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Pan de Maiz Relleno (Stuffed Cornbread)

Kathleen Harmon | May 25, 2023

We love recipes that show the versatility of a simple ingredient like cornmeal. Here, National Cornbread Cook-off competitor Kathleen Harman creates a savory corn cake to wrap a spice-forward beef filling. When Kathleen prepared this dish at the National Cornbread Cook-off, she baked and served the relleno from our crowd-favorite fajita skillets, but if you don’t have them on hand, a few 8 or 9 inch skillets will do the trick, too!

Prep Time
15 minutes
Cook Time
30 minutes
Cook it With Our
Stuffed Cornbread Hero


½ pound ground beef
½ packet low sodium taco seasoning mix
½ cup water
½ cup diced sweet pepper, red or yellow
½ cup diced sweet onion
1 tablespoon fire roasted green chilies, chopped 
3 tablespoons canola oil, divided
1 6 oz package Mexican Style cornbread mix
1 teaspoon cumin
4 eggs, room temperature
4 tablespoons granulated sugar
2 tablespoons milk
1 teaspoon white vinegar
1 cup shredded cheese
Taco sauce
Guacamole salsa
Pico de Gallo
Queso fresco


  1. Preheat the oven to 350˚ F. 
  2. Prepare the filling. Add one tablespoon of canola oil to a hot 9 inch cast iron skillet, add the bell pepper and onion and cook until still slightly crisp and charred. Remove from the pan, add ground beef and cook until no longer pink. Pour off excess fat and oil, then add the water and taco seasoning to the beef and combine. Bring to a simmer, remove from heat, mix in peppers, onions, and green chilies. Set aside.
  3. Prepare the cornmeal batter. Whip eggs in a mixer until frothy, light, and doubled in size, about 4 minutes. Add sugar one tablespoon at a time and whip until thickened, about 5 minutes more. The egg mixture should hold soft peaks. Lower the mixer speed to low and add two tablespoons of oil, milk, and vinegar until incorporated. Add cornbread mix and cumin until fully combined.
  4. Lightly oil three 9 inch skillets, line with parchment paper, and then oil the paper. Split the cornbread mixture between the 3 skillets and spread evenly. Lightly tap the bottoms of the skillets to the counter to break up any large bubbles. Bake for 9 to 12 minutes or until the cornbread is just done. Remove from the oven and immediately pull the cornbread from the pans and place on clean kitchen linens. Roll each one into a cylinder and let rest for 3 minutes.
  5. Unroll the cornbread and divide the shredded cheese and seasoned beef mixture between the cakes. Roll each corn cake into a cylinder with the seam resting on the bottom. Slice in half.
  6. Wipe the skillets you used for the cornbread and then pour ¼ cup of taco sauce into the center of each skillet and spread in a circle. Place the sliced Pan de Maiz Rellenos on the skillets and place them back in the oven to warm for a few minutes before serving. To serve, drizzle with guacamole salsa, pico de gallo, cilantro, and queso fresco.
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Contributed By: Kathleen Harmon

Kathleen Harmon lives in Murfreesboro, Tennessee and competed in the 2023 Cornbread Cook-off with her stuffed cornbread recipe, or Pain de Maiz Relleno. Learn more about the National Cornbread Festival and the Lodge National Cornbread Cook-off here!

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