The Jack Daniel’s Cookbook–Cornbread Barrel Bungs

by Min Merrell
jack daniel's cookbook

Cornbread Barrel Bungs from the Jack Daniel’s Cookbook. We love this recipe!

The new Jack Daniel’s Cookbook that R.B. and I wrote with Lynne Tolley, the great-grandniece of Jack Daniel, makes a fun holiday gift for all the Southern cookbook and Jack Daniel’s lovers on your list.

I’m thrilled to finally have the book in my hands and revisit all the great recipes we all worked on. One of my absolute favorites is the cornbread barrel bungs. They’re little crispy corn cakes made in mini muffin pans that look just like the bungs that seal up the Jack Daniel’s aging barrels.

These little bungs are a perfect cocktail party appetizer that I like to think of as the Tennessee version of the French Gougères (Goo-ZHAIR), the little classic cheese puffs made with gruyere cheese that go so wonderfully with wine or champagne. Only these are made with cheddar cheese and southern self-rising cornmeal mix and pair perfectly with a Jack Daniel’s cocktail or an ice cold beer. We’ve got a few variations in the book including the okra cornbread barrel bungs below and one with little dollops of barbecue baked in the center.

I still can’t stopping thinking about creating more variations. In fact, I recently made cornbread bungs for a party with pepper Jack cheese and roasted green chiles. Everyone went crazy. They’re super easy and addictive so make a double batch and see what variations you can come up with. I’m may even break the no-sugar-in-the-cornbread rule and make a sweet batch with cream-style corn.

You can make these ahead and reheat them on a baking sheet in a 400 degree oven for about 10 minutes. And I think they’re great at room temperature, too.

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