Pumpkin Cornbread with a brown sugar walnut topping takes classic cornbread and turns it into a tasty Fall dessert for Thanksgiving and Christmas. Add pumpkin puree, pumpkin spice seasoning, and milk to Jiffy corn muffin mix to create this delicious and easy twist on plain cornbread! Serve at holiday dinners or enjoy as a cozy Fall treat any day of the week.
This easy Pumpkin Cornbread recipe is full of pumpkin spice flavor and topped with swirls of a sugary walnut topping. It's more moist and cakelike than traditional cornbread so you won't be getting a dry cornbread here!
Autumn-inspired pumpkin cornbread is fantastic side dish served with cozy dinners, like roasted chicken, turkey, soup, pork chops and more. It also makes a great dessert for Thanksgiving dinner. We especially love it as a side with classic chili, pumpkin chili and barley soup.
You're going to love how easy it is to make my pumpkin cornbread with just a few simple ingredients. The trick for keeping it simple is to use Jiffy corn muffin mix, plus canned or homemade pumpkin puree and pumpkin pie spice blend. I have instructions below for baking pumpkin cornbread in the oven or air frying (which takes half the time!).
To make pumpkin cornbread you need:
- Jiffy corn muffin mix
- Pumpkin puree: use canned pumpkin for ease or a homemade puree.
- Pumpkin spice mix: this is my favorite store bought brand or you can use a homemade combination of cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, and cloves.
- Milk: any type of dairy or non-dairy milk works.
- Topping: the topping is made with crushed or chopped walnuts mixed with brown sugar
We are keeping this recipe super simple by using Jiffy corn muffin mix. But if you have a homemade cornbread recipe and want to use that instead, go for it!
How To Make Pumpkin Cornbread
STEP 1: Grease a pie plate or baking dish generously with butter or cooking spray. In a large bowl, mix the pumpkin puree, pumpkin spice mix, milk and egg.
STEP 2: Add the corn muffin mix and whisk together until combined.
STEP 3: Pour into the pie plate and let sit for 3 minutes while making the walnut topping. In a small bowl, combine the walnuts and brown sugar. Toss until the walnuts are coated with the brown sugar.
STEP 4: Sprinkle the topping over the cornbread batter in any pattern you'd like or no pattern at all. *If cooking in the air fryer, don't add the topping yet. I sprinkle mine in a swirl. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes, until a toothpick comes out clean. If cooking in your air fryer, set the time to 10 minutes, adding the walnut topping during the last 5 minutes. Check the cornbread with a toothpick when the 10 minutes is up, and continue to cook in 2 minute increments if it's not fully cooked.
Let the pumpkin cornbread cool for at least 5 minutes before slicing and serving. Enjoy!
How To Store Pumpkin Cornbread
Pumpkin cornbread should be covered and stored at room temperature for up to 5 days. It can be frozen for up to 6 months when stored in freezer safe storage containers. This makes it a great dessert to make ahead during the busy holiday baking and cooking rush.
What To Serve With Pumpkin Cornbread
- Soup: slow cooker carrot soup, tasty pumpkin soup, chicken and rice soup, fall cabbage soup, hearty vegetable soup and barley soup are great with pumpkin cornbread.
- Pasta: fall-inspired pasta dishes go well with a side of cornbread, such as acorn squash pasta, creamy pumpkin pasta and noodles with garlic cream sauce.
- Meats: roasted chicken and turkey, cheddar barbecue meatloaf, venison roast and lamb roast pair well with this recipe.
- Stews: pair with Middle Eastern stew, slow cooker sausage casserole, crockpot pepper steak and lamb meatballs with veggies. Or witches brew stew on Halloween!
- Make pumpkin cornbread muffins. Follow the recipe as written, but use a muffin tin instead of a pie plate. Bake for less time, about 10-15 minutes.
- Use homemade cornbread mix instead of Jiffy.
- Use butternut or acorn squash puree or even mashed sweet potatoes instead of canned pumpkin puree.
- Make it dairy-free by using almond milk, oat milk, soy milk or lactose-free milk.
- Make it egg-free by using a flax egg.
- Substitute the walnuts with almonds, hazelnuts, or even dried cranberries.
- Use a cinnamon honey butter topping or cinnamon maple topping.
The pumpkin spice seasoning blend can be substituted with ¾ teaspoon cinnamon, ¼ teaspoon nutmeg, ¼ teaspoon ginger and ⅛ teaspoon cloves.
Yes, make your own pumpkin puree using a fresh pumpkin following these instructions.
Sure! Cornbread uses basic ingredients: flour, cornmeal, sugar, baking powder, salt, milk, vegetable oil and eggs. If you have all of these in your kitchen, follow a trusted recipe and then use in place of the Jiffy corn muffin mix.
Pumpkin Cornbread (with brown sugar walnut topping)
- Grease a pie plate or baking dish generously with butter or cooking spray. In a large bowl, mix the pumpkin puree, pumpkin spice mix, milk and egg. Add the corn muffin mix and whisk together until combined.
- Pour batter into the pie plate or baking dish and let sit for 3 minutes while making the walnut topping. In a small bowl, combine the walnuts and brown sugar. Toss until the walnuts are coated with the brown sugar.
- Oven Baking: Sprinkle the topping over the cornbread batter. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes in an oven preheated to 400℉.
- Air Frying: If cooking in your air fryer, set the temperature to 350℉ and the time to 10 minutes. Place the baking dish in the air fryer, adding the walnut topping during the last 5 minutes. Check the cornbread with a toothpick when the 10 minutes is up, and continue to cook in 2 minute increments if it's not fully cooked.
- Let cool 5 minutes before serving.