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Stuffing with Sausage and Apples

If you’re looking for the most mouthwatering homemade stuffing recipe, you’ll be greatly rewarded for making this apple sausage stuffing. Friends and family will devour this one. 

Apple sausage stuffing in a white baking dish.
Homemade stuffing with sausage and apples has a savory, succulent flavor profile that even the pickiest eaters devour.

Why This Recipe Stands out

  • Rave Reviews: All the eaters, from kids to grandparents and even picky teens, double down on this homemade stuffing.
  • Prep Ahead: This is our favorite stuffing recipe, as it can be prepared ahead of time so your holiday meal planning goes smoothly.
  • The Flavors: You cannot go wrong when merging savory browned sausage with the sweetness of apples.
  • Flexibility: This recipe is perfect as written, but it can be switched up easily to match your family’s tastes.

Key Recipe Ingredients

There’s only so much room on one’s dinner plate during a holiday dinner, and who wants to take up limited plate space unless it’s fully worth it? This sausage and apple stuffing is worth every single flavorful bite.

  • Herbs: It’s filled with the aroma of wonderful herbs like rosemary, sage, and thyme. Fresh herbs are a must, as they taste better than dried herbs in this dish.
  • Aromatics: Garlic and onions are a must, as they provide such great flavor to this dish.
  • Apples and Cranberries: The apples and cranberries give it a toothsome texture. My favorite apple to use here are honeycrisp apples, as they keep shape well and have the perfect balance of sweet vs. tart.
  • Sausage: I love for Italian seasoned sausage, as its flavor profile fits with this stuffing recipe perfectly. Feel free to use your favorite flavor of sausage.
  • Bread: Use a heart bread, such as a thick French loaf or Italian loaf, cut into cubes.

Substitutions and Variations

  • Apples: We love honeycrisp apples here, but feel free to use your favorite variety. Keep in mind that certain apples hold up to baking better. These include granny smith, honeycrisp, and fuji apples.
  • Meats: Italian seasoned ground sausage is our favorite, but you can use any variety of ground sausage. You can also use cooked, browned bacon.
  • Vegetarian: Feel free to make this dish vegetarian by omitting the meat and using vegetable broth.
Apple Sausage Stuffing in a pan.
This apple sausage stuffing boasts crisp edges and a tender yet non-soggy center.

Step-By-Step Recipe Instructions

  1. In a skillet, brown the sausage and onions together over medium heat. Stir and break up lumps evenly, until fully cooked through.
  2. Add sage, rosemary, and thyme, and stir another 2 minutes. Drain well and set aside.
  3. Combine bread cubes and place in single layer on a large baking sheet. Bake about 6 minutes, or until cubes are evenly toasted.
  4. In a large bowl, combine and toss together the toasted bread cubes, cooked sausage mixture, and all remaining ingredients except for chicken stock
  5. .Gradually add 1 cup of chicken stock and toss to coat. Depending on desired level of moisture, add up to another 1/2 cup and toss again so all bread cubes are lightly soaked.
  6. Place stuffing mixture into prepared baking dish. Bake 30 minutes, covered. Stir once during the middle of baking and add up to another 1/2 cup broth if stuffing is dry. Uncover, and bake another 15 minutes or until top is golden brown.

For full list of ingredients and instruction, see recipe card below.

Pro Tips for The Best Stuffing

Avoid Soggy Stuffing: We use slightly less broth in this recipe, allowing the cubed bread to soak up just the right amount of liquid to keep the dressing ultra-tender, yet still allow the top and sides to brown nicely.

Adjust Liquid as Needed: If you prefer a texture similar to what you’d get if you cooked the stuffing inside the turkey, adjust and add a bit more broth prior to baking. Note that a little liquid can go a long way, so adjust for desired texture gradually.

Apple sausage stuffing in a white dish.

what to Serve with Stuffing

  • Main Dish: How to Brine and Roast Turkey with Homemade Gravy (brine and prep ahead of time, so turkey day is an easy day.) It’s truly more flavorful and moist than any other turkey we’ve had, and that’s coming from major turkey fanatics.
  • Side Dishes: Instant Pot Mashed Potatoes (5 Ingredients) is super quick and easy, while tasting fluffy-delicious. You can also use stovetop method, instructions included. This Sweet Honey Cornbread is every cornbread lover’s dream, especially with a pat of melting butter on top. Each of these can be prepped ahead of time.

Commonly Asked Questions

What is stuffing?

Stuffing, also known as dressing, is a mixture of ingredients that are typically placed inside poultry cavity, or baked separately as a side dish. It’s made from a combination of bread, vegetables, herbs, and seasonings.

How is stuffing typically cooked?

