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Sweet Corn Muffins, Moist ‘n Tender

With Thanksgiving just around the corner, we’ve all been thinking about the dishes that we hope will grace our family dinner table for the eagerly anticipated holidays.  Though sweet corn muffins are a treat our family savors year-round, these moist ‘n tender muffins would be a fabulous addition to either breakfast, lunch, or dinner for the holidays.

Sweet Corn Muffins

We’ve been using this perfect corn muffin recipe for years.  Ten years, to be exact, as my tattered old Cooks Illustrated subscription reminds me.  There has never been another corn muffin (or cornbread or any sort) that has rivaled this recipe.  These muffins will be loved by both grown ups and kiddos, who will beg you to make them again and again.  They aren’t overly dry/crumbly, like so many corn bread/muffin recipes I’ve tried in the past, which is what made these muffins a keeper.

Sweet Corn Muffins

Not only are these sweet corn muffins easy to whip up, they are hearty and stay moist for days, as long as they aren’t overbaked.  They are tender and sweet, yet not at all cakey.  These muffins retain a wholesome cornmeal flavor and rustic quality to them, due to the whole-grain cornmeal and corn kernels, replacing the usual degerminated cornmeal.

Sweet Corn Muffins

Pat on some whipped honey butter, plain butter, or eat em’ just as they are… they are perfectly satisfying with any meal – breakfast, lunch, or dinner!

Sweet Corn Muffins

…or go a bit unconventional and call it dessert 🙂


RECIPE (12 large muffins)


2 cups (10 oz) unbleached all purpose flour
1 cup (4.5 oz) fine ground, whole grain yellow cornmeal
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
2 large eggs
1 cup white sugar
8 TB regular butter, melted
3/4 cup whole sour cream
1/2 cup whole milk
1 1/2 cups frozen corn kernels


Adjust oven rack to lower-middle position.  Heat oven to 400F.  Grease a standard muffin tin.

Whisk flour, cornmeal, baking powder, baking soda in a bowl to combine well.  Set aside.

Whisk eggs in second bowl until well combined and pale light yellow, about 20 seconds.  Add sugar and whisk vigorously until homogenous, about 30 seconds.  Add melted butter in 3 additions, whisking to combine after each addition.  Add half of the sour cream and half of the milk.  Whisk to combine.  Whisk in remaining sour cream and milk until combined.

Combine wet and dry ingredients together, mixing gently with rubber spatula until batter is just combined and evenly moistened; do not over mix. Gently fold in frozen corn kernels.

Using ice cream scoop or large spoon, divide batter evenly among muffin cups, dropping to form mounds.  Do not level or flatten tops of mounds.

Bake until muffins are light golden and toothpick comes out almost clean (few tender crumbs are perfect.)  Bake about 18-19 minutes, rotating tin halfway through baking time.  Actual baking time varies with each oven, but watch closely not to over bake.

Cool muffins in tin for a bit.  Serve warm.

Leftovers keep well in airtight container and can be reheated in microwave or oven.

By chewoutloud, adapted from Cooks Illustrated

*Note:  Whole grain cornmeal has a fuller flavor than regular cornmeal milled from degerminated corn.  To determine what kind of cornmeal a package contains, look at the label.

Add a comment


    • Angelica

    Thank you! These are delicious! I slightly modified mine. I replaced one of the cups of white flour with whole wheat flour. I didn’t have enough baking powder, so instead I used 1 teaspoon and added a pinch more baking soda, which worked fine. I didn’t have whole milk so I used 2% milk. And I used brown sugar instead of white sugar. I’ll definitely be making these again!

      • chewoutloud

      SO happy to hear you liked these, Angelica! They’re still my favorite corn muffins!

    • Marianne

    Can the batter be made 45 minutes to 1 hour before baking?

      • chewoutloud

      Yes, that would be fine, Marianne 🙂

    • linda

    I’m curious if the unbleached flour can be substituted for coconut flour or almond flour?

    Or white sugar for coconut sugar or brown sugar? Just somethings i have and curious if anyone has substituted

      • chewoutloud

      Linda, you can definitely switch the sugar types. I’m guessing a flour switch will also change the texture, so I’d suggest staying with regular flour if possible for best results 🙂

    • Maria

    You mention to grease a muffin tin but I see they are in cupcake wrappers. Will they come out of the cupcake wrappers or did you just put the corn muffins in the warpers after they were baked? thanks

      • chewoutloud

      Hi, Maria! Great question…I only grease the tins if I’m not using cupcake wrappers. If using wrappers, no need to grease. The wrappers are for looks only 🙂 Hope you guys enjoy this and thanks for being here today!

