Sweet Olive Oil Cornbread

Sweet Olive Oil Cornbread

There are two schools of thought on cornbread. One says that cornbread should be a hearty and savory bread, and that a plainer cornbread is better for soaking up the flavor of chilis and sauces. The members of the other school prefer a sweeter, cakier cornbread. I am definitely in the latter school of thought and I like sweeter cornbread. I like the softer texture and it seems to be a little bit more versatile to me, since I can serve it up with chili or bbq, or simply slather it with butter and eat it for a snack.

This Sweet Olive Oil Cornbread walks a nice line between sweet and savory, just leaning a little into the sweet side of things. It has a fluffy, tender crumb with just a bit of texture from the cornmeal. It isn’t sweet enough to turn into a cake, but the sugar in the recipe highlights the natural sweetness of the corn and the fruitiness of the olive oil. As with most recipes that include olive oil, it is a good idea to use a flavorful olive oil that you enjoy on its own for the best results in the recipe.

I baked this cornbread in a 9-inch round cake pan and cut it into generous wedges to serve. You can bake the same bread in a 9×9-inch square pan with about the same baking time, if you prefer square cornbread pieces. Serve this alongside a spicy chili to cut the heat a little bit, or smear it with butter and drizzle it with honey to sweeten it up even more. I think that this cornbread is best when served slightly warm, but leftovers will be just as good in a day or two if the cornbread is kept well-wrapped.

Sweet Olive Oil Cornbread
1 1/4 cups all purpose flour
1 cup yellow cornmeal
1/3 cup sugar
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 cup olive oil
1 large egg
1 cup buttermilk

Preheat oven to 375F. Lightly grease a 9-inch round cake pan and line the bottom with parchment paper.
In a large bowl, whisk together flour, cornmeal, sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt.
In a medium bowl, whisk together olive oil, egg and buttermilk until well-blended. Stir into flour mixture and mix until well-combined. Pour into prepared pan.
Bake for about 25 minutes, until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.
Turn out of the pan, peel of the parchment paper, and reinvert onto a wire rack. Allow cornbread to cool for at least 15 minutes before serving.

Serves 8.

2 comments

  1. I’m right there with you! I don’t love corn bread so when I do eat it I perfer the sweeter side of things. This looks and soudns awesome!

  2. I’m in the other camp. I grew up eating savory cornbread and sweet just doesn’t do it for me. No matter how little sweet is included it tastes like corncake and not cornbread to me. The recipe sounds great but I’d not add the sugar to keep it savory. I love a good slab with some pinto beans or chili or just slattered with butter. Another “Southern” method is crumbling it up and pouring milk over it and eating it like cereal or porridge. The sweetest of the milk counters the saltiness of the cornbread to make a great meal or snack.

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