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Homemade Stuffing Recipe

This easy homemade stuffing recipe is made from scratch with croutons and loaded with flavor. It’s baked in the oven and can be made in advance, so it’s perfect for Thanksgiving. Plus, this cranberry stuffing is naturally vegan and dairy free. Makes 12 servings.

homemade stuffing recipe

Homemade stuffing is the best Thanksgiving stuffing

When we first moved to France, I was determined to make Thanksgiving dinner. It was just Marc and myself, but I was going to have everything I wanted.

Of course, I didn’t realize just how few of those Thanksgiving staples you could find in a French grocery store. I quickly realized that there would be no cranberry sauce, no pumpkin pie, and no stuffing unless I made it myself.

But ever since I made that first batch of stuffing from scratch, I won’t make any other kind. We’ve had it for years now.

Making homemade stuffing isn’t the quickest fix, but it sure is worth the time and effort. You can customize it to suit your taste by changing the herbs or even using different types of bread to make croutons.

homemade thanksgiving stuffing ingredients

Here’s what you’ll need to make this cranberry stuffing recipe

Equipment

Ingredients

For the recipe, we are using unseasoned stuffing mix (breadcrumbs), but you can also use homemade croutons. If you’re making your own, try doing it a day or two ahead of time because that’s the most time-consuming part.

You also want to double check the ingredients of the stuffing mix or breadcrumbs for hidden dairy.

celery, onion, dried cranberries and herbs for a homemade stuffing recipe simmering in a large white skillet

How to make stuffing for turkey

Sauté the savories. Heat a large skillet to medium-high. Add the olive oil, onion, celery, dried herbs and cranberries. Sauté until the onions and celery are soft and translucent.

This should take about 5 – 7 minutes and you should stir as needed to prevent burning. I also like to add a pinch of salt to bring out the juices from the vegetables.

Pour broth into a bowl with homemade stuffing ingredients

Moisten the stuffing mix. Put the stuffing mix (or homemade croutons) in a large bowl. Transfer the cooked herb/vegetable/cranberry mixture to the bowl.

Pour about 1 cup of the chicken or turkey broth into the bowl and stir to combine. Continue to add broth until your stuffing is fully moistened and soft.

cranberry stuffing ingredients mixed together in a bowl

Remember you will be baking this, so it will dry out a little while it’s in the oven, so you want it pretty wet.

Bake the stuffing. Transfer the stuffing to a large baking dish and cover with aluminum foil. Bake immediately in a 350˚F oven or refrigerate until ready to bake.

homemade Thanksgiving stuffing with cranberries in a 9x13 glass pan before being baked

FAQS and tips for making this homemade stuffing recipe

Can I make stuffing the day before Thanksgiving?

Yes. In fact, I would encourage you to do so. It makes things a lot easier. Just add 10 minutes to the baking time if you’re baking it straight from the fridge.

Does stuffing need egg?

No. There is no reason to add egg to homemade stuffing. If you want it to hold together better, simply add more broth.

What is the difference between stuffing and dressing?

I honestly don’t think there is a difference other than the names themselves. It seems to be a regional thing, and even though some people say it’s a matter of preparation, I would disagree.

Why is it called stuffing?

Traditionally, Thanksgiving stuffing was prepared to fill the empty cavity of the turkey. It has since become a staple Thanksgiving side dish, and is often prepare in a large baking dish.

Can you make stuffing ahead of time and freeze it?

Yes. You don’t even need to thaw it before baking. Just cook the stuffing from frozen by adding an additional 20 minutes to the cooking time.

homemade stuffing with cranberries on a plate with sliced turkey breast and gravy, garnished with a fresh sage leaf

More dairy free Thanksgiving basics

More homemade stuffing recipes

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Homemade Stuffing Recipe

This easy, homemade stuffing recipe is made from scratch with croutons and loaded with flavor thanks to all the savories and cranberries. It’s baked in the oven and can be made in advance, so it’s perfect for Thanksgiving. Plus, this almost traditional stuffing is naturally vegan and dairy free. #stuffing #Thanksgiving

  • Author: Melissa Belanger
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 30 minutes
  • Total Time: 40 minutes
  • Yield: 12 servings 1x
  • Category: Sides
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: American

Ingredients

Scale
  • 6 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 large onion (sweet or yellow), chopped
  • 6 stalks celery, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon dried rosemary
  • 1 tablespoon dried thyme
  • 1 tablespoon dried tarragon or sage
  • 1 tablespoon dried parsley
  • 1/2 cup dried cranberries
  • 1 12-ounce package unseasoned stuffing mix (or about 8 cups of homemade croutons)
  • 23 cups reduced-sodium chicken, turkey or vegetable broth

Instructions

  1. In a large skillet, heat olive oil over medium heat. Add onions, celery, spices and cranberries. Sauté until onions stirring occasionally until are completely translucent and tender – about 5 minutes. Remove from heat.
  2. Place croutons and cooked mixture into a large bowl. Slowly stir in chicken broth – one cup at a time – until croutons have reached desired softness.
  3. Transfer stuffing to a large baking dish and cover with aluminum foil. Bake for about 20 minutes at 350˚F oven, removing foil for the final 10 minutes.

Nutrition

  • Serving Size:
  • Calories: 202
  • Sugar: 7.9 g
  • Sodium: 410 mg
  • Fat: 8.2 g
  • Saturated Fat: 1.3 g
  • Carbohydrates: 29.4 g
  • Fiber: 1.9 g
  • Protein: 3.7 g
  • Cholesterol: 0.3 mg

Keywords: dairy, vegan, easy, Thanksgiving, fall

Last Updated on April 2, 2022 by Melissa Belanger

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23 Comments

  1. This is too funny! I had no idea you lived in France. We should basically be best friends forever. I remember paying 20€ for a pumpkin on Halloween because I was so desperate! I only lived there for 6 months to “study”. What do you and M do.. and how often do you guys move?! Did you ever go to the Thanksgiving store? I’m not sure if it was open when you were there, because, well, I don’t know when you were there 🙂 I used to get my mom to send American junk food so I could trade it on the student black market – ha! The day I made “cheese fries” when I actually found ORANGE CHEESE (!!!!!) with lardons and Dijony ranch dressing.. you’d have thought there’d been a national disaster the way the other Americans flung themselves at the platter! So funny. Now, of course, I can’t wait to go back and scrounge up every last whipped chèvre and saucisson I can find. Presliced brioche! I mean.. OK.. I’m freaking out a little.. 😀

    1. I’m so sorry! This comment went into my spam filter. I just fished it out. Obviously, we should be best friends. We just left France in April. Marc is playing hockey so we move around whenever he needs to find a new team. There were a few years when we moved literally every three months, but for the last three hockey seasons we were in Angers. And, now we’re in Kazakhstan. I used to bring ranch mix with me and make ranch dip and everyone loved it. I also made all the French girls try my pumpkin cookies. They had never had pumpkin as a dessert before, but they loved it. I mean, how could you not! I can’t wait to go back either!

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