This recipe for chilli cheddar corn muffins is incredibly easy, quick and delicious. It pays homage to the all American Cornbread but plays more on the savoury than the sweet. These muffins are gorgeous as a breakfast with creamy scrambled eggs, on their own or with a delicious blob of melting butter!

chilli cheddar muffins

I used a strong aged cheddar here, but any melting cheese that has a bit of sharpness works well. I must admit that I used a red chilli merely because I like the green , red and yellow together. You can, of course, use any chilli you like depending on your tolerance for heat. The muffins only cook briefly so it’s important that they are chopped pretty small to avoid any shocks. I freeze my chillies whole, as they defrost quickly and leak less juice if they’re chopped while still slightly frozen. This means that your knife hands and eyes are les contaminated with potentially burning juices. The revelation of freezing chillies has a profound effect on my life and I am happy to share it with you!

I used polenta here, which is essentially cornmeal. I like a medium grind if you have the choice. Polenta always seems to be stored high up on a shelf near the pasta and rice, so it can take a while to locate. I find most supermarkets have it though. Aside from these muffins, it’s a handy little carbohydrate to have in the cupboard. Unsurprisingly, buttermilk features in my recipe. I can’t get enough of this stuff! It adds another layer of flavour to this muffin mix, and the combination of buttermilk and spring onion is comforting in the same way a bowl of champ is!

These muffins can be on the table in less than half an hour, and if you want to have them warm for breakfast you can mix up the dry and wet ingredients the night before. That means that the only job in the morning is to combine the two and scoop into cases. Hey presto! A gorgeous breakfast treat!

If you’re planning a breakfast banquet, check out this recipe for chocolate filled buttermilk pancakes for those with a sweet tooth, or Two Tone Granola for the health conscious.


85 grams of melted unsalted butter
2 spring onions
1 red chilli
140 grams of plain white flour
140 grams of polenta/cornmeal
2 teaspoons of baking powder
75 grams of grated cheddar (Plus extra for the tops)
2 eggs
350 ml of buttermilk
2 teaspoons of paprika
1 teaspoon of salt
1/3 teaspoon of black pepper


Preheat the oven to 180 degrees celcius. Line your muffin tin with paper cases or grease well.

Finely chop the spring onion and chilli. I remove the seeds from the chilli but keep them in if you like it hotter!

Beat together the butter, eggs and buttermilk.

Mix together the salt, pepper, paprika, flour, baking powder and polenta/cornmeal.
Add the cheese, chilli and onion. Stir together. Add the wet ingredients and stir until just combined.. not a second longer!

Corn muffin batter

Divide between the twelve cases. An ice cream scoop can be handy here!

Sprinkle on a bit more gated cheese if you wish. Pop into the oven and baking for 14 – 18 minutes.

cheese topping

They’ll be golden brown and risen when they’re done, and a skewer will come out clean.

DSC_0016Allow to cool on a wire rack for a few minutes (to stop you burning your mouth!) and tuck in!

Leave a reply