Classic Stuffing Recipe

This recipe for classic, traditional stuffing is bare-bones but full of flavor, and you can cook it either inside your turkey or separately in a baking dish. You also have plenty of room for customizing with apple, sausage, or chopped nuts!

With simple, hearty ingredients, this stuffing recipe is a classic and is incredibly easy to make with your turkey or completely on its own as a side!

A white rectangular pan with blue outline is filled with pieces of dried out bread, celery, and other spices and four slices of butter rest on top.

Traditional Stuffing Recipe

We are on a roll with Thanksgiving and other holiday dishes and recipes lately, but a holiday feast just wouldn’t be as festive without stuffing, right?! This one is the traditional stuffing that you’ve probably had from the time you were a kid, and it’s one that never gets old. Made with stale bread cubes, chicken or turkey broth, butter, onions, celery, and some flavorful seasonings, it’s a classic holiday comfort food that I’ll always crave this time of year.

Whether you’re bringing it as a side and need to cook it by itself, or you’re in charge of the entire meal and want to cook it inside the turkey, I made sure to give you both options for making your stuffing how you like it in the recipe card directions below. You can leave this recipe as is, and it’s delish — or you can add other additions to amp up the flavor and creativity, like minced apple, crumbled and browned sausage, or chopped nuts for more texture. I know you’ll love how easy this classic holiday dish is to make and customize, and how yummy it is to eat!

Cooked stuffing with browned bread crumbs, celery and other spices are in a rectangular white dish with a blue outline resting on a blue and white checkered towel and garnished by some parsley.

Do you put eggs in stuffing?

You certainly can — it creates a more casserole-like consistency where everything sticks together and is less crumbly. If you’d like that kind of consistency, just whisk two eggs in a small bowl and pour it over your stuffing in the baking dish when you add the 1/4 cup of broth before popping it into the oven.

What is Thanksgiving stuffing made of?

A traditional Thanksgiving stuffing generally has onion, celery, dried bread pieces, chicken or turkey broth, butter, and some seasonings. You can buy dried bread cubes or you can make them yourself using leftover bread, the choice is yours. Also, the dried bread can be made ahead of time to cut down on prep the day of cooking.

A white dinner plate with a dark green outline is filled with stuffing, mashed potatoes with butter melting on top, a few slices of roasted turkey, and some sweet potato casserole are resting on a white dish towel with blue stripes and part of a piece of pumpkin pie is resting on a fancy white salad plate.

Can I make stuffing the day before?

You sure can! I would recommend making it in a baking dish if you want to make it the day before. Just follow the instructions below, let it cool completely, and cover it tightly to store in the fridge overnight. Reheat it in a 350 degree F. oven for 20 minutes, or until heated through.

What kind of bread is best for stuffing?

I recommend a hearty, high-quality bread that you’d use to make a really good sandwich — not the flimsy, cheap kind. To dry it out, cut it into cubes with a serrated knife, place it in a single layer on a baking sheet, and bake at 300 degrees F. for about an hour. The bread crumbs should be very dry and a bit toasted. You can do this step up to 3 days ahead of time. Just cool completely and store in an airtight container.

A close up of a white dish with a blue outline filled with browned bread crumbs, celery, onion, and pieces of parsley on a blue and white checkered towel and garnished with some parsley.

How to make a basic stuffing:

  1. In a large skillet or dutch oven, over medium-high heat, melt the butter.
  2. Add the onions and celery, and cook about 5 minutes.
  3. Add the salt and pepper, and stir to combine.
  4. Place the dried bread cubes in a large mixing bowl.
  5. Add the cooked vegetables to the mixing bowl.
  6. Sprinkle the poultry seasoning over the veggies, and then stir to combine.
  7. Drizzle with the chicken broth, and stir again gently to combine.
  8. To bake in a pan: Place the bread cube mixture in a bottom of  a large baking dish that has been greased well (a 9×13-inch pan works great). Drizzle with an additional 1/4 cup of broth. Cover tightly with foil, and bake at 400 degrees F. for 25 minutes. Remove the foil, and bake uncovered for an additional 10 to 15 minutes, or until golden-brown.
  9. To bake inside your turkey: Place 3 to 5 cups inside the cavity of your raw, thawed, and ready to go into the oven turkey. Do not over fill. Follow the cooking instructions for your turkey. When the turkey is done, be sure that the stuffing has reached 165 degrees F. before serving. If you have extra stuffing that didn’t fit in the turkey, bake it in a smaller serving dish, and follow the directions above.

Not much too it! And once you make it from scratch you’ll never go back to the boxed stuff.

