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Moist, buttery and just a bit sweet, this vegan cornbread is a perfect side dish at cookouts, with a bowl of chili, or on its own! It’s also super easy to make and can be ready in about 30 minutes.
Vegan baking can be tricky, and some baked goods are trickier than others. Vegan cornbread is a good example. Some ingredients are easy to replace, like milk — just use non-dairy milk instead. Simple!
But eggs are an extra challenge with a recipe like this one. Eggs are our binder in baked goods like cornbread. The gluten in flour is another binder. Since we’re using less flour than we would in other baked good recipes (and replacing it with cornmeal, which isn’t a great binder), it can be a bit tricky getting our egg-free cornbread to hold together.
This recipe took a bit of trial and error, but in the end it was finding just the right ratio of flour and cornmeal, along with a flax egg, that did it. It held together great and was delicious!
I brought a batch of this vegan cornbread to a family dinner, sliced it up and snuck it into the bread basket without letting anyone know that it was egg-free and non-dairy or that I was the one who made it.
A few minutes later everyone was going on about how awesome the cornbread was. They didn’t even know it was vegan. Score!
So I think it’s safe to say that this is the best vegan cornbread ever. It’s crumbly, moist, tender, and just slightly sweet. And bonus: it’s super easy to make!
- Ingredients You’ll Need
- Cornmeal vs. Cornstarch vs. Corn Flour
- How It’s Made
- Leftovers & Storage
- Frequently Asked Questions
- More Vegan Quick Breads
- Irresistible Vegan Cornbread
Ingredients You’ll Need
- Non-dairy milk. Just about anything that’s unflavored and unsweetened will work, such as soy milk, oat milk, cashew milk, or almond milk (which is what I used).
- Vegetable oil. Feel free to use whatever type of oil you normally bake with. Canola oil, melted coconut oil, and corn oil all work fine. You can even use olive oil!
- Maple syrup. Agave works as well.
- Ground flaxseed.
- All-purpose flour. I’ve only tested this recipe with all-purpose wheat flour. Use any other type at your own risk.
- Cornmeal. I use yellow cornmeal for the pretty color, but white cornmeal works fine. Not sure what exactly cornmeal is? Read on. There’s a whole section detailing what you need below.
- Sugar. Use organic sugar to keep the recipe vegan. Brown sugar can be substituted to give your vegan cornbread an extra rich, earthy flavor.
- Baking powder.
Cornmeal vs. Cornstarch vs. Corn Flour
What’s the difference here? I know it can get confusing! Each of these products might go by a different name, depending on where you’re located, so I want to make sure you use the right one for this recipe.
The cornmeal we use for cornbread is made from dried, ground corn. It’s similar to grits or polenta, but finer. Here is an example of cornmeal that you could use for this recipe.
Cornstarch (in some places known as corn flour), is just the starch (everything else is removed), so don’t use that.
Make sure you’re using the right ingredient, otherwise the bread’s texture will be all wrong, or worse — it won’t turn out at all!
How It’s Made
The following is a detailed photo tutorial on how to make this recipe. Scroll down if you’d prefer to skip right to the recipe!
Stir your non-dairy milk, oil, maple syrup and flaxseeds together in a small container. Let the mixture sit for a few minutes while you mix the dry ingredients.
Whisk the flour, cornmeal, sugar, baking powder, and salt together in a large mixing bowl.
Tip: Make sure your liquid ingredients are at room temperature. If your non-dairy milk and/or maple syrup have been in the fridge you may need to warm them up.
Pour the liquid ingredients into the bowl with the dry ingredients and stir just until the batter is combined. Don’t overmix the batter and don’t worry if there are a few lumps.
Pour the batter into a prepared baking pan or skillet, smooth out the top and pop it into the oven. Bake the cornbread until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.
Variations: You have options as to what kind of baking vessel to use for this one! I’m using a 9 x 9 inch baking pan. A 9 or 10 inch round cake pan or cast iron skillet will also work.
Place the baking pan onto a cooling rack when it comes out of the oven. Let your vegan cornbread cool a bit before slicing and serving it.
Your cornbread is now ready to serve! It’s awesome plain, but feel free to go crazy with the vegan butter and maple syrup if you’d like!
- Cornbread is great with stir-ins! Try adding a cup of fresh corn kernels, some fresh scallions, or jalapeño slices.
- For an extra burst of sweetness, sprinkle your cornbread batter with organic brown sugar before baking it.
Leftovers & Storage
This vegan cornbread is best served right away, but the leftovers will keep in a sealed container at room temperature for about 3 days. It can also be frozen for up to 3 months.
Frequently Asked Questions
Can this recipe be made gluten-free?
I’m honestly not sure, but I think an all-purpose gluten-free blend such as Bob’s Red Mill or King Arthur’s could work!
Can this cornbread be made without oil?
Again, I’m not sure, but I think substituting applesauce would be your best bet.
What do you serve with cornbread?
It’s awesome along anything barbecue. Try it with my tempeh ribs. It’s also great with hearty soups, like my black bean soup, or chilis like my vegan chili.
Can this recipe be made as muffins?
Probably, but you’d be better off just following my recipe for vegan corn muffins.
Why didn’t my cornbread rise?
Usually this happens because your baking powder is old. Test it by sprinkling a bit in a glass of water. It should fizz. If it doesn’t, throw it out and replace it.