    • Maki

    OMG! I have to report this. I mistakenly used “Semolina Flour” instead of “Corn Meal”…. I don’t know what I was thinking… but they are both yellow at least LOL And guess what? They turned out perfectly delicious as well!!! Corn and Semolina go perfectly well together. Just for your information : )

      • chewoutloud

      LOL, Maki! Glad they turned out yummy 🙂 Thanks for coming over today!

    • Teresa

    I made these a couple of weeks ago along with your Slow Cooker Chili with Black Beans and Corn. Both were absolutely fantastic. Love your recipes.

      • chewoutloud

      Yay, Teresa! So happy to hear it! 🙂 Glad you are enjoying our recipes here, and thanks so much for coming over to let us know! Have a wonderful Christmas season!

    • Rebecca

    Hi, could I reduce the sugar in this recipe and still get a good result?

      • chewoutloud

      Yes, Rebecca, you can 🙂 Enjoy, and thanks for coming over today!

    • Michelle Oelfke

    Hi I would like to know if I could use creamed corn instead of whole kernel corn in the recipe as my granbaby is a toddler and right now he doesn’t like bit and pieces of things in his food.
    Also could I make these into mini size muffins thinking that would be good size for granbaby.
    Thank you for an answer.

      • chewoutloud

      Michelle, if your granbaby isn’t into bits, feel free to completely omit the corn. I wouldn’t use the creamed corn, but if you omit the corn kernels completely, you’ll have a tender muffin without bits of corn 🙂 And yes, mini size muffins are delicious! Just adjust your bake time, though, taking care not to over bake 🙂 Enjoy!

        • Michelle Oelfke

        Thank you for your answers. I just made the muffins following recipe exact to feel it out. Will see what I think and make another batch without corn kernels as a backup. Just took the muffins out and they are huge! LOL cant wait to try one!
        What do you think on baking time for the minis? Like maybe 6-7 minutes? I’m thinking minis are about 1/3rd the size of regular muffins.

          • chewoutloud

          Michelle, I’d say 8-10 minutes on the minis…maybe start checking with a toothpick towards 8 minutes and then check every minute from there. Once toothpick emerges with just a few tender crumbs attached (not totally clean) then they are done 🙂 I know, the regular size muffs are HUGE and sooo moist ‘n yummy! 🙂

            • marvin

            I have a question on the measurements. For example, 2 cups (10 oz) unbleached all purpose flour. Does it mean 2 cups & 10 oz? Or is it 2 cups or 10 oz? (Corn muffin recipe)

              • chewoutloud

              Hi, Marvin! Great question. It’s referring to either 2 cups OR 10oz, for those who have a scale and prefer to weigh their amounts. Hope you love this one as much as we do 🙂 Thanks for being here today.

        • Lori

        Hi-Would cupcake liners work w/ this recipe?

          • chewoutloud

          Yes, Lori! Enjoy and thanks for coming over 🙂

        • Veronica

        Spectacular! Really good, thank you for sharing this recipe. I’m Hispanic and I was looking for corn muffins with real corn… I mean not dry and this are perfect. Thank you.

          • chewoutloud

          You’re welcome, Veronica! We seriously love these muffins, and are so happy you do, too 🙂

        • petit4chocolatier

        Looks delicious! I love the sour cream addition! They look moist and light!

        • Amy Christie

        These look delicious!

        • amy c

        These look delicious!!

        • mmmarzipan

        Hi! These look and sound lovely! As someone who has never celebrated Thanksgiving, could you please tell me what these should be served with? Do you spread them with anything? Are they an accompaniment to a main meal or a snack? Please forgive my ignorance. I recently (crazily) decided to invite some girls over for a “Thanksgiving themed” afternoon. But clearly I have no idea what I am doing! lol. I am searching for nice recipes (particularly ones that can be made in advance, frozen, etc.) and this one looks fab! 🙂

          • chewoutloud

          The corn muffins will be great with any meal you serve, really. They can accompany a meal (sort of in place of dinner bread rolls.) They are great with soups, salads, chilis, etc. We eat them for breakfast, even! Spread with whipped butter, honey butter, or even jam. It’s versatile, so just have fun with it, and enjoy! 🙂

            • mmmarzipan

            They sound wonderful! Thank you so much for your response 🙂

            • mmmarzipan

            Hi! Sorry to bug you again- but I am wondering if using organic yellow corn flour would be ok in place of corn meal? I don’t know if I can find that here…

            • Sharon Sullivan Whitfield

            I am wondering if this recipe could be made gluten free and dairy free. The doctor has just recently put me on this diet and I am just learning. Thanks for your help.

          • chewoutloud

          Here’s what I found on the difference b/w corn flour and corn meal. Sometimes they can mean the same thing, but corn flour can be a fine ground corn. Corn meal is usually medium ground. If you can’t find medium ground corn flour/meal and have to use fine ground corn flour, your muffins will probably just be less textured.

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