Ode to Cornbread

Cornbread is just one of those dishes that goes well with almost anything.  Chili, BBQ, Breakfast, Steak, Chicken, a Salad.  You can literally pair a slice of cornbread with just about anything.

Growing up in Tennessee, most of the cornbread I came across was dry, bland, and just not very good.  My mom never made cornbread, so when we would have it, it would be a side dish at a BBQ joint or mixed in with the bread plate from Cracker Barrel.  No matter where it came from, the cornbread was always dry.  It wasn’t until I went to college that I discovered there was such a thing as moist sweet cornbread, and I loved it.  I remember the first time I tried sweet cornbread I thought, “How could the South have been doing it wrong all of this time?”  Sweet cornbread is hands down the way to go.

Any other southerners who are reading this may think that I’ve just committed sacrilege, but don’t knock the moist sweet cornbread until you try this recipe.

Cornbread and Chili

This winter I went on the hunt for the perfect cornbread recipe.  Chili is one of my favorite dishes, and it’s my favorite winter dish, but I’ve always felt that it was lacking something… cornbread.  I must have tried three different cornbread recipes this winter before I pulled together elements from all three recipes to create what is, or at least what I believe to be, the greatest cornbread recipe, ever.

This recipe for cornbread is great when served as-is, with nothing added to it to dress it up.  It’s amazing with just a little bit of butter melted on top, and it’s fantastic with fresh blackberry preserves.

Seriously, you have to try it.

Dogwood Books Moist Sweet Cornbread Recipe


  • 1 cup cornmeal
  • 3 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/3 cup sugar
  • 2 Tablespoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2/3 cup vegetable oil
  • 1/3 cup melted butter
  • 2 Tablespoons honey (Tupelo or Wildflower Honey)
  • 4 eggs, beaten
  • 2 ½ cups buttermilk


  1. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees and grease a 9 x 13 inch baking dish with butter (do not be shy with the butter when greasing your dish; go to town with the butter).
  2. In a large mixing bowl, stir the cornmeal, flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt.
  3. Pour in the vegetable oil, melted butter, honey, beaten eggs, and milk, and stir just until moistened.  Don’t worry about lumps – it’s impossible to get out all the lumps when stirring, and it will smooth out when it bakes.
  4. Pour the batter into the greased baking dish and bake in 350 degree oven for 45 minutes, or until the cornbread is golden and cracked on top, and of course, until your toothpick or fork comes out clean when inserted into the middle.*
  5. Remove from oven, serve warm, and enjoy!

*Remember that baking times may vary depending on how close to sea level you are and/or how high in the mountains you are.  When the cornbread is golden and cracked on top then it’s almost done.


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