Traditional Bread Stuffing
Do you have a favorite Thanksgiving side dish? I think if we could only have two every single year, our family would most definitely choose large mounds of stuffing and mashed potatoes. We typically serve two different stuffings for Thanksgiving – a sausage cornbread stuffing (omg, my favorite!) and a traditional bread stuffing with just onions, celery and seasonings. Most of us take a little bit of each, while others aren’t a fan of the sausage, so they load up on the classic version. I shared a traditional bread stuffing quite a few years ago, but lately I have not been at all in love with it. I wanted a new, even more traditional version, and this one is absolutely a winner.
This stuffing is classic through and through… from the sautéed onion and celery in lots of butter, to the familiar scent of poultry seasonings and the combination of plain dried bread cubes and chicken stock. It all combines to make one of the best traditional stuffing recipes I’ve ever had. When I first mixed it together, I was a little skeptical that there would be enough liquid for all of the dried bread, but the stuffing baked up wonderfully moist and not at all dry.
If you like to forgo stuffings with sausage, dried fruit or other fancy adaptations, then this recipe is all you will ever need. Plus, you can assemble it the day before, which is a huge plus when it comes to holiday preparations!
Watch How to Make the Best Stuffing:
Traditional Bread Stuffing Recipe
- 6 tablespoons (85 g) unsalted butter
- 2 medium stalks celery, finely chopped
- 1 medium onion, minced
- ¼ cup minced fresh parsley leaves
- 1 teaspoon dried sage
- 1 teaspoon dried thyme
- ½ teaspoon dried marjoram
- 21 ounces plain dried bread cubes
- 3½ cups (840 ml) chicken stock
- 2 eggs, beaten lightly
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Butter a 9×13-inch casserole dish; set aside.
- In a large skillet, melt the butter over medium-high heat. Add the celery and onion and sauté until softened, stirring occasionally, about 8 to 10 minutes. Stir in the parsley, sage, thyme and marjoram, and cook until fragrant, about 1 additional minute. Transfer to a very large mixing bowl.
- Add the bread cubes, chicken stock, eggs, salt and pepper, and stir with a rubber spatula or wooden spoon to distribute the dry and wet ingredients evenly. Turn the mixture into the prepared casserole dish and press into a compact layer.
- Cover with foil and bake for 25 minutes. Remove the foil and continue to bake until golden brown, 25 to 30 additional minutes. Allow to sit for 10 minutes before serving.
- Bread Cubes: You can purchase bread cubes in a bag made specifically for stuffing, or you can take any large loaf of bread (about a 1 to 1.5-pound loaf) and cube it (you want about 10 cups of cubes), spread the cubes out on a baking sheet, and allow to dry overnight.
- Herb Substitute: You can substitute the dried herbs (sage, thyme, and marjoram) with 1 tablespoon of poultry seasoning.
- Make-Ahead: The stuffing can be assembled in the baking dish, then wrapped tightly in plastic wrap and refrigerated for up to 24 hours before baking. To bake, let the stuffing stand at room temperature for 30 minutes. Remove the plastic wrap and proceed with step #4.