Inspired by Budget Byte's sweet potato cornbread recipe, I made my own recipe for sweet potato cornbread.
Sweet potato cornbread includes mashed sweet potato, cinnamon, and nutmeg and tastes like buttery cornbread plus warm spiced hugs. If you like spice cake or carrot cake, you'll love this variation!
If you want standard cornbread, simply omit the sweet potato, cinnamon, and nutmeg to make a pan of regular fluffy cornbread. If you only want one serving of cornbread, check out my cornbread for one recipe.
Sweet Potato Cornbread
- 1 cup mashed sweet potato (about 1 medium sweet potato)
- 1 egg
- 1 cup of water
- ¼ cup (4 tablespoons) of melted butter
- ¼ cup of sugar
- 1 cup of cornmeal
- 1 cup of white whole wheat flour
- 1 tablespoon of baking powder
- ½ teaspoon of salt
- ½ teaspoon of cinnamon
- ½ teaspoon of nutmeg
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
- Wash the sweet potato. Stab the sweet potato with a knife. Put the sweet potato into a large microwaveable bowl. Add about a centimeter of water, and microwave for 8-10 minutes until the sweet potato is cooked.
- While the sweet potato cooks, add the dry ingredients, cornmeal, flour, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, and nutmeg to a large bowl. Stir to combine.
- When the sweet potato is cool enough to handle, peel and mash the sweet potato.
- Add the water, melted butter, sugar, and egg to the mashed sweet potato. Stir well to combine.
- Add the bowl with the wet ingredients to the large bowl with the dry ingredients. Stir until just combined. Do not over-mix or else your cornbread will be dense.
- You can make muffins or a pan of sweet potato cornbread.
- To make muffins, line a muffin tin with liners. Divide the batter equally. Bake for 23-25 minutes. To make a pan, use a 8x8 or 9x9 pan. Bake for 25-30 minutes.
- Sweet potato: Required for sweet potato cornbread. The exact quantity does not matter that much. Using up to 1 and 1/2 cups would be okay. Omitting the sweet potato altogether will give you regular cornbread. Substituting sweet potato with pumpkin will give you pumpkin cornbread.
- Egg: Helps bind and leaven the cornbread. Substituting 2 egg whites would be okay. For a vegan option, substitute 2 flax eggs.
- Water: Makes the batter more liquid. Substituting any sort of milk would be okay. I use water because it's free.
- Butter: Makes the sweet potato cornbread buttery and soft. Substituting oil would be okay, but the cornbread will not be as buttery.
- Sugar: Adds sweetness. You can omit sugar altogether if you want cornbread without any additional sweetness. I thought 1/4 cup of sugar made the cornbread very sweet, but you can use up to 1/2 cup of sugar. Using up to 1/4 cup of liquid sweetener, such as honey or maple syrup, would be okay.
- Cornmeal + flour: Required for cornbread. Cornbread requires 2 cups to 2 and 1/2 cups in total of cornmeal and flour. For cake-like cornbread, use 1 cup to 1 and 1/2 cups of cornmeal and 1 cup of flour. For crumbly, Southern-style cornbread, omit the flour and use 2 cups of cornmeal and more leavening. For sweet potato quick bread, omit the cornmeal and use 1 and 1/2 cups of flour. All-purpose flour, oat flour, or white whole wheat flour would be okay. Using all whole wheat flour may result in a denser cornbread.
- Baking powder: Makes the sweet potato cornbread soft and fluffy. You need 2-4 teaspoons of baking powder. I used 1 tablespoon of baking powder, which is 3 teaspoons. You can substitute 1/2-1 teaspoon of baking soda for the baking powder plus some acidic ingredient, such as 1 tablespoon of vinegar.
- Salt: Enhances the flavor of other ingredients. Adds saltiness. Use up to 1 teaspoon. I used about 1/2 a teaspoon of salt.
- Cinnamon + nutmeg: Add flavor. Use up to 1 teaspoon of cinnamon. Use up to 1/2 teaspoon of nutmeg. Omit for regular cornbread.
Step by Step Photos
Preheat an oven to 350 degrees. Start by preparing the mashed sweet potato. I cooked the sweet potato in the microwave. You can also boil the sweet potato in a pot or bake the sweet potato in the oven, but these methods take longer.
Wash the sweet potato. Stab the sweet potato with a knife to create slits. These openings let steam escape from the sweet potato as it cooks. If you skip this step, your sweet potato may explode in the microwave. Not fun.
Put the sweet potato in a large microwaveable bowl. Add about a centimeter of water. This ensures that the sweet potato does not dry out. Microwave the sweet potato for 8-10 minutes until soft.
As the sweet potato cooks, prepare the dry ingredients. Into a large bowl, add the dry ingredients: 1 cup of flour, 1 cup of cornmeal, 1 tablespoon (3 teaspoons) of baking powder, 1/2 teaspoon of salt, 1/2 teaspoon of cinnamon, and 1/2 teaspoon of nutmeg. Stir to combine.
When the sweet potato is done, very carefully remove the bowl from the microwave. Glass bowls get very very hot. Since I'm impatient, I rinse the sweet potato and bowl under cold water to cool down the sweet potato.
When the sweet potato is cool enough to handle, peel and mash the sweet potato. I got exactly 1 cup of mashed sweet potato. If you have a bit more sweet potato, you can add an additional 1/2 cup to the batter, and you can just eat any extras.
Measure 1 cup of water. Add the water to the bowl with the mashed sweet potato. Adding water first helps further cool down the sweet potato. If the sweet potato is too hot, it will cook and curdle the egg.
Pour the bowl with the wet ingredients into the bowl with the dry ingredients. Stir until there are no dry flour streaks. Lumps are okay. Do not over-mix the batter or else your cornbread will be dense.
Bake for 25-30 minutes. To test whether the cornbread is done, stick a toothpick into the cornbread. If it comes out mostly clean, then the cornbread is done. I don't have any toothpicks, so I used a piece of spaghetti.
I would suggest erring towards the longer bake times. I baked the cornbread for 25 minutes. I found that some parts were squishy and underdone, but my oven may just be bad.
I find that the sweet potato cornbread is sufficiently buttery by itself, but you can add more butter on top if you want extra buttery goodness or a pretty picture of cornbread.