Watch Cooking Channel

For the Love of Stuffing (And Dressing, Too)


Stuffing is, without a doubt, my favorite part of Thanksgiving. Though I love me some sweet potato casserole, and I inherited a fondness for fruit pies from my father, I spend 362 days a year (thank you, leftovers) thinking about stuffing.

You see, throughout my entire life, my mother has been responsible for preparing the stuffing for our Thanksgiving meal, a prized recipe passed down from my grandmother. And while a love of cooking might have skipped a generation, my mom masters that stuffing, year after year, striking the perfect balance between moist, aromatic and crispy. So it seemed wrong to try to recreate it myself — or even to ask for the recipe.

But once I started working in food media, and Thanksgiving became the highlight of my professional year, it occurred to me I ought to ask for that recipe, and see what made it so darn delicious. Well, folks? The answer, much to my dismay, was boxed stuffing — or at least, part of the answer. My grandmother (or Mama, as she was known) always added some choice vegetables and herbs to give it her own special touch.

When we asked our Kitchens to create some unique Thanksgiving side dishes, I couldn’t wait to see what stuffing or dressing they’d come up with. Perhaps a southern-leaning dressing with oysters and sausage? Or maybe something totally different, like Mixed Grain Dressing With Shiitakes, Parsnips and Apricots? Chef Treva Chadwell succeeded at surprising us twice with her highly original renditions on the Thanksgiving classic, but it was the third recipe that really caught my eye: Better Than the Box Stuffing.

This recipe, much like Mama’s, starts with a bag of seasoned stuffing mix — because on Thanksgiving, of all days, those little shortcuts count (and man do those seasoned cubes taste delicious). She adds leeks, celery and herbs (all musts), plus pecans and cranberries for their nutty, sweet and tart flavors. Suddenly, the finished stuffing melds even more harmoniously with the rest of the Thanksgiving meal, from the requisite cranberry sauce to the pecan pie.

And you know what? When Cooking Channel chef Kelsey Nixon crafted a super-easy Thanksgiving menu for our website, I noticed that her Baked Apple Pear Stuffing started with a bag of the cubed stuff, too. With the two fall fruits and raisins, it is pleasantly sweet and possesses amazing texture.

So I guess my point is this: At this time next week, on Thanksgiving Eve, if you’re planning to use some boxed or bagged stuffing (cubes or not, with or without herbs), it’s okay. More power to you if you’re starting from scratch with an interesting base like cornbread or biscuits. But if you are going to use the store-bought stuff — at least add in some additional fresh ingredients. Just like my Mama did.

Get all 14 of our amazing stuffing and dressing recipes — including Better Than the Box Stuffing — here.

Visit our complete guide to Thanksgiving:
Turkey Recipes & Cooking Tips
100 Side Dish Recipes
The Best Thanksgiving Desserts
Get Started With Appetizer Recipes & Soups
Entertaining Tips & Decorating Ideas

Tags:

Comments (2032)

  1. LGD posted 11/16/2012

    Definitely inspirational! Happy Thanksgiving to all!

  2. margot posted 11/16/2012

    Could you please post the cornbread oyster stuffing that Michael Corry made on the Thanksgiving show last night? Looked absoluttely awesome!

  3. Lindsay posted 11/16/2012

    Hi Margot,
    I'm not sure which stuffing you're referring to, but here is Cooking Channel's cornbread and oyster stuffing. It's amazing! http://www.cookingchanneltv.com/recipes/oyster-sa
    Thanks,
    Lindsay

    • Margot posted 11/18/2012

      Thanks Lindsay, It was the Michael Corry (from 555 in Portland Me) he prepared it on Foodography and it just looked perfect. My husband flipped. thanks for checking!
      Margot

  4. bgdfgdfgdfgdf posted 11/22/2012

    Title…

    [...]The information talked about in the post are a few of the top offered [...]…

  5. lecteur datamatrix posted 11/25/2012

    Title…

    [...]Here is a great Weblog You may Uncover Interesting that we Encourage You[...]…

