Skillet Chili Cornbread Casserole

freshly baked and topped skillet chili cornbread casserole

This Skillet Chili Cornbread Casserole combines the two best comfort foods: chili and cornbread! Delicious, cozy and hearty – this is a meal that everyone will love! 

This recipe is sponsored by Sylvia’s Soul Food. All opinions are my own. Thank you for continuing to support the brands that make OBB possible! 

Y’all, it’s become comfort food city over here on Our Balanced Bowl…population: me + this Skillet Chili Cornbread Casserole!! I’ve always loved chili so much. I remember growing up and eating it regularly throughout the cold winters in the mountains of NC. It was always so warming, cozy and I loved being able to top it with allll the things. 

white bowl with golden spoon of Skillet Chili Cornbread Casserole

I loved it so much (and I’ve mentioned this before on my blog) that we had a chili bar at my wedding. It was in late November so it was freezing cold and I’ve had many people tell me that chili was the PERFECT meal to have. We also had a cornbread bar. My brother brought a loaf that he made and told me that he straight up put like, 2 whole sticks of butter in it. Now that’s dedication! 

We Go Together Like Chili + Cornbread

So, I’ve been wanting to combine my two loves: chili and cornbread for a while now. What better way than to make it all in a big skillet, bake it up and top it with your favorite chili toppings?! So that’s how this Skillet Chili Cornbread Casserole was born. It’s very straight forward, simple, delicious and so hearty! 

package of sylvia's golden cornbread and muffin mix

The cornbread mixture is slightly sweet and adds the perfect balance of flavor to the smoky and savory nature of the chili. The cornbread also adds a WONDERFUL texture on top. It helps soak up some of the chili goodness on the bottom so it stays SO soft, moist and decadent. My husband commented that sometimes cornbread can be so grainy and chewy but this particular brand stays fluffy and soft. 

batter in glass bowl of sylvia's cornbread mixture

For this particular recipe, I used the same Easy Homemade Chili recipe that’s been in my family for years (the same one that has been on the blog AND that I used at my wedding). It serves about 6 people. I basically made it in a pot like I normally would, added enough to a 10 INCH cast iron skillet to fill it up about ¾ (around 6-ish cups of chili) of the way full and then I had about ¾-1 of a quart sized mason jar leftover for lunches for the next couple of days! Win win! 

close up of the garnishes

It’s so hearty, filling and delicious. So let’s get into how to make it! 

Ingredients You Need for Skillet Chili Cornbread Casserole: 

Chili Layer: 

  • Diced yellow onion 
  • Grass fed beef or ground turkey 
  • Chili powder, cumin, salt, cayenne, paprika, black pepper 
  • Olive oil 
  • Light red kidney beans 
  • Dark red kidney beans 
  • Chili beans 
  • Stewed tomatoes 
  • Diced tomatoes 

Cornbread Layer: 

  • 2 (8.5 oz) packs of Sylvia’s Soul Food Golden Cornbread Mix
  • ⅔ cup whole milk 
  • 2 slightly beaten eggs 

Other: 

  • 10 inch cast iron skillet 

Toppings: 

  • Green onions 
  • Cheese
  • Sour cream (or greek yogurt) 
  • Cilantro 
  • Jalapenos 

How to Make Skillet Chili Cornbread Casserole: 

Begin by making the chili. Add a drizzle of olive oil to a large pot and let it warm up. Dice the yellow onion, mince the garlic and add it to the pot and let it cook for 1-2 minutes. Next, add in the ground beef (or ground turkey) and cook that fully. Once that is done, add in all of the chili seasonings and mix well to combine. 

spoonful of chili in pot

Next, add in all of the cans listed above. I always make sure not to drain the liquid from any of the cans to ensure that the chili isn’t dry. If you have the time, cook this on the stovetop, on low/medium heat for 45 minutes to 1 hour. Taste and adjust seasoning if necessary (add more salt, more heat if you need to!)

Once it’s done, preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Add enough of the cooked chili to the cast iron skillet to fill it up ¾ of the way full. I added about 6 cups worth of chili to my 10 inch cast iron skillet. See photo below for reference: 

chili in 10 inch cast iron skillet

In a medium size bowl, add both packages of the cornbread mix. Mix well with the whole milk and the slightly bean eggs until combined. If the mixture feels too dry, add a splash more milk until a smooth (but not overly liquid) consistency is reached. Gently spoon on the cornbread mix, covering the pan of chili. See photo below: 

cornbread layer on top of chili layer in 10 inch skillet

Bake for 35-40 minutes, or until you can insert a toothpick into the cornbread and it comes out clean. You want to make sure the cornbread layer is fully cooked through! 

freshly baked, not garnished Skillet Chili Cornbread Casserole

Let it cool in the skillet for about 5 or so minutes and then you can begin to top it with your favorite garnishes! 

