Making classic bread stuffing reminds me of my childhood Thanksgiving meals.
Making classic bread stuffing reminds me of my childhood Thanksgiving meals.

Thanksgiving is my absolute favorite holiday.  There are no external expectations on Thanksgiving – the only gift that is required is the gift of companionship.  I love the chance to have family and friends seated at the various tables set up throughout the house, enjoying each other’s company, catching up on family events, and telling stories, all while sharing a wonderful meal together.

As a teenager, my job was to help prepare the waldorf salad.  I remember sitting at the table and cutting each grape in half to remove the seeds – yes, these were the days before seedless grapes.  Not the best of jobs, but it allowed me to sit and watch my parents as they prepared the perfect stuffing recipe.  I will never forget that delicious smell as they opened the crock pot to adjust the spice levels to make it ‘just right’.  My mouth began to water as I watched my Dad take a bite (or two), to make sure it was perfect.  I had to wait my turn until the meal was served at the table, but it was well worth the wait.

The large stainless bowl that got brought out once a year to make the Stuffing now being used at our house.
The large stainless bowl that got brought out once a year to make the Stuffing now being used at our house.

I didn’t realize until my adult years how wonderful this recipe was.  When talking with others about a traditional Thanksgiving meal, many people would mention that they weren’t fond of stuffing.  “How could you not like it?” was always my response.  However, as the years passed and I was exposed to other stuffing recipes, I understood.  Some recipes are more on the dry side, and some are moist and mushy.  There was nothing that compared to Mom and Dad’s recipe!  So when my parents began to downsize – I was honored to receive the large stainless bowl that was brought out each November, for the sole purpose of the stuffing to be prepared.

So it is time to pull out that bowl once again, and share the recipe that helped make Thanksgiving so special to me.

Classic Stuffing  Recipe

Ingredients:

Tear bread into cubes and let sit a few hours or overnight for 'stale' bread.
Tear bread into cubes and let sit a few hours or overnight for ‘stale’ bread.

12 cups of soft bread cubes (about 18 slices of bread)
1 cup unsalted butter
3 large stalks of celery (1 1/2 cup chopped)
1 large onion
2 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon ground pepper
1 tablespoon ground sage
1/2 teaspoon dried thyme (optional)
Additional chicken (or vegetable) stock – as needed (click here to see how to make your own stock)

Instructions:

Onion and celery ready to be chopped. Avoid the ease of the food processor - you want small bite sized pieces.
Onion and celery ready to be chopped. Avoid the ease of the food processor – you want small bite sized pieces.

1. In a large bowl, tear bread into small cubed pieces.
*I do this step a couple of hours or the night before I am ready to make the stuffing- cover the bowl with a towel which allows the bread to dry out a bit.

2. In a large skillet, heat butter on medium heat until melted.

Slowly add the butter mixture to the bread cubes, toss with extra stock as needed.
Slowly add the butter mixture to the bread cubes, toss with extra stock as needed.

3. Add celery and onion – cook until tender.

4. Add salt, pepper, and sage – cook an additional 3 minutes.

Classic stuffing recipe - just as my parents made it!
Classic stuffing recipe – just as my parents made it!

5. Add 1/3 of mixture to bread cubes.  Toss lightly to coat. Repeat until butter mixture is gone.  Add additional stock for moisture based on your preference. (If you like dry stuffing, add little to no stock, however, for moister stuffing, add stock by slowly pouring it in the bowl while fluffing the bread with a fork. Use just enough to lightly moisten the bread cubes.)

6. Place in crock pot and cook on low until heated through (approximately 6 hours). Add additional stock as needed for moisture.

**You can bake the stuffing separately in a 13×9-inch baking dish at 325°F for about 45 minutes. Cover with foil for the first 30 minutes – add drippings from turkey or stock for moisture as needed.

Enjoy!

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Mary and Jim

Classic Stuffing Recipe
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Ingredients
  1. 12 cups of soft bread cubes (about 18 slices of bread)
  2. 1 cup unsalted butter
  3. 3 large stalks of celery (1 1/2 cup chopped)
  4. 1 large onion
  5. 2 teaspoons salt
  6. 1 teaspoon ground pepper
  7. 1 tablespoon ground sage
  8. 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme (optional)
  9. Additional chicken (or vegetable) stock - as needed (click here to see how to make your own stock)
Instructions
  1. In a large bowl, tear bread into small cubed pieces.*I do this step a couple of hours or the night before I am ready to make the stuffing- cover the bowl with a towel which allows the bread to dry out a bit.
  2. In a large skillet, heat butter on medium heat until melted.
  3. Add celery and onion - cook until tender.
  4. Add salt, pepper, and sage - cook an additional 3 minutes.
  5. Classic stuffing recipe - just as my parents made it!
  6. Classic stuffing recipe - just as my parents made it!
  7. 1/3 of mixture to bread cubes. Toss lightly to coat. Repeat until butter mixture is gone. Add additional stock for moisture based on your preference. (If you like dry stuffing, add little to no stock, however, for moister stuffing, add stock by slowly pouring it in the bowl while fluffing the bread with a fork. Use just enough to lightly moisten the bread cubes.)
  8. Place in crock pot and cook on low until heated through (approximately 6 hours). Add additional stock as needed for moisture.
  9. You can bake the stuffing separately in a 13x9-inch baking dish at 325°F for about 45 minutes. Cover with foil for the first 30 minutes - add drippings from turkey or stock for moisture as needed.
Notes
  1. Recipe courtesy of Old World Garden Farms
Old World Garden Farms http://oldworldgardenfarms.com/

19 thoughts on “Classic Stuffing Recipe – Just The Way My Parents Made It!

