Why this recipe works
This homemade gluten-free cornbread recipe is the last one you’ll need. It’s moist and fluffy with a crispy edge. You won’t be able to tell it’s gluten-free!
You get a bit of sweetness from the gluten-free cornmeal and granulated sugar in this recipe, though I would not consider this cornbread recipe to be a sweet cornbread. After all, there’s only 1/3 cup of sugar in this recipe. It just helps to bring out the natural sweetness of the cornmeal.
Eat your warm cornbread with a slather of melty butter or a drizzle of honey. Serve it with a big bowl of chili or soup. Crumble it up and make a delicious gluten-free cornbread stuffing for the holidays. There are so many ways to enjoy this easy cornbread recipe.
You’ll love this easy recipe because:
For best results, use a food scale and follow the metric measurements stated in the recipe card. Baking with a food scale is far more accurate for dry ingredients, especially gluten-free flour and gluten-free cornmeal that can vary easily depending on the way you scoop it.
- gluten-free flour blend – This recipe has been tested with Bob’s Red Mill 1-to-1 Gluten-Free Baking Flour and King Arthur Baking Gluten Free Measure For Measure Flour. Both of these flour blends already contain xanthan gum. If you do not have access to either of these blends, I recommend using a gluten-free flour blend that is meant to be used as a 1-for-1 swap with all-purpose flour. Please use the metric measurements for best results.
- xanthan gum – Xanthan gum is used as a binder in gluten-free baking and provides elasticity instead of gluten. If your blend does not already contain xanthan gum, use the amount as specified in the recipe. The flour blend I used and recommend already contains xanthan gum.
- cornmeal – I like to use a medium-grit cornmeal for this recipe. It results in the perfect texture for this cornbread. Please be sure to buy gluten-free cornmeal for this recipe.
- buttermilk – The buttermilk gives this cornbread recipe a nice tang and also reacts with the baking soda to give the cornbread some lift. If you are dairy-free, substitute the buttermilk with unsweetened non-dairy milk (such as almond milk or oat milk) and 2 teaspoons of apple cider vinegar. Let the mixture sit for 5 minutes before using. You’ll also need to use vegan butter for dairy-free cornbread.
- granulated sugar – This is not a sweet cornbread, but I still like to add some sugar to my recipe. It helps accentuate the natural sweetness of the cornmeal. The cornbread will not taste sweet with this level of sugar. I would not recommend omitting the sugar. However, you can use brown sugar, coconut sugar, or honey in its place.
You can change up the flavor to suit your tastes and make this the best gluten-free cornbread recipe ever. Some of my favorites include bacon bites, corn kernels, jalapeño, or green onion for a savory cornbread.
While it may seem that cornmeal is naturally gluten-free, there tends to be a lot of cross-contamination in the milling and manufacturing processes with wheat. Be sure to look for a gluten-free cornmeal product to ensure your cornbread is gluten-free.
This gluten-free cornbread is so simple to make with a few ingredients and a cast iron pan! Follow the step-by-step images with matching instructions below to help you make this skillet cornbread recipe perfectly every time.
For the ingredient list with measurements, full instructions, printable recipe, and additional notes, please scroll down to the recipe card.
While cornmeal in itself is just corn and therefore gluten-free, there is often cross-contact with gluten in the milling and manufacturing processes. There are many brands of gluten-free cornmeal on the market. Be sure to purchase a brand that has specified it is gluten-free.
I’ve tested this recipe with King Arthur Baking Gluten Free Measure for Measure flour and Bob’s Red Mill 1-to-1 Gluten-Free Baking Flour. Both contain xanthan gum and are meant to be substituted as a 1-for-1 swap with all-purpose flour. I cannot guarantee that other brands of flour will work in this recipe as I have not tested them myself.
If you are using a gluten-free flour blend that already contains xanthan gum (which is what I recommend), then you DO NOT need to add xanthan gum to this recipe.
