Brown Butter Cornbread 

It is hard to improve on a classic, but we found a way by employing a trick often used in making cake frostings.

Active Time:
15 mins
Total Time:
50 mins
8 serves

The more you make and enjoy a pan of cornbread, the more you realize how much you need it with every single meal. The iconic bread of choice when serving steaming pots of chili, beef stew, or red beans and rice, a wedge of hot cornbread is also a surprisingly delicious breakfast bread, slathered in butter and topped with honey or homemade jam. It is hard to improve on a classic, but we found a way by employing a trick often used in making cake frostings - we browned the butter. Also known as beurre noisette, brown butter adds a toasted, slightly nutty hint to sweet and savory recipes. Once your butter has melted and browned in the oven, immediately pour the required amount into a small heat-proof bowl to prevent further browning. This brown butter cornbread uses just a touch of sugar to help give it a golden color and caramelize and crispy the edges.

Brown Butter Cornbread

Antonis Achilleos; Prop Styling: Audrey Davis; Food Styling: Emily Nabors Hall


  • ½ cup unsalted butter

  • 2 cups plain yellow cornmeal

  • 1 cup all-purpose flour

  • 1 tablespoon baking powder

  • 1 ½ teaspoons kosher salt

  • 1 teaspoon granulated sugar

  • 2 ½ cups whole buttermilk

  • 2 large eggs


  1. Preheat oven to 425˚F. Place unsalted butter in a 10-inch cast-iron skillet, and place in oven until butter is browned, about 8 minutes.

  2. Meanwhile, whisk together cornmeal, flour, baking powder, kosher salt, and granulated sugar in large bowl. Remove skillet from oven, and carefully pour 6 tablespoons of the melted browned butter into a small heatproof bowl, reserving remaining browned butter in skillet. In a separate bowl, whisk together buttermilk, eggs, and the 6 tablespoons of melted browned butter. Make a well in center of cornmeal mixture, and add buttermilk mixture, stirring until just combined. Pour batter into remaining melted browned butter in hot skillet. Bake at 425°F until golden brown and a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean, 25 to 28 minutes.

  3. Let cool slightly; cut cornbread into slices, and serve warm. Or let cool completely, 35 to 40 minutes, and cut into ½-inch cubes to equal 12 cups.

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