- Dish type
- Side dish
A moist and flavourful stuffing for your roast turkey, which is really similar to the classic sage and onion, but with just a little more flavour thanks to the abundance of celery. Enjoy stuffed inside your turkey or simply bake in a baking dish on its own.
5 people made this
- 115g butter
- 80g finely chopped onion
- 240g diced celery, with leaves
- 700ml chicken stock, or as needed
- 725g bread cubes
- 3 eggs, beaten
- 1 tablespoon salt
- 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 1/4 teaspoon ground sage
- 1 pinch dried thyme
- 1 pinch dried marjoram
MethodPrep:30min ›Cook:10min ›Ready in:40min
- Melt butter in saucepan. Cook and stir onion in melted butter until soft, but not brown. Add celery and stir well. Add 500ml of the chicken stock. Bring to the boil. Cover and simmer for 10 minutes.
- Place bread cubes into large mixing bowl. Add eggs, salt, pepper, sage, thyme and marjoram. Add onion-celery mixture; combine thoroughly. If still too dry, add more chicken stock.
- Stuff into the cavity of a 4 to 7kg turkey and roast turkey according to recipe. Or place stuffing in a buttered baking dish, and bake at 180 C / Gas 4 for 45 minutes, or until the top is lightly browned. (More stock may be needed for this method to keep it from drying out.)
Reviews & ratingsAverage global rating:(130)
Reviews in English (104)
Instructions were not really clear for a first timer. Bouillon mixture I assumed was the chicken broth. Marjoram was not listed but directions made it sound like a necessity when you have only a printed copy instead of online view where it said marjoram can be substituted so it was not known.-29 Nov 2000
Exactly what I was looking for! Tastes just like what Grandma makes except that this is an actual recipe, whereas Grandma adds a "little of this and a pinch of that" I'll be making this again!-29 May 2007
Great recipe for homemade stuffing! I cut this back to 8 servings and used 1 egg and eyeballed the herbs adding a bit of marjoram. This was a nice alternative to mashed potoates for a change!-26 Jan 2012
Make-Ahead Old Fashioned Celery and Onion Stuffing
Published: Nov 12, 2018 Modified: Sep 30, 2020 This post may contain affiliate links. See my Disclaimer page for more info.
Welcome to Holiday Side Dish Week! I’m joining up with some other bloggers this week to share a bunch of side dish recipes perfect for the holidays. We will be posting on Monday, Wednesday, Friday, and Sunday this week so make sure you come back all four days to enjoy the delicious holiday side dish recipes shared by nineteen amazing bloggers! There’s quite a variety of recipes and you can be sure to find something yummy to add to your holiday table.
I can’t even tell you how perfect the timing of this event is! I mentioned it the other week, but a lot of my older recipes didn’t come over when I converted from Blogger to WordPress. Unfortunately most of those recipes were holiday ones that I had shared with you. So getting to make them again for this event and having them back on the blog in time for Thanksgiving is absolutely perfect.
Do you call it stuffing or dressing? There seems to be two determining factors as to how you refer to this dish. The first one is where you are located geographically and the other is whether or not you serve it inside the bird. The Mid-Atlantic states call it stuffing, regardless of how it is served, and I fit into that category. Dressing is what you put on a salad. At least in my head.
It wasn’t until I started looking up other recipes for stuffing that I learned that the version I had growing up was considered an old-fashioned version. Although, it makes sense. My mom made the recipe and my grandmother likely did as well. I’ve tried a bunch of different kinds of stuffing, but none of them are as good to me as a version that uses celery and onions. It adds so much more flavor to what is essentially bread, seasoning and stock so I really think celery and onions should be included in every stuffing recipe.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Melt 5 tablespoons butter in a skillet. Toss with bread cubes in a large bowl. Spread in a single layer on 2 rimmed baking sheets. Toast in oven, tossing once, until golden, about 20 minutes. Let cool completely.
Place celery root in a medium saucepan add salted cold water to cover. Bring to a boil reduce heat, and simmer until soft, about 15 minutes. Drain set aside.
Heat oil and remaining 2 tablespoons butter in a large skillet over medium-high heat until butter has melted. Add celery, onions, garlic, and a pinch of salt cook, stirring occasionally, until golden brown and soft, about 20 minutes.
