Bake on Saturday, Lunch & Dinner, Recipes

Ma’s Cornbread

A simple but flavorful yellow cornbread, baked the traditional way in a cast iron skillet!


There are some things that you don’t mess with.  Like the mint and chocolate flavor combo.  Or peanut butter and chocolate.  Or mom’s go-to cornbread recipe.

Baked in a cast iron skillet.

I’m a huge fan of cast iron.  Have I mentioned?  I grew up with a 10″ and a 6″ skillet in the kitchen, the former of which was used for basically all stovetop cooking.  And for baking cornbread.  When I finally moved to an apartment with a real kitchen senior year of college, I missed the cast iron.  I find it heats and distributes better than anything else.  You can put your cast iron skillets in the oven, too!  Can nonstick do that?  Nonstick is good for some things, like pancakes, but other than that…I don’t know.  Perhaps I’m stuck in my ways.  Anyway, I asked for a cast iron skillet for my birthday that year and ended up getting three.  All from my mom.  She said she didn’t know which size to get for me.  Since I’m currently back at home, we have five cast iron skillets.  So many cornbread possibilities.



Okay, Reader, I guess I’ve done my little preach-y bit about cast iron (did I mention it can go in the oven as well as on the stove so you can use it for cornbread?).  Back to cornbread.  I’ve called this “Ma’s Cornbread” because it’s the recipe she always uses.  And now I always use it, too.  There are some things my family bakes with relatively frequency but never with the same recipe, like coffee cake and pumpkin bread.  But this one is an unquestioned staple in our house.

The bottom and sides are slightly crispy, the top is lightly browned, and the inside is golden.  Crumbly but not too crumbly.  Sweet but not too sweet.  What more could you ask for?

Ma’s Cornbread

From the back of the Indian Head Old Fashioned Stone Ground Yellow Corn Meal bag, ages ago (it’s still there)


  • 1 cup yellow corn meal
  • 1 cup all-purpose or white whole wheat flour
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 3 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1 egg
  • 1/4 cup vegetable, canola, or melted coconut oil


Preheat oven to 400°F.  Grease a medium (8 or 10″) cast iron skillet, and place it in the oven while it is preheating.

In a medium bowl, mix together the dry ingredients.  Make a well in the center of the mix.  In a small bowl, whisk together the wet ingredients.  Pour the wet into the dry, and mix quickly, just until incorporated.  Carefully remove the frying pan from the hot oven, and pour the batter into it.  Bake for about 25 minutes, until the cornbread begins to pull away from the edges of the pan and is a light golden brown.  Serve hot with butter and honey.  Eat the leftovers for breakfast.


3 thoughts on “Ma’s Cornbread”

  1. I love my cast irons too! I have three different sizes and they get so much work out. Love this cornbread recipe. Ma’s are always the best!

  2. My book club is meeting at my house in two weeks. In chapter one of the book the hero eats pinto beans and **cornbread**. How fortuitous to see this recipe here right now!!! (Book is The Blue Star)

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