This sausage and apple stuffing is egg-free & dairy-free. It’s ready in 40 minutes from start to finish! Quick and tasty stuffing recipe that does not require any chilling, nor drying-out the bread in the oven.
If you are looking for easy Thanksgiving stuffing recipe, this is it! Baked alongside turkey, this stuffing is moist on the inside but crispy on the outside. The recipe yields about 7-8 portions but can be easily doubled or halved.
Stuffing vs Dressing?
A traditional stuffing was cooked in the cavity of a turkey. This sausage and apple stuffing is cooked separately and for that reason the right word to call it would be a dressing.
These days many of us still call it a turkey stuffing, even though we cook it “outside” of the turkey.
How to make sausage and apple stuffing
First of all, you will need some basic tools to make this homemade stuffing:
- An oven-proof dish – you can fit it into a 9×7 inch (23×18 centimeters) dish but it should be at least 3 inch (7 centimeters) high. A 9×13 inch (23×33 centimeters) sheet pan will work great here!
- Spatula or wooden spoon
- Chopping board
- Skillet or frying pan
This is a straight-forward recipe and you could divide the prep into 3 steps:
First – cook the sausage, celery and onion in a skillet/frying pan.
Second – mix the cooked mixture with the rest of the ingredients and mix well. If you don’t mix well, you might end up with some areas of this sausage and apple stuffing being bland while others being over-seasoned. When you are done mixing, pour this into an oven-proof dish.
Last – Bake this stuffing with sausage and apple for 30 minutes or until nice golden brown on top, or until it looks to your liking.
Prepping sausage and apple stuffing
You can prep this stuffing a day ahead and keep it in the fridge in an air-tight container or Ziploc bag. Just omit the stock. Then, the next day just transfer it into a baking dish/pan/casserole and pour the stock over.
Give everything a good mix and bake following the recipe instructions.
Bread – I like using French baguette or similar but you can use other type, if you like. I don’t recommend using toast bread though.
Herbs de Provence – if you don’t have this seasoning on hand, you can use just oregano or a combination of oregano, rosemary and thyme.
Chicken stock – now it is important to use stock or broth, but it does not matter what flavor it is: chicken, vegetable, turkey even beef, if you like. You can also use homemade (I have a recipe for Instant Pot Chicken Stock, if you like making it from scratch – it does contain almost no salt, so you would need to add more salt).
Sausage – I usually buy Spanish longaniza sausage. This time I bought chicken one and it was delicious. You can use any sausage you like (Italian is the most popular I think), whether it is chicken, pork or turkey. I recommend using your favorite one for best flavors.
Green Granny Smith apples are perfect for this sausage and apple stuffing. Apples go well with celery and add a little sourness to this side dish.
Thanksgiving Side Dishes
Instant Pot Braised Red Cabbage is made in electric pressure cooker ahead and re-heated on Thanksgiving Day.
Creamy Potato & Ham Salad always tastes better the next day so it’s the perfect side dish for Thanksgiving. Make it ahead and serve on the T-Day.
Irish Colcannon is a delicious mashed potato side dish that is worth giving a try.
Sausage and Apple Stuffing
- ½ pound Sausage , casings removed, see note 1
- 2 Long Celery Sticks , see note 2
- 1 tablespoon Oil
- 1 Medium Onion
- 1 Large French Baguette , stale, diced, see note 3
- 1 Granny Smith Apple , cut into small pieces
- 4 teaspoons Herbs de Provence
- A bunch of Fresh Parsley roughly chopped, see note 4
- ¼ teaspoon Black Pepper
- Celery Salt , a generous pinch
- 1 cup Chicken Stock , see note 5
- Preheat the oven to 400° Fahrenheit (200° Celsius).
- Meanwhile, Add sausages to a skillet/frying pan and break them into small pieces, if you haven’t done so. Turn the heat to high. Dice the celery and add it to the pan altogether with oil. Stir, from time to time. Dice the onion and add it to the pan as well. Cook everything for about 5-6 minutes on high heat, stirring from time to time. When ready, turn it off.
- Transfer the mixture into a large bowl and add the rest of the ingredients – diced baguette, diced apple, Herbs de Provence, fresh parsley, black pepper and celery salt. Mix well to make sure all the herbs and seasoning is evenly distributed. Finally, pour in the chicken stock and mix again until all the bread has soaked it up.
- Pour the mixture into an oven-proof dish (see note 8) and put into the oven.
- Bake at 400° Fahrenheit (200° Celsius) for 30 minutes or until golden brown and crispy on top.
- You can add more sausage. Use any sausage you like. I used Spanish chicken longaniza but you can use any sausage you like (i.e. Italian) - also it does not matter if it is chicken, turkey or pork sausage as long as you like them.
- I got about 1 cup of diced celery out of 2 long sticks.
- Bread - I like using French baguette or artisan bread. Here I combined French baguette with multigrain bread, but you can use what you like. I don’t recommend using toast bread. 1 large baguette weighed little over than half pound (260 grams). When diced, I got 8 cups of bread pieces, but if you decide to measure it by cups, you might use more or less bread as measuring by cups is not as accurate as weighing the ingredients. Dice the bread when you buy it and leave it dry out on a kitchen counter (on a baking sheet) for 1-2 days.
- Parsley - make sure to use flat-leaf parsley not the curly-leaf parsley. I used about ½ cup finely chopped parsley.
- Chicken stock can be substituted with vegetable broth, chicken broth or turkey stock. I use normal stock so I did not need to add much salt. If you decide to use low sodium, you might need to use more salt.
- Celery salt can be substituted with table salt.
- Oil - Most of the time I use olive oil in cooking but you can use vegetable or sunflower, if that’s what you have on hand.
- When using smaller and deeper dish, your stuffing will be soggier. When using a larger oven proof dish (9x13 inch/22x33 centimeters), your stuffing will be drier so you might need to reduce the cooking time slightly.
- Note that the 10-minute prep time also include the 10-minute cooking time on stove top. The reason is that you can do the prep while cooking so it saves you time.