The Pioneer Woman Tasty Kitchen
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Beans and Cornbread

4.17 Mitt(s) 6 Rating(s)6 votes, average: 4.17 out of 56 votes, average: 4.17 out of 56 votes, average: 4.17 out of 56 votes, average: 4.17 out of 56 votes, average: 4.17 out of 5

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Level: Easy

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This is an easy recipe for basic beans and Texas-style cornbread, which is the only kind of cornbread I like. It’s grainy in texture, flatter, and very crispy and brown on the outside, with no hint of sweetness at all.

Beans and cornbread. They just go together.

Ingredients

  • FOR THE BEANS:
  • 4 cups Dry Pinto Beans
  • 4 slices Thick Bacon (can Also Use Salt Pork, Or Ham Hock, Or Diced Ham)
  • 1 teaspoon Salt
  • 2 teaspoons Ground Black Pepper
  • FOR THE CORNBREAD:
  • ¼ cups Plus 2 Tablespoons Shortening
  • 1 cup Yellow Corn Meal
  • ½ cups All-purpose Flour
  • 1 teaspoon Salt
  • 1 cup Buttermilk
  • ½ cups Milk
  • 1 whole Egg
  • 1 Tablespoon Baking Powder
  • ½ teaspoons Baking Soda

Preparation

For the beans: Rinse beans in cool water; pour them into a large pot, cover with water by 2 to 3 inches. Slice the bacon into 1-inch thick pieces and throw it into the pot. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and cover. Simmer for 2 hours, or until beans are tender. Add additional hot water to the pot as needed. Beans should have a thick broth. Toward end of cooking time, add salt and pepper and season to taste. Don’t over-salt. For a variety try adding chili powder, garlic or Tabasco. Serve in a bowl with cornbread. Can be served with small bowls of grated cheese, chopped onions, chopped fresh jalapenos, sour cream, and/or cilantro.

For the cornbread: Preheat oven to 450 F. Heat shortening over medium heat in an iron skillet (10-12 inch size), muffin pan, or other oven safe pan. Combine cornmeal, flour, and salt in a mixing bowl. In a separate bowl, combine buttermilk, milk, and egg. Mix the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients. Add baking powder and baking soda. Stir to combine. Add ¼ cup of the melted shortening, stirring constantly. Pour the batter into the hot pan, smoothing the surface with a spatula. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes or until golden brown on top.

3 Comments

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Lynette Cassel on 6.8.2014

I was interested in this recipe, since I do like a good pinto bean. The recipe calls for bacon and then does nothing with the bacon. When does it go in the beans, do I cook it separately and add to beans later?

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Brioche on 6.3.2010

I’m with txbikergirl. The cornbread is amazing. I love love love cornbread, but I had never made it without sugar. until now. I may never go back to the sweet stuff.

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txbikergirl on 11.17.2009

THE CORNBREAD ROCKS! Oh, beans are always a great meal… but I am focusing on the cornbread here.

My hubby hails from Texas, and living there now I have come to the realization that beans and cornbread are a basic diet staple. Hubby prefers a real dense corny bread, whereas I like a light and fluffy cornbread… and this recipe marries the two wonderfully! It is very corny but yet comes out fluffy enough to please me… and I will cook/bake anything in an iron skillet so that really pulled me in as nothing done in a seasoned skillet ever comes out bad.

We use a course cornmeal instead of the basic stuff, because we like the texture, and sometimes I add a 1/2 can of creamed corn soup to the bread recipe to give it even more heartiness. I use a medium size skillet so my cornbread is quite thick as I like it that way.

So even if you want to try your own beans, purple hull peas here in Texas, try out this cornbread recipe and you won’t be sad. Mine turns out really dark, more brown than golden, but it is still soft and wonderful inside.

Oh, and after dinner if you have any leftover bread then drizzle some honey over a piece and eat it for dessert. to DIE for.

6 Reviews

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PAM BRADLEY on 4.16.2014

I’m with you on the whole sweet cornbread thing, Ree! I’m from Louisiana, and we eat the same kind you do! Sweet cornbread is like cake! if I want cake, I’ll EAT cake! I don’t get it……..but to each their own. I was just raised on the grainy, NON-sweet, cooked-in-an-iron-skillet kind…and it’s the ONLY kind for me! Yummo!!

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Janee on 1.9.2014

It sounded good so thought I’d give it a try. Meh. The amount of salt was more than I would normally use so I cut it by almost half and it was still a bit much. I added only 1/4tsp pepper. Wow, 2tsp? Was this a typo? Then I added unions, garlic, and a bit of salsa… Better. I baked the cornbread to recipe with the exception of using butter instead if shortening in the batter and only a tsp of shortening in the pan when I heated it up. Should have used butter there too, my son could not eat it because of the grease on the bottom of the bread. Seriously, reduce the amount of fat and use butter. You can taste the baking powder so I’d recommend cutting that a smidge too.

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DCourtney on 2.16.2012

I must admit, I have been so scared to fix beans like my mom used to fix me when I was younger and cannot believe how easy it is! I used prepared pinto beans (and added a can of northern whites in with it). My daughter is helping fix it and just brings back so many memories of how my mom fixed it. Thanks for sharing!

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applepail on 7.14.2010

This is just for the cornbread… It’s fantastic! My favorite cornbread ever.

Some tweaks I like: I usually only use about 1/4 cup total shortening – half butter (on the pan) and half bacon grease (in the bread). YUM. I also like to throw in a cup of frozen roasted corn kernels 2 or 3 tablespoons of sugar because I like my cornbread sweet.

SO GOOD!

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racergal3 on 5.20.2010

My in-laws gave me a 20-pound bag of dried pinto beans. I make these a lot. I usually freeze some and make Ree’s refried beans recipe with part of a batch of these. This makes a lot… but then again, I have 20 pounds of beans to get through…

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