We are smack dab in the center of my favorite season, FALL. The autumn in Santa Barbara has a golden warmth and crisp air, all set against crazy sunrises and sunsets. It's an invigorating place to be! I much prefer it to the heavy grey clouds and drizzle of Portland . . .

As the November food magazines come piling through my little green mailbox, I've been percolating a few ideas for Thanksgiving. I can't help it. The side dishes, twists and potential for reinvention is tantalizing. This Cornbread with Apples & Onions seemed to be made from the same Autumnal ingredients my favorite stuffing is comprised of, just self-contained, in my Mother's ancient cast iron skillet.

My family needed a morale boost, so I made it yesterday -- a bit early for Thanksgiving table -- but no less satisfying and divine. Dripping in sweet/soft onions and apples, married with the grit of cornmeal and finally balanced with a glut of butter this cornbread is INSANE.

Cornbread with Caramelized Apples, Onions and Fresh Thyme
adapted from Bon Appetit

¾ cup plus 2 Tbsp. unsalted butter
medium onions, thinly sliced
1 teaspoon kosher salt plus more
Freshly ground black pepper
medium apples, thinly sliced
4 tablespoons sugar, divided
3 teaspoons fresh thyme leaves, divided
1½ cups cornmeal
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
large eggs
1½ cups buttermilk

  • Preheat oven to 400°. Melt butter in an cast-iron or other heavy skillet over medium-high heat. Pour all but 2 Tbsp. butter into a small bowl; set aside.
  • Add onion to butter in skillet, season with salt and pepper, and cook, stirring occasionally, until onion is softened and beginning to brown, about 4 minutes. Add apples, 2 Tbsp. sugar, and 2 tsp. thyme and cook, stirring often, until apples are softened, about 4 minutes. Transfer onion mixture to a medium bowl and reserve skillet.
  • Whisk cornmeal, flour, baking powder, 1 tsp. salt, and remaining 2 Tbsp. sugar in a large bowl. Gradually whisk in eggs, buttermilk, and ¾ cup reserved melted butter until smooth (no lumps should remain). Fold in half of onion mixture and scrape batter into reserved skillet. Top with remaining onion mixture and remaining 1 tsp. thyme.
  • Bake cornbread until golden brown and a tester inserted into the center comes out clean, 30–40 minutes.


  1. Gorgeous. I must try it.

  2. Oh I love that word, autumnal, how it tumbles of the tongue. Although we are already reaching summer temperatures here in Australia I don't think a slice of this delicious looking cornbread would go astray at all.
    Thank you for sharing.

  3. By the looks of it, that really should taste good.

  4. Very tempting treat. Thanks for sharing this wonderful recipe.


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