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These golden-brown hush puppies are crispy on the outside and the moist, buttery inside practically melts in your mouth. 

Made with buttermilk, this hush puppy recipe has sweet Vidalia onion and fresh summer corn, plus a little chopped green onion and diced jalapeño for extra flavor!

fried hush puppies in a paper lined basket with old bay sauce.

Ohh, hush puppies make me think of fish fries and summer barbecues — yum! These fritters of goodness pair especially well with fried catfish and a side of coleslaw.

And, you can’t go wrong serving them with Shrimp on the Barbie and Corn Salsa. Hush Puppies go so well with all kinds of seafood.

Then there are the barbecue foods I love! Hush Puppies are fantastic with my Slow Cooker Country Style Ribs and a side of Easy Baked Beans. Another good one is my recipe for Smoked Brisket with some Red Potato Salad.

Now, if those don’t have you starving and ready for some yummy hush puppies, I don’t know what will!

ingredients for hush puppies on a table.

Key ingredients & substitutions for Hush Puppies

  • Peanut or canola oil — These two are my favorite choice for flavor when frying, however you may use vegetable oil as well.
  • Yellow cornmeal Either white or yellow would work, but you are welcome to use the white cornmeal. It is just a bit sweeter.
  • Self-rising flour See my note in the FAQs for making your own self-rising flour.
  • Salt and Sugar — The balance of sweet and salt is an important part of baking. But if you like it a little sweeter, you can add a bit more.
  • Vidalia onion — Diced small is best so they mix in well with the dough.
  • Fresh corn kernels — Use fresh cut from cob kernels for the best taste result. You can use either white or yellow corn.
  • Green onions — Thinly sliced green onions add a mild flavor and gorgeous color. You can use scallions or chives here, too.
  • Jalapeño — Finely chop the peppers and be sure to remove the seeds so no one gets a big bit of heat.
  • Buttermilk — Buttermilk adds tangy flavor to the recipe and the acid counteracts the baking soda in baking recipes. Plus, it is a creamier option than just plain milk.
  • Egg — I use large room temperature eggs that are well beaten.
  • Cheddar cheese — Cheddar is better, but you can switch out the cheeses for half gouda or jack cheese. Pepper Jack is great for an added kick!

Special equipment needed

How to make homemade Hush Puppies

STEP 1 | Preheating the oil

Before getting started making the hush puppy batter, you will want to preheat the oil. Then get started as you watch the temperature climb.

tips

  • The best oils for frying are those with high heat points. Vegetable, peanut, and canola oils work best.
  • If you are concerned about regulating the temperature of the oil, chop all your veggies and prep your batter first and let it sit on the counter while you watch the temperature of your oil.

combining chopped vegetables (corn, onion, jalapeno) with dry ingredients for hush puppies.

STEP 2 | Mixing the dry ingredients

In a large bowl, start with measuring out the dry ingredients and putting them in. Whisk that mixture to incorporate.

Then you can begin dicing, slicing, and chopping your veggies to add to the flour mixture in the large bowl. Add them right on top of the dry ingredients and stir to combine.

mixing together wet ingredients for hush puppy batter.

STEP 3 | Mix in the wet ingredients

Now, grab another bowl and mix the wet ingredients — the buttermilk, egg, and cheese.

Pour the wet mixture into the dry ingredient and veggie bowl. Give it a good stir to mix all the homemade hush puppy batter together.

tips

  • Increase your sugar to taste for an extra sweet cornbread flavor.
  • The temperature of the ingredients matters. For best results, bring your egg and buttermilk to room temperature before you start making the batter.

STEP 4 | Frying the hush puppies

Use a spoon dipped in a little water to carefully slide the batter into the hot oil. These fry up quickly in small batches and will disappear almost as fast when you serve them on your dinner table!

Fry each batch until it is golden brown. Then be sure to try one and ensure the inside is just right and cooked through.

fried hush puppies draining on paper towels.

STEP 5 | Drain the crunchy hush pups

Line a baking sheet with paper towels, then take each puppy out of the oil with a spider strainer and allow them to drain. Then you can remove the batches to a serving plate — that is if they make it there before being devoured!

Now, you’re ready to serve these scrumptious cornmeal treats. Enjoy!

fried hush puppies in a paper lined basket with old bay sauce.

