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Ditch the regular cornbread for this vegan jalapeño cornbread recipe—a fluffy, moist, and savory side dish with a kick of heat! Pair each piece with hearty chilis, soups, stews, and more.

slices of baked jalapeno cornbread in a white baking dish.
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Easy, Fluffy, and Moist Vegan Jalapeño Cornbread Recipe

Can you even call it a bowl of chili if there isn’t a piece of fluffy cornbread on the side? I really don’t think so! 

Think of this vegan jalapeño cornbread recipe as an upgrade from regular, old-fashioned vegan cornbread. It’s just as soft, moist, and sweet as the classic, but has an exciting kick of heat from fresh jalapeños! The only way it gets better is when you dunk a piece into a steaming bowl of vegan lentil bean chili or a hearty eggplant stew.  

What’s better are the endless ways to make this vegan cornbread recipe your own. Feel free to swap the jalapeños for another spicy chili pepper (or a milder pepper if spicy food isn’t your thing), fold in vegan cheddar cheese for some cheesiness, or bake the batter in a muffin tin for cornbread muffins. The options are practically endless!

Regardless of your customizations, the cornbread pairs perfectly with my vegan chickpea stew, vegan bean chili, spicy lentil soup, and even more hearty meals. Keep a batch on hand (as well as this sweet potato cornbread) at all times (it stores well in the fridge and freezer) to enjoy this perfect side dish with all of your comfort foods.

The Ingredients and Substitutes

This vegan cornbread recipe is quite simple to make with classic baking staples and fresh jalapeño peppers, of course. Here’s what you need:

ingredients for Vegan Jalapeño Cornbread in separate white bowls.

For gluten-free vegan cornbread, replace the all-purpose flour with gluten-free all-purpose flour. Just keep in mind that gluten-free vegan cornbread tends to be a little more crumbly.

Recipe Variations

  • Instead of jalapeños: Try this recipe with diced serrano peppers, poblano peppers, Fresno peppers, or bell peppers.
  • For vegan jalapeño cheddar cornbread: Fold ⅓ cup of shredded vegan cheddar cheese or 2 heaping tablespoons of nutritional yeast (here’s a nutritional yeast guide) into the batter for an irresistible ‘cheesy’ flavor.
  • Add more veggies: Feel free to fold sliced green onions, bell peppers, sun-dried tomatoes, shredded zucchini, shredded carrots, or kale into the batter.
  • Make cornbread muffins: Keep the recipe the same, but bake the cornbread in a greased regular muffin tin for 18 to 20 minutes.
  • Cast iron cornbread: Make this recipe using the cooking instructions in my Skillet Vegan Cornbread recipe.
  • Oil-free cornbread: Swap the oil for an equal amount of applesauce.
  • Less-sweet cornbread: Reduce the sugar to 1 tablespoon for a less-sweet flavor.

How to Make Vegan Jalapeño Cornbread

Keep scrolling to the recipe card for the complete list of ingredients and recipe instructions.

milk and apple cider vinegar in separate glass jars.
whisking wet ingredients for vegan jalapeno cornbread in a glass measuring cup.

Step 1: Pour the plant milk into a small bowl and whisk in the apple cider vinegar.

Step 2: Set this vegan buttermilk mixture aside for 10 minutes to curdle.

wet ingredients for Vegan Jalapeño Cornbread in separate small bowls.
whisking the dry ingredients for Vegan Jalapeño Cornbread in a large bowl.

Step 3: Stir the applesauce, oil, and sugar together in a separate small bowl. Gently stir the applesauce mixture into the vegan buttermilk.

Step 4: In a large bowl, whisk the flour, cornmeal, salt, baking soda, and baking powder together.

dry ingredients and wet ingredients for jalapeno cornbread in separate bowls.
holding diced jalapenos over cornbread batter in a bowl.

Step 5: Mix the wet ingredients into the dry mixture. Stir until just combined.

Step 6: Fold the sweet corn and diced jalapeños into the batter.

uncooked jalapeno cornbread batter in a white baking dish.

Step 7: Pour the cornbread batter into a prepared baking dish and smooth out the top. Then, bake the cornbread until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.

FAQs

What kind of cornmeal is best for cornbread?

Fine cornmeal is best in cornbread, as it will yield the softest bread with a fine and tender crumb. Medium cornmeal and blue cornmeal will yield a somewhat fine crumb but keep in mind that they do have more texture. Coarse cornmeal does not work because it will make the cornbread mealy.

Is jalapeño cornbread spicy?

The cornbread will pack more heat if you make it with two jalapeños. For less heat, only use one pepper. Alternatively, scrape out the seeds and veins from the peppers before adding them to the batter, as this is where most of the heat comes from.

Can I make cornbread with corn flour?

Sorry, no! You must use cornmeal in cornbread recipes to achieve the right texture and structure.

