Holiday Cooking | November 9, 2017

Apple, Sausage and Herb Stuffing

 Apple, Sausage and Herb Stuffing has been a family recipe for as long as I can remember. This was always the highlight of Thanksgiving for me as a child, and 55 years later, it  is still a staple on our Thanksgiving table!
Apple, Sausage and Herb Stuffing

If I had to pick only one food item to eat for Thanksgiving dinner, it would be stuffing. Stuffing and dressing are the same thing.  Traditionally stuffing is placed inside of the turkey to cook and dressing is cooked outside of the turkey in a dish. Also, depending on where you come from, and what era you were raised, you either call it dressing or stuffing. Or stuffin’.

Apple, Sausage and Herb Stuffing

I’m not sure, but I am willing to bet  this recipe originated from either the box of dried bread cubes my mom purchased to make her Thanksgiving stuffing, or it possibly  came from of her old red plaid Better Homes and Gardens Cookbook, published in the 1950’s! I make Apple, Sausage and Herb Stuffing a little different than my mom used to,   using a bit more sage and I usually dry my own bread. The basic recipe is my mom’s and I’m sure there would be nothing short of a riot in our kitchen if I announced I was not making my mom’s Apple, Sausage and Herb Stuffing for Thanksgiving!

Apple, Sausage and Herb Stuffing

Think stuffing is too difficult to make? It is one of the easiest dishes I make every year at holiday time! I was appalled when I first heard people say they “made” STOVE TOP stuffing for Thanksgiving. THAT, my friends, is a crime. Seriously. Apple, Sausage and Herb Stuffing is the best recipe hands down for basic home cooked dressing you will ever taste. Simple steps: brown sausage, chop and cook veggies, throw in dried bread, broth, butter, seasonings and toss it all together. Repeat after me. This is easy. This is easy.
So grateful for recipes that bring generations together. Thanks Mom! I love you.

Apple, Sausage and Herb Stuffing
5 from 5 votes
Print

Apple, Sausage and Herb Stuffing

This homemade stuffing will take your Thanksgiving to the next level! It's so easy and has just the right balance of savory and a little sweet from the apples.

Course Side Dish
Cuisine American
Keyword sausage stuffing, stuffing, thanksgiving
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 50 minutes
Servings 12
Author abountifulkitchen

Ingredients

  • 1 lb sausage (Jimmy Dean Regular or Spicy) I use half of each
  • 1 medium yellow, white or sweet onion chopped about 2 cups
  • 2-3 stalks celery chopped about 1 1/2 -2 cups
  • salt and fresh ground pepper to taste
  • 1 clove fresh garlic, minced or 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • Fresh sage or 2-3 tablespoons dry sage about 5 large leaves chopped or about 3-4 tablespoons 
  • 2 tablespoons poultry seasoning
  • 8-10 cups dried bread cubes homemade or store bought without seasoning
  • ½ 14 oz bag "Herb Seasoned Classic Stuffing" (Pepperidge Farm) OPTIONAL, If not using this ingredient, add additional 2 cups of dried bread cubes or crumbled dry bread*
  • 3/4 cup butter, melted
  • 1 apple cored, chopped (I usually use a Gala) peel left on
  • 2-3 cans chicken broth MSG free about 4-5 cups 

Instructions

  1. Cook the sausage, breaking up into pieces as the sausage is cooking. Drain the fat from sausage. 

  2. Add chopped onion and celery to the pan. Cook until softened over medium heat. 

  3. Season with salt, pepper and one clove of fresh minced garlic, sage (fresh or dry) and poultry seasoning. Remove from heat. 

  4. In a large bowl or container, pour in bread cubes, Pepperidge farm mix (if using) cooked sausage and vegetable mixture.

  5. Drizzle melted butter over bread and vegetable mixture. As you pour, make sure the butter is drizzled over most of the bread, not only in one spot. 

  6. Add chopped apples to mixture and toss all ingredients together. 
  7. Pour chicken broth, about a cup at a time until moistened but not soggy over mixture in bowl. Making sure to evenly distribute and not pour in one spot.

  8. Toss again. The broth will take a minute to be absorbed into the bread. At this point, the stuffing should be slightly wet or damp, and all of the broth absorbed by the bread. If the mixture appears to be dry, add more broth, about 1/2 cup at a time and toss. 

  9. Place stuffing into a large greased baking pan (or two 9x13 pans).
  10. Cover with foil that has been greased on one side (side facing stuffing).
  11. Bake at 350 for approximately 30 to 40 minutes. When finished baking, if stuffing seems dry, add a little more chicken broth by drizzling over the top of the casserole dish. Replace foil top until ready to serve. 

