Most cornbreads served during the holidays contain wheat and gluten from all purpose flour, but there are easy ways to make a delicious gluten-free cornbread that tastes like the real thing. If you have a gluten intolerance or allergy, then you’ll love these whole food ingredients you need to make a gluten-free cornbread. I serve this every year and just adore the flavors. It’s even better than the original in my opinion! Plus, its really simple to make, and the ingredients are easy to find as well.
1. Coconut Flour
The all star ingredient you need to make a delicious gluten-free cornbread is coconut flour! I love coconut flour and use it in all my baking recipes. It doesn’t taste like coconut, but has more of a cake taste to it. It’s very moist, dense and tender, unlike many rice flours out there used in gluten-free baking. Those can be dry, and they’re also lacking in the taste department. Coconut flour has a rich, really balanced taste to it that is also high in protein and fiber, so it thickens recipes really well, and adds a great nutritional profile. As a bonus, it’s low in carbohydrates and wonderful for grain-free baking. To make gluten-free cornbread, use ½ cup coconut flour for a 16 serving recipe. You can buy coconut flour online or in stores at a very reasonable prices as well. Bob’s Red Mill, Coconut Secret, Honeyville Farms and Edwards and Sons Let’s Do Organic all make great coconut flour products.
2. Gluten-free Cornmeal
Bob’s Red Mill brand makes a great gluten-free cornmeal. It’s just pure, whole grain yellow cornmeal, nothing else. It’s also really easy to find and affordable. This will give your cornbread that delicious cornbread flavor we all want! You’ll need ⅔ cup for a 16 serving recipe.
3. Baking Powder
You can’t make cornbread without a little leavening power, which is what baking powder does. This helps your cornbread rise really well and not fall after cooking. Don’t leave it out! You can use regular or double acting baking powder and get good results. Buy a gluten-free brand such as Bob’s Red Mill or Rumford brand. You’ll need 1 teaspoon for 16 serving recipe.
Now if you’re vegan, no worries! You can use an egg free replacement like Ener G Egg just fine, but if you’re not vegan, use eggs! Eggs are a great ingredient to bake with coconut flour. They work really well to help plump, thicken and add density to the recipe, along with keeping it light at the same time. They help to create that perfect “cake” result that we all love from cornbread. Using flax and water won’t work here, nor will chia and water, so use real eggs, or a good egg replacement product. Use 6 eggs or 3 eggs and 3 egg whites for a 16 serving recipe.
5. Coconut Oil or Butter
I personally don’t use butter in recipes, but if you do, go for it here! Just used grass fed butter, or ghee if you’re going to go the butter route. if you don’t use butter, use my favorite replacement, coconut oil! Coconut oil is excellent for your health, and one of my favorite ingredients to bake breads with. It makes for the perfect replacement to butter and has no coconut taste once baked. You’ll need ⅔ cup of either butter or coconut oil for a 16 serving recipe. Oh, and don’t fear the fats, especially in coconut oil! Coconut oil’s fats are cholesterol free, and actually enhance your health, not hurt it, which is why I prefer it to butter. This will give you tons of flavor from the healthy fats and also increase the moisture factor in this recipe.
Here’s where you’re given a little freedom. Many people on a Paleo diet would choose honey, and others might choose agave. I personally don’t tolerate sugar, so I just use stevia. It doesn’t matter that you won’t have the same liquid amount, and you can easily add a touch of water and be fine if choosing stevia. If you’re using honey or agave, use ⅔ cup. I use 5 drops of plain liquid stevia, and ¼ cup water since water is much thinner in volume than either honey or agave. You could also use 1 teaspoon pure stevia extract, or ½ cup baking stevia plus ¼ cup water. The sweetener gives your cornbread that sweet taste that is usually in the form of sugar in pre-made cornbread mixes.
Lastly, add a touch of salt for flavor. I suggest using 1/2 teaspoon for a 16 serving recipe. Salt adds a little flavor and helps balance everything out. It also brings out both the savory and sweet tastes in the ingredients, and works with the baking powder to make a fluffy cornbread instead of a flat one. I choose a wind-made salt that is still rich in all the natural minerals, which is Himalayan sea salt. Don’t leave the salt out!
Now, just grab your baking pan and bake away! You’ll need a 9x9 glass baking dish. Preheat your oven to 400 degrees. Mix your dry and wet ingredients separately, and then add together to create a thick batter. You can do this in a blender or in a bowl with a spoon. Grease your pan with a little more coconut oil, butter or nonstick spray and pour the batter in. Bake at 400 degrees for 18-20 minutes until nice and golden brown. Let it cool a bit and cut into small 1 inch squares to make 16 servings. You’ll love this recipe I know, and please let me know if you try it! Have you ever made gluten-free cornbread?