Pro Recipe Tips

  • Don’t overmix the batter: Gently stir the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients only until the two just come together and no dry flour remains. Overmixing will leave you with dry or dense cornbread.
  • Corn kernels are optional: Cornbread recipes with corn kernels have another layer of sweet corn flavor and more texture. However, you don’t have to add the corn if you don’t want to! The bread will still have a great corn flavor with just the cornmeal.
  • Let it cool before slicing: Keep the baked cornbread in the baking pan for at least 10 minutes after it comes out of the oven. It’ll be much easier to slice and won’t crumble when it’s cool.
close up on slices of baked jalapeno cornbread in a white baking dish.

Serving Suggestions

The sweet, savory, and spicy jalapeño cornbread is great on its own or can be paired with hearty comfort foods. Here’s how I recommend serving it:

And if you still have leftover cornbread, tear the loaf into bite-sized pieces and use them in a Southwestern jalapeño vegan cornbread stuffing, or quickly bake them in the oven to make croutons! 

Storage Instructions

After it cools to room temperature, cover the baking dish with a tight layer of plastic and store it for up to 1 week in the fridge. Don’t slice the bread before refrigerating, or else the pieces will dry out.

Jalapeño cornbread also freezes well for up to 3 months. To prevent freezer burn, wrap the bread in a layer of plastic wrap and keep it in a freezer-safe airtight container or in a Ziplock/Stasher bag. 

Allow the bread to thaw in the fridge or on the kitchen counter, then enjoy it chilled, at room temperature, or reheat each piece in a toaster oven or in the microwave in 20-second increments.

slices of baked jalapeno cornbread in a white baking dish covered in plastic wrap.

Jalapeño Cornbread

5 from 31 votes
Prep: 5 minutes
Cook: 30 minutes
Total: 35 minutes
Servings: 12 servings
Ditch the regular cornbread for this vegan jalapeño cornbread recipe—a fluffy, moist, and savory side dish with a kick of heat! Pair each piece with hearty chilis, soups, stews, and more.

Ingredients 

  • 1 ½ Tablespoons of apple cider vinegar
  • 1 cup of plain plant-based milk
  • ¼ cup of apple sauce
  • 2 tablespoons of vegetable oil
  • 2 tablespoons of granulated sugar
  • 1 cup of all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup of cornmeal
  • ½ teaspoon of salt
  • 1 teaspoon of baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon of baking powder
  • 1 can of sweet corn, drained
  • 1 to 2 jalapeño(s), diced (depending on spice preference)

Instructions 

  • Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
  • Pour apple cider vinegar and the plant milk into a small bowl, whisk, and let sit for 10 minutes, or until it’s curdled.
  • In a small bowl, mix together apple sauce, oil, and sugar.
  • In a large bowl, mix together the flour, cornmeal, salt, baking soda, and baking powder.
  • Add the apple sauce mixture to the plant-based milk and gently mix. Add to dry ingredients and combine. Don’t over-mix. Stir in sweet corn and jalapeño
  • Pour into a 9×7 baking dish, garnish with more diced jalapeño, and bake for 30 minutes or until a toothpick comes out smoothly with no batter sticking to it.

Notes

  • Don’t overmix the batter: Gently stir the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients only until the two just come together and no dry flour remains. Overmixing will leave you with dry or dense cornbread.
  • Corn kernels are optional: Cornbread recipes with corn kernels have another layer of sweet corn flavor and more texture. However, you don’t have to add the corn if you don’t want to! The bread will still have a great corn flavor with just the cornmeal.
  • Let it cool before slicing: Keep the baked cornbread in the baking pan for at least 10 minutes after it comes out of the oven. It’ll be much easier to slice and won’t crumble when it’s cool.

Nutrition

Calories: 155kcalCarbohydrates: 28gProtein: 4gFat: 4gSaturated Fat: 1gPolyunsaturated Fat: 2gMonounsaturated Fat: 1gTrans Fat: 0.01gSodium: 252mgPotassium: 136mgFiber: 2gSugar: 4gVitamin A: 104IUVitamin C: 3mgCalcium: 49mgIron: 1mg

Disclaimer: Although plantbasedonabudget.com attempts to provide accurate nutritional information, kindly note that these are only estimates. Nutritional information may be affected based on the product type, the brand that was purchased, and in other unforeseeable ways. Plantbasedonabudget.com will not be held liable for any loss or damage resulting for your reliance on nutritional information. If you need to follow a specific caloric regimen, please consult your doctor first.

Additional Info

Course: Bread
Cuisine: American
Method: Oven
Diet: Vegan
Tried this recipe?Please tag us at @PlantBasedOnABudget! 🙂
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Stephanie Lundstrom

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Comments

    1. Hi! The oil will add much-needed moisture to the vegan cornbread recipe so the texture may turn out different if you omit it. Let us know how it turns out if you end up giving it a try! 🙂

    1. Hi! You can replace the all-purpose flour with gluten-free all-purpose flour. Note that the gluten-free, vegan cornbread may be more crumbly/have a different texture, though! Enjoy 🙂