  • November 21, 2015 at 9:12 am
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    I add eggs and stuff the turkey ,other then that it is the same as I was taught .My son in law loves it He never had home made stuffing growing up .

    Reply
  • November 21, 2015 at 8:32 am
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    This is just like Mom’s. Just add pecans. I miss her dressing.

    Reply
  • December 20, 2014 at 1:30 am
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    Also close to what my family makes, but mom adds eggs. We typically stuff the turkey and call it turkey butt dressing. We also make another batch and add raisins, so we always have two dressings every year.

    Reply
  • November 16, 2014 at 7:16 pm
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    This is pretty much how I make my famous stuffing. One exception, I add onion. If you bake it in the oven, it is dressing.

    Reply
  • May 14, 2014 at 5:28 pm
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    When I originally commented I clicked the “Notify me when new comments are added” chekbox and
    now each time a comment is added I get four emails with the same comment.
    Is there any way you can remove people from that service?
    Appreciate it!

    Reply
    • May 14, 2014 at 8:53 pm
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      I am not sure how to undo that for you – but I will look into it and see what I can do – I am so sorry you are getting so many comments back..that has to be frustrating.

      Reply
    • May 14, 2014 at 8:55 pm
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      Actually – I may be able to delete your original comment and that would end the responses.. I will try that now

      Reply
  • November 27, 2013 at 1:15 am
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    As with others here, this is just about my recipe too, learned from my mom. She stuffed the bird and no one ever died ; ), I bake in the over, pouring turkey dripping over the top which gets crusty while the inside remains soft. Oh, yum!

    Reply
  • November 26, 2013 at 8:37 pm
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    This close to what I grew up with, with a few exceptions. I use Bell’s Poultry Seasoning in the yellow box, season to taste. And, HAVE to use chopped walnuts AND it has to be stuffed in the turkey, both ends !! That’s why it’s called “stuffing” not “dressing” ! LOL

    Reply
  • November 26, 2013 at 7:27 pm
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    very close to my recipe too….I’m trying it in the crock pot this year–love that idea. It will free up some oven space!

    Reply
  • November 26, 2013 at 10:55 am
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    this is the best i add a cup of apple to it

    Reply
  • November 26, 2013 at 9:26 am
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    This is the recipe I grew up with

    Bread crumbs
    melted butter
    onion
    savory is the magic ingredient here about 2 table spoons for every 2 cups of stuffing this is a traditional Newfoundland recipe for stuffing birds and I guarantee the best you will ever taste, I guess the problem American’s will have is finding the Savory, but if you can then try it, you wont want to go back, you can also adjust the amount of savory as it is very strong, Happy Thanksgiving to my American neighbours!

    Reply
  • November 19, 2013 at 2:06 pm
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    Yes! This is it, the recipe I grew up on via my maternal ancestral line at least 3 generations back, and exactly as I still make it. Never made it in a crock pot, I should try that. And now this is printable so I don’t have to keep writing it out for people. Thank you! And thanks for the nostalgia.

    Reply
  • November 17, 2013 at 8:54 pm
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    Recipe is nearly like my Moms’ she would sometimes add nuts, which made it very good. Have never tried fixing it in a crock pot, but what a great idea to try.

    Reply
  • November 15, 2013 at 3:18 pm
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    This also sounds like the way I make it, but have never tried it in a crock pot. I am going to do that this year, because we have only one oven, and this would free up some space. Thank you for the idea. the other thing I am going to do different is make my own bread to use, because I use organic flour now, in past I bought bread stuffing mix.

    Reply
  • November 15, 2013 at 12:15 pm
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    This is how we always had our stuffing too. I have never had one I liked better and the stuffing is the first bite every year! I only make stuffing at Thanksgiving…I should change that, I enjoy it so much….

    Reply
  • November 15, 2013 at 11:44 am
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    This is almost identical to the recipe I grew up on, and which I still make every year. I’ve never made it in a crockpot, though. We use bread pans in the oven, and it gets a bit of a crisp “crust” on top, but is still moist on the inside. Might just have to try it your way before Thanksgiving. Trial run before the Big Day, you know. 😉

    Reply
  • November 15, 2013 at 9:31 am
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    You mean instead of bread Charlotte Moore?

    Reply
  • November 15, 2013 at 9:21 am
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    We always use corn bread for ours. Never eaten any without it.

    Reply

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