My Grandmother’s Sausage Stuffing

Thanksgiving is my favorite Holiday, hands down.

It’s all about delicious food and gratitude- what could be better? Throw in some crisp Fall weather, the Macy’s Day parade and some catch football in the front yard, and the day is perfect. Gathering with family and friends we don’t normally get to see all year? Priceless.

I often host Thanksgiving (which sometimes falls on my birthday) but this year I had no desire to. I’m exhausted and the idea of setting the table, cooking for three days, and cleaning for three days, didn’t appeal to me at all. I thought about ordering the meal from a grocery store (like Milam’s), but there’s still the setting the table and cleaning up afterwards and, besides all that, I wouldn’t be able to have my Grandmother’s Sausage Stuffing, so it was a no-go.

At any rate, A.J. and her family are headed to Mississippi to Justin’s Dad’s, Chris, Courtney, Liam and newborn Luke are headed to Perry to her Dad’s, so it was going to be a very small gathering. When Emma said: “I don’t care about Thanksgiving”, (sacrilege!) it was a done deal for me. Emma thought she was working Thanksgiving (now she isn’t) and seemed disappointed I wasn’t cooking (?). She is going to her future in-law’s house for turkey.

I am going to my Mom’s for Thanksgiving.

She recently had hip surgery so my sister Elise is going to set the table, cook the turkey and stuffing and we are all bringing something and will clean up. The best part of this is, besides the fact I don’t have to host, is I still get to have my Grandmother’s Sausage Stuffing. It is my favorite food to eat at Thanksgiving. When that golden bird emerges from the oven, with it’s lacquered, crispy skin (my second favorite part), I sneak a little bite of the crunchy, savory stuffing that’s gotten browned at the top. Heaven!

One Thanksgiving, when we were hosting a lot of people, Zeke and I had “dueling turkeys”, one stuffed with his Dad’s Oyster Stuffing and one stuffed with my Grandmother’s Sausage Stuffing. The winner, hands down, was my Nanny’s. The crowd was mostly made up of my side of the family, but still. The Oyster Dressing tasted fishy, not something you want in your turkey. Nanny’s secret ingredient? Besides love, a beaten egg or two in the stuffing to keep it moist. Although I know food safety wisdom advocates for making stuffing OUTSIDE the bird, nothing beats stuffing cooked INSIDE the turkey.

Now it is well-known throughout the Midwest that the old man is a turkey junkie. A bona-fide garlicy turkicanis freak. A few days before Christmas his eyes would begin to gleam with a wild and ravenous light.

A Christmas Story

My Grandmother’s Sausage Stuffing

Recipe by Julia RiceCourse: Side DishCuisine: AmericanDifficulty: Easy
Servings

4

servings
Prep time

30

minutes

This easy and delicious recipe for stuffing is a Family Tradition. Leftovers can go on sandwiches or in turkey soup.

Ingredients

  • Pepperidge Farm Herb Seasoned Stuffing (not cubes) in blue package

  • Jimmy Dean Regular Sausage (16 oz.)

  • 1 cup celery, chopped

  • 1 cup onion, chopped

  • 2 1/2 cups Swanson Organic Chicken Broth

  • 1/4 cup (1/2 stick) butter

  • 1 to 2 eggs, slightly beaten

Directions

  • Remove sausage from package and brown in a 3 quart saucepan. Remove sausage and drain grease.
  • Heat butter in a 3 quart saucepan over medium heat. Add the celery and onion and cook for 5 minutes or until tender crisp.
  • Add broth to the saucepan and heat to a boil.
  • Remove sauce pan from heat. Add the stuffing and sausage and mix lightly.
  • When cooled slightly, add beaten eggs.
  • The day you’re cooking the turkey (don’t do it ahead) stuff the stuffing into the bird. Stuff both cavities- the breast and the tail side. Don’t overpack and cover the stuffing with aluminum foil so it doesn’t burn. Roast turkey according to its size and weight. You will have additional stuffing left.
  • Spoon leftover stuffing into a greased baking dish. Cover the dish and bake for 30 minutes or until stuffing mixture is hot.

Notes

  • I don’t drain the sausage fat and save it to saute the vegetables in. I just use just use less butter (like 1/4 cup).

The heavenly aroma still hung heavy in the house. But it was gone. All gone. No turkey sandwiches. No turkey salads. No turkey gravy, turkey hash, turkey a la king or gallons of turkey soup.

A Christmas Story

Wishing you an abundance of leftovers and a very Happy Thanksgiving!

Up Next: Eating House is Reborn

Published by gleeguilford

Born and raised in Miami, the daughter of a pilot and stay-at-home Mom, I love food in all forms. My great grandfather opened the first Italian restaurant in Miami in the 20's, The Boathouse on the Miami river. I love exploring my heritage and linking food and recipes to personal stories. I've been published in Chicken Soup for the Soul: Food and Love and wrote restaurant reviews and news as the Miami Dining Examiner for three years. I love exploring Miami's latest hot spots, hole in the walls and institutions. I'm always looking for innovative ways to use the plethora of tropical fruits and vegetables South Florida offers, especially from my own garden.

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