Jalapeno Cornbread Recipe: A Spicy Twist on a Classic

It is a truth universally acknowledged that cornbread is an essential part of any southern meal. But, nothing sparks joy and comfort more than a warm slice of jalapeño cornbread. And when it comes to the best jalapeño cornbread, Luby’s Cafeteria holds the recipe for perfection. Fear not, my culinary explorers, for I have unlocked the secret recipe of Luby’s Jalapeño Cornbread just for you.

The sweet aroma of cornmeal mixed with spicy jalapeños is enough to get anyone’s taste buds dancing. The texture, flavor and spiciness are in perfect harmony – not too crumbly, not too dry and not too bland. Over the years, this cafeteria copycat recipe has become an all-time classic in Texan cuisine.

From Thanksgiving dinner to backyard barbecues or even as a standalone snack with a hot cuppa tea on a lazy afternoon, this jalapeño cornbread will leave you craving for more. So what are you waiting for? Follow me into the world of flavorsome goodness and let’s make some lip-smacking jalapeño cornbread together!

Why You’ll Love This Recipe

Luby's Jalapeno Cornbread
Luby’s Jalapeno Cornbread

Luby’s Jalapeno Cornbread recipe is truly something special. As an avid lover of cornbread, I can safely say that this recipe is one of the best out there. Here’s why you’ll love it:

First off, the combination of whole kernel corn, red bell peppers, and pimientos give the cornbread a unique texture and flavor profile that is simply irresistible. It’s moist, yet crunchy in all the right places. Plus, the addition of jalapenos adds a little kick of spice without being too overwhelming.

Secondly, this recipe is incredibly easy to make. All you need are a few basic ingredients like all-purpose flour, cornmeal, salt, baking powder, granulated sugar, extra-large egg, buttermilk, milk, and oil. Simply mix them all together in a large mixing bowl and you’re good to go.

Lastly, it serves a crowd. This recipe yields enough for 12 people – perfect for gatherings and events. Plus, it’s a copycat recipe from Luby’s Cafeteria which has been serving up delicious food for over 70 years.

In conclusion, if you’re looking for a new and exciting spin on classic cornbread that will please your taste buds and impress your guests then you’ll absolutely love Luby’s Jalapeno Cornbread recipe.

Ingredient List

 Freshly baked Luby's Jalapeno Cornbread served straight out of the oven – a crowd favorite!
Freshly baked Luby’s Jalapeno Cornbread served straight out of the oven – a crowd favorite!

Here are the ingredients that you need to make Luby’s Jalapeno Cornbread:

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 cups cornmeal
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 1 1/2 cups whole milk
  • 1/2 cup buttermilk
  • 1 extra-large egg
  • 2 tablespoons oil
  • 1/4 cup whole kernel corn, drained
  • 2 tablespoons diced red bell peppers
  • 2 tablespoons diced pimientos
  • 1 jalapeño pepper, seeded and diced (use 2 jalapeños for spicier version)

Note: If you are planning to make this recipe up to 12 servings, you may double the ingredient list.

Here’s a breakdown of some of the ingredients required to make this savory and spicy Jalapeno Cornbread:

Flour and Cornmeal

In any bread recipe, the type of flour and grain used plays a significant role in achieving the perfect texture, flavor, and consistency. For this recipe, we will be using all-purpose flour, which provides structure and smoothness. In contrast, cornmeal delivers an earthy and slightly sweet taste with a rustic crumbly texture.

Leavening Agents

The key leavening agents found in Jalapeno Cornbread are baking powder and eggs. Baking powder reacts with the acid in buttermilk and creates gas bubbles that increase the batter’s volume, making it rise during baking. The egg provides an extra boost since they contain proteins that help stabilize the air pockets created by baking powder.

Dairy Base

The dairy base in this recipe is a combination of whole milk and buttermilk. The low acidity of whole milk complements well with buttermilk’s tangy profile while keeping the bread moist and rich.

Sweetness Boosters

While cornbread is not generally sweet like cake, adding a touch naturally sweet granulated sugar will help balance out any bitterness from cornmeal or heat from jalapeños.

Add-ins for Kick

For added color and depth of flavor, we’ve added whole kernel corn, diced red pepper, and pimientos into the mix. To elevate the heat level even higher, the star of this recipe is diced fresh jalapeños. These add-ins will take your traditional cornbread up a few levels and bring out that bold Texan style that sets it apart from other southern classics.

The Recipe How-To

 This cornbread, packed with spicy jalapeno peppers, is sure to add some excitement to your meal.
This cornbread, packed with spicy jalapeno peppers, is sure to add some excitement to your meal.

