The best Vegan Cornbread recipe that’s soft, tender, and sweet – and just so happens to be gluten-free! Serve it with chili, BBQ, or as a side dish for the holidays. A simple, easy, and quick recipe.
Why you’ll love this recipe
- Vegan and gluten free friendly for a dietary friendly cornbread
- A little sweet, a little savory, and a whole lot of texture!
- Pairs perfectly with chili, soups and stews
- Adds a pop of golden color to your holiday table
I feel like people get pretty particular about cornbread (or maybe just me?), so I hope you like my version!
Ingredients for the best cornbread recipe
- oil – I used unrefined coconut oil, which I melted in the oven while it was preheating, but avocado oil would be a great sub.
- non-dairy milk – cashew, oat, or almond milk all work. I haven’t tested the recipe with coconut milk, but I suppose it would work just as well and provide a richer flavor.
- apple cider vinegar – add it to the plant milk while you measure out the rest of the ingredients. The acid reacts with the milk protein to create your very own vegan buttermilk.
- medium-grit cornmeal – I like my cornbread with a bit of texture so I used the medium grind cornmeal, but you could probably sub the fine grind if you prefer. I also feel like cornbread should have a little bit of a crumb to it, which this one has.
- all-purpose gluten-free flour blend (or whole wheat white) – I used Bob’s Red Milll 1:1 baking flour. Feel free to use an equal amount of whole wheat white flour if gluten is not an issue.
- oat flour – for hearty flavor and tender texture.
- organic granulated sugar – I specify organic since not all sugar is vegan (commercial white sugar is processed with animal bone char) or you can use a granulated maple sugar. Liquid sweeteners, like maple syrup, may alter the texture so be cautious if you’re looking to substitute.
- baking powder, baking soda, and salt – for lift and flavor.
- unsweetened applesauce – this is one of the secrets to vegan baking and a favorite of mine! The applesauce is a wonderful egg substitute for cornbread and adds a tiny touch of sweetness, too.
How to make cornbread from scratch
The recipe itself is super easy. Preheat the oven and prepare an 8 x 8-inch square baking pan – using a smaller pan size will give you extra lift and thickness.
Prepare vegan buttermilk
In a glass measuring cup, add milk and apple cider vinegar. Let sit for 3-5 minutes.
Combine dry ingredients
Meanwhile, in a large bowl whisk together cornmeal, GF flour, oat flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt.
Add wet ingredients
Add applesauce, milk-vinegar mix and oil into the large bowl of dry ingredients, using a large whisk to gently combine. Batter should be somewhat thick and wet, but pourable.
Pour batter into the prepared baking dish. Bake for 20-25 minutes, or until edges are golden and an inserted toothpick comes out with little to no batter.
Cool and slice
Allow cornbread to cool for at least 20 minutes before cutting into. Cornbread should be slightly moist, with a little bit of crumble. Cut into 9 for larger squares or into 16 for smaller.
Cornbread is delicious with chili, and makes a great holiday side dish for Thanksgiving or Christmas! Some of my favorite dishes to pair it with include butternut squash chili or white bean and kale soup.
And if you haven’t tried my vegan pumpkin chili, you should probably add that to the list while this cornbread is in the oven.
How to store
This gluten-free cornbread is even great the next day. Store it in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 4 days. Just pop it in the microwave for a few seconds to warm through.
Applesauce. That’s the secret to this homemade cornbread recipe. The mix of apple cider vinegar and baking soda, along with baking powder, also gives that much more lift and fluffy texture.
Cornbread is typically not vegan because it is made with dairy, including butter and buttermilk, along with eggs. Since cornbread is fundamentally a quick bread, a few simple ingredient swaps easily make it vegan.
You sure can. Feel free to use oat, cashew, or almond milk. I haven’t tested this recipe with coconut milk, but I would assume it would provide a richer texture.
More side dish recipes you’ll love:
- Shredded Brussels Sprouts Salad
- Vegan Sweet Potato Casserole
- Cranberry Orange Sauce
- Cauliflower Mashed Potatoes
If you make this Vegan Cornbread recipe, be sure to leave a comment and review on the blog! I love hearing from you, and it helps others learn more about the recipe too! Xx Ashley
- 1/4 cup melted/cooled coconut oil, plus 1 TBS for greasing the pan
- 1 ¼ cups non-dairy milk – cashew, oat or almond milk
- 2 teaspoons apple cider vinegar
- 1 1/4 cups medium-grind cornmeal (or fine grind)
- 1/2 cup 1:1 all-purpose gluten-free flour blend, such as Bob’s Red Mill*
- 1/2 cup oat flour*
- 1/3 cup organic granulated sugar
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
- ¾ teaspoon fine sea salt
- 2 tablespoons unsweetened applesauce
- Preheat the oven to 400ºF. Grease an 8 x 8 inch baking pan with 1 TBS oil; set aside.
- In a glass measuring cup, add milk and apple cider vinegar. Let sit for 3-5 minutes.
- Meanwhile, in a large bowl whisk together cornmeal, GF flour, oat flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt.
- Add applesauce, milk-vinegar mix and oil into the large bowl of dry ingredients, using a large whisk to gently combine. Batter should be somewhat thick and wet, but pourable.
- Pour batter into the prepared baking dish. Bake for 20-25 minutes, or until edges are golden and an inserted toothpick comes out with little to no batter.
- Allow cornbread to cool for at least 20 minutes before cutting into. Cornbread should be slightly moist, with a little bit of crumble. Cornbread is delicious with chili, and makes a great holiday side dish!
FLOUR – Can sub whole wheat white pastry flour, or all-purpose flour if not gluten-free.
STORING – Store it in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 4 days. Just pop it in the microwave for a few seconds to warm through.
- Serving Size: 1/8th
- Calories: 248
- Sugar: 15g
- Sodium: 346mg
- Fat: 12g
- Saturated Fat: 8g
- Unsaturated Fat: 3g
- Trans Fat: 0g
- Carbohydrates: 32g
- Fiber: 3g
- Protein: 3g
- Cholesterol: 0mg
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