This gluten-free cornbread recipe is so easy to make – 5 minutes of prep and 20 minutes to bake!

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.

Although cornbread is a savoury bread, there is a hint of sweetness with the addition of maple syrup. I love serving chunky slices of cornbread or small muffins with chilli con or sin Carne, soups and casseroles 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.

Gluten-Free Cornbread
  • 250g yellow cornmeal or polenta
  • 60g store-bought or homemade gluten-free plain flour
  • ¼ teaspoon xanthan gum
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 375ml milk
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten
  • 60g unsalted butter, melted
  • 3 tablespoons maple syrup
  • 2 teaspoons butter, melted, for brushing the cornbread

Makes one loaf or 11 muffins

Step by Step Instructions

1. Preheat the oven to 200 C/ 400 F.

2. Combine the cornmeal with the gluten-free plain flour, xanthan gum, baking powder, bicarb. of soda and salt in a medium size bowl.

3. Stir in the milk, lemon juice, egg, melted butter and maple syrup.

4. Once mixed well, pour the mixture into either a pre-greased loaf pan or muffin tins.

5. Bake for 20 minutes.

6. Brush the tops with some melted butter.

7. Test by inserting a toothpick in the centre. If it comes out clean, the bread is ready.
8. Serve immediately or keep warm in a tea towel.

The cornbread muffins freeze very well and can be reheated directly from the freezer to the oven. Cover with foil and reheat for 10 to 15 minutes.