This Traditional Thanksgiving Stuffing Recipe has the perfect combination of buttery, warm bread plus hearty herbs and aromatics. It’s an easy stuffing recipe that will soon be your go-to recipe for years to come!
MY GO TO THANKSGIVING STUFFING RECIPE
The terms Stuffing and Dressing are often used interchangeably, but they do have different meanings: Stuffing is cooked inside the bird, and dressing is cooked on its own in a casserole dish.
BUT, since most people refer to it as just stuffing – despite it being outside of the bird – I gave in. Stuffing IT IS.
This recipe is the traditional buttery and herby stuffing that we all know of, and if it’s your turn to make it, print out this recipe, asap! It’s an essential side dish for every Holiday gathering, so it’s important to make it as great as possible.
The secret to the best homemade Traditional Stuffing is DRY bread cubes, some butter, and aromatics. Trust me, with this homemade Stuffing recipe, there will be no need for you to reach for a boxed mix.
HOW TO MAKE TRADITIONAL STUFFING
Prepared with a handful of ingredients, this classic side dish is the definition of Holiday dinner comfort and it comes together in just three steps.
- The first step of making stuffing is simply sautéing celery and onions in butter, and throwing in a wonderful blend of herbs.
- Then, you combine those sautéed goodies with dry bread cubes, chicken broth or vegetable broth, and eggs.
- Toss together until moist and transfer to a 3-quart casserole dish.
- Bake for 45 minutes, covered; uncover and continue to bake for 15 minutes, or until golden brown.
- Remove from oven and let stand 5 minutes before serving.
CAN I MAKE STUFFING AHEAD OF TIME?
- You can absolutely make the stuffing 1 day ahead of time. Prepare everything, but don’t bake. Cover and refrigerate for up to 24 hours.
- When ready, remove stuffing from fridge and let come to room temperature, about 20 to 30 minutes. Then, bake.
DO YOU NEED TO REFRIGERATE STUFFING?
- Yes, stuffing should be refrigerated. Store completely cooled stuffing in an airtight container and keep in the fridge for 4 to 5 days.
SHOULD YOU MAKE STUFFING INSIDE A TURKEY?
The answer is NO because, stuffing inside the bird doesn’t get hot enough to kill off all the bacteria before the bird is done cooking. As the turkey cooks, juices that may contain salmonella soak into the stuffing, and if the stuffing isn’t cooked to 165˚F degrees, it may be dangerous to eat.
However, if you still want to go ahead with stuffing the bird, look in the Recipe Notes section below for instructions.
WHAT KIND OF BREAD IS BEST FOR TRADITIONAL STUFFING?
- I have used all kinds; French baguettes, country bread, cornbread, homemade Italian loaf, and so on… The only thing is that the bread must be dry, or stale.
- To make dried bread cubes, cut bread into cubes and leave out overnight to dry. OR, you can spread the bread cubes on a baking sheet and bake at 200˚F for about 20 minutes, or until dry.
- You can also buy 1-pound (about 10 cups) unseasoned dried bread cubes.
MORE STUFFING RECIPES
- Cheesy Italian Sausage Stuffing Recipe
- Easy Apple Stuffing Recipe
- Sweet Potato and Cranberry Stuffing
TOOLS USED IN THIS RECIPE
Traditional Stuffing Recipe
- 1 loaf (1 pound) bread, cut into about 1/2-inch cubes and dried (you'll need around 10 cups of bread cubes)
- 6 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 2 small yellow onions, diced
- 4 stalks celery, thinly sliced
- 3 to 4 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 tablespoon chopped fresh sage
- 1 tablespoon fresh thyme leaves
- 1/2 tablespoon chopped fresh rosemary leaves
- 3 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
- salt and fresh ground pepper, to taste (I use about 3/4 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper)
- 3 cups low sodium chicken broth or vegetable broth
- 2 large eggs, beaten
- chopped parsley for garnish
- Before you begin, make sure bread is dry/stale. If bread isn't dry, place cut up bread cubes on baking sheets and bake at 200˚F for 20 minutes.
- Preheat oven to 350˚F.
- Butter a 3-quart baking dish and set aside.
- Place dried bread cubes in a large mixing bowl and set aside.
- Melt 6 tablespoons butter in a large skillet set over medium heat.
- Stir in onions and celery; cook for 6 to 8 minutes, or until soft.
- Add garlic and cook for 30 seconds.
- Stir in sage, thyme, and rosemary; cook for about a minute, or until fragrant.
- Stir in parsley and season with salt and pepper and remove from heat.
- Add sautéed onions and celery to the bread cubes and stir to combine.
- In a separate mixing bowl, whisk together broth and eggs; pour over bread mixture and mix until everything is completely coated.
- Transfer mixture to previously prepared baking dish; smooth it out and cover with foil.
- Bake for 45 minutes; remove foil and continue to bake for 15 more minutes, or until top is lightly browned.
- Remove from oven and let stand 5 minutes.
- Garnish with parsley and serve.
WW FREESTYLE POINTS: 8
HOW TO MAKE STUFFING INSIDE THE TURKEY
- Melt 10 tablespoons butter in a large skillet; add celery and onions and cook for 6 to 8 minutes, stirring occasionally, until tender. NOTE: We're using more butter than in the recipe above. Also, for this method, we will not be using eggs and chicken broth.
- Stir in garlic and fresh herbs and cook for 1 minute. Season with salt and pepper and remove from heat.
- Stir in dry bread cubes and gently toss with a spoon until all bread cubes are evenly coated. You might want to do this part in a large mixing bowl because you'll need more space.
- Stuff a 10 to 12 pound raw turkey with the stuffing, then bake.
Nutritional info is an estimate and provided as courtesy. Values may vary according to the ingredients and tools used. Please use your preferred nutritional calculator for more detailed info.