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Jalapeno Cheddar Cornbread Recipe

Follow our easy, step-by-step, instructions to learn how to make this spicy Jalapeno Cheddar Cornbread. Printable recipe included.

Add a little spice and cheese to your cornbread. Made with Duke’s Mayonnaise and baked in a cast iron skillet.

This recipe is adapted from a recipe seen on the Duke’s Mayonnaise website.

I changed it slightly by using self-rising flour instead of the all-purpose flour, baking powder and salt version that their recipe used. Not a big change, but worth noting.

Duke’s Mayonnaise is a Southern tradition, and most definitely a favorite with all true Southern cooks. They even advertise it as “The secret to great food” and in my opinion, it truly is. You’ll find its the ONLY mayonnaise used in any of our recipes here on Taste of Southern. I’m that devoted to it. Smile.

While the recipe does use Jalapeno peppers, spicy food and I just don’t get along well. Still, I wanted to try the recipe so I pushed forward with it.

Personally, I cut down on some of the heat from the peppers by removing the seeds that contain the heat. If you like it spicy, leave the seeds in. I did leave the seeds in the few slices that I used to garnish the top of the cornbread.

Do note that the recipe calls for two cups of grated cheddar cheese. One cup goes IN the cornbread itself, and the other cup goes on TOP of the batter before it goes into the oven.

I also place my cast iron skillet in the oven and let it heat up along with the oven once I turned it on. So, be careful when you’re working with a hot pan. Cast iron can get really hot.

I love to cook in my cast iron skillet. The one in the photos below is the actual skillet that my Mother cooked in for probably all my life at home.

She did have more than one skillet, so I was glad to be able to get this one. It’s my most treasured kitchen item. If only it could talk about all the great meals she prepared in it. Smile.

So, if you’re ready to spice up your cornbread a notch or two, let’s head on out to the kitchen, and… Let’s Get Cooking!

Jalapeno Cheddar Cornbread Recipe, you’ll need these ingredients.

NOTE: Pre-heat your oven to 425F degrees. And, place a 10 inch cast iron skillet in the oven so it can be heating up while you mix together the ingredients.

Prepare the peppers.

If you like hot and spicy, just dice up the peppers with seeds and all. As for me, hot and spicy foods and I just don’t get along well. It’s just me. So, to cut down on some of the heat, I removed the seeds from most of the Jalapeno peppers. I did leave the seeds in the few slices that I placed on top of the batter before it was baked.

I suggest you wear gloves when working with the peppers, or at least make sure you don’t place your hands anywhere around your eyes and face. Be careful. Smile.

Grate the cheese.

I’ve said this often, I prefer to grate my own cheese. The shredded cheese you buy has cornstarch on it to keep it from sticking together. It’s also a bit harder and doesn’t melt as smoothly as cheese that you grate yourself. It only takes a minute, so I highly encourage you to grate your own if possible.

Place the cornmeal in a large mixing bowl.

Add the self-rising flour.

If you only have all-purpose flour, it will work just as well. But, you will need to add 3 teaspoons of baking powder and 1/2 teaspoon of salt to it also.

Add the sugar.

Use a fork or whisk to mix all the dry ingredients together well.

Place the Duke’s Mayonnaise in another smaller mixing bowl.

Add the buttermilk.

Use a fork or whisk to fully combine the mayo and buttermilk.

Now, pour the wet ingredients into the bowl of dry ingredients.

Use a large spoon to mix everything together until fully combined.

Place HALF of the cheese in the batter.

Add the peppers.

Use the spoon to fold the cheese and peppers into the batter.

Carefully remove the HOT skillet from the oven. Place the shortening in the skillet and swirl it around as it melts to fully coat the bottom of the pan.

Pour the batter into the hot skillet and spread it out with the spoon if need be. You can see the bubbles around the edge of the batter where it was so hot it was bubbling and starting to cook.

Spread the remaining half of the cheese over the top of the batter. If desired you can top the cheese with some slices of Jalapeno pepper as garnish.

Place the skillet in the oven.

Place the skillet back in the oven and let it bake at 425F degrees for about 25-35 minutes until done. You can bake it to an internal temperature of 195F degrees, or you can bake it until the top is browned and a toothpick inserted in the middle pulls out dry and free of crumbs.

When it’s done, remove the skillet from the oven and place it on a folded towel or wire rack to cool.


Serve the cornbread while it’s still warm.

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