Cornmeal Mush

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 Old-fashioned, comforting cornmeal mush recipe that you can serve as a hot porridge cereal for breakfast, or as a side dish to a main dish at dinner time.

how to make cornmeal mush

Cornmeal Mush Recipe

Although Matt and I both spent our childhood days in Ohio, he was in the south and I was in the north. We’ve realized over the almost 20 years we’ve been married that these two parts of Ohio tend to be very different! Many things that he remembers from growing up, I never experienced. And this cornmeal mush recipe is one of them. He’s crazy for it.

Actually…he’s wild for fried mush. But as we were working to create fried mush, he remembered a simple cornmeal mush that he’d often eat as a hot cereal in the morning.

Cornmeal Mush vs. Polenta?

Many times today this recipe is called cornmeal polenta. From my research It can be served at breakfast with a touch of cream and honey or maple syrup. Or it can be served as the side dish to meaty main dish with a bit of fresh salsa, your favorite herbs and even a touch of parmesan cheese.

Whether you serve it for breakfast or as a savory side dish, the warm texture of this corn mush will warm your belly on cold winter days!

bowl of cornmeal mush

Corn Mush Ingredients

Cornmeal mush has basic ingredients that you most likely have in your pantry. It starts with boiling water, then you add cornmeal, milk, and a bit of salt. That’s it! 4 ingredients and you’re on your way to a warm cereal.

How to Make Cornmeal Mush

To make mush, simply start 3 cups of water boiling. In a separate bowl, mix together the cornmeal, milk and salt. It’s important to mix this first in a separate bowl and not just add the individual ingredients to the boiling water. If you do, it will clump up and you don’t want clumps! Slowly pour the milk/cornmeal mixture into the hot water, stirring constantly.

Keep stirring the mixture until it comes to a boil again. Then reduce the heat to low and cook/stir the mixture for about 15 minutes until it has thickened to the consistency you like.

Simple as that! It takes about as long to make as if you were making oatmeal on the stovetop. And gives you that same warm, fuzzy feeling, too!

A close up of cornmeal mush

Love cornmeal? Try our cornmeal pancakes.
cornmeal mush hot cereal recipe with syrup and cream
cornmeal mush hot cereal recipe with syrup and cream

Corn Mush Recipe

4.69 from 66 votes
Old-fashioned, comforting cornmeal mush recipe that you can serve as a hot porridge cereal for breakfast, or as a side dish to a main dish at dinner time.
Servings 5
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 20 minutes


  • 3 cups water
  • 1 cup yellow cornmeal
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt to taste


  • In a large saucepan, bring the water to a boil.
  • In a small bowl, mix together the cornmeal, milk and salt.
  • Slowly pour the cornmeal/milk mixture into the boiling water, stirring constantly.
  • Bring it to a boil again, then reduce heat and stir almost constantly (to avoid clumps) for about 15 minutes or until the mixture is thickened to the consistency you like.
  • Serve warm with cream and maple syrup.



Calories are based on a serving of 1 cup.


Calories: 151kcal | Carbohydrates: 25g | Protein: 4g | Fat: 3g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 4mg | Sodium: 262mg | Potassium: 166mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 2g | Vitamin A: 80IU | Calcium: 60mg | Iron: 1mg
Author Julie Clark
Course Breakfast
Cuisine American
Calories 151

About Julie Clark

I'm Julie Clark, CEO and recipe developer of Tastes of Lizzy T. With my B.A. in Education and over 30 years of cooking and baking, I want to teach YOU the best of our family recipes.

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Charlie Linebarger
1 year ago

5 stars
I just made this 100% by the directions above. Poured some in a cereal bowl, added almost a tablespoon of butter, two teaspoons of beautiful old fashioned white sugar (I’m not a fan of corn syrup or maple syrup in my cereal) and milk. Delicious! But it takes 15 minutes at the stove. But over all I will do this again!

10 months ago

5 stars
Made this In remembrance of mom for mothers day breakfast. Creamy recipe and brought
t back memories of a warm kitchen and family early morning.

9 months ago

5 stars
I had some blue cornmeal so I made it and it was really good. Much better than I remember eating it as a child. I’m hoping the left over will set up and I can fry it.

9 months ago

5 stars
I grew up in Ohio. Had mush and fried mush very often. I love it.

6 months ago

5 stars
This sounds so good. I can’t eat oatmeal because it affects my sugar levels, but this look like a great replacement for it!

5 months ago

5 stars
I made them this morning…..nostalgic memories of when Dad would make cmeal mush for me before sending me out in the wintry blast to walk to school…..”This will stick to your ribs, Bondy….all the way to school” We ate it with molasses and butter. I just had it the same but with sorgum instead of molasses. I poured the left over into a pyrex dish to set up for fried mush tomorrow. Happy camper…..this recipe is delicious…..(we never used milk in preparation…..just a cup of water to make the corn meal slurry. Nary a lump.

Tracy Grasso
2 months ago

5 stars
Had cornmeal to use up and made this for breakfast! LOVE it! I love cornbread and only served with a small Pat of butter and maple syrup-cornbread in a bowl 🙂