Cornbread and Sausage Stuffing

cornbread sausage stuffing
  • 55 mins
  • Prep: 20 mins,
  • Cook: 35 mins
  • Yield: Serves 8

This is absolutely one of my favorite recipes for turkey stuffing or dressing. Since most of us are doing preparation of other dishes for our holiday meals, it's easy to bake the cornbread a couple days before the big day, and let it get stale. You can always use a prepared cornbread instead, but they tend to be overly sweet, and I prefer my cornbread, especially for stuffing, on the savory side. If you wish to spice it up a bit, add a finely chopped jalapeno to the cornbread batter.

What You'll Need

  • 8 tablespoons (1 stick) unsalted butter
  • 2 cups whole milk or buttermilk
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2-1/2 cups cornmeal
  • 2 cups flour
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 2 tablespoons baking powder
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 large onion, diced
  • 3 celery stalks, diced
  • Kosher salt
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1-1/2 pounds sausage removed from casings
  • 2/3 cup chopped toasted pecans or walnuts (optional)
  • 8 to 10 fresh sage leaves, finely chopped
  • 2 sprigs fresh thyme, leaves removed
  • 3 to 4 cups chicken broth, homemade or packaged

How to Make It

  1. Preheat oven to 400°F. Butter or spray with cooking spray the bottoms and sides of two 8-inch square baking pans.
  2. Melt the butter in a saucepan or in the microwave in a microwave-safe bowl. Whisk in the milk or buttermilk and the eggs until well-blended.
  3. Stir in the cornmeal, flour, sugar, baking powder and salt with a wooden spoon or rubber spatula. Combine everything together into a batter; it will have a few lumps. Pour the batter into the prepared baking pans, scraping batter off the sides of the mixing bowl.
  1. Spread the batter evenly, then bake 20 to 25 minutes until golden brown and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Cool the cornbread in the pans, then cut it out of the pans either whole or in two large pieces. You want the cornbread to be stale for the stuffing, so let it sit uncovered for a couple of days.
  2. To prepare the stuffing: preheat oven to 350°F. Heat the olive oil over medium high heat in a large skillet. Add the diced onions and celery, and saute, stirring occasionally for about 10 minutes.
  3. Gather the minced garlic into a little pile on a cutting board, and sprinkle the Kosher salt on top. Using the flat end of a chef's knife, press down on the salt and grind it into the garlic, forming a paste. Scrape the paste into the cooked onion and celery, and stir to combine.
  4. Add the sausage and cook 10 minutes, breaking it up as it browns. Stir in the pecans or walnuts (if using), chopped sage and thyme leaves.
  5. Cut the cornbread into small cubes, and add them to a large mixing bowl. Transfer the sausage and vegetables to the cornbread cubes, and toss gently to loosely combine.
  6. Gradually pour in the chicken broth (you probably won't need all of it), and using your clean hands, mix the stuffing together. Depending on your preference for wet or dry stuffing, keep adding chicken broth until desired consistency.
  7. Prepare a large baking dish by either lightly buttering or spraying it with cooking spray. Transfer the stuffing to the baking dish, spreading it evenly, and bake 30 to 35 minutes until golden and crispy on top.
  8. Alternatively, if you wish to stuff your turkey with the stuffing, add less chicken broth when mixing it together.