A Spicy Perspective

Fluffy Jalapeno Cheddar Cornbread

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Best Jalapeno Cheddar Cornbread Recipe – Soft, moist, thick, and fluffy Jalapeno Cornbread loaded with cheese. It’s a classically delicious southern side dish that’s ready in under an hour!

fluffy jalapeno cheddar cornbread close up slice

Thick or thin, crumbly or soft, smooth or with kernels – if you’re from the south then you likely have an opinion (or two) on which cornbread is the best.

While we believe that all cornbreads are beautiful, in our family we prefer thick and fluffy cornbread prepared in a baking dish. Although dense and slightly crispy cornbread made in a skillet is certainly yummy, it just doesn’t quite give me the oomph I need in a carb-alicious side dish.

To us, the taller the cornbread the better. Especially if it contains spicy jalapenos and cheese!

Hand grabbing this cornbread recipe with jalapenos and cheese

The Best Jalapeno Cheddar Cornbread Recipe

Besides having a fabulous taste and the fluffiest texture possible, a thick cornbread is great for loading with all kinds of savory and spicy add-ins.

This Jalapeno Cornbread recipe with cheddar cheese is similar to our Fluffy Broccoli Cornbread, but kicked up a few notches thanks to the spicy peppers. The heat is balanced by cheesy goodness and sweet corn so that every bite is a party in your mouth. And it’s easy to tweak the ingredients and flavors to your liking!

Prep time is only about 15 minutes and this recipe uses just one bowl. The cornbread then bakes hands-off for 40 minutes, so in less than an hour, start to finish, you have a fresh and hot side dish on the table.

Pair Jalapeno Cheese Cornbread with your favorite fuss-free southern mains for a comforting dinner any night of the week!

overhead view squares of baked cornbread on a white platter

Here’s What You Will Need

Once you realize how simple it is to make cornbread from scratch using basic pantry items, I promise you’ll never buy the pre-made package blends again. All of these ingredients are easy to find at popular grocery stores, and you probably have most (if not all) of these in your kitchen right now:


  • All-purpose flour – or your favorite gluten-free baking mix
  • Cornmeal – 100% pure, not a mix
  • Granulated sugar – or coconut sugar
  • Baking powder – to get perfectly tall cornbread
  • Salt – just a pinch
  • Garlic powder – because all good things have garlic, amirite?
  • Buttermilk – store-bought or homemade buttermilk
  • Eggs – room temperature if you can
  • Unsalted butter – melted
  • Sweet corn – frozen and thawed
  • Sharp cheddar cheese – shredded
  • Jalapeno peppers – diced

What Equipment You Will Need

  • Cutting Board 
  • Knife 
  • Measuring Cup
  • Large Bowl 
  • Whisk
  • Casserole Dish or Cast Iron Skillet
recipe ingredients corn, chopped peppers on a cutting board

How to Make Jalapeno Cornbread with Cheddar Cheese

First, preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Set out a 9 X 13-inch baking dish and spray it with nonstick cooking spray.

Dice the jalapenos and shred the cheese.

Pro Tip: If you are sensitive to heat you might want to wear gloves when handling the jalapenos.

chopped jalapenos on a cutting board

Next, set out a large mixing bowl. Add the flour, cornmeal, sugar, baking powder, salt, and garlic powder. Mix well with a wire whisk. Then whisk in the buttermilk, eggs, and melted butter.

Whisk again until smooth.

pouring buttermilk into a bowl with baking mix about to whisk it up

Add the thawed sweet corn, 2 cups of shredded cheddar cheese, and the diced jalapenos into the batter.

bowl with baking mix, corn meal, cheddar cheese, diced jalapenos

Gently and evenly fold the ingredients into the batter. You do not want to over mix or your Jalapeno Cornbread with Cheese won’t get that fantastic fluffy rise.

Then scoop the batter into the baking dish, and sprinkle the remaining 1 cup of shredded cheese over the top.

Get the Complete (Printable) Jalapeno Cheddar Cornbread Recipe + Video Below. Enjoy!

adding shredded cheese to the top of the unbaked batter in a casserole dish

Bake for 40-50 minutes, until the center no longer jiggles when you shake the pan.

You can insert a toothpick into the center to make sure it’s fully baked. If the toothpick comes out dry, remove it from the oven.

Let the cornbread cool for 10 minutes before slicing and serving warm.

baked dish of  cornbread covered in cheese

Recipe Variations

Make this cornbread just how you like! Here are just a few suggestions:

  • Prepare as a fairly mild Jalapeno Cornbread recipe by seeding the fresh jalapenos before adding them to the batter.
  • Like it super spicy? Leave the jalapeno seeds in when you dice them!
  • Make it even spicier by swapping cheddar with spicy pepper jack cheese or adding in crushed red pepper.
  • Elevate the flavors in your cornbread by using gouda cheese. Or, use half shredded gouda and half shredded cheddar.
cut squares of homemade cheesy cornbread with jalapenos

Frequently Asked Questions

What dishes go well with spicy Jalapeno Cheddar Cornbread?

