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Let’s talk about corn muffins, those golden little treats that pair perfectly with just about any meal. This small batch of Corn Muffins is tender, moist, and filled with the perfect corn flavor, thanks to the kernels of corn we add into the batter. Simple ingredients, easy steps, and ready in less than 25 minutes make this the go-to recipe for corn muffins.

Corn muffins pair wonderfully with various single serving dishes. Try them with Cheesy Baked Eggs, comforting Vegetable Soup, succulent Oven-Baked Ribs, or flavorful Pork Tenderloin. These choices complement the sweet, crumbly texture of corn muffins, enhancing your meal.

Why You’ll Love This Corn Muffin Recipe

  • Quick and Easy: This recipe takes just 30 minutes from start to finish.
  • Versatile: Great for breakfast, a snack, or as a side dish.
  • Moist and Tender: Sour cream in the recipe ensures each muffin is deliciously moist.
  • Doubles Well: Need more? This small batch recipe easily doubles to fit your needs.
  • Customizable Sweetness: A hint of sugar provides a touch of sweetness, but you can adjust to your liking.
a corn muffin on an orange plate cut in half.

What Are Cornbread Muffins?

Cornbread muffins, also commonly known as corn muffins, are individually portioned delights that hold a special place in American cuisine, notably in the Southern and Southwestern regions. Made predominantly with cornmeal, these muffins boast a unique, grainy texture coupled with a robust corn flavor.

Unlike your typical yeast-leavened breads, cornbread muffins use baking powder and baking soda, ensuring they rise quickly to achieve that fluffy, moist crumb we all love. The best part? These versatile muffins strike a harmonious balance between sweet and savory flavors. You can enjoy cornbread muffins or corn muffins as a versatile side dish, a quick breakfast, or even use them in stuffing or dressing.

Ingredients

cornmeal, an egg, baking powder, corn, salt and other ingredients needed to make corn muffins on a cutting board.

Corn muffins, also known as cornbread muffins, are a quick and scrumptious treat that takes around 20 minutes to bake. This easy recipe evokes the nostalgia of childhood favorites like Jiffy corn muffin mix, but with an elevated, homemade taste. Here’s what you’ll need to whip up a small batch:

  • Butter: Melted salted butter is key for flavor-packed cornbread muffins. It elevates the taste and gives the muffins a rich texture.
  • Milk: Feel free to use any milk you prefer—dairy or non-dairy options like almond or soy milk work equally well.
  • Egg: A single large egg serves multiple roles—providing structure, enriching the flavor, enhancing the color, and lending richness to the muffins.
  • Sour cream: This is your golden ticket to ultra-moist corn muffins. Greek yogurt is a suitable alternative if you don’t have sour cream on hand. Consider using leftover sour cream in a mini Squash Casserole or Chicken Tetrazzini.
  • Cornmeal and flour: Cornmeal is crucial for authentic corn muffin flavor. A combination of fine or medium ground yellow cornmeal and all-purpose flour creates the perfect cornbread texture. We use cornmeal in many other single serving and small batch recipes. Consider using any extra in a mini Chess Pie or in a small batch of Hush Puppies.
  • Baking powder and baking soda: These leavening agents are essential for that quick rise, ensuring your muffins are fluffy and light.
  • Sugar: A subtle addition of granulated sugar complements the corn’s natural sweetness without overpowering it.
  • Salt: A pinch enhances all the flavors, making each bite of your corn muffin memorable.
  • Corn: The star of the show! You can use fresh cooked corn, thawed frozen corn, or even canned corn to add that burst of corn goodness to your muffins. Use leftover corn in a Mexican Street Corn Salad, Chicken Tortilla Soup, or Cowboy Caviar.

This section provides a quick rundown of the ingredients used in this Corn Muffins recipe. For complete measurements and step-by-step instructions, please scroll to the recipe card located at the bottom of this post.

