Corncakes on the Griddle

"This early-American dish is wonderfully simple and absolutely delicious. I learned to make it while working in a living history museum. Back when ovens were rare and most cooking was done directly over the fire bread came almost exclusively from professional bakers located in towns and cities. But women at home made a wide variety of griddle cakes as staple foods. Try a little edible history today. They go well with any meal where you might serve cornbread. Tip -- they are particularly handy when camping or even when grilling out because you can make them on your gas grill's side burner while tending to the steaks, burgers, or brats. Note -- In light of a few of the early reviews I would like to emphasize that these are not pancakes and will not have a fluffy, pancake texture. They are the hearty staple food of pioneer hunters, trappers, and farmers and are as different from a pancake as a black, peasant rye bread is different from Wonder bread. :)"
photo by Outta Here photo by Outta Here
photo by Outta Here
Ready In:
20-30 cakes depending on size




  • Mix the dry ingredients together in a medium bowl. It will be particularly convenient if you have one of those 2 quart measuring cups with the pour spout.
  • Beat the eggs into the milk or buttermilk.
  • Mix the milk-egg mixture into the cornmeal mixture. I find that a fork is a better tool than a spoon for this.
  • Note -- the batter will be a bit thicker than ordinary pancake batter but should still pour. Different types of cornmeal will make a thicker or thinner batter and it may thicken on standing as you cook -- making it hard to get the centers of the later batches done. Add more milk a little at a time if necessary.
  • Heat your griddle medium to medium-high. Butter it lighly and pour out batter to make cakes 3-4 inches across.
  • Cook until bubbles appear in the upper surface and the bottom is nicely browned. Turn and cook until the bottom is brown and the cake is cooked through. Reduce heat and/or add more milk to the batter if the centers aren't cooked before the outsides threaten to burn.
  • Butter the griddle very lightly between batches --just enough to prevent sticking and encourage browning but not enough to give them a fried texture.
  • Serve with butter, jelly, apple butter, or other favorite bread spread.

Questions & Replies

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  1. MechanicalJen
    I couldn't possibly count the number of times I've eaten/made this dish. Growing up I thought these were pancakes - didn't have the real deal until I was well into my teens. I'm surprised at how little publicity this dish gets. Great as pancakes, or even as a "quick" cornbread - spread a little chili on one and roll it up. Whatever. Dense and wonderful. Thanks!
  2. Toni in Colorado
    These taste good but are a bit heavy, not light and fluffy. Served with syrup. When placing on the griddle, I tipped the griddle to spread out the batter, so I wouldn't have to worry about whether the middle was done. Like the idea of adding cornmeal to the batter. Thanks for posting and thanks for the history lesson. Toni in Colorado
  3. Outta Here
    Boy, did this bring back memories. My grandmother made these when I was a kid. She served them with syrup or honey, like pancakes. I had them today with Blue Agave Nectar (a low-glycemic syrup). I am going to make them next time I make chili in the motorhome, since making cornbread in the so-called "oven" :wink: is a chore. Thanks for posting!
  4. brookeba
    was ok, confused on what i should eat it it a pancake or cornbread? butter or syrup? weird



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