marisa mariella

easy mouthwatering recipes that unite your family and friends


I remember tasting cornmeal for the first time in my 30s. Before you mock me, understand that despite my traditional Italian upbringing, we did not eat polenta. So when my good friend, Steve Palamarchuk pulled out golden cornbread from his oven, my senses were confused. It looked like a cake but it wasn’t a dessert. It smelled incredibly fragrant but the flavours were subtle and intriguing. It glistened with butter but the crumb was soft and light. I fell in love that night. Enough said.
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Course breads
Cuisine American


For Pan:

  • 3 ounces butter for pan

Wet Ingredients:

  • 3 large eggs
  • cups buttermilk see notes if you don’t have buttermilk

Add-ins: (Choose 2 or 3)

  • ½ - 1 cup chopped scallion
  • ½ cup finely chopped fresh hot pepper cut from freshly grilled corn on the cob
  • 1 cup grated sharp cheddar cheese
  • Corn niblets from grilled corn on the cob or drained from a can
  • ¼ cup chopped cilantro or other fresh herb

Dry Ingredients:

  • 1⅛ cup cornmeal
  • 1⅛ cup all-purpose flour
  • tbsp baking powder
  • tbsp sugar
  • ¾ tsp baking soda
  • ¾ tsp salt


  • 1 tbsp Butter
  • 1 tbsp honey


  • Heat grill to 425° F. Place 12” cast iron pan on one side of grill. Close lid.
  • Prepare batter by whisking eggs in medium bowl.
  • Whisk in buttermilk. Set aside.
  • Mix dry ingredients in large bowl.
  • Pour egg mixture into dry ingredients and stir until just moist. Mixture will not be thick but will have a few small lumps. Do not overmix.
  • Fold in preferred add-ins.
  • At this point, the grill should have reached temperature. Work quickly to add butter to pan to melt.
  • Then, as soon as it is melted, pour batter in pan, scraping sides of bowl. Turn off heat from the side with pan, leaving heat on from opposite side. It bakes on indirect heat. Close lid.
  • Bake about 18 minutes but depending on your grill, it can be shorter or longer. Bake until the center is firm and a cake tester or toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean, about 15 to 20 minutes. If toothpick is wet, let bake a few more minutes. Remove from grill when done.
  • To serve, brush a little butter on surface. Drizzle a little honey.
  • Serve warm or at room temperature to accompany grilled meat or chicken.


If you do not have buttermilk, you can add 2 tablespoons of white vinegar or fresh lemon juice into a measuring cup. Add enough milk to measure 2¼ cup. Stir gently and allow to sit for about 5 minutes. Then use in recipe.
If you prefer to bake the cornbread in oven, preheat pan in oven set to 425 degrees F. Then, remove the hot skillet from the oven using oven mitts. Reduce oven temperature to 375 degrees F. Bake as described above.
If you have a 9” or 10” cast iron pan, reduce the ingredients by ⅓.
Keyword BBQ sauce, cheddar, corn, cornbread, grilled, scallions