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Soft Buttermilk Spoon Bread Recipe

Soft Buttermilk Spoon Bread Recipe

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Spoon bread is a great Southern delicacy that is rich and soft, almost like eating a savory pudding. Traditional spoon bread is extremely soft, but if you want an even softer product, you must try out this buttermilk spoon bread recipe! Let us take a look at how exactly this can be made! 

But, before we begin, I know that some of you, at least those of you who aren’t Southerners, may probably not have heard of something called a spoon bread before. What is that, and why is it called that? To clear the confusion, this sort of bread is a quick bread that is typically very popular in the Southern United States. 

This bread is called so because it is so incredibly soft that you can actually eat it right out of the pan with a spoon! If the consistency of it had to be described, imagine something between cornbread and a savory pudding, and that is exactly what this spoon bread is all about! 

Moreover, what makes it stand out even more, especially this particular recipe, is that we will use buttermilk to make it. Buttermilk acts as a great acidic agent and tends to make the bread much softer. Another trick that we will be using here, which makes this bread incredibly soft, is that we will be adding in the egg whites and yolks separately, but more on that later. 

This article will find all the information you need to make this bread. Starting from the equipment, time, ingredients, method, and even what this bread is supposed to look like, everything is given below under different sections! Now, let’s take a look at the recipe! 

What’s In The Post

Other Thanksgiving Recipes That You Can Try

  • Spinach Spoon Bread
  • leftover turkey hash
  • alton brown’s classic brined and roasted turkey
  • salt crusted turkey
  • apple cider brined turkey
  • bBQ turkey
  • turkey sandwich
  • turkey melt
  • hot turkey sandwich
  • turkey and cheese sandwich

What Equipment Will You Need To Make Buttermilk Spoon Bread? 

  • Measuring Cups – Precision is very important in baking; hence, to measure all the ingredients as precisely as possible, you will need a set of measuring cups. 
  • Measuring Spoons – For ingredients that are needed in smaller quantities, you will need a set of measuring spoons. 
  • Bowl – For this recipe, you will need two large bowls. One of them will be to mix the dry and wet ingredients together, whereas the other is to whip the egg whites in before folding them into the batter. 
  • Whisk – To mix the dry and wet ingredients together and make the buttermilk and cornmeal mix, you will need two large whisks. 
  • Spatula – Once done, you will need a rubber or silicone spatula that will help you to fold the egg whites.
  • Electric Mixer – To whip the egg whites and form soft peaks, you will need an electric mixer. 
  • Saucepan – This recipe will need a medium-sized saucepan to make the buttermilk and cornmeal mix. 
  • Cast Iron Skillet – You will need an oven-proof cast iron skillet for this recipe, as it heats evenly and will bake the bread evenly too. 
  • Pastry Brush – To grease the skillet, a pastry brush will be a really handy tool. 
  • Baking Tray – Lastly, you will need a baking tray to place the cast iron skillet on while it has to bake. 

How Much Time Will You Need To Make Buttermilk Spoon Bread? 

Preparation Time Baking Time Total Time
30 Minutes 40 Minutes 1 Hour 10 Minutes

What Ingredients Will You Need To Make Buttermilk Spoon Bread? 

  • Cornmeal – Cornmeal is one of the most important ingredients in this recipe, and you will need a cup of the white variety. Another reason this recipe gives a spoon bread that is extra soft is that it uses only cornmeal as the base! 
  • Buttermilk – Yet again, one of the most important ingredients in this recipe is buttermilk. You will need a cup of plain buttermilk for this recipe to get a yield of 6 portions. 
  • Milk – Milk is the other added liquid in this recipe that will help form the base of it, so you will need two cups of whole milk. 
  • Butter – You will need three tablespoons of unsalted butter for this recipe, cold and chopped into small pieces, plus an extra tablespoon to grease the skillet. Try not to use salted butter, as that will change the flavor of this bread from what it is supposed to be like. 
  • Eggs – This recipe needs three large eggs, with the yolks and whites separated into two different bowls. While separating the two, make sure that there isn’t a single drop of yolk in the whites; otherwise, they won’t rise and become fluffy. Another thing to remember is to ensure that the bowl you add and whip the egg whites in should be completely dry and does not have even the tiniest amount of water, as they won’t form soft peaks otherwise. 
  • Thyme – Thyme will help add a great flavor to the bread, so you will need two teaspoons of freshly chopped thyme. 
  • Salt – Salt is the most important seasoning in any recipe; for this one, you will need two teaspoons of the same. 
  • Black Pepper – Lastly, to add a little kick of spice to the recipe, you will need ½ teaspoon of ground black pepper. 
Buttermilk Spoon Bread 1

