Sweet Potato Cornbread

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Sweet Potato Cornbread is moist and tender with a rich, sweet flavor of fall warmth. An easy way to sneak in some extra vegetables for kids and the perfect side for any soup or hearty entrée.

golden brown sweet potato cornbread in a cast iron skillet topped with butter.

Why you’ll love this recipe

You can’t have a cast iron skillet without having a few cornbread recipes in your pocket. Cornbread is easy and goes with just about any dinner. Sweet potato cornbread is perfect for using up leftovers from Thanksgiving or simply from those few sweet potatoes in your pantry starting to turn. No judgment.

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Ingredients & Variations

  • Sweet Potato: You can use cooked sweet potato (even from a leftover casserole) or canned yams.
  • Flour: All-purpose or gluten-free works.
  • Cornmeal: Finely ground yellow cornmeal will provide a tender crumb and golden color.
  • Brown Sugar: Dark brown sugar is my go-to for fall flavors. The molasses in the brown sugar brings all the warm spices together.
  • Spices: I used cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, and salt. You could also use Apple Pie Spice, Pumpkin Spice, or any other warm spice blend you may have.
  • Egg: A binder and leavening agent, use room temperature eggs.
  • Baking Soda & Baking Powder: Again for a leavening agent.
  • Butter & Milk: Wondering how to get the crumb so tender and moist? Butter and milk for the win. You can use buttermilk in place of the whole milk. We want ALL the fat.

This recipe can be made into muffins or a short loaf as well.

ingredients for making sweet potato cornbread

How to make easy sweet potato cornbread

  1. Combine the dry ingredients in a large bowl and whisk together. That includes seasonings, flour, cornmeal, and leavening agents.
  2. Mash the sweet potatoes or yams until they are the consistency of mashed potatoes. It helps to warm them up in a large bowl.
  3. Stir in the brown sugar and eggs in the mashed sweet potato bowl.
  4. Melt the butter and allow to cool slightly.
  5. Stir in the butter and milk in the sweet potato bowl.
  6. Combine the wet and dry ingredients. Be careful not to overmix. Some lumps are okay.
  7. Pour batter into the preheated skillet and quickly even out.
  8. Bake at 400F for 25 minutes. A toothpick should come out clean with maybe a few loose crumbs
how to make sweet potato cornbread collage


  • 10-inch Skillet
  • Potato Masher
  • Whisk
  • Large Bowls
  • Wooden Spoon
  • Measuring Cups and Utensils

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What is the difference between southern cornbread and regular cornbread?

Northern cornbread is known to be sweeter, with more eggs, and yellow cornmeal. Southern cornbread has white or yellow cornbread with more butter.

Is sweet cornbread northern or southern?

Northern cornbread is traditionally sweeter and cake-like in texture. The addition of molasses started in the early centuries. Northern is typically sweeter as well.

How to keep cornbread moist and tender

Do not overmix, overcook, and add an extra egg yolk. This will help with the rise.

Where did cornbread originate?

Cornbread was originated by British colonists as they adapted their baking to meal ground from white corn.

Close up of sweet potato cornbread with butter and honey


In the pantry, double-wrap the cornbread in plastic wrap. Store in a cool, dry, dark, area of the pantry or cupboard. Best consumed within 3 days.

To refrigerate cornbread, wrap it as stated above then also place it into an air-tight container. Cornbread will last 5-7 days refrigerated.

For freezing, wrap in tinfoil in a single layer, then into a large freezer-safe Ziploc bag with air removed. Will last 3 months. Thaw at room temperature overnight.

skillet of sweet potato cornbread with pads of butter on top

More Cornbread Recipes You’ll Love

What to it serve with

hand holding a piece of sweet potato cornbread with cast iron skillet in the background.

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Sweet Potato Cornbread

Course Bread
Cuisine American
Prep Time 7 minutes
Cook Time 25 minutes
Total Time 32 minutes
Servings 16
Sweet Potato Cornbread can be made using holiday leftovers or fresh sweet potatoes. Warm, fragrant, and mildly sweet, this bread is a wonderful side dish to hearty dinners or served as dessert with butter and honey.


  • 10-inch skillet
  • handheld mixer
  • Whisk
  • 2 large mixing bowls
  • rubber spatula


  • 1 cup cornmeal yellow
  • 1 cup flour all-purpose
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 2 sweet potatoes cooked
  • 1-1/2 cup brown sugar lightly packed
  • 1/2 cup butter room temperature (see notes)
  • 3 eggs
  • 1/2 cup buttermilk or whole milk


  • Preheat the oven with skillet inside, to 400F.
  • In a large mixing bowl whisk together the dry ingredients.
    1 cup cornmeal, 1 cup flour, 1 teaspoon cinnamon, 1 teaspoon nutmeg, 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves, 1 teaspoon salt, 1 teaspoon baking powder, 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • Use a handheld mixer to combine the wet ingredients in a separate large mixing bowl.
    1-1/2 cup brown sugar, 1/2 cup butter, 2 sweet potatoes, 3 eggs, 1/2 cup buttermilk
  • Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and blend briefly. Ensure all the dry ingredients are now wet. Texturally, a few lumps in the batter is fine. Do not overmix.
  • Pour batter into the preheated skillet and return to oven for 25 minutes.
  • Top with butter and a drizzle of honey while still warm. Allow to cool for about 10 minutes before slicing and serving.


If your sweet potatoes are hot, add room temperature butter to the wet ingredients and it will melt during mixing. If using leftover sweet potato or yams and they are cold, melt the butter 50% of the way before mixing. We still want some butter chunks.
You can use leftover sweet potato pie, mashed sweet potato, etc. Just keep in mind if your leftovers have sweetener in them, you may want to cut back on the sugar in this recipe by as much as 1/2 cup. 
Don’t have leftovers or canned yams? Wash then fork prick two sweet potatoes. Microwave on high for 7 minutes. Remove skin and mash sweet potato before adding to wet ingredients. 


Calories: 184kcal | Carbohydrates: 27g | Protein: 4g | Fat: 7g | Saturated Fat: 4g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 2g | Trans Fat: 0.2g | Cholesterol: 47mg | Sodium: 463mg | Potassium: 160mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 8g | Vitamin A: 4273IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 79mg | Iron: 1mg

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