Recipe Notes

  • I buy Artisan bread or white bread, thick slice for this recipe. Cube and set  out to dry on large jelly roll pans,  Or dry in the oven a week or more before Thanksgiving. Two loaves of bread are enough for one to two recipes. Spread the cut up bread out on cookie sheets for about 1-1 1/2 hours on 250-300 degrees. Let cool, bag, and save until assembly of stuffing.  You may also add olive oil, salt and pepper for flavor before drying the bread.  Recipe for drying bread cubes here or you can purchase bread cubes at any grocery store.
  • If purchasing bread cubes, I like unseasoned best, because I like to control the amount and what type of seasoning used!
  • If you can't find, or forgot to purchase the Peppridge Farm dry stuffing, no problem. This was the way my mom made this stuffing, but it is not a key ingredient. You may substitute as directed in recipe. I have found that I don't like the texture of substituting with dry bread crumbs (the type sold in cans) in stores. 
  • Add broth just until bread is moistened and barely clinging to other pieces when shaped with hands.
  • I generously season the stuffing, especially with sage. Fresh is best, but dried works well too.
  • If the dressing is too moist, you may add more dry bread cubes or bake in an oven uncovered for a few minutes at 375. Toss once and let mixture dry in oven a bit!
  • I usually double this recipe for a group of 25. With several other sides for Thanksgiving, double is plenty for 25. 
  • You may also make this 3-4 days before serving and store in refrigerator in Ziplock bags and then pour into a greased baking pan to cook. Allow about 15 extra minutes for cooking if taking directly out of fridge. This is also perfect for cooking in a slow cooker on low. 

26 thoughts on “Apple, Sausage and Herb Stuffing

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

  1. I want to try this recipe for Thanksgiving this year, but just wanted to clarify: does the recipe call for 1 ½ bags cubed stuffing AND about 8 cups bread cubes or 1 ½ bags cubed stuffing OR about 8 cups bread cubes?

  2. Can this be made gluten free? I know I could buy gluten free bread but I’m not sure about the seasoned stuffing crumbs. Please help!

  3. 5 stars
    Hello! Where do you find the Pepperidge farm seasoned stuffing? And is there a possible substitute if I can’t find it. Thank you! I look forward to making this for Thanksgiving.

    1. Regan,
      In the Salt Lake area, I can find Pepperidge Farm seasoned stuffing at Smith’s and Harmons.
      I love the sweet/savory combination in this recipe! Check out my updated “How to Host Thanksgiving Dinner” with new recipes and a simple timeline to follow, starting 6 days before Thanksgiving. Hope that helps make your holiday less stressful and more delicious.
      Thanks for reading ABK!
      xo,
      Si

  4. Do you think this could be cooked in a slow cooker instead of the oven? We just are running out of oven space! Thanks, this recipe looks amazing!

    1. Yes, After cooking the sausage and vegetables and tossing all ingredients with butter and broth, place in a slow cooker and cook for about 2-3 hours on low. make sure to spray the inside of the slow cooker with spray so it won’t stick!
      happy holidays,
      Si

  5. 5 stars
    I just tried this recipe. From your instructions I couldn’t tell when to add the sage, poultry seasoning, and pepperidge farm stuffing. I just guessed and added it when I was stirring all the ingredients, about the time when I added the apples. Maybe the sage would be better added when I’m cooking the celery and onion? Could I also make the recipe the night before? Assemble it all and bake it the next day? If I did this, would I add the broth the night before, or right before I bake it the next day? Thanks for your blog and recipes. They are great and I refer to them and make your meals often.

    1. Katie,
      Add the sage when you’re adding the garlic and salt and pepper. Yes, stuffing is perfect to make the night before. Combine all ingredients (including the broth), cover with foil, refrigerate and bake the next day. Yum!
      Thanks for reading ABK!
      xo,
      Si

  6. Have you ever made the recipe ahead of time? I only have one oven and am trying to figure out how to bake everything!!

  7. Hi Si!

    I dried out my bread and am excited to try this recipe soon! I am a little confused because the instructions say “pour in dry bread crumbs and or cubes of bread”. The or throws me off. If I dried out my bread would I still use the Peppridge farm crumbly stuffing mix? Thanks so much!

    1. Hi Marissa, sorry for the confusion and yes, you use both the dry bread cubes and the stuffing mix. Thanks for asking and for reading ABK!
      xo
      Si

  8. 5 stars
    Truly the best stuffing I’ve had in my entire life. And the fact that you can prep it the night before is a game changer. I will never make another stuffing recipe in my life!

  9. Hi Si,
    Your apple sausage stuffing is very similar to our thanksgiving family recipe. Because I only make this once a year I’m going to follow your recipe (and am excited to do so it looks great). I stale my own bread and then moistened the slices under water quickly. This year I’m staling plain bread already cubed. I was just wondering if I could add water instead of chicken broth? One year we all tried chicken broth and thought it wasn’t as good as just moistening our bread with the water. What are your thoughts?
    Thank you, Kelly

    1. Hi Kelly, I would use either chicken broth or vegetable broth. It gives the bread a nice texture and flavor, just make sure you add enough bread cubes so it doesn’t get too soggy. I don’t usually use water to moisten the bread because it’s less dense. Hope this helps and thanks for reading ABK!
      xo
      Si

  10. 5 stars
    This year I hosted my first Thanksgiving Dinner and I made this stuffing, along with your Southern Sweet Potato recipe and Instant Pot Mashed Potatoes. All were delicious!! Thank you so much for all the wonderful recipes. I love that you include step by step instructions. Thank you, thank you!!

    1. You’re very welcome, Lainie, and I’m so glad you enjoyed the recipes and found the step by step instructions helpful. Thanks for sharing and for reading ABK!
      xo
      Si