Step 1: Preheat and Prepare Ingredients

First things first, I preheat my oven to 400°F (205°C) then I get all my ingredients ready. I measure out 2 cups of cornmeal, 1 cup of all-purpose flour, 1 tablespoon of baking powder, and 1 teaspoon of salt in a large mixing bowl. To this, I mix well before blending in the following: 2 extra-large eggs, 1 cup each of buttermilk and whole milk, 1/2 cup vegetable oil, and 2 tablespoons of granulated sugar.

Step 2: Add Jalapeno Peppers and Other Flavor-Enhancing Ingredients

Once my base mixture is smooth, I add in the flavor-enhancing ingredients including 1 chopped red bell pepper, a small jar of pimientos (rinsed and drained), and 1 to 2 jalapeno peppers, seeded and chopped. These ingredients give this classic cornbread a pop of sweetness from the bell pepper, smokiness from the pimientos, and a spicy kick from the jalapenos.

Step 3: Bake Jalapeno Cornbread

With all of my ingredients blended together, it’s time to bake my Luby’s Jalapeño Cornbread Recipe. For this recipe which serves 12, I pour the batter into a greased 9×13-inch glass baking dish then slide it into the preheated oven. After about 20 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean, I know it’s time to take it out.

Step 4: Cool and Serve!

The next step is also an essential one – let your Luby’s Cafteria-copycat Jalapeño Cornbread cool for about five minutes before slicing and serving to your hungry loved ones. This approach prevents crumbling as the bread cools down. This best served warm or room temperature with butter or honey.

Note: If you prefer spicier cornbread, feel free to add more jalapenos. Alternatively, you can try adding shredded cheddar cheese for jalapeno cheese cornbread. Want an even quicker version? Try Jiffy cornbread mix with chopped jalapeno to make sweet cornbread or jalapeno cheddar cornbread!

Substitutions and Variations

This recipe can be easily adapted to your taste preferences or dietary requirements. Here are some substitutions and variations to try out:

– Whole kernel corn: if you don’t have any canned corn, you can use frozen or creamed corn instead. Adjust the amount according to taste, but make sure to drain off any excess liquid.

– Red bell peppers and pimientos: these give the cornbread a nice pop of color and flavor, but if you’re not a fan, you can leave them out or substitute with roasted green chilies, diced jalapeño peppers, or chopped scallions.

– All-purpose flour: for a gluten-free version, use a gluten-free all-purpose flour blend or almond flour in equal parts.

– Cornmeal: yellow or white cornmeal works well in this recipe, but if you want a finer texture, try using corn flour instead.

– Buttermilk: if you don’t have buttermilk on hand, you can make your own by adding 1 tablespoon of lemon juice or vinegar to 1 cup of milk. Let it sit for a few minutes until it thickens and curdles slightly.

– Extra-large egg: if you only have smaller eggs, use two instead of one extra-large egg.

– Milk: whole milk works best in this recipe, but 2% or skim milk will also work in a pinch. For a vegan version, use almond milk or soy milk instead.

– Jalapeño cornbread muffins: instead of baking the batter in one large pan, pour it into greased muffin tins and bake at 375°F for 15-20 minutes or until golden brown on top. Serve these muffins warm with butter or honey drizzle!

Try different variations to find your personal favorite that makes this Luby’s jalapeno cornbread perfect for your next Thanksgiving dinner or as an accompaniment for chili as well!

Serving and Pairing

Now that you’ve baked a delicious batch of Luby’s jalapeno cornbread, it’s time to serve it up!

This cornbread is perfect on its own as a snack or as a side dish to any meal. It pairs well with a variety of dishes including chili, barbeque, and fried chicken. The spicy kick from the jalapenos makes it an excellent contrast to savory meat dishes.

For a Tex-Mex inspired meal, try serving the cornbread alongside enchiladas or tacos. The sweetness from the cornmeal and the heat from the jalapenos complement the bold flavors of Mexican cuisine perfectly.

If you’re feeling adventurous, try making a unique sandwich with this jalapeno cornbread recipe. Cut out individual squares and use them as sandwich bread for a pulled pork or brisket sandwich. You can even add some sliced pepper jack cheese and pickled jalapenos for an extra kick!

The possibilities are endless with Luby’s jalapeno cornbread recipe. Serve it fresh out of the oven or at room temperature with some butter, honey, or maple syrup drizzled on top for added sweetness. Trust me; your taste buds will thank you!

Make-Ahead, Storing and Reheating

Once this jalapeno cornbread has cooled to room temperature, it can be made ahead and stored for later use. Simply wrap tightly in plastic wrap, place in an airtight container, and store at room temperature for up to 2 days or in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.

