Cornmeal Spoonbread with Fresh Greens

Preparation info

  • Makes


    • Difficulty


Appears in

Lighter, Quicker, Better: Cooking for the Way We Eat Today

Lighter, Quicker, Better

By Richard Sax and Marie Simmons

Published 2000

  • About

Soft and puffy like a soufflé, spoonbread is one of the family of traditional hot Southern cornmeal breads. Stirring the cornmeal with cold liquid before adding it to boiling liquid helps prevent lumps.


  • 1 pound collard greens, swiss chard, kale, or mustard greens
  • ½ cup chopped onion
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic
  • Salt and Freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 cup yellow cornmeal
  • cups cold water
  • 1 cup lowfat milk
  • 1 large egg yolk
  • ½ cup shredded jack cheese
  • ½ cup corn kernels
  • Dash hot pepper sauce
  • 3 large egg whites


    1. Prepare the greens as described on pages 174-175. Chop the cooked greens fine and set aside.
    2. Combine the onion and oil in a nonstick skillet and cook over medium heat until golden, about 10 minutes. Add the garlic and cook, stirring, for 1 minute. Add the greens and stir to blend. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Set aside.
    3. Stir together the cornmeal and cold water in a bowl. Scald the milk in a medium saucepan. Gradually stir in the cornmeal mixture, stirring until smooth. Cook, stirring, over medium heat until the cornmeal boils and thickens, about 5 minutes. Transfer to a large bowl and stir to cool slightly.
    4. Stir some of the warm cornmeal mixture into the yolk in a small bowl, then stir the yolk mixture back into the cornmeal. Add the greens and onion mixture, the cheese, corn kernels, and hot pepper sauce.
    5. Heat the oven to 375°F. Spray a 3-quart soufflé dish or other deep casserole with nonstick cooking spray.
    6. Whisk the egg whites in a large clean bowl until soft peaks form. Gently fold the whites into the cornmeal mixture until blended. Spoon into the prepared dish and bake until top is slightly puffed and browned, 35 to 40 minutes. Serve immediately as a main dish or as a side dish with poultry or fish.