  6. haccp zachodniopomorskie posted 11/25/2012

    Title…

    [...]we like to honor numerous other world-wide-web web sites on the internet, even when they aren’t linked to us, by linking to them. Underneath are some webpages really worth checking out[...]…

  7. software posted 11/25/2012

    Title…

    [...]we like to honor many other world-wide-web web pages around the web, even when they aren’t linked to us, by linking to them. Beneath are some webpages worth checking out[...]…

  8. "????? ????? ????" posted 11/26/2012

    Title…

    [...]the time to study or take a look at the subject material or internet sites we have linked to below the[...]…

  9. Deliver my Dumpster posted 11/26/2012

    Title…

    [...]we came across a cool website that you may well appreciate. Take a search in case you want[...]…

  10. dig this posted 11/26/2012

    Title…

    [...]Every when in a even though we select blogs that we read. Listed beneath are the most up-to-date sites that we choose [...]…

  11. air quality testing posted 11/26/2012

    Title…

    [...]just beneath, are numerous completely not connected web-sites to ours, even so, they may be certainly really worth going over[...]…

  12. Allevamento Rottweiler posted 11/26/2012

    Title…

    [...]very few sites that transpire to become comprehensive beneath, from our point of view are undoubtedly nicely really worth checking out[...]…

  13. Deliver my Dumpster posted 11/26/2012

    Title…

    [...]Here is a good Blog You might Locate Fascinating that we Encourage You[...]…

  14. weight loss diet posted 11/27/2012

    Title…

    [...]that is the finish of this report. Right here you’ll locate some web-sites that we consider you’ll appreciate, just click the links over[...]…

  15. local one night stands posted 11/27/2012

    Title…

    [...]one of our guests not long ago suggested the following website[...]…

  16. galaxy s3 posted 11/27/2012

    Title…

    [...]just beneath, are various entirely not related websites to ours, however, they may be surely really worth going over[...]…

  17. network marketing posted 11/28/2012

    Title…

    [...]the time to read or visit the material or internet sites we have linked to beneath the[...]…

  18. how to make money online posted 11/28/2012

    Title…

    [...]always a significant fan of linking to bloggers that I adore but do not get a lot of link appreciate from[...]…

  19. cheap car insurance posted 11/28/2012

    Title…

    [...]check beneath, are some totally unrelated sites to ours, however, they may be most trustworthy sources that we use[...]…

  20. female hair loss treatment posted 11/29/2012

    Title…

    [...]we came across a cool website that you could possibly take pleasure in. Take a appear should you want[...]…

  21. a fantastic read posted 11/30/2012

    Title…

    [...]below you’ll discover the link to some web-sites that we assume you should visit[...]…

  22. lida ile zayiflama posted 11/30/2012

    Title…

    [...]we like to honor a lot of other world wide web web pages around the web, even when they aren’t linked to us, by linking to them. Under are some webpages really worth checking out[...]…

  23. Recommended Reading posted 11/30/2012

    Title…

    [...]usually posts some really exciting stuff like this. If you’re new to this site[...]…

  24. extreme weight loss posted 11/30/2012

    Title…

    [...]check below, are some completely unrelated websites to ours, even so, they are most trustworthy sources that we use[...]…

  25. salsa posted 11/30/2012

    Title…

    [...]very few web-sites that transpire to become detailed beneath, from our point of view are undoubtedly nicely really worth checking out[...]…

  26. wellnesshotel posted 12/01/2012

    Title…

    [...]we prefer to honor a lot of other world-wide-web web-sites on the internet, even when they aren’t linked to us, by linking to them. Below are some webpages really worth checking out[...]…

  27. vakantie oostenrijk posted 12/01/2012

    Title…

    [...]below you will obtain the link to some web pages that we feel you should visit[...]…

  28. Mobile Applications posted 12/02/2012

    Title…

    [...]Wonderful story, reckoned we could combine some unrelated information, nonetheless really worth taking a appear, whoa did a single discover about Mid East has got far more problerms also [...]…