Serve the fluffiest, most flavorful cornbread loaded with cheese and jalapenos alongside nearly any classic southern dish. It is delicious with mains like Coca-Cola Baked HamGrilled Pork Chops, or Slow Cooker Pulled Pork… And is a great addition to other sides like Southern Collard Greens and Cheesy Southern Squash Casserole.

Generous chunks of warm and soft cornbread are also wonderful to enjoy with hearty soups and stews. Try this recipe as a side for Slow Cooker Chicken Enchilada Soup, the BEST Beef Chili (seriously), and Creamy White Chicken Chili.

How do you make gluten-free fluffy cornbread with jalapenos and cheddar cheese?

Cornmeal itself is GF so you simply need to swap the all-purpose flour with your preferred gluten-free baking mix.

How long does homemade cornbread keep well?

Leftover cheesy cornbread with jalapeños will keep well for up to 3-4 days. Wrap tightly in cling wrap or keep in an airtight container at room temperature. You can also place it in the refrigerator for up to a week.

Can Jalapeno Cornbread with cheese be frozen?

Yes! This is a great recipe to make ahead and freeze. Let the cornbread cool completely before wrapping it in cling film and then a layer of aluminum foil. For even more protection I recommend also storing it in an airtight plastic zipper bag. Defrost the Jalapeno Cheese Cornbread in the fridge overnight and bake in the oven at 350 degrees until warm, about 5-10 minutes.

side view of cornbread squares filled with chopped peppers and topped with cheese

Looking for More Classic Southern Side Dishes?

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4.88 from 8 votes
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Fluffy Jalapeno Cheddar Cornbread Recipe

Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 45 minutes
The BEST recipe for super soft, moist and fluffy Jalapeno Cornbread loaded with cheddar cheese. Enjoy this southern side with all your fave comfort dishes!
Servings: 12 pieces



  • Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Set out a 9 X 13 inch baking dish and spray it with nonstick cooking spray.
  • Dice the jalapenos and shred the cheese. (If you are sensitive to heat, seed the jalapenos before dicing, otherwise leave the seeds in.)
  • Set out a large mixing bowl. Add the flour, cornmeal, sugar, baking powder, salt, and garlic powder. Mix well. Then whisk in the buttermilk, eggs, and melted butter. Whisk until smooth.
  • Fold the thawed sweet corn, 2 cups of cheddar cheese, and the diced jalapenos into the batter. Mix well.
  • Scoop the batter into the baking dish and sprinkle the remaining 1 cup shredded cheese over the top.
  • Bake for 40-50 minutes. The center should no longer jiggle when you shake the pan. (You can insert a toothpick into the center to make sure it’s fully baked. If the toothpick comes out dry, remove from the oven.)



Try with gouda or pepper jack cheese as well.
Leftover cheesy cornbread with jalapenos will keep well for up to 3-4 days. Wrap tightly in cling wrap or keep in an airtight container at room temperature.


Serving: 1piece, Calories: 515kcal, Carbohydrates: 49g, Protein: 16g, Fat: 29g, Saturated Fat: 17g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g, Monounsaturated Fat: 8g, Trans Fat: 1g, Cholesterol: 129mg, Sodium: 729mg, Potassium: 465mg, Fiber: 3g, Sugar: 9g, Vitamin A: 1001IU, Vitamin C: 5mg, Calcium: 356mg, Iron: 3mg
Course: Appetizer, Side Dish
Cuisine: American, Southern
Author: Sommer Collier

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11 comments on “Fluffy Jalapeno Cheddar Cornbread”

  1. I haven’t written a recipe review in over 15 years because it’s lame and I’d rather spend time doom scrolling. I’m writing one now because this cornbread is so good, I called my mama and slapped her through the phone! (I used half the butter, powdered buttermilk, vegan cheese). 

  2. I made it in two 8×8 pans, I increased the recipe to 16 servings. I really like that the recipe allowed me to do that easily!

    I have eaten honey cornbread my whole life and to be honest, I still prefer it. This is still a great savory recipe. I think next time I would increase the sugar or add honey to the recipe-just for my own personal taste. My boyfriend told me this recipe still turned out really well, slight heat with 4 jalapeños (de seeded) and very moist with the buttermilk. 

  3. Absolutely fantastic! Delicious! 

  4. Pingback: 15 Lip-Smacking Side Dishes for BBQ Ribs

  5. I’d like to make this, but only have homemade pickled jalapeños. (they are fairly mild) Have you or anyone used these instead of fresh?

  6. Really good!

  7. Anybody made muffins from this recipe?

  8. I really hate when cornbread is dry….which is why I LOVE this recipe. Super moist, tastes great! Love the jalapeno and cheese in there, I could seriously eat the whole pan.

  9. I’ll I’ve ever made is sweet cornbread, so I thought I’d try a new version. This was so yummy! Can’t wait to make it alongside soup and chili all winter long!

  10. Oh my goodness, this looks incredibly delicious!! LOVE it!

  11. this cornbread is something that I just adore! I love the spice and savory flavor notes in this cornbread, so good!