Cornbread is a savory or sweet bread eaten as a side dish, main dish, or dessert.
Northern cornbread is savory and uses yellow cornmeal and few eggs, whereas Southern cornbread uses white or yellow cornmeal and is sweet with a buttery finish, cake-like texture, and higher egg content.
Single-Ingredient Cornbread Snacks
Cornbread and butter are perfect together because they create a sweet and salty contrast.
Salted or unsalted butter works. Salted butter creates a sweet saltiness with sweet cornbread, and unsalted butter creates a rich and creamy taste with savory cornbread.
Melt salted butter over a sweet slice of cornbread to marry the sweet and salty tastes over the soft, cake-like texture.
Use a microwave to melt the butter over the cornbread for 20 seconds if the bread isn’t fresh.
Cheese is ideal with cornbread because it can be melted over warm cornbread for a soft texture.
Cotija cheese is an aged Mexican cheese that creates a creamy and salty complement to sweet cornbread.
Feta cheese has a salty flavor that tastes wonderfully bold in contrast to sweet cornbread. Melt feta over a fresh slice, or reheat the two together for 20 seconds.
Gruyere cheese is an aged, alpine cheese with a rich taste and creamy texture and that satisfies when melted over a slice of savory cornbread.
Cheddar’s sharp and earthy flavors come alive when the cheese is melted over savory cornbread.
Honey is recommended with savory cornbread because it brings the sweetness the cornbread lacks.
Honey on cornbread is a marriage made in heaven for people who want the sweet, savory blend. Warm the cornbread first to help the drizzled honey soak in.
Hot dogs are delicious with savory cornbread because they add additional flavor to a simple dinner idea.
The cornbread is richer and more flavorful than bland, regular hot dog rolls. Slice savory cornbread rolls open and place a heated hot dog in the center with your preferred sauce.
Good sauces for cornbread hot dogs include:
- Tomato to create a traditional hot dog flavor (savory cornbread)
- Hoisin BBQ for a tangy BBQ flavor (sweet cornbread)
- Dijon mustard to give a sweet-spicy flavor (sweet or savory cornbread)
- Chili for a tangy flavor (savory cornbread)
Jalapenos taste great with sweet cornbread because the mild chilies offer some zest and a kick to warm cornbread.
Bake sliced jalapenos into the cornbread, or sprinkle raw sliced jalapenos over warm cornbread before sprinkling shredded pepper jack cheese – this one adds a creamy flavor to the kick.
Meals With Cornbread
Chili/Stew With Cornbread
Hearty chili and stew are delicious with sweet cornbread because the bread brings an extra sense of hygge, or quality of comfort, to the meal.
Beef stew or chili with a side of sweet cornbread for dunking marries the flavors of salty sweetness and smoky, aromatic flavors.
Add broken pieces of sweet cornbread into a saucy chili or stew cooked with smoky paprika, earthy garam masala, sweet fenugreek, and aromatic cumin.
Fried Chicken and Coleslaw With Cornbread
Fried chicken and coleslaw taste wonderful with savory cornbread because the binding of flavors lets every note shine. Aromatic crispy fried chicken blends well with creamy, sweet coleslaw and sour buttermilk cornbread.
Substitute 1 cup buttermilk for 1 cup whole milk in any cornbread recipe to create a sour cornbread batter.
Add the sour cornbread to the side of sweet coleslaw topped with raisins, and chicken fried in an aromatic breading made with cayenne pepper, salt, and chili powder.
Marinated Barbeque With Cornbread
Beef or pork barbeque is tasty with sweet cornbread because the meat increases the savory flavors while the sweetness of cornbread breaks the tangy meat marinade.
Add a sweet note to the tangy and salty marinated and barbecued pork or beef by eating cornbread as a side dish.
Serve pork or beef barbeque over cornbread as a sandwich in action. Slice the meat into thin strips for a smoky sandwich with sweet and savory flavors.
Meatloaf, Tomato Soup, and Cornbread
Meatloaf, tomato soup, and cornbread together make a wonderful meal. Smoky-spicy meatloaf blends with sour notes and creamy texture of tomato soup before sweet cornbread balances it all with its starchy sweetness.
Use dried mustard powder, salt, pepper, garlic powder, and onion powder for a smoky, spicy meatloaf.
Dunk sweet cornbread in creamy tomato soup to balance the tomato’s acidity and emphasize the perfect combo of creamy texture with smoky flavor.
Pot Roast and Cornbread
Pot roast and skillet-fried savory cornbread are perfect served together because the saltiness of pot roast breaks into the heavy starch of the cornbread.
Serve a slice of savory cornbread topped with shredded beef, chicken, or lamb roast before drizzling gravy from the pot over the dish.
Another way to blend cornbread with pot roast is by adding sweet cornbread to pork roast with honey for a sweet-and-sour combo.
Use finely-shredded pork roast over a slice of sweet cornbread and drizzle some honey over everything. Reduce the sweetness with melted mozzarella.
Specialty Cornbread Dishes
Cottage Cheese and Eggs Over Cornbread
Cottage cheese and eggs work great with savory cornbread for a quick specialty breakfast.