Steps To Make Buttermilk Spoon Bread

1. Make The Cornmeal Mix

Firstly, preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit while making this bread. Next, take the extra tablespoon of butter and melt it; grease the cast iron skillet with this butter and keep it aside. Now, take a saucepan and pour in all the buttermilk and milk. 

Let them simmer at medium heat for a while until they are warm and not boiling. As soon as it starts steaming, you can add the cornmeal to the saucepan, bit by bit, while whisking constantly. 

Make sure you get all the sides, too, as some of this mix will be stuck to the sides. For that, you can use a silicone spatula, as it will be much easier to scrape off the sides. Once all the cornmeal is mixed in, reduce the heat to low and let the mixture cook, while stirring once in a while, for 10 minutes. 

By the end of 10 minutes, all the cornmeal will have dissolved in the milk and buttermilk, and the mixture will be thick. Take it off the heat once done and add in three tablespoons of butter, along with chopped thyme, salt, and pepper and let it stand for 10 minutes until it cools down. 

2. Prepare The Batter

In a large bowl, crack the eggs and separate the yolks from the white in a different bowl. As I mentioned earlier, make sure that there is not a single drop of yolk in the white, and if that does happen, you will have to start over. 

After you have separated the yolks from the egg whites, whisk the yolks and start adding in the cornmeal mixture, little by little, until well combined. Transfer the mixture to the saucepan and heat for just a hot minute until everything is combined. It is okay if the mixture is lumpy or grainy. 

Then, with an electric mixer, start beating the egg whites until they are foamy and form stiff peaks. This should take about 2 minutes, maximum. A trick to check if the peaks are hard or not, once you think they are, is to turn the bowl upside down. If nothing falls out or even tries to slip out of the bowl, your meringue is ready! 

Then, with the help of a silicone spatula, start folding the egg whites little by little into the egg yolk mixture. Do not mix too vigorously; otherwise, the egg whites will deflate and will not give a soft and spongy bread. 

After everything is combined together, transfer the batter into the greased skillet and place it on the baking tray. Bake the bread for 35-40 minutes. Once you insert a toothpick or knife (preferably the former) into the center of the bread, it should come out clean. Take it out and serve it hot or warm! Also, the bread will puff up really well while baking, and once you take it out of the oven, it will deflate, which is quite normal for this recipe. 

What Variations Can Be Made With This Buttermilk Spoon Bread? 

There are many variations and flavors that can be made with a simple buttermilk spoon bread. Some of my personal favorites are as follows: 

  • Corn Kernels – To make your bread extra *corny*, you can add some corn kernels to the recipe. 
  • Spinach – Spinach spoon bread is delicious and nutritious too! Moreover, when combined with this extremely soft bread, it tastes even better! 
  • Sausages – Chopped sausages make a lovely addition to buttermilk spoon bread. You can also try adding in some bacon. 
  • Mushrooms – Mushrooms sauteed in butter and garlic can be added to the buttermilk spoon bread. 
  • Cheese – Lastly, cheese makes everything better, so it is a great addition to buttermilk spoon bread! 