Recipe Variations

Tempted to mix things up a bit? These corn muffins are incredibly versatile. Here’s how you can add your own twist:

  • Scallion Corn Muffins: Fold in some finely chopped scallions into the batter for a savory, aromatic twist.
  • Fruit or Nut-Infused: Want to add a touch of natural sweetness or crunch? Stir in 3 tablespoons of either dried cranberries, dried blueberries, or your favorite chopped nuts.
  • Cheesy Bacon Corn Muffins: For a savory, meaty take, cook and crumble a strip of bacon. Add it to the batter along with 2-3 tablespoons of shredded cheddar cheese. The end result is a corn muffin that’s a meal in itself.
  • Herbed Corn Muffins: Experiment by adding a teaspoon of your favorite dried herbs like rosemary or thyme to the batter for a flavor-packed twist.
  • Spicy Corn Muffins: For those who like a bit of heat, add a diced jalapeño to the batter. The spiciness will bring a zesty kick to these wholesome muffins.

Feel free to experiment with these variations to find your perfect corn muffin match!

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How To Make Corn Muffins

These step-by-step photos and instructions help you visualize how to make a small batch of corn muffins. See the recipe below for ingredient amounts and full recipe instructions.

  1. Heat oven to 400 F (200 C). In a medium sized bowl, whisk or stir together the melted butter, milk, egg, and sour cream with until well blended.
  2. In a separate bowl, mix together the cornmeal, flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.
  3. Add the cornmeal mixture to the milk mixture and stir just until the flour is moistened. Do not overmix.
  4. Gently stir in the corn.
corn muffin batter in a mixing bowl with a spoon on the side.
  1. Grease or butter 4 to 6 muffin wells in a muffin pan or line with paper liners. Divide the batter evenly between the cups, filling each about 2/3 of the way full. Firmly tap the muffin pan on the counter to even out the batter.

How To Grease Muffin Tins For Flawless Muffin Release: Properly greasing your muffin tin is crucial for getting those delicious cornbread muffins out without a hitch. If you’re a fan of classic techniques, simply use softened butter to coat the bottom and sides of each muffin cup. Alternatively, melted butter applied with a pastry brush—or even a paper towel if you’re in a pinch—works wonders. For a more modern approach, a quick, even spray of vegetable oil does the job, just be cautious to avoid excessive pooling at the bottom. And if you’re all about convenience, paper liners are your best friend; some folks even give them a spritz of cooking spray for an extra layer of non-stick assurance. Choose the method that suits you, and you’ll be rewarded with perfectly-shaped cornbread muffins.

corn muffin batter in a muffin pan.
  1. Bake the muffins until firm to the touch, lightly golden in color, and when a toothpick or the tip of a sharp knife inserted into the center comes out clean, about 18-20 minutes.
four corn muffins in a muffin pan.
  1. Let the muffins cool in the pan on a wire rack for 5 minutes. Remove from the pan and enjoy warm or at room temperature. Corn muffins are great sliced and slathered with butter or jam.

Expert Tips

  • Before you start cooking, make sure to read the entire recipe, including the Ingredient Notes section, and examine the process photos. This detailed guide will help you understand how the recipe unfolds, ensuring your corn muffins turn out perfect every time. All the information you need is found within the body of this recipe post, so don’t miss a thing!
  • Adjusting Sweetness: If you’re a fan of savory corn muffins, you can easily reduce or omit the sugar. If you like them a bit sweeter, an additional 1/2 teaspoon of sugar will do the trick.
  • Avoid Overmixing: Overmixing can lead to tough, dense muffins. For optimal texture, use a spoon or rubber spatula for combining ingredients. Electric mixers aren’t recommended for this specific recipe.
  • Uniform Muffin Size: To achieve consistent muffin sizes, using an ice cream scoop to portion out the batter is a handy trick. It also speeds up the process and minimizes mess.

