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Fried Cornbread Recipe

Is there anything more comforting than fried cornbread?

This easy recipe is perfect for a quick and tasty snack or a side dish that your family will love. So why not give it a try today? You’ll be glad you did!

With just a few simple ingredients, you will have this ready in no time.

Delicious Southern Cooking

Fried cornbread with melting butter on top

Southern cooks have been making cornbread for generations, and fried cornbread is a great way to change things up now and again.

The best cornbread is made from scratch with yellow cornmeal and a hot skillet or griddle.

Serve it alongside fried chicken, collard greens, black-eyed peas, and sweet tea for an authentic Southern meal.

Plus, it’s a great budget-friendly side dish for a large family. If you love traditional cornbread, you will love fried cornbread.

Fried cornbread stacked on a white plate.

Fried cornbread, also known as cornmeal hoe cakes, is so simple to whip up.

Prep time takes less than five minutes, and you can make about one dozen pieces of cornbread.

What Ingredients Are Required For Fried Cornbread?

Full printable recipe with measurements and instructions listed at the bottom of the post in the recipe card.

Dry Ingredients

  • Self-rising yellow cornmeal
  • Salt

Wet Ingredients

  • Water
  • Bacon drippings/grease
  • Egg
  • Buttermilk
  • Vegetable oil to fry

Give these hacks a try for moist Jiffy cornbread.

How To Make Fried Cornbread

  1. Heat your cast iron skillet on medium to medium-high heat.
  2. In a large mixing bowl, add the yellow cornmeal, salt, water, bacon grease, egg, and buttermilk and mix well.
  3. Add one tablespoon of vegetable oil to the skillet and spread it around.
  4. Spoon the cornmeal mixture into the pan and gently spread it out to about four inches wide.
  5. Cook for several minutes and flip the corn cakes over.
  6. After cooking, place on a paper towel to soak up any excess grease and serve.
  7. Top with butter and honey (optional).
Fried hoe cakes with honey

Step-By-Step Instructions

Heat up your skillet on medium-high while you mix your ingredients.

Yellow cornmeal in a glass bowl

Start by adding yellow, self-rising cornmeal to a large glass bowl.

I used self-rising cornmeal, so I didn’t need to add any flour to the recipe.

Pouring water into a bowl with salt and cornmeal

Next, add the salt and water to the bowl.

Pouring bacon grease into a bowl with cornmeal.

Pour the bacon drippings and grease into the bowl.

If you don’t have any bacon grease, you can use vegetable oil instead. The bacon grease just gives the cornbread so much more flavor.

I made some bacon for another recipe before making this one, so I had some grease on hand.

An egg in a glass bowl with cornmeal.

Next, add the egg to the bowl.

Pouring buttermilk into a glass bowl

Pour the buttermilk into the bowl and mix the ingredients.

Cornbread mixture in a large glass bowl.

The cornbread will be thick when you mix the ingredients. If it’s too thin, add a small amount of cornmeal.

And, if it’s too thick, add a tablespoon of buttermilk and mix.

Fried cornbread in a skillet

Add one tablespoon of vegetable oil to a large skillet and drop a spoonful of cornbread into the pan.

Let the cornbread cook for a few minutes and flip over gently with a spatula.

You will need to press it down a little with your spoon.

Be careful, as the hot oil will pop. I was able to get about four pieces of cornbread in the pan at the same time.

The cornbread cooks up with nice crispy edges.

Cast iron skillets work great for this recipe because they are a heavy skillet, but aren’t necessary. If you don’t have one, don’t let that stop you from making the cornbread.

You can use any skillet, but they might heat up faster than a cast iron skillet, so be aware of that.

Four pieces of fried cornbread on a paper towel.

Once the fried cornbread cooks to a golden brown, remove it and place it on a paper towel.

These really aren’t that greasy, so don’t be surprised if there’s not much oil on your paper towels.

You will need to add another tablespoon of vegetable oil to the skillet before frying more cornbread.

Stacked fried cornbread on a white plate with melting butter on top

If you don’t like your cornbread sweet, you can eat it just as it is or add some butter on top while it’s hot.

This is definitely one of my southern favorites. It is one of those wonderful recipes that you want to hang on to because people will be asking for it again.

