Best Buttermilk Cornbread

This super easy buttermilk cornbread recipe is the perfect amount of moist and crumbly (as all good cornbread is)! You only need one big bowl for this recipe, which comes together super quickly. The rich flavor of extra-virgin olive oil and buttermilk (which can easily be made, I promise!) takes this cornbread over the top! This cornbread pairs perfectly with a hearty bowl of chili and is one of my favorite fall dishes!

buttermilk cornbread

Alright, folks. Before we get too far into this let’s address the elephant in the room: I’m a midwesterner who enjoys a sweeter flavored cornbread recipe. This is not a savory recipe and this is not your typical southern style cornbread.

I’m a girl from the north country who loves her sweet cornbread recipe and I’ll shout it out from the rooftops, “I’m in love! I’m in love! And I don’t care who knows it!” <name that movie

Phew. Glad we got that out of the way. If you’re still here, fantastic! This buttermilk cornbread recipe is so good. Whenever I make a pot of chili, I make sure to whip this cornbread recipe together while the chili simmers.

Cornbread and chili are such a dynamic duo and this entire recipe, which is made in a 9×13 baking dish, was scarfed down by my family of five before bedtime last night. So I think they approve!

Looking for more buttermilk recipes? Try this tahini banana bread!

Why You’ll Love This Recipe

  • Super quick and simple: It’s easy and requires only one mixing bowl (read: fewer dishes!)
  • Buttermilk: the buttermilk adds a depth of flavor that takes this cornbread over the top. Plus, it makes the cornbread super moist! Don’t have buttermilk? Perfect! Simply fill a two-cup measuring cup with 2 tablespoons of white vinegar and fill the rest of the cup with milk until you get to two cups! Let sit for a couple of minutes and voila, you have yourself some buttermilk.
  • Olive oil: This gives the cornbread a richer and more nuanced flavor. It also gives it the perfect amount of crumb.
  • Just sweet enough: This cornbread is *just* the right amount of sweet. Not too much sugar, but definitely not savory.
buttermilk cornbread with a pad of butter


buttermilk cornbread ingredient picture
buttermilk, cornmeal, flour, eggs, olive oil, sugar, baking soda, baking powder, salt

Buttermilk – you can substitute whole milk if you wish, but I highly recommend buttermilk. If you are looking for an easy way to make buttermilk, check out this recipe that breaks it down simply for you! You only need milk and vinegar!

All-Purpose Flour – I use the King Arthur brand. You could also try

Yellow Cornmeal – The ingredient that gives cornbread its namesake! The yellow cornmeal also gives the cornbread its classic color.

Olive Oil – I use this instead of butter. It adds richness and depth of flavor.

Eggs – I whisk them ahead of time before adding them to the mixing bowl.

Sugar – White cane sugar is what I use for this recipe.

Baking Soda, Baking Powder, and Salt – Working together, they add fluffiness to this cornbread!

How to Make Buttermilk Cornbread: Step by Step

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Grease a 9×13 baking dish. I grease mine with butter or olive oil. Whichever is closest to me at the moment!

greased 9x13 dish

Before I prepare my ingredients, I make the buttermilk so it has time to do its thing and will be ready when it’s time to add to the mixing bowl.

cornbread ingredients

Add all the dry ingredients (cornmeal, flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt) to a large mixing bowl. Whisk the ingredients together.

cornbread ingredients in mixing bowl with olive oil

Add the wet ingredients (olive oil, buttermilk, and whisked eggs) to the mixing bowl.

mixing ingredients of cornbread together

Mix the ingredients with a wooden spoon or spatula until just combined. Be careful not to over-mix the batter. This can result in too crumbly of cornbread! Peep the little hands mixing. Love my little helpers!

adding batter to pan

Add the batter to a 9×13 baking pan.

cornbread batter in pan

Pop that bad boy in the oven at 350 degrees for about 35 minutes. It will be ready when you can stick a toothpick in the middle and it comes out clean or a little crumbly. It should be golden brown on top.

baked cornbread

Beautiful golden brown goodness!

cornbread with a pad of butter
buttermilk substitute

How to Make Buttermilk (Easy Two-Ingredient Recipe!)