The flavor notes dance between creamy, salty, nutty, sour, and slightly sweet. Add a tablespoon of almonds to intensify the nutty flavors.
Start with a slice of savory cornbread, and top it with crumbled plain cottage cheese.
Avoid using flavored cottage cheese because the flavors become too pungent.
Add a fried egg with a pinch of salt over the cornbread before sprinkling more cottage cheese and adding nuts if desired.
Hummus and Lamb Over Cornbread
Hummus and shredded lamb are ideal with savory cornbread as a specialty dish for dinner or lunch.
The rich, umami flavor of hummus works with the robust earthy and herbal flavors found in herbed lamb. Adding savory cornbread brings a starchy texture with buttery richness.
Hummus, herbed lamb, and cornbread are very rich and starchy and work as specialty comfort food.
Use lamb roasted with rosemary and thyme instead of mint. Melt a teaspoon of butter over the cornbread and spread a tablespoon of hummus before adding shredded lamb.
Ice Cream Over Cornbread
Ice cream over cornbread is a heavenly combination for a specialty dessert.
Chocolate ice cream’s heavy richness is lightened with the starchy sweetness of sweet cornbread. Vanilla ice cream adds a creamy note to robust sweet cornbread.
Use mint ice cream for a fresher addition to sweet cornbread.
Top ice cream and corn bread with a tablespoon of almonds, cashews, or pecans. Drizzle chocolate sauce over the ice cream and cornbread for a richer flavor.
Onion-Sweetened Apples Over Cornbread
Onion-sweetened apples are perfect over cornbread for a specialty sweet-and-savory dish. Fried onions’ earthy, smoky flavors combine well with sweet, slightly-sour apples.
Add sweet cornbread to the mix to enhance the balance of sweet and sour.
Slice one onion and one Granny Smith apple before frying together in 1 tablespoon of coconut oil and 1 teaspoon of white sugar at a low temperature.
Remove the apples and translucent onions from the pan after four minutes, and spread them over sweet cornbread.
Roast Duck and Orange Sauce With Cornbread
Roast duck and orange sauce with cornbread is a mouth-watering specialty meal.
Sweet cornbread tames roast duck’s fatty, wild pungency, and orange sauce adds a hint of bitter sweetness to the specialty dish.
Use star anise, hoisin sauce, soy sauce, five-spice powder, caraway seeds, coriander, and sage to roast the duck for a smoky yet wild flavor.
Place pulled duck roast over sweet cornbread, and pour bittersweet orange sauce over the dish.
Vegetarian Cornbread Dishes
Beans and Cornbread
Beans and sweet cornbread make a great vegetarian dish.
Baked beans and sweet cornbread combine well because the cornbread breaks the acidic taste of tomatoes and enhances the sweetness of the beans.
Pour half a cup of baked beans over cornbread for a simple snack. Chili beans also taste great with sweet cornbread. Pour one cup of chili beans over sweet cornbread for dinner or lunch.
Brussels Sprouts and Cornbread
Brussels sprouts and savory cornbread make a simple, healthy, and delicious vegetarian dish for dinner or lunch.
The Brussels sprout’s sweet, smoky, and nutty notes balance well with the dense texture of savory cornbread to create a wholesome meal.
Roast Brussels sprouts with spices like smoky paprika and mustard powder combined with miso paste, peanut oil, and fish sauce to reduce their bland flavor.
Spread the Brussel sprouts over the cornbread, and drizzle with the oil from the pan.
Roasted Veggies and Cornbread
Roasted veggies and cornbread are ideal as a main vegetarian dish for dinner or lunch.
The flavors in roasted veggies of any variety include aromatic, fatty, hearty, and earthy. Savory cornbread adds creamy, mildly sweet, and starchy notes to the dish.
Use spices like cloves, nutmeg, cinnamon, ginger, lemongrass, coriander, tarragon, and dill to roast the vegetables in, and use two tablespoons of olive oil for a healthy fatty texture.
Pour the vegetable roast over the savory cornbread with the oily and spicy leftovers from the pan.
Pumpkin and cornbread are a good match because they both strike similar flavor notes, and the sweet corn balances the aromatic pumpkin.
Add freshly cooked then dried pumpkin to a sweet cornbread recipe to enhance the bread’s sweetness.
Half a cup of additional corn flour is necessary to prevent the cornbread from flopping.
Or, roast pumpkin with cinnamon, nutmeg, and cumin, and serve over a fresh slice of cornbread made with a pinch of cayenne pepper in the batter.
Sautéed Spinach and Cornbread
Spinach and sweet cornbread are ideal as a vegetarian dish for dinner or lunch.
The earthy, fresh, nutty, tangy, and slightly sweet flavor notes in sautéed spinach find subtle balances in the sweetness of the cornbread, and the starchy texture of cornbread enhances the heartiness of this dish.
Sautée spinach in a pan with one tablespoon of coconut oil and add salt and three of the following spices: chives, nutmeg, allspice, thyme, garlic, ginger, or red pepper flakes.
Pour the spinach over the sweet cornbread with the pan’s oil to serve.