These fluffy homemade Southern cornbread muffins are easy to make from scratch and ready for the oven in under 10 minutes! This recipe yields savory and moist cornbread muffins with just enough sweetness to complement the cornmeal! They’re best served fresh from the oven and are a perfect side dish for chili or or barbecue. Don’t forget to make a batch of these for Thanksgiving too!
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When you think of classic Southern side dishes, cornbread is sure to be near the top of the list! That moist, crumbly, slightly sweet bread is the ideal companion for a hot bowl of turkey chili or a classic Southern meal of pulled pork and fried okra.
I love a big wedge of this cast iron skillet buttermilk cornbread (made with melted butter, buttermilk, and bacon grease).
But homemade cornbread in muffin form is easy to grab for a perfectly portioned serving – essential for potlucks and holidays. And no Thanksgiving spread is complete without a heaping bread basket full of dinner rolls and cornbread muffins!
What Readers Say:
“Wow! So delicious! My husband said it was the best I ever made (and I’ve made quite a few batches of cornbread over our 36 years of marriage)!! This is now my ‘go to’ cornbread recipe. Thank you!!”
I hadn’t made these in a while but it’s only because I forgot how stinkin’ easy they are to make! While I love a box of Jiffy cornbread mix, it really takes no time at all to make cornbread muffins from scratch.
The batter takes about five minutes to throw together with the simple of instructions of don’t overmix and don’t overbake. Seriously, don’t overdo or overthink these and they’ll be just fine!
These classic savory cornbread muffins have just enough sweetness to complement the cornmeal. They come out with super high domes, a lovely golden brown exterior, and are moist and airy when you break them open.
These easy cornbread muffins have just 8 simple ingredients. Many ingredients can be swapped out, but this is a great base recipe and is how my mom always made cornbread!
While I do love cornbread made with bacon grease, I’m much more likely to have cooking spray in my pantry. Don’t have to cook bacon? That’s one fewer obstacle between you and a delicious golden cornbread muffin fresh from the oven.
Ingredient substitutions and adjustments
- Buttermilk for milk: You may substitute buttermilk or make a buttermilk substitute. To make “clabbered milk,” start with 1 tbsp white vinegar in your measuring cup, then fill the rest of the cup with milk. Wait about 5 minutes for the milk to sour and curdle a bit. You may also dilute sour cream with milk until it has the consistency of heavy cream.
- Butter for oil: Replace the oil with the same amount of melted butter.
- More or less sugar: For a less sweet cornbread muffin, reduce the sugar to 1/4 cup. For sweet cornbread muffins, increase to 1/2 cup.
- Bacon grease for cooking spray: Grease your muffin tins with bacon grease for extra flavor.
This is a great recipe for customizing! Here are a few things you can add into your cornbread muffins to make them your own!
- Cornbread with creamed corn: Add a can of undrained creamed corn to the wet ingredients.
- Jalapeno cornbread muffins: Add 2-3 finely diced, seeded jalapenos. You can use hatch chiles too! Add a cup of shredded cheese for jalapeno cheddar muffins.
- Bacon cornbread: Crumble a few slices of bacon into the batter before mixing, and use the bacon grease to grease the muffin tin.
- Cheesy cornbread: Add 8 oz. shredded cheddar cheese.
- Honey cornbread muffins recipe: Substitute 1/4 cup honey for the sugar.
How to make homemade cornbread muffins
Step one: Mix dry ingredients.
Add cornmeal, flour, salt, and baking powder to a large bowl. Mix well with a whisk.
Step two: Mix wet ingredients.
In a medium bowl, combine egg, milk, and oil.
Step three: Combine wet and dry ingredients.
Add the wet ingredients into the bowl with the dry ingredients. Mix until just combined. Don’t overmix!
Step four: Bake.
Fill a greased muffin tin about halfway with muffin batter, and bake at 400 degrees for 13-17 minutes until the tops are golden brown and a toothpick comes out mostly clean. Don’t overbake!
To make mini muffins: Bake for 10-12 minutes or until a toothpick comes out mostly clean. This recipe will make about 30-36 mini cornbread muffins.
To make in a cast iron skillet: Heat the empty skillet in your preheated oven for 5-10 minutes. Remove and add 2 tbsp bacon grease or butter and swirl it around until it’s melted and coats the interior of the skillet. Then add your batter and bake for 20-25 minutes. Try my favorite cast iron skillet cornbread recipe here!
Expert Tips for the Best Cornbread Muffins
- Don’t overmix! Overmixing cornbread batter will result in dense, tough cornbread muffins. Mix the batter until just combined: it’s okay if there are some lumps.
- Measuring dry ingredients: Be sure to spoon and level your flour and cornmeal rather than scooping with the measuring cup itself. That means spoon the flour into the measuring cup, then level with the flat of a knife. Scooping with the measuring cup can make the flour more densely packed, giving you too much flour in the recipe.
- Baking powder: For best results, use an aluminum free baking powder (like Rumford). Baking powder that contains sodium aluminum sulfite (like Clabber girl) or using old or expired powder can result in a bitter or metallic taste or flat-topped muffins.
- Baking powder vs. Baking Soda: Using the proper leavening agent is very important! Baking powder and baking soda are not interchangeable: baking soda requires acid to be activated, while baking powder is better for recipes with little to no acid. Once I used 4 teaspoons of baking soda instead of baking powder in this recipe and it looked beautiful but was about the worst thing I’d ever tasted in my life. However, if you’re swapping the regular milk in this recipe for an acidic ingredient like buttermilk or diluted sour cream, you may swap the 4 tsp baking powder for 1 tsp baking powder and 1 tsp baking soda.
What to serve with cornbread muffins
- Serve with big bowl of chili
- Enjoy warm muffins topped with honey butter (or topped with regular butter and a drizzle of honey)
- Crumble into a glass of milk or buttermilk
- Serve alongside pulled pork or other barbecue
- Have as a side for shrimp and grits
More cornbread recipes to try
Easy Homemade Cornbread Muffins Recipe
- 1 cup cornmeal
- 1 cup flour
- 1/3 cup granulated sugar
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 4 tsp baking powder
- 1 egg
- 1 cup milk
- 1/4 cup corn or vegetable oil
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
- Add cornmeal, flour, sugar, salt, and baking powder to a large bowl and whisk to break up any clumps.
- Combine egg, milk, and oil in a medium bowl and whisk to combine.
- Add wet ingredients to dry ingredients and stir until just combined. Do not overmix.
- Pour batter into a greased muffin tin, filling each cup about halfway. Bake for 13-17 minutes or until toothpick stuck in the center comes out mostly clean. Don’t overbake!
- Serve warm with butter and a drizzle of honey, or as a side for chili.