Holiday Stuffing/Dressing

April 22, 2011
0 Ratings
Photo by sdebrango
  • Prep time 1 hour
  • Cook time 45 minutes
  • Makes A lot of dressing/stuffing
Author Notes

It took years to finesse this recipe. I don't like stuffing the bird so its baked separately, it is a family favorite and the most memorable part of the Thanksgiving meal. Although somewhat labor intensive, when you are preparing a meal on Thanksgiving it's always a bit of work but so worth it in the end. I have made this dressing for many years and have never measured anything I like to work according to taste, that said I did measure so I could share this recipe. You can easily adjust according to your own taste, omit the bacon and use vegetable stock instead of chicken to make it vegetarian, add more or less nuts, you can add whatever you like to make it your own, its delicious with raisins dried fruit (cranberry, apricot) or pomegranate seeds as well.
This recipe makes a lot of stuffing you can easily half the recipe. —sdebrango

What You'll Need
  • 4 cups Cubed dried cornbread
  • 4 cups cubed herbed bread
  • 2 cups Ground walnuts
  • 1-2 cups Chopped pecans
  • 1 Chopped white or yellow onion
  • 1 Chopped Apple skin removed
  • 2 cups Chopped celery
  • 1 pound good quality bacon cooked until crisp(Reserve 2 tbs bacon fat)
  • 2-3 cups chicken stock (add gradually you don't want your dressing to wet)
  • 2 tablespoons reserved bacon fat (optional)
  • 2 large eggs lightly beaten
  • 1 cup whole milk or half and half
  • 2-4 teaspoons dried sage (If using fresh sage increase the amount to suit your taste)
  • 2 teaspoons freshly ground pepper
  • 4-6 tablespoons butter to saute vegetables
  1. I like to bake the cornbread a day or two before I make the dressing cut into cubes or break off small chunks and set out on a baking sheet to dry or you can scatter on two baking sheets and bake in a 175-200 degree oven until dried. You can also air dry uncovered but its quicker in the oven. I used the recipe on the cornmeal bag and doubled it baking in a 9x13 rectangular baking pan.
  2. You can make your own herbed bread cubes by cutting a day old loaf of artisan bread into cubes, toss with some chopped herbs (I like sage) and bake in a 200 degree oven until bread is toasted or you can use bagged cubed herbed bread if you wish
  3. Grind walnuts in food processor and toast in fry pan on low heat careful not to burn, You will know they are done when you can smell the walnuts.
  4. Chop pecans, onion, apple and celery. Melt butter (You can use olive oil if you like) in saute pan add the onions and celery saute until onions are translucent then add the pecans, apple and the sage continue cooking until the ingredients are cooked through but not mushy. Fry the bacon until its crisp break into bite size pieces set aside.(Reserve 2 tbs of the fat to add to the dressing)
  5. In large mixing bowl add the cornbread and bread cubes. Add all the other ingredients Toss to mix careful not to over mix you want the breads to retain its shape as much as possible. Now add the chicken stock, eggs and milk and mix everything together. Adjust seasoning, add salt if you wish or more sage to suit your taste. Add the liquid a little at a time until its wet but not too soggy. You can never remove but can always add more.
  6. Butter your casserole or baking pan and spoon the dressing in careful not to pack in or press down. Bake covered with foil in a pre-heated 375 degree oven for 45 minutes then to crisp the top drizzle some of the pan juices from the turkey on top and put in broiler for a few minutes until the top is crisp. You can make this a day ahead and then refrigerate.(Let sit at room temperature for an hour before baking) NOTE: I like to cover and bake then crisp in the broiler you can with very good results just bake uncovered for 30-45 minutes.

See what other Food52ers are saying.

  • James Kramer
    James Kramer
  • AntoniaJames
  • irishchef
I have loved to cook for as long as I can remember, am self taught learning as I go. I come from a large Italian family and food was at the center of almost every gathering. My grandfather made his own wine and I remember the barrels of wine in the cellar of my grandfathers home, I watched my mother and aunts making homemade pasta and remember how wonderful it was to sit down to a truly amazing dinner. Cooking for me is a way to express myself its my creative outlet. I enjoy making all types of food but especially enjoy baking, I live in Brooklyn, NY, and I share my home with my two dogs Izzy and Nando. I like to collect cookbooks and scour magazines and newspapers for recipes. I hope one day to organize them.

4 Reviews

James K. September 4, 2015
Good recipe and all. But I throw in the kitchen sink. Acorn squash, cubed. Cranberries. Raisins. Clear out the refrigerator. After It's done cube it . Back into the baking dish poor turkey gravy over. Bake until bubbly delicious. Meal in itself when you add left over turkey meat in the dressing mixture. Great Thanksgiving casserole. Mushrooms leeks carrots, sausage. ??? Imagination runs does it not dairy products cause hastened spoilage. Be warned
AntoniaJames November 23, 2012
Made this using aargersi's pear skillet cornbread and assorted artisanal bread I'd made in the past week (including ChezSuzanne's Rosemary Stout Bread, made with Lagunitas IPA). I left out the dairy, and the walnuts, and the pomegranate. It is so tasty! This is a great recipe -- one I'm looking forward to using again!! ;o)
irishchef November 16, 2012
What does "Double your favorite recipe for cornbread mean"? Do I use twice the amount of cornbread I use in my own cornbread recipes? I'm a little confused. I also think I'll use turkey bacon (I have some friends who don't eat pork). Love the idea of using twice the amount of celery to onion. I do that w/my own recipes. I will use this this year if I can get an answer to my question. Thank you.
AntoniaJames November 7, 2012
Love this!! Seriously considering it for our menu this year, perhaps using pancetta and a pear instead of apple. Tried aargersi's cornbread with pear and sage last night; it makes me want a cornbread dressing this year. I'd use that cornbread. ;o)