Nutritional Information

Calories 244 kcal
Carbohydrates 25 g
Protein 7 g
Fat 13 g
Saturated Fat 7 g
Monounsaturated Fat 3 g
Polyunsaturated Fat 1 g
Trans Fat 0.3 g
Cholesterol 36 mg
Sodium 851 mg
Potassium 271 mg
Fiber 3 g
Sugar 6 g
Vitamin A 466 IU
Vitamin C 1 mg
Calcium 154 mg
Iron 1 mg

How Will The Buttermilk Spoon Bread Look And Taste Like? 

If you are making spoon bread for the first time, you may have certain questions about what to expect out of the final product. Of course, baking can be very challenging; hence, this question makes a lot of sense! Let me help you understand what you should expect the final product to look and taste like. 

As far as looks go, this buttermilk spoon bread actually looks like a savory pudding. One of the main reasons here is that it is so soft and spongy that you cannot actually take it out of the skillet unless it is with a spoon! Moreover, the bread will be slightly deflated from the center, but that is okay! This is because this recipe has no added gluten or chemical leavening agent. 

When it comes to the flavor, this buttermilk spoon bread is incredibly tasty. It tastes like very soft cornbread. Plus, combined with the thyme and black pepper, they add the much-needed extra herby and spicy flavor to the bread. The bread is really rich, so much that you might not even need anything to enjoy it with! 

Recipe Card

Buttermilk Spoon Bread Recipe

Spoon bread is a deliciously soft southern delicacy, that makes a perfect side on Thanksgiving. This recipe for buttermilk spoon bread makes an even softer and more decadent bread in just about one hour!

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Measuring cups
Measuring Spoons
Silicone Spatula
Electric Mixer
Cast-Iron Skillet
Pastry Brush
Baking Tray
  • Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit and grease the skillet with melted butter.
  • In a saucepan, add the buttermilk and milk and let them simmer until they are warm and not boiling.
  • After they start simmering, add in the cornmeal, bit by bit, while whisking constantly.
  • Reduce the heat to a minimum and let the mixture cook until it is thick while stirring occasionally.
  • After 10 minutes, your mixture should be ready, and you can take it off the heat.
  • Add three tablespoons of butter, thyme, salt, and black pepper, and whisk the mixture until the butter melts and everything is combined. Let it sit for 10 minutes.
  • In a large bowl, crack the eggs and separate the yolks from the whites, ensuring that there isn’t a single drop of yolk in the egg whites.
  • Add the cornmeal mixture to the egg yolks and whisk once it has cooled down. Transfer the mixture to the saucepan and heat over a very low flame for a minute or two until everything is combined.
  • Whisk the egg whites using an electric mixer until it forms stiff peaks.
  • Afterwards, start folding the egg whites into the egg yolk and cornmeal mixture, bit by bit and gently, in a large bowl.
  • Once everything is mixed together, transfer the batter into the greased cast iron skillet and bake for 35-40 minutes.
  • After the 40-minute mark, take the bread out of the oven and let it cool down for 5-10 minutes, after which you can serve it hot or warm.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Is this recipe for Buttermilk Spoon Bread gluten-free? 

Yes, this recipe for buttermilk spoon bread is completely gluten-free. 

Why is there no leavening agent added to this recipe? 

As this recipe makes extra soft bread, the egg whites are the only leavening agent needed here. 

Can other spices and herbs be added to this recipe? 

Yes, you can add other spices and herbs to this recipe as per your liking. 

Can skimmed milk be used to make this recipe? 

No, this recipe needs to be made with whole milk to get the proper texture and flavor. 

Is it necessary to use a cast iron skillet while making this recipe?

A cast iron skillet will ensure even heating and baking; however, if you don’t have one, you can use a regular cake tin. 

What type of bread is this? 

Buttermilk Spoon Bread is a type of quick bread. 


Soft, spongy, and easy to make, this recipe for buttermilk spoon bread is extremely decadent. It can be the perfect accompaniment for all your mains to be served on Thanksgiving or just be enjoyed as it is, thanks to its soft texture and delectable taste! 


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