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Shrimp & Cornbread Piñatas with Confetti Relish 

Lizzie Bennet | May 26, 2023

Why stop at cornmeal when you can use the whole ear? We love the way Lizzie Bennett uses cornmeal, canned corn, and corn husks to make these savory, tamale-like piñatas. The relish is good on, oh, everything, but we especially love the way it balances the buttery flavors of the shrimp and cornbread. Lizzie competed in the 2023 National Cornbread Cook-off with this creative recipe.

Prep Time
25 minutes
Cook Time
20 minutes
Cook it With Our
Shrimp and cornbread piñatas


Confetti Relish

1 tablespoon vegetable oil
1 tablespoon lime juice
2 teaspoons sugar
½ teaspoon Dijon mustard
½ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon black pepper, plus additional for garnish
1 cup chopped Savoy cabbage
1 small red bell pepper, diced
1 avocado, diced
1 14-ounce can corn kernels, drained, divided
½ cup chopped cilantro
6 radishes, halved and sliced
2 green onions, chopped

Cornbread Piñatas

1 cup cornmeal
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon sugar
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
½ teaspoon salt
1 cup whole milk
3 tablespoons butter, melted and cooled
1 egg, lightly beaten
¼ cup minced jalapeño pepper
8 large dried corn husks, pre-soaked in boiling water and towel-dried


1 tablespoon vegetable oil
30 large raw shrimp, deveined, shells removed, and patted dry
2 tablespoons butter, melted
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 tablespoon chili powder
2 teaspoons cumin
1 teaspoon onion powder
1 teaspoon smoked paprika
Zest from 1 lime

Sauce & Garnishes

½ cup sour cream
4 teaspoons sriracha sauce
Lime juice
Lime wedges


  1. Place the baking pan in the oven and preheat to 425 degrees F.

  2. Make the relish. Place oil, lime juice, sugar, mustard, salt, and pepper in a small jar with a lid; shake until well combined. In a medium bowl toss together cabbage, red bell pepper, avocado, ½ cup corn, cilantro, radish, and green onions with dressing until well coated. Divide relish into 6 small serving bowls. Sprinkle a pinch of black pepper over each bowl; set aside until ready to use.

  3. Make the Cornbread Piñatas. Stir together cornmeal, flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a medium bowl. Add milk, butter, and egg; stir until just combined. Stir in jalapeño and remaining corn from step 2. Tear two of the husks into small strips about 1/2-inch wide. Spread a heaping ½ cup cornbread mix into the center of each remaining corn husk. Fold long sides of cornhusks over each other and, using the husk strips, tie the top and bottom ends to create a loosely closed “piñata,” leaving room for the cornbread mix to expand while baking. Place piñatas on the preheated baking pan and bake for 11 to 14 minutes or until cornbread is baked through.

  4. Make the shrimp. Heat oil in a 12 inch cast iron skillet or dual handle pan over medium-high heat. In a medium bowl, toss together shrimp, butter, garlic, chili powder, cumin, onion powder, smoked paprika, and lime zest until well coated. Cook shrimp in skillet, flipping once, until cooked through, about 3 to 4 minutes. Transfer to a plate until ready to use.

  5. Make sauce. Stir together sour cream, sriracha, and 1 tablespoon lime juice until well combined. Add additional lime juice by the teaspoon if needed until mixture will drizzle easily; transfer to a squeeze bottle.

  6. To serve, carefully open corn husks and add 5 shrimp to each; drizzle shrimp with a little squeeze of sauce. Place the Shrimp & Cornbread Piñatas on dinner plates, each accompanied by a bowl of Confetti Relish. Garnish plates with lime wedges, additional cilantro, and dots of sauce. Encourage your dinner guests to squeeze the lime over the shrimp then add the confetti to the piñatas.

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Contributed By: Lizzie Bennet

Lizzie Bennet lives in Seattle, Washington and competed in the 2023 Cornbread Cook-off with her creative cornbread piñatas. Learn more about the National Cornbread Festival and the Lodge National Cornbread Cook-off here!

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