This healthy oil-free vegan cornbread is gluten-free and made with whole grain flour. It's moist (I'll say it again. MOIST. 😂) and just sweet enough. Perfect with a bowl of chili or drizzled with maple syrup for a sweet treat.
I've been making variations of the same vegan cornbread recipe since... 2009. 😳 It started out as a pretty standard recipe (canola oil and cane sugar and all-purpose flour), but we've swapped those out for more wholesome ingredients, like applesauce (or beans; more on that in the FAQ section below), maple syrup, and a mix of brown rice flour and oat flour. Surprisingly, the flavor and texture have barely changed, even with all those substitutions!
Side note: I'm pretty sure my egg-allergic sister has been asking me for this recipe since, like, 2015, so... this one's for you, Ash! ❤️
How do you make oil-free vegan cornbread from scratch? It's surprisingly easy. Let's dive in.
- This healthy cornbread recipe is egg-free and dairy-free. It's made without wheat or gluten, and has no oil. Oat flour and brown rice flour make it whole grain.
- Ground flax makes a great substitute for eggs in cornbread, and adds fiber. Bonus! With the fiber from the oat flour, brown rice flour, flax, cornmeal, and applesauce (or beans), you'll be a healthy-pooping machine! 😂
- This recipe is lightly sweetened. If you prefer either a sweeter cornbread or a savory cornbread, you can easily tweak it to fit your tastebuds.
Here's a quick look at the ingredients you'll need to make your oil-free vegan cornbread.
- cornmeal (be sure to use certified gf cornmeal if you have a gluten sensitivity)
- oat flour (you can make your own by grinding rolled oats in a spice grinder or high speed blender)
- brown rice flour
- tapioca starch
- baking soda
- baking powder
- ground flax seeds mixed with water
- unsweetened almond milk (or your plant milk of choice)
- apple cider vinegar
- unsweetened applesauce
- pure maple syrup
First, gather all your ingredients. Then preheat your oven and line your 8" x 8" baking pan.
Next, make your flax "egg" and vegan "buttermilk" and let them sit while you combine your dry ingredients.
After that, combine the wet ingredients and add them to the dry ingredients. Mix it all up, pour the batter into your baking dish, and bake.
Finally, take the finished cornbread out of the oven and wait for it to cool before cutting into it and enjoying a piece.
- Don't over-bake the cornbread because it will end up dry and crumbly. Do the toothpick test at 25 minutes and only bake it longer if necessary.
- If you want to add whole corn kernels, do not just add frozen corn straight from the freezer. I learned this the hard way! It will take FOREVER to bake. You're welcome to use frozen corn, just make sure to thaw it first.
FAQs & Substitutions
Can I use a different kind of flour?
Yes! I've made this recipe using all-purpose flour for years, and I've used Bob's Red Mill gluten-free 1-to-1 baking flour with decent, but somewhat crumbly results. You can use one cup of either of those (weight is different for each flour, so just use a cup and you'll be fine), and I would guess other gluten free all purpose flour blends would work as well. You can omit the tapioca starch if using any of these options. I don't recommend using almond or coconut flour.
What can I use in place of the applesauce?
My favorite substitution is ¼ cup white beans (like cannellini or great northern) smashed up with 2 tablespoons of water. You can also sub an equal amount of canned pumpkin puree. This will make your cornbread darker, but it tastes just fine. You can also use ¼ cup of a mild tasting oil or melted vegan butter if you're not avoiding oil.
Is cornmeal gluten free?
Technically, yes, but there is a risk of cross contamination during processing. If you have a serious gluten sensitivity, be sure to look for cornmeal labeled as gluten free.
Can this recipe be doubled?
Yes! As written, this recipe makes an 8" x 8" pan of cornbread. When you select the "2x" option in the recipe card, it will show weight/gram measurements for a double batch, which will make enough batter to fill a 9" x 13" baking dish. Check the cornbread at 30 minutes by inserting a toothpick into the center of the cornbread. Your cornbread is done if it comes out clean. If there's still batter on the toothpick, bake another 5-10 minutes and test again.
If you make this recipe, I would love to hear what you think. Please leave your rating and a review below.
I would also love to see a photo of your creation on Instagram. Let's be insta-friends!