The root ingredient in all three of these dishes happens to be corn. Are they the same thing? What differentiates them from one another?
The Short Answer:
These are three separate foods, which all use cornbread as a base.
The Long Answer:
To fully understand the difference between cornbread, corn casserole, and corn pudding, you first have to understand cornbread, as that is the unifying factor with all three of these dishes.
Cornbread is particularly popular in southern cooking. The term cornbread applies to any kind of quick bread that contains cornmeal. While we know it as “good ol’ Southern cookin’” the origins of cornbread actually date back to the Native American tribes.
For thousands of years, Native Americans have been using ground corn in their meals, which they referred to as “maize.” The Cherokee, Choktaw, Creek, and Chickasaw tribes shared these recipes with early European settlers.
The colonizers took the recipe for cornmeal and figured out how to turn that into a bread, quite similar to those made out of grains. Cornmeal is made by grinding raw dry corn grains. The resulting bread that could be made from it was cheap and came in many different forms. That made cornbread a popular recipe during the American Civil War when resources were scarce. This is also how grits came into being.
Corn casserole is a dish that mixes cornbread with whole kernel corn, sour cream, butter, and cheese, along with some creamed corn to form a new dish that has cornbread as its base. This is a Southern favorite that makes an excellent side dish, particularly during the holidays.
Corn pudding is another cornbread-based recipe, also known as pudding corn, hoppy glop, country pudding, corn mash, and even “yello’ jello.” Stewed corn and water are added to a thickening agent that includes cornbread to make a gelatinous food product. It’s popular in the Appalachian area of the United States. Sour cream, milk, creamed corn, butter, and sugar are also typically added to the mixture.
Are you planning on serving up some cornbread this holiday season? Any plans to incorporate it into a casserole or pudding? What’s your favorite cornbread-based recipe. Let us know in the comment section below!