Frequently Asked Questions

I don’t have any buttermilk. Can I substitute it with regular milk?

Yes! I’m not a fan of being finicky over here. Use what you have. But I will say that making buttermilk is super easy. I never buy actual buttermilk from the store. I make my own.

This recipe calls for two cups of buttermilk. To make this, simply add two tablespoons of white vinegar to a measuring cup and then fill the rest of the cup with milk until it gets to two cups. Let it sit a couple minutes and voila–you have yourself your very own buttermilk. See how easy that is?!

Do I have to use all-purpose flour for this recipe?

No, you certainly don’t have to. I haven’t tested this recipe with anything other than all-purpose flour, but using whole wheat flour or almond flour should still work, though it will give a more nutty flavor to the cornbread.

Do I need to use olive oil in this recipe?

Olive oil helps give a ton of moisture to this cornbread and I highly recommend using it! But if you only have butter, that will work fine as a substitute.

How can I get moist cornbread?

As silly as it sounds, don’t overdo it on the olive oil. This recipe calls for the perfect amount of oil and if it gets too much, it can actually get too crumbly! Once the cornbread is out of the oven, you can spread some butter over it, which will allow the butter to seep into the cornbread and add even more moisture. I always serve my cornbread with a pad of butter on top. It adds such a rich flavor to it!

What if I don’t like sweet cornbread?

You can reduce the sugar by 1/4 cup to get a less sweet cornbread.

What should I serve with my cornbread?

I prefer serving my cornbread with chili! It can also go well with BBQ meats such as pulled pork or ribs.

What toppings go on cornbread?

Butter, jam, jelly, honey, or ham and swiss cheese, to name a few! I love keeping it simple with butter or honey, but add whatever tickles your fancy!

hearty chili recipe

Try this Hearty Chili Recipe–the perfect companion to cornbread.

buttermilk cornbread

Easy One Bowl Buttermilk Cornbread

This easy buttermilk cornbread recipe requires only one bowl to prepare and is SO delicious! The combination of buttermilk, sugar, and olive oil is what makes this cornbread recipe my absolute favorite! Enjoy it along with a batch of chili!
5 from 1 vote
Print Pin Rate
Course: Bread
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 40 minutes
Servings: 12
Calories: 342kcal
Author: Jamie


  • 2 cups cornmeal
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 tablespoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 cups buttermilk
  • 2 eggs whisked
  • 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil


  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Grease a 9x13 baking dish.
  • Prepare the buttermilk by adding 2 tablespoons of white vinegar to a 2-cup measuring cup and then fill the rest up with milk until it reaches 2 total cups. Let sit while you're preparing the dry ingredients. Skip this step if you have store bought buttermilk.
  • Add the dry ingredients (cornmeal, flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt) to a large mixing bowl. Whisk the ingredients together.
  •  Add the buttermilk, whisked eggs, and olive oil to the mixing bowl and mix ingredients together using a wooden spoon or spatula until just combined. Make sure not to overmix the batter.
  • Fold the ingredients into the prepared baking dish.
  • Place in the middle rack of the preheated oven for 35-40 minutes. Stick a toothpick in the center of the cornbread to ensure there is no more uncooked batter in the bread. 
  • Allow the cornbread to cool for 5-10 minutes before cutting up and serving. Serve with a pad of butter on top for added flavor. 


This cornbread stays good in the fridge for up to a week and at room temperature for about 3 days (but let's be honest, it won't last that long)!


Calories: 342kcal | Carbohydrates: 50g | Protein: 7g | Fat: 13g | Saturated Fat: 3g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g | Monounsaturated Fat: 8g | Trans Fat: 0.003g | Cholesterol: 32mg | Sodium: 454mg | Potassium: 173mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 15g | Vitamin A: 106IU | Calcium: 173mg | Iron: 2mg

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