Stuffing can be cooked in a variety of ways. It can be baked in a casserole dish, stuffed inside turkey or chicken, or even cooked in a slow cooker. The cooking method depends on personal preference.

Can I make stuffing in advance?

Yes, you can make stuffing in advance. Stuffing can be fully cut, prepped, and assembled the night before – do not add broth until you’re ready to bake. Waiting to add the broth prevents stuffing from becoming too soggy.

How do I prevent stuffing from becoming too dry?

To prevent stuffing from becoming too dry, you can adjust liquids like broth or melted butter when mixing the ingredients. Additionally, make sure not to over-bake it, and cover it with foil if needed. Periodically check and add more a bit more liquid if necessary during baking.

What are popular variations of stuffing?

Variations of stuffing include cornbread stuffing, oyster stuffing, and wild rice pilaf. Some of those options are gluten-free as well.

How should I store leftover stuffing?

Wrap leftover stuffing airtight and store in the fridge for up to 3 days. We do not recommend freezing leftover stuffing. Reheat in the oven, uncovered, for best results.

Did you make this?

Please give us a rating and comment below. We love hearing from you!

Apple sausage stuffing in a white dish.

Stuffing with Apples and Sausage

4.97 from 65 ratings
This apple sausage stuffing is a winner, as it is highly aromatic and flavorful. Slightly crisp on the outside, tender on the inside. It's always someone's favorite side dish for the holidays.
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Servings: 12
Author: Amy Dong

Ingredients  

  • ½ lb ground sausage, Italian seasoned, no casings
  • 1 whole onion, chopped
  • 5 tsp sage leaves, fresh, chopped
  • 3 tsp rosemary, fresh
  • 1 fresh sprig thyme
  • 6 cups bread, hearty, such as French or Italian loaf, cut into cubes
  • 1 whole apple, firm, peeled and chopped (granny smith, fuji, or honeycrisp work well)
  • ½ cup dried cranberries
  • cup parsley, minced
  • 4 TB butter, melted
  • 1 ½ to 2 cups chicken stock, regular strength

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 350F. Lightly grease an 8×8 baking dish, or one of similar size. Set aside.
  • Combine bread cubes and place in single layer on a large baking sheet. Bake about 6 minutes, or until cubes are evenly toasted.
  • In a skillet, brown the sausage and onions together over medium heat. Stir and break up lumps evenly, until fully cooked through. Add sage, rosemary, and thyme, and stir another 2 minutes. Drain well and set aside.
  • In a large bowl, combine and toss together the toasted bread cubes, cooked sausage mixture, and all remaining ingredients except for chicken stock; toss so melted butter evenly coats bread cubes.
    Gradually add 1 cup of chicken stock and toss to coat. Depending on desired level of moisture, add up to another 1/2 cup and toss again so all bread cubes are lightly soaked.
  • Place stuffing mixture into prepared baking dish. Bake 30 minutes, covered. Stir and add up to 1/2 cup broth, as needed to moisten the bread. Uncover, and bake another 15 minutes or until top is golden brown.

Notes

  • Stuffing can be assembled the night before, up to the point of adding broth. Add the broth only when ready to bake.
  • You can use entirely wheat or white bread, if preferred. If opting for all-white bread only, choose a loaf with more robust texture.
  • For a meatless version, simply omit the sausage or use vegan ground “meat”.  You can opt for vegetable broth in lieu of chicken broth.
  • f you prefer a texture more similar to stuffing that’s been cooked in a turkey, add a bit more broth until it’s to your liking. (See note in original article.)
If you enjoyed this recipe, please come back and give it a rating. It helps keep your favorite recipes alive on our site. And, we ❤️ hearing from you. 

Nutrition (per serving)

Calories: 380kcal | Carbohydrates: 62g | Protein: 13g | Fat: 19g | Saturated Fat: 6g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 3g | Trans Fat: 0.2g | Cholesterol: 24mg | Sodium: 717mg | Potassium: 106mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 8g | Vitamin A: 277IU | Vitamin C: 3mg | Calcium: 88mg | Iron: 1mg
Course: Side
Cuisine: American
Method: Bake

Spotlight on Holiday sides

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Recipe Rating




52 comments

    • Ntensibe Edgar
    • 5 stars

    Yyyaaaayyyyyy…this dish is a go for me! I am a sucker for apples and sausage!

    • Thena Franssen

    Wow! This looks like a super simple recipe! I can’t wait to make this for the Thanksgiving table!

    • Elise Ho
    • 5 stars

    Tis the stuffing season. I am not a big stuffing person but my son and his God-mom love it.

    • ashley t
    • 5 stars

    This looks and sounds so delicious. Ive never had stuffing with apples but would love to try one day.

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