Grandma Lulu's Cornbread is a specialty of chef Sara Bradley, who serves this family recipe at her restaurant freight house in Paducah, Ky. The Top Chef Season 16 runner-up uses her grandmother’s decades-old cast iron skillet to prepare this Southern classic made with bacon grease.

Dry Ingredients

  • 3 c       corn meal
  • 1 ½ c    flour
  • 4 t        baking powder
  • 4 t        baking soda
  • 4 T       sugar
  • 4 t        salt

Wet Ingredients

  • 4 e       eggs
  • 2/3 c    bacon grease melted + more for skillet
  • 2 2/3 c buttermilk


  1. Heat oven to 350º F and place cast iron skillet inside to heat while you mix the batter. Start by mixing all the dry ingredients together, then add the wet ingredients.
  2. Remove skillet from oven and grease with additional bacon fat. Dust pan with white grits if available, then pour in batter.
  3. Bake for 20 minutes.