Cheddar Cornmeal Biscuits

These cornmeal drop biscuits are soft and tender, and slightly sweet with a hint of cheddar.

There’s nothing more scrumptious than buttery warm biscuits. Besides being delicious, they are also very versatile:

  • Serve them at breakfast, brunch, or tea, or as a side with lunch or dinner.
  • Enjoy them savory with eggs and sausage or sweet with cream and jam. 
  • Add different mix-ins like cheese, jalapeños, or herbs.

Unlike traditional rolled biscuits, drop biscuits are much easier to make. The batter is thicker than a muffin batter, and holds its shape when dropped onto the baking sheet. No rolling or cutting required, or worrying about the butter getting too warm.

These corn biscuits are a cross between corn muffins and biscuits. They are soft yet crumbly with a buttery flavor and the salty cheese pairs well with the sweetness of the cornmeal. 

We normally have them with sausage gravy and eggs, but sometimes we have them plain with a bit of jam or honey on the side.

How to Make Cheddar Cornmeal Biscuits

First combine the dry ingredients like 1 1/3 cup flours (I use a mix of whole wheat and all-purpose), 1/2 cup fine cornmeal, 2 1/4 teaspoons baking powder, and 1/2 teaspoon salt.

Then, to this mixture, add 2-4 tablespoons each of cold butter and oil. Use a pastry blender or fork and mix until the flour resembles coarse crumbs.

Now stir in 1/2-1 cup grated cheese. I use cheddar, but any type of cheese can work.

Make a well in the center, and pour in 3/4 cup buttermilk or regular milk and 1-3 teaspoons of honey.

Slowly stir with a fork until a dough form. Be careful not to over mix.

The dough can be prepared and left to chill in the fridge while preheating the oven and prepping the baking sheet. This helps the butter stay cold.

Then use a large spoon or ice cream scoop to drop 8 mounds of dough onto a lined baking sheet. Lightly flatten the tops with the palm of your hand.

The dough mounds can also be frozen on the baking sheet. When completely solid, transfer the mounds to an air-tight bag or container. They can be baked directly from the freezer, no need to thaw. You might need to bake 1-2 minutes longer.

These biscuits take about 15 minutes to bake and can be served warm or cooled on a wire rack to enjoy later.

Biscuit Variations

This is the fun part where you can be creative and add different mix-ins to your biscuits. You can make a sweet dessert version or keep them savory.

  • Blueberry & Honey: Omit cheddar, and increase honey to 1-2 tablespoons. Gently fold in 1/2 cup fresh blueberries into the dough.
  • Cheddar & Bacon: Add 1/2 cup cooked crumbled bacon.
  • Cheddar & Herb: Add 1/4 cup minced fresh herbs like chives, sage, and/or parsley.
  • Cheddar, Sour Cream & Chives: Sub half of the milk with sour cream and add 1/4 cup minced chives.
  • Pizza Flavored: Omit the cheddar and add 1/4 cup grated mozzarella + 1/4 cup parmesan + 1/4 cup diced pepperoni + pinch dried oregano + garlic powder
  • Sausage, Cheddar, & Jalapeño: Add 1/2 cup cooked and crumbled sausage + 1/4 cup minced pickled jalapeños.

What My Kids Say:
10 year-old: “The biscuits are out of this world!”
8 year-old: “It’s crumbly, crusty, and delicious.”

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Cheddar Cornmeal Biscuits
These easy biscuits are savory and slightly sweet with a soft muffin-like texture.
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Plate of cheddar cornmeal biscuits.

Plate of cheddar cornmeal biscuits.

Cheddar Cornmeal Biscuits

Joby’s Test Kitchen
These easy biscuits are savory and slightly sweet with a soft muffin-like texture.
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Course Side Dish
Cuisine American
Servings 8 biscuits
Calories 302 kcal

Ingredients
  

  • 1⅓ cups (160g) whole wheat flour + all-purpose flour (or use only all-purpose)
  • ½ cup (70g) fine-ground cornmeal
  • tsps baking powder
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 2-4 tbsps (28-56g) cold unsalted butter, cut into chunks
  • 2-4 tbsps (30-60ml) oil
  • ½-1 cup grated cheddar
  • ¾ cup (180ml) buttermilk
  • 1-3 tsps honey

Instructions
 

  • Preheat oven to 425°F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  • In a medium bowl, combine flours, cornmeal, baking powder, and salt.
  • Add butter and oil to flour mixture. Using a pastry blender or fork, mix well until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Stir in the grated cheese.
  • Make a well in the center, and pour in the milk and honey. Slowly stir with a fork until a dough form. Be careful not to overmix.
  • Using a large spoon or ice cream scoop, drop 8 mounds of dough onto baking sheet. Lightly flatten the tops with the palm of your hand.
  • Bake for 15 minutes or until golden on top. Serve warm or cool on a wire rack. Cooked biscuits can be stored in an air-tight container in the fridge for several days, or in the freezer for a several months.

Notes

Freezing/Chilling: The dough can be prepared and left to chill in the fridge while preheating the oven and prepping the baking sheet. This can help the butter stay cold. The dough can also be portioned out into 8 mounds and frozen on the baking sheet. When completely solid, transfer the mounds to an air-tight bag or container. It can be baked directly from the freezer, no need to thaw. Though you might need to bake 1-2 minutes longer.
Calorie Info: Calories were calculated using the higher amounts listed for butter, oil, and cheese. If you want to reduce the amount of calories per biscuit, use less of these ingredients and maybe a touch more milk and salt. The biscuits will still be soft but not as rich. 
Keyword biscuits, cheddar, corn muffins, cornmeal

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