Put celery root, vegetable mixture, and toasted bread into a bowl. Return skillet to medium heat. Add vermouth cook, scraping up browned bits with a wooden spoon, until it bubbles. Pour over bread-vegetable mixture. Stir in 1/2 cup stock, the poultry seasoning, and herbs season with salt and pepper. Stir in 3 eggs.
To cook stuffing in turkey: Stuff as directed (see turkey recipe) for the remaining stuffing, stir in 3/4 cup stock, spoon into a buttered 8-inch square baking dish, and dot generously with butter. Cover with foil, and bake at 375 degrees, 25 minutes. Uncover, and bake until golden brown, 10 to 15 minutes more. To bake all of the stuffing in the oven: Stir an egg and 1 1/4 cups stock into stuffing, spoon into a buttered 13-by-9-inch baking dish, and dot generously with butter. Bake as directed above.
Herbed Bread and Celery Stuffing
Ingredients US Metric
- 2 tablespoons (1 oz) unsalted butter
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 3 medium onions, chopped
- 6 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
- 2 tablespoons chopped thyme leaves, or 2 teaspoons dried, crumbled
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 5 stalks celery, chopped
- 1/2 cup very thinly sliced basil leaves
- 1 1/2 cups chopped flat-leaf parsley leaves
- 10 cups cubed bread
- 1 cup milk, preferably whole
In a large skillet over medium-low heat, warm 1 tablespoon of the butter and the oil. When the butter has melted and begins to sizzle, add the onions and garlic and cook, stirring, until the onions are softened, about 8 minutes.
Season with half the thyme and some salt and pepper. Add the celery and half of the basil and half of the parsley and cook, stirring frequently, until the celery is just beginning to soften, about 5 minutes. The celery should still have somewhat of a crunch.
Meanwhile, place the bread in a large bowl and mix in the remaining thyme, basil, and parsley. Pour the celery mixture from the skillet on the bread and gently toss to combine.
Place the skillet back over low heat, add the milk and the remaining tablespoon butter, and simmer for 2 to 4 minutes, using a spatula to scrape up any bits and pieces clinging to the bottom of the skillet.
Pour the hot milk mixture over the bread and toss. The stuffing should seem somewhat moist. Season with salt and pepper to taste. (You can cover and refrigerate the stuffing for up to several hours.)
If you prefer to stuff your turkey, cram the stuffing into the cavity and roast the stuffed hen according to your recipe, ensuring that you check the internal temperature of the stuffing for doneness by inserting a probe thermometer into the center of the stuffing. If possible, baste the stuffing with some of the turkey juices from the bottom of the turkey pan to keep the stuffing moist. If you prefer to not stuff your turkey, pile the stuffing in a lightly buttered baking dish or casserole dish and bake it at 350°F (175°C) for 15 to 20 minutes, or until hot throughout.
Serve the stuffing warm. Accept accolades. Originally published October 9, 2006.
Add 1 pound coarsely chopped shucked fresh oysters to the skillet when the celery is nearly done and cook for about 2 minutes.
Add 1 cup toasted chopped walnuts or your favorite nuts when you add the celery.
Add 1 cup thinly sliced peeled, fresh water chestnuts when you add the celery.
Add 1/2 cup coarsely chopped dried cranberries, cherries, or raisins when you add the celery.
Add 1 pound sausage meat, removed from the casing, when you add the onions to the skillet.
Substitute cubed cornbread for regular bread.
Recipe Testers' Reviews
So I was highly skeptical of this recipe. There's not enough butter, there's no chicken stock, turkey drippings, or eggs. It only uses a bit of milk to moisten it. But it's still surprisingly good.
I used red onions, a seeded Italian loaf for the bread , and whole milk. I baked it in a 9-by-13-inch baking dish and the recipe easily serves 8 to 10. Fifteen minutes was sufficient to heat the whole thing through, but 20 minutes gives the crisper bits on the top that I really enjoy.
While I still prefer my own recipe with a stick of butter (yes, really!), this is a healthier alternative to the fat-laden traditional.
This is what I'd call a good beginner's stuffing. For the uninitiated or first-time turkey maker, this is a great little recipe to start with. It's easy to make, forgiving if you don't have something on the ingredients list, or if there is something else you want to add into the mix. For those of us who have been making turkeys or chickens with stuffing or dressing for many years, we have already added our own spins and additions to this basic type of stuffing.
