Try our Pancetta Cornbread-Pane di Mais con Pancetta this holiday. Our all-time favorite cornbread recipe from scratch made even better with the addition of delicious pancetta. So easy to make and it goes great with any meal.
Do you ever just crave cornbread? Usually I make Grandmother's Buttermilk Cornbread. ((not my grandmother, but a great recipe!). When you try this pancetta cornbread (pane di mais con pancetta), you will soon start to crave it.
I wish I could say it was something you try once and you could live without for a while because it was too rich or too spicy or too something.
This is one of those breads that you will want to make not just for a holiday.
The funny thing is, I usually think of cornbread when I think of Thanksgiving. Mostly because cornbread is one of my favorite things to make for the big holiday. I also like to make cornbread just so I can make homemade cornbread stuffing, and then I can overindulge on one of my favorite parts of the meal, and it's truly just my fault!
Pancetta Cornbread-Pane di Mais con Pancetta
A little info on the word mais: both mais and granturco mean corn in Italian. This isn't a typical cornbread you will find in Italy, but it is one that I have impressed my Italian family with!
My mother-in-law loves the texture and how how easy it is to whip up! She would most likely make something yeasted like this cornmeal bread.
It's been an insanely busy time here with the kids and some family in town. My daughter celebrated her confirmation, and it was a very big thing for our family.
The confirmation was almost like celebrating a baptism or a communion. It is all about the party afterward and being with family and enjoying lots of incredible
An Italian Thanksgiving Menu
This is our first recipe in our Italian Inspired Thanksgiving Menu series. It was time to share delicious Italian Thanksgiving recipes to inspire you! Don’t miss our Best Ever Italian Sausage Stuffing and our Instant Pot Mashed Potatoes (so easy to make!).
Another Italian main dish to try is our Roasted Butternut Squash and Pumpkin Lasagna. Italian Cranberry Sauce is too delicious to miss! A fabulous Italian inspired dessert is our Amaretti Almond Pumpkin Pie...it’s so good!!
This is our first recipe in our Italian Inspired Thanksgiving Menu series. Stay tuned for more delicious Italian Thanksgiving recipes to inspire you!
How to keep cornbread from sticking in the pan?
You have to properly season your skillet. After you have cleaned it you have to season it again. Another tip is to preheat your cast iron pan before baking cornbread in it. I really like to use baking spray. I find that it consistently coats the whole pan so their is no sticking at all!
Should you let cornbread cool before removing from pan?
Yes, let it cool a bit before removing. We do like our cornbread still a bit warm so the butter will melt on it!
Can you make cornbread in a regular skillet?
I sometimes make cornbread in a square baking pan. I like to get the perfect squares to serve. They’re good but just not same as baking in cast iron skillet. A cast iron skillet will give you a crusty, crunchy cornbread.
What can I substitute pancetta with?
Well, bacon, of course! Just use whatever is your favorite bacon. It will still be delicious and irresistible!
PIN for later!
Pancetta Cornbread-Pane di Mais con Pancetta Final Tips:
This cornbread is so easy to put together and as I mentioned earlier, there is no need to save it just for Thanksgiving! If you don't have a cast iron pan, you could use your oven proof skillet or bake it in a deep dish pie plate or a square baking pan.
And if you don't have any pancetta around or don't feel like buying it, bacon is absolutely fine to use in this recipe. Just remember, it may not be used as a part of the meal. The cornbread may become the meal once everyone takes a bite of it and sees how delicious it is!!
How do you reheat leftover cornbread?
You could cut any leftover of your cornbread into squares (serving size that you like). Line a baking sheet with parchment or aluminum paper. Cover the cornbread with foil paper so it won't brown. Heat it 325 degree F oven for 10-15 minutes, or until the cornbread is warmed all the way.
What's the best way to freeze cornbread?
The best way to freeze leftover cornbread is to wrap each slice in plastic wrap each serving in cling film before placing them into one larger freezer bag. Place the wrapped pieces in a zipped lock freezer bag (squeeze out the air before sealing the bag).
Place the bag in the freezer and freeze for up to 3 months.
You may also love Heather'ssweet brown butter cornbread . If you're looking for something baked with cornmeal that's amazing, you have to try this savory corn rolls.
Originally published May 2016 and updated for content October 2019.
Pancetta Cornbread-Pane di Mais con Pancetta
- 1/2 cup of pancetta diced
- 1 small onion chopped in small pieces
- 1 3/4 cups of cornmeal
- 1/2 cup of all-purpose flour
- 2 Tablespoons of brown sugar
- 1 teaspoon of salt
- 2 teaspoons of baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon of baking soda
- 1 cup of buttermilk
- 1/3 cups of sour cream
- 2 large eggs
- 3 tablespoons of salted butter cut into large chunks
- Preheat oven to 400° F. Place an 8 to 10-inch cast-iron skillet in the oven.
- Heat a small frying pan over a medium heat. Add a tablespoon of butter and melt. Add the onions and saute until softened, about 2 minutes. Saute for another 3 minutes, until the pancetta is very lightly browned. Turn off the heat and set aside.
- In a small saucepan, bring 3/4 cups of water to a boil. Remove from heat and pour in 1/2 cup of the cornmeal. Stir rapidly until you have a warm mush.
- In a medium bowl, blend the remaining corn meal, flour, brown sugar, salt, baking powder, and baking soda.
- Add the buttermilk, sour cream, and eggs to the cornmeal mixture and mix well with a spatula. Fold in the pancetta and onions.
- Once the oven has reached the desired temperature, remove the pan from the oven. Add the remaining 3 tablespoons of butter to the pan and swirl to melt and grease the pan. Pour any excess butter into the cornmeal mixture.
- Fold the pancetta and onions into the cornmeal mixture and stir until just incorporated with a wooden spoon. Don’t overwork the batter or the cornbread will be tough.
- Carefully add the batter to the hot pan and smooth out the top. Bake for 20 minutes or until golden brown (check it with a toothpick in the center, it should come out clean-baking time will vary depending on the size of the pan you used). Serve warm.
I made this today, it is delicious! I think maybe goof proof because I slightly changed few things...I used a different type and size pan-a rimmed small cookie sheet - and I used whole milk ricotta instead of buttermilk and sour cream. Also instead of pancetta I didn't have, I used pork sausage. Yours probably baked higher/lighter, mine looks like a pizza, but everything worked! My family is from central Italy and there is an old recipe very much like yours except they use ricotta because that is what they had in their region. They call it torta di granturco in padella. I couldn't find my moms recipe and this was the closest and very tasty. I'm excited to try some of your banana bread recipes. Thank you!
Hi Marianicole-Thank you for writing me and letting me know! That's so cool that you used ricotta and it turned out so nice! Torta di granturco in padella ...I do use ricotta and cornmeal together and make sweet cakes (I have one on the blog with lemon and one with raspberries). Would love to try it as a savory idea! I hope you do try the banana bread recipes (the sourdough discard one is great!). Happy Baking!! XX
How would this recipe be if I made it a day in advance? Does it taste as good if it is rewarmed the next day?
Hi I find that any cornbread recipe is best eaten the day it's baked. If you have time to make it the day of, it only takes 20 mins to bake. If you have to make it the day before, you could reheat it . Hope that helps!