Most of a white dinner plate with a dark green outline is shown. The dinner plate has mashed potatoes with butter melting on them, a small piece of turkey can be seen, a serving of sweet potato casserole, and stuffing are also on the plate. Underneath the plate is a white dishtowel with a blue stripe and in the upper left hand corner, you can see a slice of pumpkin pie on a fancy white salad plate.

Print

Classic Stuffing Recipe


  • Author: Melissa Griffiths - Bless this Mess
  • Prep Time: 15 min
  • Cook Time: 40
  • Total Time: 55 minutes
  • Yield: Serves 10 1x

Description

This recipe for classic, traditional stuffing is bare-bones but full of flavor, and you can cook it either inside your turkey or separately in a baking dish. You also have plenty of room for customizing with apple, sausage, or chopped nuts!


Scale

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 2 cups onion, chopped, white or yellow
  • 2 cups celery, chopped
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 10 cups dried bread cubes (16 ounces)
  • 2 teaspoons dried poultry seasoning
  • 1 1/2 cups chicken or turkey stock

Instructions

  1. In a large skillet or dutch oven, over medium-high heat, melt the butter.
  2. When the butter is melted, add the onions and celery, and cook, stirring occasionally, until the onions are tender, about 5 minutes.
  3. Add the salt and pepper, and stir to combine.
  4. Place the dried bread cubes in a large mixing bowl.
  5. Add the cooked vegetables to the mixing bowl.
  6. Sprinkle the poultry seasoning over the veggies, and then stir to combine everything well.
  7. Drizzle with the chicken broth, and stir again gently to combine.
  8. To bake in a pan: Place the bread cube mixture in a bottom of  a large baking dish that has been greased well (a 9×13-inch pan works great). Drizzle with an additional 1/4 cup of broth. Cover tightly with foil, and bake at 400 degrees F. for 25 minutes. Remove the foil, and bake uncovered for an additional 10 to 15 minutes, or until golden-brown.
  9. To bake inside your turkey: Place 3 to 5 cups inside the cavity of your raw, thawed, and ready to go into the oven turkey. Do not over fill. Follow the cooking instructions for your turkey. When the turkey is done, be sure that the stuffing has reached 165 degrees F. before serving. If you have extra stuffing that didn’t fit in the turkey, bake it in a smaller serving dish, and follow the directions above.
  10. Serve hot.

Notes

  • I love this bare-bones stuffing recipes because it’s simple and it’s classic. Feel free to add a grated apple, sausage (cook while the onions are cooking), and/or a cup of chopped nuts. You have lots of flexibility for flavor and additions.
  • To make homemade bread cubes, simply buy a favorite loaf of hearty bread (high-quality sandwich bread — the super cheap stuff doesn’t have enough bulk to it). Cut it into cubes with a serrated knife, place it in a single layer on a baking sheet, and bake at 300 degrees F. for about an hour. The bread crumbs should be very dry and a bit toasted. You can do this step up to 3 days ahead of time. Just cool completely and store in an airtight container.
  • Category: side
  • Method: bake
  • Cuisine: American

Keywords: stuffing recipe, stuffing, dressing recipe, homemade stuffing, easy stuffing recipe

Want To Save This Recipe?

This recipe for classic, traditional stuffing is bare-bones but full of flavor, and you can cook it either inside your turkey or separately in a baking dish. You also have plenty of room for customizing with apple, sausage, or chopped nuts! With simple, hearty ingredients, this stuffing recipe is a classic and is incredibly easy to make with your turkey or completely on its own as a side! #stuffing #stuffingrecipe #traditionalstuffing #classicstuffing #holidayrecipes #thanksgivingrecipes This recipe for classic, traditional stuffing is bare-bones but full of flavor, and you can cook it either inside your turkey or separately in a baking dish. You also have plenty of room for customizing with apple, sausage, or chopped nuts! With simple, hearty ingredients, this stuffing recipe is a classic and is incredibly easy to make with your turkey or completely on its own as a side! #stuffing #stuffingrecipe #traditionalstuffing #classicstuffing #holidayrecipes #thanksgivingrecipes

More Thanksgiving side dish recipes you’ll love:

Traditional stuffing is a delicious and flavorful holiday staple that’s super easy to make and can be customized if you’d like to add additional flavors and textures!

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Bless This Mess - About Me

I’m Melissa, and I want to help you feed your family wholesome food.

As a hobby farmer and mom of five, I’m all about keeping it simple in the kitchen. I want healthy meals that feed my family well, and then I want to get back to my (messy) life. Let’s work together to find something yummy for your dinner table.