Serving suggestion

Dipping sauces are a must for the men in my life. So you may want to try any of the following:

Frequently asked questions

What if I do not have any self-rising flour?

You can make your own batch by combining baking soda and salt. For every cup of all-purpose flour, you will need 1 1/2 teaspoons of baking powder and 1/4 teaspoon of salt. Whisk it all together and voila! You have self-rising flour!

Does the oil have to completely cover the hush puppies?

These puppies will rise to the top of the oil as they are cooked, so don’t worry about that. If you do not have enough oil to cover, you can flip each one as the side gets golden brown.

Can I make these hush puppies gluten-free?

You can make these gluten-free by using the Gluten-Free Flour Mix of your choice. And be sure you grate your own cheeses.

Behind the recipe: Southern Hush Puppies

Did you know that the hush puppies recipe actually was first attributed to hunters who fried up a basic cornmeal mixture to feed to their howling hounds on hunting trips? “Hush, puppies!”

Later on, these quick-fried delicacies became a popular side dish at Southern fish fries and barbecue dinners. I’d say hush puppies sure have come a long way since colonial times when the recipe was simply deep-fried cornmeal and water!

Please share!

Your shares are how this site grows and I appreciate each one. Do you know someone who would enjoy this recipe? I’d love it if you would share it on Facebook or on your favorite Pinterest board!

fried hush puppies in a paper lined basket with old bay sauce.

Hush Puppies

Hushpuppies. Little buttermilk cornbread bites with sweet Vidalia onion, fresh summer corn, and diced jalapeño for extra flavor.
4.56 from 29 votes
Prep Time 15 mins
Cook Time 30 mins
Total Time 45 mins
Course Bread
Cuisine American
Servings 6 servings
Calories 228 kcal

Ingredients
  

  • Peanut or canola oil for frying
  • 1 cup yellow cornmeal
  • 3/4 cup self-rising flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon sugar
  • 1/2 small Vidalia onion diced
  • 1 ear fresh corn kernels cut from cob
  • 4 green onions thinly sliced
  • 1 jalapeño finely chopped
  • 1 cup buttermilk
  • 1 large egg beaten
  • 1/4 cup grated cheddar cheese

Instructions
 

  • Preheat 2 inches oil in a deep-fryer to 375 degrees.
  • In a large bowl, combine cornmeal, flour, salt, sugar, Stir in diced veggies and cheese.
  • In another bowl, stir together buttermilk, egg, and cheese. Add to dry ingredients, stirring well to combine.
  • Carefully slide batter into hot oil by tablespoons, working in batches of 4-6 hushpuppies at a time. Cook the hushpuppies for 3 to 5 minutes, or until golden brown. Test to make sure the first one is cooked through.
  • Drain hushpuppies on a paper towel-lined baking sheet. Continue process until all the batter is used up.

Notes

  • The best oils for frying are those with high heat points. Vegetable, peanut, and canola oils work best.
  • If you are concerned about regulating the temperature of the oil, chop all your veggies and prep your batter first and let it sit on the counter while you watch the temperature of your oil.
  • Increase your sugar to taste for an extra sweet cornbread flavor.
  • The temperature of the ingredients matters. For best results, bring your egg and buttermilk to room temperature before you start making the batter.

Nutrition

Serving: 1gCalories: 228kcalCarbohydrates: 36gProtein: 8gFat: 6gSaturated Fat: 2gPolyunsaturated Fat: 4gCholesterol: 37mgSodium: 495mgFiber: 3gSugar: 5g
Keyword hushpuppies
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was.
sheila thigpen in her kitchen

About Sheila Thigpen

Recipe Developer, Food Photographer, Food Writer

Sheila Thigpen is the publisher of Life, Love, and Good Food — a Southern food blog — and the author of Easy Chicken Cookbook and The 5-Ingredient Fresh and Easy Cookbook. After 20+ years in the publishing industry, she retired in 2018 to focus on her own creative endeavors full time. She and her husband live near the beautiful Smoky Mountains and have a precious little granddaughter who has stolen their hearts. As an influencer, Sheila has collaborated with brands like Creamette, Kroger, HERSHEY’S, Hamilton Beach, Garafalo Pasta, OXO, Smithfield, Valley Fig Growers, and more.

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