Apple Sausage Stuffing

  • Apple Sausage Stuffing is filled with all the classic stuffing flavors plus a few extras to make it over the top! Studded with apples, dried cranberries, fresh herbs, and sausage makes this stuffing rich, flavorful, and hearty. Perfect for pairing with your holiday main dish!

    Overhead view of finished stuffing garnished with fresh herbs and cranberries.

    If you are looking for a side dish to change up the usual suspects this apple sausage stuffing is perfect! It has all the classic flavors plus an added bonus from the savory sausage, the sweet apples, and dried cranberries. And it would go great with this Herb Roasted Turkey or this Bacon Wrapped Pork Loin.

    Reasons You Will Want To Make This Apple Sausage Stuffing

    • It’s a cold weather staple, so don’t just make it at Thanksgiving or Christmas
    • Hearty, and full of flavor
    • Fills your kitchen with a mouthwatering aroma
    • Can be made ahead of time, is freezer friendly, and can be made in the slow cooker!
    • It’s moist, light, and not mushy
    Overhead view of all the ingredients to make this stuffing recipe.

    Spotlight on the Ingredients

    BREAD: The main ingredient in stuffing! You can use storebought or homemade bread too!

    SAUSAGE: Adds so much flavor and richness to the dish. The sausage also controls how much salt you will be adding to the stuffing. So use a sausage you are familiar with so you know how much salt to add.

    AROMATICS: I love using fresh herbs and especially in stuffing. They add a lot of flavor with minimal effort. If you can find a herb pack with rosemary, parsley, and thyme it will help prevent some waste if you don’t use fresh herbs often. They are sold in the produce section.

    APPLE AND CRANBERRIES: They add a subtle sweetness and a nice contrast to the savory richness of the sausage.

    CHICKEN BROTH/STOCK: Used to moisten the bread. Use a reduced sodium broth/stock to help control the amount of salt if that is a concern.

    Four pictures showing the steps to make the apple sausage stuffing.


    Overview on How To Make This Comforting Side Dish

    Brown the sausage with chopped celery and onion until the sausage is no longer pink and the onion is softened. Stir in the fresh herbs. Add all the remaining ingredients and place in a 9×13 casserole dish.

    Bake covered in a 375 degree oven for 35 minutes. Uncover and bake for 5-10 minutes to get some of the stuffing a little crispy. Can omit this if you don’t like crispy stuffing.

    Tips and Variations:

    BREAD: Use a French or Italian loaf as stated in the recipe or replace it with sourdough or use half white and half whole wheat. Use a little more chicken broth if using whole wheat as it is a drier bread. I don’t recommend using all whole wheat because it will be too heavy.

    SAUSAGE: Replace the breakfast sausage with a mild Italian sausage or even turkey sausage.

    APPLE: Use any cooking apple you like such as granny smith, fuji, gala, or golden delicious. You can also replace the apples with pears for a different flavor!

    VEGETARIAN VERSION: Replace the sausage with mushrooms or even butternut squash and the chicken broth with vegetable broth.

    Close up of the apple sausage stuffing fresh from the oven.
    CAN I MAKE THIS STUFFING IN ADVANCE?

    Yes! Make the day before and store covered in the refrigerator. To reheat remove from the refrigerator 30 minutes before placing in the oven.

    HOW CAN I MAKE THIS WITH DRIED HERBS?

    Replace the fresh herbs with 1 teaspoon of dried.

    CAN I FREEZE LEFTOVER STUFFING?

    Place completely cooled stuffing in a freezer safe container or bag for up to 3 months. Defrost in the refrigerator. To reheat: Add a little extra broth and reheat in a 350 degree oven for 20-25 minutes or until heated through. Or reheat on the stovetop or microwave.

    CAN I USE THIS STUFFING TO STUFF A BIRD?

    Yes, just be sure to follow food safety rules for cooking stuffing in a turkey. You must use a meat thermometer to make sure the stuffing reaches 165 degrees F.

    HOW TO MAKE STUFFING IN A SLOW COOKER?

    Use 1 1/2 cups broth and place stuffing mixture in a 6 quart slow cooker. Cover and cook on LOW for 4 1/2 hours or HIGH for 2 1/4 hours.

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    Apple Sausage Stuffing
    Prep Time
    15 mins
    Cook Time
    35 mins
    BREAD DRYING:
    45 mins
    Total Time
    1 hr 35 mins
     

    Apple Sausage Stuffing is filled with all the classic stuffing flavors plus a few extras to make it over the top! Studded with apples, dried cranberries, fresh herbs, and sausage makes this stuffing rich, flavorful, and hearty. Perfect for pairing with your holiday main dish!

    Course: Side Dish
    Cuisine: American
    Keyword: homemade stuffing recipe, sausage stuffing, stuffing recipe
    Servings: 10
    Calories: 230 kcal
    Author: Malinda Linnebur
    Ingredients
    • 1 (1 pound) (465g) loaf French or Italian bread
    • 1 pound (455g) ground pork sausage
    • 1 small onion, chopped
    • 2 stalks celery, chopped
    • 1 tablespoon each: fresh rosemary, fresh parsley, fresh thyme, all minced
    • ½ dried sage
    • 2 apples, cored and diced
    • ½ cup (60g) dried cranberries
    • 1 cup (235ml) chicken broth/stock
    • 4 tablespoons butter, melted
    Instructions
    1. Preheat oven to 375°F. Cut bread into ½ inch cubes and place on a baking sheet. Bake stirring frequently until dry. This can take 45+ minutes.

    2. In a large skillet brown the sausage with the onion and celery until sausage is no longer pink. Add herbs and stir in well.

    3. In a large bowl combine toasted bread, sausage mixture, diced apples, and cranberries. Toss with the broth and melted butter (use a little more broth if it seems to dry). Transfer to a 9×13 baking dish and bake covered for 35 minutes. Uncover and bake for 5-10 more minutes to crisp the top if desired.

    Recipe Notes
    1. MAKE AHEAD: Make the day before and store covered in the refrigerator. To reheat remove from the refrigerator 30 minutes before placing in the oven. 
    2. FREEZER FRIENDLY: Freeze completely cooled stuffing in a freezer safe container or bag for up to 3 months. Thaw in refrigerator. 
    3. HERBS: Can replace the fresh herbs with 1 teaspoon of dried. 
    4. To use to stuff a bird be sure to follow food safety rules for cooking stuffing in a turkey. You must use a meat thermometer to make sure the stuffing reaches 165 degrees F.
    5. SLOW COOKER: Use 1 1/2 cups broth and place stuffing mixture in a 6 quart slow cooker. Cover and cook on LOW for 4 1/2 hours or HIGH for 2 1/4 hours.
    Nutrition Facts
    Apple Sausage Stuffing
    Amount Per Serving
    Calories 230 Calories from Fat 144
    % Daily Value*
    Fat 16g25%
    Saturated Fat 6g38%
    Trans Fat 1g
    Polyunsaturated Fat 2g
    Monounsaturated Fat 6g
    Cholesterol 42mg14%
    Sodium 328mg14%
    Potassium 190mg5%
    Carbohydrates 16g5%
    Fiber 2g8%
    Sugar 12g13%
    Protein 8g16%
    Vitamin A 162IU3%
    Vitamin C 3mg4%
    Calcium 12mg1%
    Iron 1mg6%
    * Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet. Since different brands of ingredients have different nutritional information, the information shown is just an estimate.

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