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Close up of hot water cornbread in a basket, with one fritter broken in half and spread with butter.

Hot Water Cornbread

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  • Author: Shelly
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 30 minutes
  • Total Time: 45 minutes
  • Yield: 4 servings 1x
  • Category: Breads
  • Method: Stovetop
  • Cuisine: American


Crispy old-fashioned hot water cornbread is so crave-worthy! This fried cornbread recipe is an easy side dish that’s perfect for pairing with your favorite Southern meals.


  • 1 cup cornmeal
  • 1 teaspoon granulated sugar
  • 3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 2 tablespoons butter, room temperature
  • 1 egg
  • 3/4 cup boiling water
  • vegetable oil for frying


  1. In a medium bowl, combine cornmeal, sugar, salt, baking powder, and butter until mixed evenly. Stir in the egg until smooth. Add in the boiling water and stir until combined. Set aside.
  2. Fill a deep skillet or Dutch oven with 1- inch vegetable oil to fry. Heat the oil over medium heat until it reaches 350°F.
  3. Using a 3- tablespoon scoop, portion out the cornmeal mixture and form into thick (1/2- inch) patties. When the oil is hot, place the patties in the pan and fry for 2-3 minutes on each side until golden brown. Transfer to a paper towel lined baking sheet to drain.
  4. Serve warm.


These are a lot like hush puppies and can be served with butter, honey, or jam. They are also great on the side of chili or a cup of soup for dipping. 

Great served as a side with Tex Mex or BBQ, or anytime you would serve cornbread.

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