To reheat the cornbread, preheat the oven to 350°F. Remove the plastic wrap, wrap the cornbread in aluminum foil and bake for 10-15 minutes until heated through.

If you have leftovers that you want to store for another time, make sure that you also wrap them tightly in plastic wrap or put them in an airtight container. Store them in the refrigerator for up to three days or freeze them for up to three months.

Reheating leftovers will depend on whether they are frozen or refrigerated. If they’re frozen, let them thaw overnight in the refrigerator before reheating following the instructions above. For refrigerated leftovers, wrapping it in aluminum foil and reheating it at 350°F should work fine. Ultimately it’s best to keep an eye on it as it reheats ensuring that you aren’t over-drying out the cornbread.

Overall, this make-ahead recipe is ideal if you’re prepping ahead of time for a party or Thanksgiving dinner as it saves you time and effort on the day itself. By following these simple tips your jalapeno cornbread will retain its flavor and texture.

Tips for Perfect Results

When it comes to making perfect jalapeno cornbread, there are a few tips that you should keep in mind. One of the most important things is to make sure that your oven is properly preheated before baking the cornbread. This will ensure that it bakes evenly and has a nice golden crust. You should also use a large mixing bowl to ensure that all of the ingredients are well combined.

Another tip is to not overmix the batter. When you add the dry ingredients to the wet mixture, you should only mix until just combined. Overmixing will result in tough and dry cornbread. To prevent sticking, grease your pan or skillet with oil before adding the batter.

Additionally, when adding jalapenos, be sure to use gloves to avoid any irritation or burning sensation on your skin. If you prefer a milder version, simply remove the seeds from the jalapenos before adding them into the mixture.

To achieve a richer and creamier taste, I suggest using buttermilk instead of regular milk in this recipe. It adds a subtle tang and moisture which complements the sweetness of cornmeal. Also, using high-quality ingredients like fresh whole kernel corn or authentic Mexican corn masa flour greatly enhances flavor and texture.

Lastly, take note of baking time and temperature accuracy as these can vary depending on your location and oven’s calibration. Baking for too long or at too high temperatures may cause overbrowning or dryness which affect taste and appearance of the bread’s crumb.

By following these tips, you’ll be making perfect jalapeno cornbread just like they do at Luby’s Cafeteria in no time!

Bottom Line

In conclusion, Luby’s Jalapeno Cornbread Recipe is the perfect addition to any meal, especially for those who love spicy and flavorful food. This recipe offers a delicious balance of textures and flavors that will leave your taste buds dancing with joy. Whether you’re serving it as a side dish for Thanksgiving dinner, or want to impress your friends and family with a good-old Southern-style cornbread, this recipe is easy to follow and customizable to make it your own.

Don’t be afraid to experiment with different substituions and variations. You may want to add some extra jalapeno peppers or cheddar cheese for an even stronger punch of flavor. Alternatively, you could try sweet cornbread by adding some more sugar to the mix or grab a jiffy cornbread mix as a base for your own creation.

No matter how you choose to customize it, one thing is certain: once you try Luby’s Jalapeno Cornbread Recipe, you won’t look back. So, roll up your sleeves, grab your apron and start baking! It’s time to enjoy the classic Luby’s cafeteria copycat recipe right at home.

Luby's Jalapeno Cornbread

Luby’s Jalapeno Cornbread Recipe

Jalapeños, red bell peppers, and corn kernels add color and Tex-Mex taste appeal to this hearty cornbread. Serve it with any favorite entrée - especially anything seasoned with their special barbecue s. uce.
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Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 20 mins
Course Side Dish
Cuisine American
Calories 200 kcal


  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1/2 cup buttermilk
  • 1 extra-large egg
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1 tablespoon granulated sugar
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup cornmeal
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 2 tablespoons diced red bell peppers or 2 tablespoons pimientos
  • 2 tablespoons minced jalapenos
  • 2 tablespoons whole kernel corn


  • Heat oven to 425°F.
  • Generously grease 8-inch cast iron skillet or round baking pan.
  • In medium bowl, whisk together milk, buttermilk, egg, oil, sugar, baking powder, and salt until well blended. Add cornmeal and flour. Mix just until dry ingredients are moistened. Fold in red pepper, jalapeños, and corn. Pour into skillet.
  • Bake 20 to 25 minutes or until light golden brown and wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean.

Your Own Notes


Serving: 97gCalories: 200kcalCarbohydrates: 29gProtein: 5.4gFat: 7.3gSaturated Fat: 1.6gCholesterol: 44.5mgSodium: 378mgFiber: 1.9gSugar: 3.6g
Keyword < 30 Mins, Breads, Easy, Quick Breads
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