While you could make cornbread without any flour, it will be very dense and gritty. Flour or gluten-free flour helps make the cornbread light and fluffy with a smoother texture. Do not omit the gluten-free flour in this recipe.
Use a 10-inch pie pan or a 8-inch-square baking pan for this recipe. Also be sure that you don’t use too large of a cast iron skillet. If it is too large (say 12-inch or 15-inch) then the cornbread will not be thick and tall and will bake too quickly in the oven.
Yes, you can easily double this recipe and use a 9×13-inch rectangular baking dish.
- Storage: Store leftovers in an airtight container at room temperature for 3-4 days for best freshness. You can rewarm the cornbread if you would like before serving.
- Freezer Option: This cornbread freezes beautifully! Let the cornbread cool completely. Slice into squares or wedges and freeze on a parchment lined sheet pan for an hour. Place the slices in a freezer-safe bag or container and freeze for 2-3 months. Let sit out at room temperature to defrost. Alternatively, you can place in the oven at 300F until warmed through to defrost.
I love serving this gluten-free cornbread warm from the oven. It’s perfect with a pat of butter right on top that melts at contact. I also love a little sweetness, so a drizzle of honey or maple syrup is always a welcome idea.
You can also serve this cornbread alongside your favorite chili or soup recipe. It’s perfect with my slow cooker turkey chili recipe or my gluten-free beef stew recipe.
Around the holidays, I love to use this cornbread to make my gluten-free cornbread stuffing recipe. It’s filled with Italian sausage, celery, dried cranberries, pecans, and fresh herbs. This cornbread compliments it so well!
No matter which way you choose to serve this cornbread, I promise the whole family will love it and you won’t even be able to tell it’s gluten-free!
More delicious gluten-free breads and rolls to try
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- 1/2 cup unsalted butter (at room temperature)
- 1 cup gluten-free flour blend (144g)
- ½ teaspoon xanthan gum (if your blend does not already contain it)
- 1 1/4 cup gluten-free cornmeal (195g)
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 1/2 cups buttermilk (12oz /360 mL)
- 2 eggs
- 1/3 cup granulated sugar (66g)
- Preheat the oven to 400F.
- Place a 9-inch cast iron skillet on the stove top over medium heat to preheat. Once heated, add the butter and cook until melted. Once the butter is melted, use immediately or set aside until ready to use. Keep the cast iron pan over medium-low heat so that it is hot when you pour the batter into it.
- In a large bowl, whisk together the gluten-free flour blend, gluten-free cornmeal, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Set aside.
- In a large measuring cup or bowl, add the buttermilk, eggs, granulated sugar, and melted butter. Whisk until combined.
- Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and stir to combine.
- Pour the cornbread batter into the hot cast iron skillet.
- Bake at 400F for 18-22 minutes, until the cornbread is cooked through. A toothpick inserted into the center should come out dry with a few moist crumbs.
- Let cool for a few minutes before slicing and serving.
- Do not let the butter heat in the cast-iron skillet for too long as it can burn. Set the skillet on the stove-top to heat after you have taken all of the ingredients out and are ready to start mixing together the dry ingredients.
- I used Bob’s Red Mill 1-to-1 Gluten-free Baking Flour which already contains xanthan gum. This recipe has also been tested with King Arthur Baking Gluten Free Measure For Measure Flour which also contains xanthan gum. If you use any other flour blend, I cannot guarantee that your cornbread will turn out.
- If your flour blend already contains xanthan gum, you do not need to add more to the recipe.
- If you have celiac disease or are gluten-free, be sure to purchase gluten-free cornmeal. Cornmeal that is not labeled as gluten-free may have come into cross contact with gluten and not be safe for those on a gluten-free diet.
- If you are on a gluten-free diet, always double check ingredients and product packaging because formulas and manufacturing practices change from time-to-time.
- To make this recipe dairy-free, substitute the buttermilk for your favorite unsweetened dairy-free milk and 2 teaspoons of apple cider vinegar. Let the mixture sit for 5 minutes before using. Use vegan butter.