Recipes > Cornbread Brunch

Cornbread Brunch


Looking for a delicious breakfast recipe? Toasted cornbread topped with rich tomato sauce, goat cheese, a poached egg and a drizzle of pesto.
  • Serves: 4 to 18
  • Active Time: 1 hr
  • Total Time: 2 hrs 15 mins
  • Views: 64,487
  • Success Rating: 94% (?)
    0% - I fed it to the dog


Step 1: Preparing Your Mise en Place

Preparing Your Mise en Place
  • 1 whole jalapeño pepper
  • 3 tbsp fresh dill
  • 3 tbsp fresh cilantro


Preheat the oven to 375ºF.

Start by seeding and finely dicing jalapeño. If you want a spicier effect, you can leave the seeds in. Wash your hands thoroughly once done.

Finely chop the fresh herbs and set aside.

Step 2: Preparing the Batter

Preparing the Batter
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 2/3 tbsp baking powder
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 1/2 tsp salt
  • 2 cups cornmeal
  • 4 large eggs
  • 2 cups milk (or buttermilk)
  • 1/2 cup melted butter
  • 1 cup canned or frozen kernel corn


Sift all of the dry ingredients (flour, baking powder, sugar, salt and cornmeal) together.

In a separate bowl, mix together the eggs, milk and melted butter.

Mix the wet and dry ingredients together until the dry is just incorporated. Then fold in jalapeños, herbs and corn. Do not over mix.

Step 3: Baking the Cornbread

Baking the Cornbread


Spray two loaf pans with non-stick cooking spray and pour in the batter. You can also use a rectangular cake pan. Bake 30 – 40 minutes.

Test for doneness with a fork. If it comes out clean, the cornbread is ready. Let the cornbread cool for a few minutes before loosening the edges with a knife. Turn out onto a cooling rack.

The cornbread can be made a day or two in advance.

Step 4: Slicing and Toasting the Cornbread

Slicing and Toasting the Cornbread


Place a rack on the upper third part of the oven and preheat to broil.

While the broiler is heating, slice the cornbread into approximately 1" -inch thick pieces. Place onto a baking sheet.

Place the cornbread into the oven for a minute or so, or until the one side is lightly toasted. Remove and set aside.

Using oven mitts, carefully move the top rack back to the middle position and turn the oven to warm (approximately 150ºF).

Step 5: Preparing the Pesto

Preparing the Pesto
  • 4 tbsp pesto*
  • 3 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil


Mix together the pesto and the olive oil. This will thin down the pesto and make it easier to drizzle over the eggs.

*Note: For the pesto you can make your own or buy it.

Step 6: Dressing the Cornbread

Dressing the Cornbread
  • 1 cup tomato sauce
  • 1/2 cup soft goat cheese*


Be sure the tomato sauce is hot before you spoon it over the cornbread.

Spoon about two tablespoons of the sauce over each slice of bread and top with a tablespoon or two of goat cheese, if desired.

Place the corn bread into the oven to keep warm while you poach the eggs. If you like, you can also put the plates in the oven to warm them up.

Step 7: Poaching the Eggs

Poaching the Eggs
  • 5 cups water
  • 1 tsp table salt
  • 1/8 cup vinegar
  • 5 large eggs


To poach the eggs, use a pan that is at least 3" -inches deep. Fill approximately three-quarters full with water. Add the salt and vinegar.

Once the water comes to a gentle boil, reduce the heat to just below a simmer. Gently add the eggs one at a time. Once done, the whites should be firm to the touch but the yolk should still be soft. This should take about 2 to 4 minutes.

Note: Make one or two extra eggs if you are making this for guests, just in case any eggs break. The eggs can also be cooked ahead of time, which is a great time saver.

Step 8: Assembling the Plate

Assembling the Plate


To assemble, remove the warmed cornbread and plates from the oven. Top each piece of cornbread with a hot poached egg. Lightly season the egg with salt and freshly-cracked pepper. To finish, drizzle the plate with a bit of the pesto and serve immediately.