Serving Suggestions

  • With Chili: A classic match. The sweetness of the muffin balances the spices in the chili.
  • Breakfast Spread: Think scrambled eggs, avocado slices, and a dollop of sour cream for a hearty morning meal.
  • With Soup: Ideal with many soups like White Bean Soup, these muffins serve as the perfect dipper or side dish.
  • As a Snack: Ideal for grab-and-go, perhaps with a spread of honey butter for extra flair.

Special Thanksgiving Pairing

If you’re planning a small Thanksgiving meal, corn muffins can make for a great accompaniment. Consider serving them as part of a Thanksgiving For One or Thanksgiving For Two.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is cornmeal?

Cornmeal is made from dried, ground corn and is a pantry staple found in the baking section of most grocery stores. For this corn muffins recipe, opt for either fine or medium-ground cornmeal. You might also come across polenta, which is basically medium-grind cornmeal. Cornmeal can be stored in a sealed container in the freezer for up to a year, or in the pantry for up to 9 months.

Can I use this corn muffin recipe to make corn muffins in a skillet?

Absolutely! You can make this cornbread muffins recipe in a 6.5-inch cast iron skillet or a 5×5-inch baking dish.

What’s the best way to store corn muffins?

Store your corn muffins in an airtight container at room temperature for up to two days. They can also be frozen for up to two months for longer storage.

Can I double this small batch corn muffin recipe?

Yes, doubling the recipe is a breeze. Simply double the ingredient quantities and follow the baking instructions as usual.

Can I use this recipe to make mini corn muffins?

Sure thing! This recipe yields about 12 mini corn muffins, depending on your mini muffin pan’s size. After preparing the batter, fill the mini muffin pan and bake for 8-15 minutes. Start checking for doneness around the 9-10 minute mark using a toothpick. Mini muffins cook faster, so keep a watchful eye to avoid overbaking.

a baked corn muffin on an orange plate next to three other muffins

Ways To Use Leftover Ingredients

If you have any ingredients leftover from this recipe, check out our Leftover Ingredients Recipe Finder or you might like to consider using them in any of these single serving and small batch recipes:

If you’ve tried these small batch corn muffins or any recipe on One Dish Kitchen please let me know how you liked it by rating the recipe and telling me about it in the comment section below.

Also, if you take a picture please tag us on Instagram (@onedishkitchen) we’d love to see it!


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Because you’re worth it

Small Batch Corn Muffins

5 from 9 votes
Prep: 5 minutes
Cook: 18 minutes
Total: 23 minutes
Servings: 4 muffins
Discover tender and moist Small Batch Corn Muffins, ready in under 25 minutes. With golden kernels in every bite, these easy-to-make muffins are the perfect addition to any meal. Simple ingredients, effortless steps.

Equipment

Ingredients 
 

  • 2 tablespoons salted butter , melted and cooled
  • ¼ cup milk
  • 1 large egg
  • 2 tablespoons sour cream
  • ¼ cup yellow cornmeal
  • ¼ cup all-purpose flour
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • ½ teaspoon baking powder
  • teaspoon baking soda
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 2 tablespoons corn
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Instructions 

  • Heat oven to 400 F (200 C).
  • In a medium sized bowl, whisk together the melted butter, milk, egg, and sour cream with a spoon until well blended.
  • In a separate bowl, mix together the cornmeal, flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.
  • Add the cornmeal mixture to the milk mixture and stir just until the flour is moistened. Do not overmix.
  • Gently stir in the corn.
  • Grease or butter 4 to 6 muffin wells in a muffin pan or line with paper liners. Divide the batter evenly between the cups, filling each about ⅔ of the way full.
  • Bake the muffins until firm to the touch, lightly golden in color, and when a toothpick or the tip of a sharp knife inserted into the center comes out clean, about 18-20 minutes.
  • Let the muffins cool in the pan on a wire rack for 5 minutes. Remove from the pan and enjoy warm or at room temperature.

