Easy Homemade Stuffing

5 from 3 votes
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Make the BEST homemade stuffing with bread, garlic, onion, celery, fresh herbs, and broth. It’s moist & tender inside, crispy on top, and a hearty, satisfying crowd-pleasing holiday side!

Homemade stuffing in a casserole dish

No Thanksgiving table would be complete without several key staples, like roasted chicken or turkey (of course), creamy mashed potatoes, gravy, roasted veg like my honey-roasted carrots, and this easy homemade stuffing recipe (aka “dressing”).

This classic stuffing recipe is a crowd-pleasing holiday side dish. It is made from day-old bread and simple kitchen pantry basics to pull together a hearty, satisfying dish packed with flavor. It’s so easy to make, too: sauteed in butter celery, onion, and garlic, then tossed with dried bread and an eggy-broth mixture to bake until tender and moist, a little chewy, and crisp on top.

It’s buttery, herby, savory, and, best of all, versatile. Check out the recipe card notes section for several ways to add to this easy stuffing recipe with popular mix-ins like Italian sausage, mushrooms, and/or cranberries. Best of all, it’s meal prep and freezer-friendly, too, ready to reheat as needed on “the big day”!

A scoop of homemade stuffing

Homemade stuffing ingredients

This simple Thanksgiving stuffing recipe is made with just a few inexpensive kitchen and pantry basics.

  • Bread: Use day-old sturdy bread, like sourdough bread, French bread, a whole grain loaf, or even a combination of white bread and sourdough or cornbread/brioche. Use gluten-free bread if necessary.
  • Olive oil: For baking the bread until dry/crisp. Any neutral oil will work.
  • Broth: Use a rich vegetable broth or chicken broth, low-sodium if preferred.
  • Aromatics: Help to make a flavor-packed base with the use of onion (yellow or white), garlic, and celery (or leek, if you aren’t a celery fan).
  • Eggs: To work as a binding ingredient to hold the stuffing together.
  • Butter: It’s best to use unsalted butter – this adds richness.
  • Fresh herbs: A blend of fresh thyme leaves, rosemary, sage, and parsley makes for a classic yet delicious Thanksgiving stuffing recipe.
  • Salt & black pepper: It’s best to use sea salt rather than table salt.
Ingredients for homemade stuffing

How to make homemade stuffing from scratch

Cut and toast the bread

First, preheat the oven to 225°F/105ºC while you cube the bread into ½-inch pieces.

Then, drizzle the bread cubes with olive oil and a sprinkle of salt and pepper, toss, and spread across a large baking tray.

Transfer to the oven to bake for between 30-40 minutes, until golden and dry/crisp.

Steps for making dried bread cubes

If you live in a warm, dry climate, you could leave the bread cubes to air dry across a large, rimmed baking sheet on the counter for 1-2 days – no need to bake.

Sauté the aromatics

Preheat the oven to 350ºF/175ºC. Mince the garlic and finely chop the onion and celery. Also, finely chop all the fresh herbs.

Chopped onion, garlic, celery and herbs

Meanwhile, melt the butter in a large skillet over medium heat. Once hot, add the onion and sauté for a minute before stirring in the garlic and celery to cook for 8-10 minutes, until tender.

Add some salt, pepper, and the chopped herbs and sauté for a minute longer before using about ½ cup of the broth to help de-glaze the pan.

Steps for cooking onions and celery for stuffing

Whisk the eggs into the remaining broth.

Whisking eggs in chicken stock

Assemble and bake

In a large baking dish/casserole dish (9×13-inch), combine the bread and aromatics, pour in the egg mixture, and stir well.

The cubes should be wet but not overly soggy. Add more broth if it’s too dry or more bread if it’s too wet.

Steps for preparing homemade stuffing

Then, transfer the homemade stuffing to the oven to bake for 35-45 minutes, until golden brown and crisp and heated through.

If its browning too quickly, cover the dish with foil for a portion of the baking time. For a crispier or darker top, broil it for a minute or two at the end.

Finally, leave the stuffing/dressing to rest for a few minutes before serving. Enjoy!

Before and after baking homemade stuffing

What can I do with leftover stuffing?

Along with being a staple on your Christmas and Thanksgiving table, this easy stuffing recipe can be used in several ways:

  • Used to create a hearty holiday sandwich or burger (think “Friends” moist maker!) with leftover turkey/chicken, cranberry sauce, etc.
  • Make a simple stuffing casserole with a layer of stuffing, then shredded turkey/chicken, then gravy, and bake until warm. OR add it to a breakfast casserole.
  • Use it to stuff veggies like pumpkin or squash, bell peppers, or mushrooms.
  • Make stuffing waffles by cooking the stuffing in a waffle iron.
  • Turn them into stuffing muffins – with leftover shredded meat and cheese.
  • Make stuffing hash, sauteed with potatoes & veg, and topped with a poached egg.
  • Use it to top baked mac and cheese or other pasta bakes.

Storage information

Make ahead: You can chop and even sauté the aromatics 1-2 days in advance, storing them in an airtight container in the fridge, or even assemble the entire dish ready to bake 1-2 days in advance.

Store: Once cooled, store leftovers in the dish wrapped with plastic wrap or in an airtight container in the fridge for 3-4 days OR in the freezer for up to 4 months.

