The Cheddar Garlic Spoon Bread is creamy, hearty, and makes the perfect side dish for just about any meal!
If you’ve never had spoonbread before, this post is for you! Being a west coaster, I hadn’t had it until a few years back at a southern food restaurant, and I instantly fell in love. This recipe is a fun twist on the traditional southern side dish without taking it too far away from its roots. Just about anything is good with cheese and garlic added to it!
What is Spoon Bread?
Spoon bread is a southern side dish that might be best described as a corn souffle. Though, it’s not quite as light and airy as a traditional souffle since it has both cornmeal and whole corn kernels in it. It’s creamy, soft, and pairs exceptionally well with meats and gravy. Think of it as a good substitute or addition to mashed potatoes.
How to Make Spoon Bread From Scratch:
- First, preheat your oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit
- You’ll then melt some butter with some garlic and cook until fragrant for about 30 seconds. You’ll then, stir in the milk until it’s just at a boil.
- Next, you’ll slowly whisk in the cornmeal and continue steadily whisking for about 5 minutes.
- Remove the pan from the heat and spoon the mixture into a mixing bowl and stir in the cheese, salt, and corn kernels.
- Allow the corn mixture to cool a bit and whisk in the egg yolks.
- Then, in a large bowl, you’ll beat the egg whites just until they form soft mounds, but not stiff peaks. Stir 1/3 of the whites into of the corn mixture to lighten up the batter and then carefully fold in the remaining whites.
- Gently turn batter into the buttered baking dish and bake for 25-30 minutes, until risen and golden brown.
How to Tell when Spoon Bread is Done?
Spoon bread is done when the top is golden brown, the edges have risen, and the center is just slightly jiggly and loose but not runny.
Is Spoon Bread Gluten Free?
My recipe for spoon bread (below) is gluten-free, but not all recipes are so sure to check the recipe if you are sensitive to gluten.
Can Spoon Bread Be Made Ahead of Time?
Spoon bread loses some of its pillowy magic soon after cooking, so it’s best to cook it right before serving. That said, if you need to make it ahead, you can prepare the batter up until the point that you fold in the egg whites. When ready to bake, take the batter out of the fridge and allow to come to room temperature. Then, whip the egg whites, fold into the batter, and bake as directed.
Why Aren’t My Egg Whites Whipping?
Whipping egg whites can be tricky business. The main thing to know is that egg whites WILL NOT whip if there is any fat (oil, grease, egg yolk, butter) in the whites. So be sure to use a spotless bowl and whisk and be careful not to get any yolk in the whites while separating. If you do, you will not be able to incorporate any air into the whites, and they will not form the soft mounds you need for this spoon bread recipe or the stiff peaks you might need to make meringue.
Cheddar Garlic Corn Spoon Bread
- 2 cloves garlic minced
- 3 tablespoons + 1 teaspoon butter divided
- 4 cups 2% milk
- 2/3 cup cornmeal
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 2 cups grated cheddar
- 2 cups frozen corn kernals
- 6 eggs separated
- Preheat oven to 425° F.
- In a 2 quart saucepan, melt 3 tablespoons of butter over medium heat and cook garlic until fragrant—about 30 seconds. Stir in milk and heat to just below a boil. Slowly whisk in the cornmeal and bring to a boil. Cook, whisking constantly for 5 minutes. Remove from heat and scrape cornmeal mixture into a mixing bowl. Stir in cheese and salt until melted, followed by the frozen corn kernels. Let sit for 10 minutes and whisk in egg yolks.
- Grease 9x13” baking dish with remaining teaspoon of butter.
- In a medium bowl, beat the egg whites just until they form soft mounds, not stiff peaks. Stir 1/3 of the whites into of the corm mixture to lighten and then carefully fold in the remaining whites. Gently turn batter into the buttered baking dish. Bake for 25-30 minutes, until risen and golden brown. Serve immediately.
Want more delicious side dish recipes?