Notes

  • Before you start cooking, make sure to read the entire recipe, including the Ingredient Notes section, and examine the process photos. This detailed guide will help you understand how the recipe unfolds, ensuring your corn muffins turn out perfect every time. All the information you need is found within the body of this recipe post, so don’t miss a thing!
  • Adjusting Sweetness: If you’re a fan of savory corn muffins, you can easily reduce or omit the sugar. If you like them a bit sweeter, an additional 1/2 teaspoon of sugar will do the trick.
  • Avoid Overmixing: Overmixing can lead to tough, dense muffins. For optimal texture, use a spoon or rubber spatula for combining ingredients. Electric mixers aren’t recommended for this specific recipe.
  • Uniform Muffin Size: To achieve consistent muffin sizes, using an ice cream scoop to portion out the batter is a handy trick. It also speeds up the process and minimizes mess.

Nutrition

Serving: 1muffin, Calories: 172kcal, Carbohydrates: 22g, Protein: 4g, Fat: 9g, Saturated Fat: 5g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g, Monounsaturated Fat: 2g, Trans Fat: 1g, Cholesterol: 65mg, Sodium: 302mg, Potassium: 108mg, Fiber: 1g, Sugar: 8g, Vitamin A: 330IU, Vitamin C: 1mg, Calcium: 65mg, Iron: 1mg

The information shown is an estimate provided by an online nutrition calculator. It should not be considered a substitute for a professional nutritionist’s advice.

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5 from 9 votes (5 ratings without comment)

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14 Comments

  1. Marsha Williams says:

    I tried the Small Batch Muffin recipe omitted the baking soda and corn. Cooked on a 5” skillet best cornbread ever. I love your recipes. I’m glad I found your site I was tired of trying to change recipes to suit one person. 👍

  2. Alice Reynolds says:

    Would there need be any adjustment to make this in a pan instead of muffin tin? Thank you!

    1. Joanie Zisk says:

      Yes, if you’re baking this in a pan rather than a muffin tin, you’ll likely need to extend the baking time. Expect it to take about 20-25 minutes total, but keep an eye on it and check for doneness before taking it out of the oven.

  3. Lisa says:

    I’ve made this recipe twice within a three day period. My husband absolutely loves these muffins. I doubled the batch the second time after he ate three of the four the first go round.

    I only have masa harina in my kitchen at the moment. It works wonders as a substitute for the traditional cornmeal. The toasty corn flavor is amazing. To top it off, the local sweet corn that’s in season right now… Primo! It puts these corn muffins over the top. No doubt this recipe will be on repeat.

    1. Joanie Zisk says:

      I’m so happy you are both enjoying the corn muffins. Thank you so much for your feedback!

  4. Rhonda says:

    Thank you for the recipe. I did this tonight for a batch of chili and it was the perfect amount of cornmeal muffins. I added jalapeño to it for a little kick.
    Thank you again!!

    1. Joanie Zisk says:

      I’m so happy you enjoyed them!

  5. Dale Robinson says:

    We lost power iust as I put the muffins in the oven. I left the door closed, and checked after 25 minutes and they were perfectly cooked through. Delicious and so satisfying.

  6. Anda Leipurts says:

    Love this site but the corn muffins I made turned out totally tasteless and took 10 more minutes to cook than the recipe said. I’m sure it was my fault. I used a 6-muffin SILICONE baker—could that have been the problem? Or something wrong with the cornmeal? Not kidding, had to sprinkle salt on after finished, no corn taste at all 😩

  7. Velma McKinney says:

    Wanted to let you know made this morning but I made these into pancakes turned out great. Needed something different for breakfast. Thank you.

  8. Lou says:

    I tried these muffins this morning – YUM! They’re light and fluffy and delicious.

  9. Abby says:

    HI, I love cornbread… so wondering if I can leave the corn out. my g’daughter does not like corn but she loves cornbread.. thanks

    1. Joanie Zisk says:

      Yes, you can leave the corn out.

    2. Lou says:

      I left the corn and the sugar out.