It was the first time I'd used milk in a recipe like this and it wasn't bad. I usually use butter and broth and I would do it again. I leaned a little more heavily on the seasoning at the end as I felt it was needed. I would, however, heartily recommend any of the suggested additions, such as the water chestnuts or dried cranberries, to give it a little more oomph in taste and texture and perhaps increase the amount of the herbs to give them a stronger flavor.
The end result was stuffing that tasted very nice, was moist but not mushy, and went well with the roasted turkey we had for dinner. I used a combination of a good italian white bread and a sturdy multigrain bread for texture. I would recommend that soft “pappy” bread not be used as I think it would result in a mushy stuffing. I used a 13-by-13-inch deep ceramic baker and it was pretty full.
I like this for its infinitely adaptable (and adjustable) size and flavor, which I think is a great thing to have around on the holidays. This simple recipe turns out a mild, moist, altogether good accompaniment for Thanksgiving dinner—I see it as a kind of blank-canvas recipe that would go with anyone's holiday table, and could easily be dressed up with other ingredients. A solid Thanksgiving dish, if a bit plain unadorned (but still tasty). And so fast!
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My new favourite stuffing recipe! Made it for our Thanksgiving turkey last week and again today with roast chicken. First time I used mixed days old baguette and cranberry/walnut table loaf…today half a loaf of the herbed 5 minutes artisan loaf (recipe from this site and so easy). Love the recipes on this site!
Love to hear this, Heather! Thank you so much for taking the time to share your experience with us, we greatly appreciate it. And yeah, we love that 5-minute artisan loaf, too! Looking forward to hearing which recipes on the site you try next. Many thanks!
Simple Homemade Stuffing
This simple homemade french bread stuffing delivers the savory, buttery stuffing taste you remember from childhood holidays.
1 loaf French bread, day old (or 1 1/2 loaves day old baguette)
1 1/2 tablespoons Poultry seasoning
1/2 teaspoon Dried crushed rosemary
Fresh ground black pepper to taste
- Up to one day ahead, but at least 4 hours before making stuffing, cut french bread into cubes of roughly bite-size. Spread bread pieces in single layer over 1 or 2 parchment or aluminum-foil lined cookie sheets.
- Dry bread in 250° F (120° C) oven stirring every 10-15 minutes for 45-60 minutes, or until bread is very dry and crouton-like. Allow bread to thoroughly cool before using. If storing dried bread overnight, store in paper bag(s).
- Preheat oven to 350° F (175° C). Grease large casserole or baking dish (approx. 9吉) with softened butter.
- Dice onion and celery.
- In saute pan over low to medium-low heat, melt butter. Heat should be low enough that butter does not begin to brown.
- Add diced onion and celery toss to coat in butter. Cook for 8-10 minutes, or until onions are soft and translucent and celery is tender, stirring occasionally. Lower heat if butter begins to brown.
- Add poultry seasoning, oregano, rosemary, salt, and black pepper. Stir into butter and vegetables and allow to cook over low heat for 1-2 minutes.
- Pour 2 cups chicken stock into saute pan. Stir thoroughly to incorporate into butter mixture. Let heat for 30-60 seconds, then remove from heat.
- Place dried bread cubes in large mixing bowl.
- Pour stock/butter/vegetable mixture over bread cubes about 1 cup at a time, pausing to stir between each addition.
- Add some or all of additional 1 cup of chicken stock if stuffing seems to dry, or according to your preferred moisture level. Taste stuffing for seasoning. If stuffing seems bland, add pinches of salt until you are happy with the taste.
- Pour stuffing mixture into prepared casserole or baking dish, spread evenly and press down slightly.
- Cover dish with aluminum foil and bake in preheated oven for 30 minutes. Remove foil and bake additional 25-35 minutes until stuffing is golden brown and somewhat dry on top, or to your preferred doneness. Serve.
- This recipe calls for a minimum of 2 cups of chicken stock, but more may be required. If your stuffing seems too dry, add more stock at your discretion.
- Vegetable or turkey stock may be used as substitutes for chicken stock. Chicken broth and broth made from bouillon will work wonderfully as substitutes. Beef stock is not recommended.