Notes on Skillet Chili Cornbread Casserole: 

  • This recipe would work awesome with leftover chili! Just make sure you have about 6 cups worth of chili to add to the skillet.
  • I used a 10 inch cast iron skillet for this recipe. I would highly recommend using this size – as a bigger skillet might result in a drier casserole.
  • You will most likely have leftover chili from what you cook for this recipe. Store in the fridge and eat for leftovers OR top this casserole with an extra chili layer once you’ve plated it. Yum!

side view of white bowl of Skillet Chili Cornbread Casserole

I so hope y’all enjoy this extra cozy Fall dinner recipe as much as I did! 

Did you love this recipe? Here are a few others you might enjoy: 

Chipotle Sweet Potato Chili 

One Skillet Taco Chili Mac and Cheese 

Sweet Potato Tatertot Casserole 

Chicken Pot Pie with Cheesy Everything Bagel Spiced Biscuits 

Thank you so much for following along here, friends! Want to see more? Be sure to follow ourbalancedbowl on Instagram and tag me with your photo if you end up making a recipe! You can also post a photo of your recipe to the Our Balanced Bowl Facebook page! Like a recipe that you saw? Follow me on Pinterest here! I always love to see your re-creations! If you do make a recipe, it would make my whole day if you were to rate and comment so I can get your feedback! Lots of love! – Haylie

5 from 6 votes
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Skillet Chili Cornbread Casserole

Course Main Course
Cuisine American
Keyword chili cornbread casserole, easy homemade chili, fall comfort foods, skillet chili, skillet chili cornbread, sweet cornbread
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour 30 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 40 minutes
Servings 6 people
Author Haylie

Ingredients

Easy Homemade Chili

  • 1 medium yellow onion, diced
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 lb ground beef or ground turkey
  • 2 tbsp chili powder
  • 1 tbsp cumin
  • 1 tbsp Salt
  • 1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 1/2 tsp paprika
  • 1/2 tsp ground black pepper
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 14 oz. cans of light kidney beans (do not drain!)
  • 2 14 oz. cans of dark kidney beans (do not drain!)
  • 2 cans chili beans (do not drain)
  • 1 can stewed tomatoes
  • 1 can diced tomatoes

Cornbread Layer

  • 2 (8.5 oz) packages of Sylvia's Golden Sweet Cornbread Mix
  • 2/3 cup whole milk
  • 2 slightly beaten eggs

Other:

  • 10 inch cast iron skillet
  • garnishes: jalapeno, sour cream, cilantro, chives, cheese, etc

Instructions

Chili Layer

  1. Add olive oil to a large pot and cook onion and garlic until fragrant and translucent (2-3 minutes).

  2. Add ground beef and mix in well. Cook until done. Add in seasonings and mix well. 

  3. Add in cans of beans and tomatoes - make sure NOT to drain any of the liquid from the can - this is very important in making sure your chili doesn't turn out dry. 

  4. Cook on the stovetop high for 45 minutes to 1 hour. Taste and add more seasoning if needed.

  5. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Add about 6 cups of the cooked chili to the 10 inch cast iron skillet - to where it is about ¾ of the way full. 

Cornbread Layer

  1. In a medium size bowl, mix together the two packets of the Sylvia’s Golden Sweet Cornbread Mix along with the ⅔ cup of milk and the 2 slightly beaten eggs. If it’s too dry, add a splash more milk until you get a smooth (but not super liquidy consistency). 

  2. Gently spoon the cornbread mixture right on top of the chili, carefully using the back of the spoon to smooth it out over the entire chili layer. 

  3. Bake at 400 degrees for 35-40 minutes or until you can insert a toothpick into the cornbread layer and it comes out clean. You want to make sure the cornbread layer is fully cooked through! 

  4. Let cool in the skillet for 5 or so minutes and then garnish with your favorite toppings! Enjoy! 

Recipe Notes

For this particular recipe, I used a 10 inch cast iron skillet. 

I did have leftovers from the pot of chili I made. Store those in the fridge and keep for lunches for the next few days - you know that chili leftovers are always the best! 

If you are using another type of cornbread mix, just make sure it is 8.5 oz per package and you follow the instructions on that package. 

15 comments / Add your comment below

  1. 5 stars
    You know I’m allll over this Haylie! Cornbread and chili definitely go so good together and I love this skillet presentation. It’s raining here today and I could seriously go for a huge serving right about now! Love it!

  2. 5 stars
    I love any meal cooked up in a skillet, and this combination is just straight up genius! The cornbread on top is such a great idea. Also love your commitment to chili and cornbread. Sounds like a wedding meal I would love!

  3. 5 stars
    Haylie, I share your love of chili and cornbread – almost anyway, I didn’t have it at my wedding – that’s so sweet! Having them together in the same dish is brilliant! I’ll take alllll the toppings too! Your photos are absolutely stunning, my friend.

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