What To Serve With Fried Cornbread

Fried cornbread with honey and butter

And, if you do like sweet cornbread, pour some honey or maple syrup over the top. It tastes amazing and is the perfect sweet treat.

If you’re looking for comfort food, I recommend fried cornbread. It’s so tasty and inexpensive…it’s the perfect choice.

How To Store the Fried Cornbread

Store the fried cornbread in an airtight container and keep it refrigerated to maintain freshness.

Add Some Variety To Your Fried Cornbread

  • Johnny Cakes: Also known as cornmeal pancakes, these are a simple and versatile type of cornbread made with boiling water and white cornmeal. Cook them in a hot skillet with canola or peanut oil until golden brown. They’re a great addition to any meal, whether breakfast or dinner.
  • Corn Pone: This is a traditional Native American and Southern cornbread, typically unleavened and made with plain cornmeal and fried in hot grease. Corn pone was a staple during the Great Depression.
  • Lace Cornbread: For a delicate, crispy edge, create a thin batter using white cornmeal, boiling water, and a touch of salt. The lacy edges are a delightful texture contrast, making this type a family favorite at the dinner table.

Optional Ingredients

This is a basic recipe, and if you want to make a few changes here and there, you can add some of the following ingredients to your fried cornbread.

  • Onion powder
  • Diced onions
  • Jalapeños
  • Crumbled bacon
  • Crumbled sausage
  • Scallions
  • Shredded cheddar cheese
  • Green chilies

More Tasty Cornbread Recipes

Fried cornbread is a quick and easy dish that can be made in the comfort of your own home.

All you need are some basic ingredients like cornmeal, salt, egg, bacon grease, buttermilk, and vegetable oil.

This recipe makes about one dozen fried cornbread pieces to feed several people.

Here’s how to create this delicious Southern delicacy from scratch. Now get started with these instructions on how to cook up some tasty fried cornbread today!

Fried cornbread with melting butter on top

Fried Cornbread Recipe

Yield: 12 pieces
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 5 minutes
Total Time: 15 minutes

There's nothing like fried cornbread to top off a hearty bowl of chili or soup. Plus, it's incredibly easy to make - just mix together a few simple ingredients and fry it up in a hot pan. So if you're looking for a delicious and easy side dish, give this fried cornbread recipe a try!


  • 2-3/4 cups self-rising yellow cornmeal
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup water
  • 1/4 cup bacon drippings/grease (OR vegetable oil)
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 cup buttermilk
  • Vegetable oil to add to skillet


  1. Heat cast iron skillet on medium high heat while preparing the cornbread mixture. Do not add vegetable oil yet.
  2. Add the cornmeal, salt, water, bacon drippings, egg, and buttermilk, to a medium bowl and mix well.
  3. Add one tablespoon of vegetable oil to the skillet and spread it around.
  4. Drop one large spoonful of cornbread mixture into the skillet to create a corn cake.
  5. Add several more to the skillet and cook for several minutes. Flip and cook on the other side until the cornbread is golden brown and crispy.
Nutrition Information:
Yield: 12 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 470Total Fat: 7gSaturated Fat: 1gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 5gCholesterol: 18mgSodium: 141mgCarbohydrates: 94gFiber: 9gSugar: 1gProtein: 11g

Nutrition is approximate.

Did you make this recipe?

Please leave a comment on the blog or share a photo on Pinterest


Sunday 25th of February 2024

Can you use whole milk

Julie Pollitt

Sunday 25th of February 2024

Hi Todd, You can use milk instead of buttermilk. Hope you like them!


Tuesday 23rd of January 2024

What if you don't have any buttermilk

Julie Pollitt

Tuesday 23rd of January 2024

Hi Todd,

Do you have some lemon juice or vinegar? If so, you can mix 1 tablespoon of lemon juice or vinegar with the milk and let it sit for about 10 minutes. Then you can add it to the mixture. If not, using regular milk is fine.


Monday 1st of May 2023

Can use use whole milk instead of buttermilk?

Julie Pollitt

Monday 1st of May 2023

Yes, you can use whole milk. It will just be a little bit of a different flavor. I hope you love them!

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