Reheat: Bake at 350ºF/175ºC until heated through – about 15-20 minutes. Add an extra splash of broth if it’s too dry.

Homemade stuffing in a casserole dish

More Thanksgiving recipes

If you try this easy homemade stuffing recipe, let me know how it goes in the comments below. I’d appreciate a recipe card rating and would love to see your recipe recreations – tag me on Instagram @Alphafoodie!

Easy Homemade Stuffing

5 from 3 votes
By: Samira
Make the BEST homemade stuffing with bread, garlic, onion, celery, fresh herbs, and broth. It's moist & tender inside, crispy on top, and a hearty, satisfying crowd-pleasing holiday side!
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour 20 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 30 minutes
Servings: 12

Ingredients 
 

  • 12 cups bread cubes dried, see below
  • 2.5 cups chicken stock or vegetable stock, regular or reduced sodium
  • 8 oz onion 1 large (~2 cups chopped). yellow or white
  • 6.3 oz celery 3 stalks (1.5 cups finely diced) OR leek
  • 2 eggs large
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 2 oz butter unsalted (1/4 cup)
  • 2 Tbsp fresh sage chopped
  • 2 Tbsp fresh parsley chopped
  • 2 Tbsp fresh rosemary chopped
  • 2 Tbsp fresh thyme chopped
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt
  • 1/2 tsp black pepper

For making 12 cups of dried bread cubes

  • 26 oz white bread 1 loaf
  • 2 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt or to taste
  • 1/4 tsp black pepper or to taste

Instructions 

Cut and toast the bread

  • If you live in a warm, dry climate, you could leave the bread cubes for stuffing to air dry spread across a large, rimmed baking sheet for 1-2 days – no need to bake at all.
    Preheat the oven to 225°F/105ºC. Cube the bread into ½-inch pieces.
  • Drizzle the bread cubes with olive oil and a sprinkle of salt and pepper, toss, and spread across a large baking tray.
  • Transfer to the oven to bake for between 30-40 minutes, until golden and dry/crisp.

Sauté the aromatics

  • Preheat the oven to 350ºF/175ºC. Mince the garlic. Finely chop the onion and celery. Finely chop all the fresh herbs.
  • Melt the butter in a large skillet over medium heat. Once hot, add the onion and sauté for a minute before stirring in the garlic and celery to cook for 8-10 minutes, until tender.
  • Add some salt, pepper, and the chopped herbs and sauté for a minute longer before using about ½ cup of the broth to help de-glaze the pan.
  • Whisk the eggs into the remaining broth.

Assemble and bake

  • In a large baking pan or casserole dish (9×13-inch), combine the bread, aromatics, and egg mixture and stir well.
    The cubes should be wet but not overly soggy. Add more broth if it's too dry or more bread if it's too wet.
  • Transfer the homemade stuffing to the oven to bake for 35-45 minutes, until golden brown and crisp and heated through.
    If it's browning too quickly, cover the dish with foil for a portion of the baking time. For a crispier or darker top, broil it for a minute or two at the end.
  • Leave the stuffing to rest for a few minutes before serving. Enjoy!

Notes

  • Choose the right bread: It’s best to use 1 or 2-day-old, high-quality bread that’s dry but not overly stale (to absorb liquids/flavors well). Bread that’s too soft makes for soggy stuffing.
  • Adjust the liquid content: The bread should be wet but not soggy/leaking, holding its shape when molded. If it’s too dry, add more broth. If it is too wet, add more bread.
  • Be gentle when mixing: You don’t want to make the bread mushy and fall apart, as it can lead to dense stuffing.
  • Leave it to rest after baking: This helps the flavors meld more, and it will firm up slightly as it cools, making it easier to serve. You only need to leave it for a few minutes.
  • For moister stuffing: Cover the pan with foil for 25-30 minutes, then remove the foil for the remaining baking time.
Flavor variations:
  • Red pepper flakes: To add some heat.
  • Nutmeg: Just a pinch for flavor depth.
  • Chicken seasoning: Just a little will help to infuse extra flavor throughout.
  • Dried cranberries: To add an element of sweet and tangy flavor.
  • Carrots: Finely chopped for extra color, flavor, and nutrients.
  • Spinach/kale: Chop and sauté it with the aromatics.
  • Mushrooms: Finely sliced and sautéed for extra savory, umami flavor.
  • Apple: Use a tart apple like Granny Smith, finely diced and sauteed with the aromatics.
  • Sausage: Apple and sausage stuffing is a classic. Use crumbled Italian sausage meat and sauté it with the veggies.
  • Nuts/seeds: Sprinkle in some chopped walnuts/pecans or pumpkin seeds in the last few minutes of baking for extra crunch.
Check the blog post for storage information and serving suggestions!
Course: Side
Cuisine: American
Freezer friendly: 3-4 Months
Shelf life: 3-4 Days

Nutrition

Calories: 202kcal, Carbohydrates: 30g, Protein: 6g, Fat: 6g, Saturated Fat: 3g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g, Monounsaturated Fat: 1g, Trans Fat: 0.2g, Cholesterol: 10mg, Sodium: 569mg, Potassium: 151mg, Fiber: 3g, Sugar: 5g, Vitamin A: 272IU, Vitamin C: 2mg, Calcium: 84mg, Iron: 2mg

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

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