Chef's Notes

This recipe makes a mouth-watering alternative to eggs benedict.

Everything in this recipe can be made ahead of time, including the poached eggs, which makes it a great dish to serve for brunch when you have several guests coming over.


  • Tony D
    Tony D
    The video played the same part a couple times for me (not back to back)... No big deal, all the steps were there, just though you guys might like to know.
  • Dawn T
    Dawn T
    Oops! We are on it, thanks for taking to time to mention this :-)
  • Debra G
    Debra G
    I'm considering this recipe for a birthday brunch for a couple girlfriends. Any great ideas on what to serve with it? How about drinks? Thanks!
  • Dawn T
    Dawn T
    This is quite a substantial dish on its own. You could make hashbrowns or even a nice salad. And, of course...mimosas :)
  • Debra G
    Debra G
    I wish the goat cheese would have been listed with the ingredients on the left. I missed it when I went shopping.
  • Dawn T
    Dawn T
    Debra, I am so sorry, I would have been sad as well...again sorry, the recipe has been updated.
  • Renee L
    Renee L
    It says it serves 4-18 which is quite a range! I'd be grateful if you could elaborate...
  • Dawn T
    Dawn T
    The cornbread makes enough so that if you wanted to you could serve quite a few people. It really just comes down to how many eggs you want to poach. That's why this breakfast is a great one for a crowd, because you can do most things ahead of time and then you just the assembling to worry about when it comes down to serving time. If you are only making it for a small group you might even want to cut the cornbread recipe down by half (but it does freeze well). Hope that helps Renee. Cheers! p.s. nice to see you back, we have missed you.
  • Renee L
    Renee L
    Feeds a crowd and you can freeze it? What's not to like?! Thank you so much Dawn. It is nice to be back, I just wish I had more time to participate but I'll just have to aim for quality visits to Rouxbe rather than quantity!
  • Kristin C
    Kristin C
    Can you substitute another kind of cheese with the goat cheese?
  • Dawn T
    Dawn T
    Indeed you can use many other types of cheese instead of goat cheese. Feel free to experiment to see which one you prefer. Cheers!
  • Noel G
    Noel G
    Exactly what type of tomato sauce should you use ? it it table tomato sauce . Great recipe by the way.
  • Kimberley S Rouxbe Staff
    Kimberley S
    This tomato sauce is our favorite and is a practice recipe from the Cooking School lesson on How to Make Tomato Sauce. Cheers!
  • Dawn T
    Dawn T
    I have also used this sun-dried tomato sauce, with great results, for this recipe many times. Cheers!
  • Mary W
    Mary W
    Because of the crumbly nature of the cornbread, I added about 3/4 of a cup of grated old cheddar which helped to hold it together a little better, and instead of using the pesto I used some leftover basil and garlic gremolata from a previous recipe. to drizzle over top of the eggs. Will make this recipe again. Yum!
  • Sunnie S
    Sunnie S
    This is such an interesting take on a traditional benedict! The flavors were unusual, but wonderful! I deseeded my jalapeno, but will leave the seeds in next time, for a bit more kick. I did notice that when I added my melted butter to the milk and eggs, it kind of coagulated back to small curds (I believe this happened because my milk and eggs were just out of the refrigerator and still quite cold). I was worried this might be an issue, but the cornbread came out perfectly. I used Rouxbe's recipes for both the pesto and the tomato sauce. My pesto was still a bit too thick - even after adding that extra olive oil, but I just went with it. When plated it didn't look quite as elegant as the photo here, so I know for next time, I need to do a better job of thinning it out. Soft poached the eggs and the runny yolks made this dish fantastic! Thanks so much Rouxbe for such an interesting take on a classic! Loved it!
  • Rosie G
    Rosie G
    Best recipe I've made in my entire life. I've made it quite a few times now, even for my sis-in-law's bridal shower. My kids beg for it regularily.
  • Char N Rouxbe Staff
    Char N
    Rosie, it sounds as though you have found a new signature baked good! You may want to make a double batch, and freeze one batch of the muffins. Thanks for your kind words. Cheers -Char

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