Grandmom Murphy’s Southern Style Cornbread Recipe

cornbread in cast iron skillet on wooden table

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Authentic Southern Style Cornbread, savory, not sweet, made with only cornmeal – no added wheat flour.


Units Scale
  • 2 cups self-rising corn meal*
  • Approximately 1 1/4 cups of buttermilk (no substitutes for this please)
  • 1 egg
  • 1/4 cup corn oil or melted lard or butter


Heat oven to 450°F.

Oil a cast iron skillet. I pour my oil in the pan, run it all around, and then pour it into the batter.

Blend all ingredients together in a medium mixing bowl. You can adjust the meal or buttermilk to get the right consistency of mix. The cornmeal batter should be fully wet but not runny.

Pour the batter into the pan, scraping the bowl clean, and shake the pan back and forth until it levels out.

Place cast iron skillet in oven and bake for 20 to 25 minutes. You can see the underneath edges turning brown when it is almost done.

As soon as the top gets the least bit of brown on it, turn the over to broil (careful now–this goes fast) until it is the shade of golden brown you like (usually about 2 to 2 1/2 minutes).


*1 cup self-rising cornmeal = 1 cup plain cornmeal + 1 1/2 tsp baking powder + 1/2 tsp salt

Keywords: cornbread, quick bread