This easy Vegan Jalapeño Cornbread recipe is a little sweet, a little spicy, and completely delicious! The perfect pair for soups and chilis, Thanksgiving dinner, or even a delicious snack with a pat of dairy-free butter and drizzle of pure maple syrup.
Cornbread is one of my favorite things. It’s dense, but moist, with the perfect crumb.
It can be a side dish or snack.
It can be sweet or spicy…or a little of both, which is what we have here in this Vegan Jalapeño Cornbread recipe.
Ingredient notes and substitutions
Cornmeal ~ I like to use a fine or medium ground cornmeal. It makes for a softer cornbread. If you like a crunchy cornbread with lots of texture and crumb, you can use a coarse ground cornmeal.
White or yellow cornmeal will work. Use what you have.
Flour ~ I used a gluten free flour blend designed to replace wheat flour at a 1:1 ratio. I haven’t tested this recipe with single gluten free flours, so while some may work, I hesitate to recommend which ones.
All purpose flour, white whole wheat, or spelt flour may be subbed at a 1:1 ratio.
Milk ~ Whatever you have on hand will work, with the exception of canned coconut milk. I generally use almond milk or oat milk. Be sure to choose an unsweetened, plain variety.
Sweetener ~ I love pure maple syrup in cornbread. Agave may be used instead if you prefer.
Aquafaba ~ Aquafaba is the liquid from a can of chickpeas. It works as an egg substitute in vegan baking and makes baked goods lighter and fluffier and helps them to rise.
I don’t recommend skipping it if you don’t have to, but if you must, leave it out and add an extra ¼ of milk.
Corn ~ I like the texture and sweetness of whole corn kernels. Feel free to leave them out if you prefer a smoother cornbread.
Jalapeño ~ It wouldn’t be vegan jalapeño cornbread without the jalapeño! I remove the ribs and seeds – that’s where all the heat lives. If you like a kick of heat, go ahead and leave them in.
How to make the recipe
For exact ingredient measurements and step-by-step instructions, scroll down to the recipe card.
This recipe is so easy to make!
Simply whisk the dry ingredients in one bowl and the wet ingredients in another.
Combine the dry and the wet and mix to combine.
Add some corn kernels and diced jalapeños.
Pour it into a round cake pan and top with more jalapeño, this time in slices. Bake, cool, slice! Enjoy!
Storage and freezing
Fridge: Cool the cornbread completely before storing. Transfer to an air-tight container and keep in the fridge for up to a week.
Freezer: You can also freeze this vegan jalapeño cornbread. Cool it completely. Then wrap tightly in plastic wrap and aluminum foil or in a freezer safe plastic bag. It should keep well for 2 to 3 months.
Pro tips for success
~ Choose a medium or fine ground cornmeal for a lighter cornbread that stays together well, yet still has a bit of a crumb. Choose a coarse ground cornmeal if you like a crunchier cornbread with a lot of texture.
~ Be sure to use a certified gluten free cornmeal if you are allergic or sensitive to gluten.
~ Mix until combined well with no bits of flour remaining, but don’t overmix!
~ Make sure the baking soda and baking powder are fresh. If they’ve been sitting in your pantry for close to a year, it’s probably time for to buy new!
~ Substitute white or distilled vinegar for the apple cider vinegar if you prefer.
~ Remove the ribs and seeds of the jalapeño if you don’t like a lot of heat. If you love a good kick of heat, leave them in.
~ Bake until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. There may be a few crumbs, but it shouldn’t be “wet.”
~ Let the cornbread cool in the pan before cutting into slices to ensure it holds together well.
Cornbread refers to any type of quick bread made using cornmeal. It typically contains flour in varying amounts, as well, and is leavened by baking powder, not yeast.
There are lots of different recipes for cornbread. Some are sweet, some are savory, some are spicy, some have diced veggies or corn kernels, some have no veggies, etc.
Cornbread has a grainy, rustic texture that is more crumbly than typical quick bread.
It can be sweet, savory, and/or spicy.
I typically like my cornbread with a bit of sweetness and this Jalapeño Cornbread Recipe has just that, but is definitely more savory.
If you like your cornbread on the sweeter side, try my Pumpkin Maple Cornbread or this Vanilla Cornbread Cake.
There are a lot of different kinds of cornmeal: fine ground, medium-ground, course-ground, and stone-ground. Polenta and grits are labels for types of cornmeal which are essentially course ground.
There are also different colors of cornmeal, just like there are different colors of corn: yellow, white, and even blue.
The kind you choose for your cornbread is really a matter of preference. I prefer to use medium-ground or fine-ground because they soften up easily. I find the course ground a bit too crunchy for my taste. You can use a combination of any of them if you prefer.
For this recipe, I used medium-ground cornmeal. And, I also go for yellow cornmeal to get that beautiful golden hue.
Cornmeal is naturally gluten free, but is often processed in facilities that also process wheat, which can lead to cross-contamination. If you have Celiac disease or are gluten intolerant, be sure to choose a cornmeal that is certified gluten free.
I hope you love this recipe as much as we do! If you tried it, please use the rating system in the recipe card and leave a comment below with your feedback.
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Easy Vegan Jalapeño Cornbread
- 1 ½ cups medium-ground cornmeal fine-ground would also work
- ½ cup gluten-free flour blend I like Bob's Red Mill
- 1 tablespoon baking powder
- ¼ teaspoon baking soda
- ¾ teaspoon salt
- 1 cup unsweetened dairy-free milk I used almond milk
- 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
- ¼ cup aquafaba liquid from a can of chickpeas
- ¼ cup pure maple syrup
- ½ cup fresh or frozen corn kernels
- 1 jalapeño ribs and seeds removed, diced
- 1 jalapeño sliced
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Line a 9-inch round cake pan with parchment paper or gently spray with cooking spray.
- In a mixing bowl, whisk together the cornmeal, flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.
- In a separate mixing bowl, whisk the milk, apple cider vinegar, aquafaba, and maple syrup.
- Mix the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients until combined.
- Add in the corn and diced jalapeño and stir to combine.
- Pour into the prepared pan, top with jalapeño slices, and bake 25 to 30 minutes until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.
- Let cool in the pan on a cooling rack before cutting into slices.
Nutrition values are calculated using online calculators and are estimates only. Please verify using your own data.