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A plate full of mini gluten-free cornbread muffins next to a bowl of soup and corn on the cob
Gluten-Free Cornbread Muffins – an easy & quick side to many dishes!

This gluten-free cornbread recipe is so easy to make – 5 minutes of prep and 20 minutes to bake! For mini muffins, allow 15 mins, but for regular-size, aim for 20 minutes for the best, wholesome cornbread muffins to go with your favourite soup or stew.

Where did cornbread originate from?

Cornbread originated from the southern part of the US, accompanying spicy chillis and eventually became a traditional side to Thanksgiving meals.

Originally, only yellow cornmeal was used in the recipe, but as cornbread evolved, flour was added to lighten the texture from gritty to a more balanced finish. Bacon fat/dripping is often added to the mixture, but as a healthier option, I like to add melted butter but feel free to replace it with bacon fat for that one-off treat.

How to serve cornbread muffins?

Although cornbread is a savoury bread, there is a hint of sweetness with the addition of maple syrup. I love serving these muffins with Chilli con or sin Carne, soups and stews to mop up the sauces as well as at Thanksgiving or Christmas as a side or stuffing.

The combination of this gluten-free cornbread and bread gives the Cornbread & Sausage stuffing interesting textures and flavours, together with the abundant amount of pecans, onions, apples, sausage meat and a medley of herbs and spices.

A close up of several cornbread muffins stacked up on a plate
Adobe photo of gluten-free cornbread muffins
A few split cornbread muffins to show the interior texture
A plate full of mini gluten-free cornbread muffins next to a bowl of soup and corn on the cob

Gluten-Free Cornbread Muffins

by Sandra, Fun Without Gluten
These gluten-free cornbread muffins are so easy to make! It takes 5 minutes to add and mix in one bowl and 20 minutes to bake! That's it!
This recipe makes 20 mini cornbread muffins or 12 regular-size muffins.
If you have trouble finding polenta or cornmeal, cut the same weight of fresh uncooked corn kernels from the cob and blend until smooth. The texture of the cornbread muffin will be denser but packed with corn flavour.
Serve cornbread muffins with soups, stews and Chilli con Carne or crumble them up to add to your roast turkey stuffing. Made too many? They freeze well and defrost in a flash.
5 from 3 votes
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 25 minutes
Course baking, Kids' Snacks, Side Dish, Vegetarian
Cuisine American
Servings 20 mini muffins


  • 250 g yellow cornmeal or polenta or an equal quantity of fresh uncooked corn kernels blended thoroughly (add extra 10 mins of baking time)
  • 60 g store-bought or homemade gluten-free plain flour
  • ¼ tsp xanthan gum
  • 1 tbsp  gluten-free baking powder
  • ½ tsp bicarbonate of soda/baking soda
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 375 ml milk
  • 1 tsp lemon juice
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten
  • 60 g unsalted butter, melted
  • 3 tbsp maple syrup or golden syrup
  • 2 tsp butter, melted, for brushing the baked cornbread


  • Preheat the oven to 200°C/ 400°F.
  • Whisk the cornmeal with the gluten-free plain flour, xanthan gum, baking powder, bicarb. of soda and salt in a medium bowl.
  • Stir in the milk, lemon juice, egg, melted butter and maple syrup.
  • Pour the mixture into either a pre-greased muffin tin or silicone muffin tray.
  • Bake for 15 mins if making mini muffins or 20 mins for regular-size muffins. Test by inserting a toothpick in the centre of one muffin. If it comes out clean, the muffins are ready.
  • Once baked, brush the tops with some melted butter while the muffins are still in the trays.
  • Serve immediately or keep warm in a tea towel.


  • Keeps for one week chilled
  • Suitable to freeze 
  • Defrosts quickly in the oven or air-fryer
NOTE about using fresh corn in place of polenta or cornmeal:
When using fresh corn and blending it to replace polenta or cornmeal, add an extra 10 mins or more to the baking time as more liquid is released from the corn during baking. The result is denser but moister and tastier cornbread muffins.
Keyword gluten-free cornbread muffins, gluten-free sides, gluten-free turkey stuffing
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A side view of some cornbread muffins stacked on a plate in front of soup and corn on the cob
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