Fall may be quickly approaching (as you’ve probably noticed by all the department store decorations by now) but it’s not quite here yet. Fall brings out everything pumpkin spice flavored, warm and cozy, but you don’t necessarily need to wait for fall to make some authentically fall foods.
If you love pumpkin recipes and enjoy the health benefits of pumpkin, why wait until the official start of fall to create some homemade treats for your friends and family to enjoy? With this simple, fresh pumpkin cornbread recipe you can bring all things fall right into your kitchen with ease.
Cornbread is one of those comfort foods perfect for pairing with hearty stews, chili and soups. Adding pumpkin into the mix adds an extra level of flavor that cornbread lovers and pumpkin lovers will equally appreciate. You may even want to make double – since this cornbread is sure to go fast!
- 1/4 cup white sugar (you can also use organic or turbinado sugar depending on preference)
- 2 cups cornmeal
- 1 tablespoon brown sugar
- 1 tablespoon baking powder (this is what gives this cornbread that airy texture since the pumpkin itself could weigh down the recipe.)
- 1 teaspoon salt (sea salt will also work well here)
- 1 tablespoon butter (margarine will work here too)
- 1 cup pumpkin puree, Libby’s preferably (or canned pumpkin if you don’t have the time to make pumpkin puree) see recipe below
- 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon (optional)
- 2 eggs
- 1 tablespoon olive oil (if olive oil is too strong for you, canola oil will work as well)
- 1 cup milk (any type of milk will work here – almond, soy, etc., but I suggest 2% milk)
- 9” baking dish or form pan
PUMPKIN PUREE RECIPE: OPTIONAL
NOTE: It may be difficult to find real pumpkin in stores right now, but in case you do find one, this is a simple way to create homemade fresh pumpkin puree. Once the pumpkin is processed, you can easily scoop it into freezer safe plastic bags and keep it frozen for up to 6 months. It’s a great way to save time and money by using your own fresh pumpkin!
1 large pumpkin
WHAT YOU WILL NEED:
- A food processor preferably, if you don’t have one a blender may work – just work in smaller batches so the pumpkin doesn’t stick.
- Water, in case the pumpkin puree ends up being too dry while in the food processor.
- A cookie sheet
- A sharp knife
- A pumpkin scooper (if you don’t have a pumpkin scooper, a large spoon will work)
- Preheat the oven to 350F
- Cut the pumpkin into chunks and scoop out the seeds and pulp.
- Place pumpkin pieces on a baking sheet and into the oven skin side down and roast for 1 hour.
- After an hour, remove pumpkin skin from flesh.
- Puree the roasted pumpkin pieces in a blender or food processor. Add water as needed.
- Voila! Fresh homemade pumpkin puree!
INSTRUCTIONS FOR PUMPKIN CORNBREAD
Preheat the oven to 400F
Butter or oil a 9-inch pan and set aside.
You can use spray butter or oil for this step if it’s easier. The point is to make sure the ready cornbread doesn’t stick to the pan – which is why a spring form pan can be an easier pan to use since the bottom releases out and the cornbread will maintain its shape.
Combine the cornmeal, white sugar, brown sugar, baking powder, salt and cinnamon in a bowl, sifting a few times.
Use a whisk if you can’t sift by simply stirring the dry ingredients together lightly to incorporate all ingredients evenly. Sifting is important so that all the dry ingredients get incorporated into the recipe without any lumps. Sugar and baking powder do have the tendency to lump up, so make sure you don’t see any lumps in the mixture before baking.
In a large bowl, mix the pumpkin puree, butter, eggs, olive oil and the milk. Make sure to mix this combination really well, so there are as few lumps as possible. I used a hand whisk to really get the right texture.
Although not necessary, you can totally use a blender, food processor, or mixer for this step if you aren’t getting the right consistency by hand mixing.
Once the wet mixture is ready, slowly start to add the sifted dry mixture, incorporating slowly and stirring well.
Make sure to add dry mixture slowly and scrape the sides to make sure the batter will all be properly mixed. Be sure to work out any lumps, too!
Pour the mixture into the pan and bake for 30 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean.
Cool for a few minutes before enjoying. Spread some butter on a piece for the best experience! I even tried peanut butter and it was amazing!
That’s it! Pretty simple, huh? This is a great recipe in preparation for that fall feeling, or really any time you’re feeling like something hearty and full of pumpkin! You can also double this wonderful cornbread as a morning bread recipe by topping the slices of cornbread with butter, sweet cream butter, brown sugar or fruit preserves. Since the pumpkin in this recipe is so aromatic, whatever you decide to pair it with will more than likely be melt-in-your-mouth delicious.
You can freeze this pumpkin cornbread for up to 6 to 8 months by storing in an air tight container or freezer safe plastic bags. Warm up in the oven at 350F or until completely thawed and warm. If you don’t want to use a spring form pan or baking dish, you can easily turn this delicious cornbread recipe into cornbread muffins by filling a muffin tin in place of a pan. Bake at 400F for 25-30 minutes. You’ll know it’s ready by pulling out a clean toothpick from the muffin. And for more awesome and easy pumpkin recipes click here!