- French bread could be substituted with any other bread as long as the bread is thoroughly dried. Results will vary.
- If you prefer to use a store-bought stuffing mix with already dried bread, be sure to decrease any seasonings you add if the mix you buy is already seasoned.
- Seasonings may be adjusted or substituted according to your taste. Poultry seasoning may be substituted with combination of dried ground (or rubbed) sage and dried thyme (though poultry seasoning is highly preferred as it has additional seasonings). Possible substitutes for oregano and rosemary are basil, parsley, and marjoram.
- Butter is highly preferred for this recipe, but margarine or a neutral oil (vegetable, grapeseed, canola, etc.) may be used as a substitute. Flavor will be altered.
I feel I should take a moment to note that this recipe does not have eggs as binders for the stuffing. I prefer stuffing without eggs, maybe because the stuffings I grew up with never had it. The egg versions seem a bit more like a bread pudding to me. However, many people are accustomed to that texture and prefer it! I have never tried adding eggs to this recipe, but would be interested to know how it goes if someone tried it. Generally, I would say you’re better off looking for a recipe that already has eggs incorporated so that you get the best results.
Final note: while this recipe is called a stuffing, it is technically a “dressing” as it is not stuffed in bird, or anywhere else. We always called it stuffing in our house anyway, even though it was prepared on the side, and I find that’s the way most folks refer to it. I do not recommend using this to actually stuff a turkey or any other raw meat for roasting. Bread stuffing in raw meat can become a receptacle for the juices meat releases as it cooks, but stuffing often doesn’t heat at the same speed the meat does, leaving it full of dangerously undercooked juice when the meat itself is done.
Stuffing Recipe Ingredients
Unlike the stuffing recipes I’ve shared in the past (see here or here), this one is fairly traditional. I make it with these basic ingredients:
- Bread, of course! Steer clear of pre-sliced sandwich bread for this recipe. You want a loaf that’s crusty and flavorful, preferably sourdough.
- Butter – It infuses this stuffing with rich, buttery flavor.
- Leeks – I love their sweet, oniony flavor with the herbs and celery in this recipe. If you don’t cook with leeks often, check out this post to learn how to cut and clean them!
- Celery – A stuffing essential.
- Garlic – For sharp depth of flavor.
- Fresh herbs – Rosemary, sage, thyme, and parsley fill this Thanksgiving stuffing with a mouthwatering mix of earthy, fresh, and savory flavors. You’ll never make stuffing with dried herbs again!
- Vegetable broth – To moisten the bread.
- Eggs – They add richness and moisture, helping to create the stuffing’s irresistible gooey center.
- Extra-virgin olive oil – Drizzle a little on top to help the stuffing brown in the oven.
- And sea salt and fresh black pepper – To make all the flavors pop!
Find the complete recipe with measurements below.
Dressing or stuffing?
Technically speaking, this is “Dressing” because I don’t like to stuff the bird. I prefer the bread pieces to have a little more of a crunch factor. But what you call it might also be impacted by where you live. In the South it’s called dressing. And pretty much everywhere else it’s stuffing.
Grab a fresh french bread or sourdough loaf you know, the large ones used to make garlic bread. The crumbs are light and airy, which makes for a stuffing that&rsquos not too dense. Buying a large loaf and then cutting it down allows you to control the cube size.
I recommend buying about a 1 pound loaf. The cubes will shrink down after drying, so it&rsquos better to have extra. Typically, day-old bread works best, but I use a fast oven drying technique to stale the bread.
4 ounces margarine
1/2 cup celery, chopped
1/3 cup onions, chopped
12 cups cubed dry bread
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1 teaspoon dried sage
1 1/2 cup chicken broth
Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Grease a 13x9-inch baking dish.
Heat the margarine in a saucepan over medium heat. Add the celery and onions and cook, stirring, until the onion is soft.
Add the bread, black pepper, and sage to a large mixing bowl. Add in the cooked veggies along with the margarine from the saucepan.
Slowly add in the broth, tossing the ingredients until evenly mixed and thoroughly moist.
Place the stuffing in the prepared baking dish and bake at 375 degrees F until cooked through and lightly browned, about 30 minutes.