cup chopped bacon bits.
Incredible, Moist Gluten-Free Cornbread
- ½ cup yellow cornmeal
- 1½ cups gluten-free all-purpose flour (I prefer Cup4Cup)
- ⅔ cup granulated sugar
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 1 tablespoon baking powder
- 3 tablespoons butter, melted
- ⅓ cup oil (canola or avocado) (canola or avocado)
- 2 large eggs
- 1 tablespoon honey
- 1¼ cups whole milk
- Heat oven to 350ºF. Grease an 8-inch square pan, or a 1½-to-2-qt baking dish; set aside.
- In a medium mixing bowl, combine the cornmeal, gluten-free flour, sugar, salt and baking powder. Whisk together and set aside.
- In another bowl or large measuring cup, combine the melted butter, oil, eggs honey and milk. Whisk until the eggs are broken up and blended.
- Pour milk mixture into the dry ingredients and whisk until smooth and just combined.
- Transfer batter to the prepared baking dish and smooth with a spatula until it is in an even layer in the pan. Bake until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out almost clean, with no wet batter, 35 to 40 minutes.
- Let cool for a few minutes and serve warm, or completely cool.