The Best Cornbread You’ll Ever Eat

Skillet cornbread recipe

I have a pretty slow turnaround with recipes. In a fantasy world, for every Instagram photo I take of food, I’d link up directly to the recipe already saved here. This doesn’t always happen, but with tonight’s out-of-this-world creation, I have to share this recipe pronto.

I stumbled upon The New York Times recipe for “brown butter skillet cornbread” about two weeks ago and was finally compelled to make it after work this afternoon. I like to take a brief break where I’m standing up and active between work hours and hours where I try to do some writing. As it’s cold and rainy here, and MainMan’s headed to a golf lesson after he gets off work, I thought I’d whip this up and surprise him when he gets home.

I can’t express how goddamn delicious it is. I have made a few cornbread recipes and they always turn out super dry and too salty. This cornbread borders between the perfect side and a course of its own. It is so flavorful. And moist. Wow. The maple syrup really adds a subtle sweetness to the cornbread you never knew you needed and I’ll never make another cornbread again.

And for all my friends further north who are still recovering from Jonas, this makes a great blizzard side. I can’t wait to make it for our next camping trip.

Brown Butter Skillet Cornbread by Melissa Clark

  • 12 tablespoons (1 1/2 sticks)/170 grams unsalted butter
  • ½ cup/120 ml maple syrup
  • 2 ¼ cups/530 ml buttermilk
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 ½ cups/180 grams yellow cornmeal, fine or medium-coarse grind
  • ½ cup/65 grams whole wheat flour
  • ½ cup/60 grams all-purpose flour
  • 1 ½ tablespoons/18 grams baking powder
  • 1 ½ teaspoons/9 grams kosher salt
  • ½ teaspoon/5 grams baking soda
  1. Heat oven to 375 degrees. On the stovetop, in a 11- or 12-inch skillet (ovenproof and preferably cast iron), melt the butter over medium heat. Cook, swirling pan to lightly coat sides and bottom, until the foam subsides and the butter turns a deep nut brown. (Watch carefully to see that it does not burn.)
  2. Pour brown butter into a large bowl. (Do not wipe out the pan.) Whisk the maple syrup into the butter, then whisk in buttermilk. The mixture should be cool to the touch; if not, let cool before whisking in the eggs. Then whisk in the cornmeal, flours, baking powder, salt and baking soda.
  3. If the skillet is no longer hot (cast iron retains heat longer than other metals), reheat it briefly on the stove for a few minutes. Scrape batter back into it. Bake until the top is golden brown and a toothpick inserted into it emerges clean, 30 to 40 minutes. Cool in the skillet for 10 minutes before slicing.

There is one comment

  1. Kerri

    I agree about this recipe! I also stumbled across it recently and now it’s my go-to cornbread. Even if you cut way back on the butter, it’s delicious. Plus I love anything that can be cooked in a cast-iron skillet.


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