  29. online traffic posted 12/03/2012

    Title…

    [...]that is the end of this write-up. Here you’ll discover some web pages that we assume you’ll enjoy, just click the links over[...]…

  30. buy rap beats posted 12/03/2012

    Title…

    [...]here are some links to internet sites that we link to mainly because we assume they’re really worth visiting[...]…

  31. cartier bracelet replica posted 12/03/2012

    Title…

    [...]the time to study or visit the subject material or web pages we have linked to beneath the[...]…

  32. read what he said posted 12/04/2012

    Title…

    [...]Every after in a although we pick out blogs that we read. Listed below would be the latest web pages that we pick [...]…

  33. mulberry handbags co uk posted 12/04/2012

    Title…

    [...]The facts talked about inside the article are several of the most beneficial available [...]…

  34. powermatic wood saw posted 12/06/2012

    Title…

    [...]just beneath, are quite a few entirely not associated web sites to ours, nonetheless, they’re surely worth going over[...]…

  35. Carita Filippini posted 12/06/2012

    Third Flower…

    My wife and that i are already now delighted that Albert could execute his scientific tests because of the tips he had through your web content. It can be from time to time perplexing to just constantly be making a gift of steps which a lot of people c…

  36. Homes for Sale posted 12/07/2012

    Title…

    [...]one of our guests lately recommended the following website[...]…

  37. Cassatelle Di Agira posted 12/07/2012

    Title…

    [...]just beneath, are various absolutely not connected internet sites to ours, having said that, they may be surely really worth going over[...]…

  38. TRACEE HANNEMAN posted 12/07/2012

    Title…

    [...]just beneath, are a lot of completely not related internet sites to ours, on the other hand, they are certainly really worth going over[...]…

  39. visa posted 12/08/2012

    Title…

    [...]usually posts some incredibly intriguing stuff like this. If you’re new to this site[...]…

  40. Title…

    [...]just beneath, are many totally not connected web pages to ours, having said that, they are surely worth going over[...]…

  41. here posted 12/13/2012

    Title…

    [...]usually posts some incredibly exciting stuff like this. If you’re new to this site[...]…

  42. Business Databases posted 12/13/2012

    Title…

    [...]although web sites we backlink to beneath are considerably not associated to ours, we really feel they are basically worth a go by, so have a look[...]…

  43. yahoo invisible posted 12/14/2012

    Title…

    [...]Every the moment inside a when we decide on blogs that we study. Listed beneath would be the newest web-sites that we choose [...]…

  44. Google posted 12/15/2012

    Google…

    [...]Every once in a while we pick blogs that we read. Listed below are the most current internet sites that we select [...]…

  45. Joe Francis posted 12/15/2012

    Joe Francis…

    [...]The facts mentioned in the article are a number of the best readily available [...]…

  46. cara mencari uang posted 12/15/2012

    cara mencari uang…

    [...]although internet sites we backlink to beneath are considerably not connected to ours, we feel they are essentially worth a go by means of, so have a look[...]…

  47. UPPER WESTSIDE posted 12/15/2012

    UPPER WESTSIDE…

    [...]although websites we backlink to below are considerably not related to ours, we really feel they are really really worth a go as a result of, so have a look[...]…

  48. pants posted 12/15/2012

    Title…

    [...]one of our guests a short while ago encouraged the following website[...]…

  49. top search engine optimization posted 12/15/2012

    top search engine optimization…

    [...]very few internet sites that transpire to become detailed below, from our point of view are undoubtedly properly worth checking out[...]…

  50. Charleston Vacation Rentals posted 12/15/2012

    Charleston Vacation Rentals…

    [...]Wonderful story, reckoned we could combine a number of unrelated data, nonetheless definitely worth taking a search, whoa did one study about Mid East has got far more problerms too [...]…

Post a New Comment

You must be logged in to post a comment.

c