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Sage Stuffing Recipe for Turkey

This classic Sage Stuffing Recipe for Turkey is filled with all the savory, familiar flavors of the holidays. It’s made with dried bread cubes, savory sage seasoning and chicken broth. It’s delicious and easy, pairs so well with poultry, and makes a great side dish for any holiday meal!

Thanksgiving is one of my favorite times of year. I love that it’s a time to focus on all that we are thankful for, both past and present. And I also love having the traditional Thanksgiving dinner that we can gather around the table together and eat–turkey and all the fixings! 

In our house, you just can’t have turkey without stuffing on Thanksgiving. It’s such a warm and savory addition that pairs so well with turkey, potatoes, and all sorts of greens—add some gravy and it’s close to perfect! 

There is something so special to me about including traditional recipes on our Thanksgiving table when we gather together, and this Sage Stuffing for Turkey recipe is one of them. It reminds me of Thanksgiving meals from when I was young, and of all those that have come before us and celebrated this wonderful holiday. I love that this recipe is just as delicious whether you stuff your turkey with it or bake it on its own.

This recipe has several steps involved in order to make the Sage Stuffing for Turkey recipe from start to finish, since you will be making this from scratch. But, it’s worth it, I promise! You’ll find everything you need to know below, including directions for both cooking the stuffing inside the turkey and on its own as a side.

Looking for other Thanksgiving recipes? Try my Cranberry Orange Muffins, Sweet Potato Casserole with Marshmallows, Pumpkin Bar Recipe, and Twice Baked Mashed Potato Recipe.

Ingredients for Sage Stuffing for Turkey

  • Bread – Two loaves of day-old bread make up the bulk of this recipe. You can use any kind of bread that you want! Many people prefer white bread or leftover stale bread. To make this recipe gluten free, use your favorite gluten free bread (though it will result in a different texture).
  • Butter – Salted butter helps to make this dish rich and delicious. To make this dairy free, substitute with your favorite plant based butter.
  • Celery – Chopped stalks of celery adds both texture and freshness to this otherwise heavier recipe. And is such a classic ingredient for turkey stuffing.
  • Red Onion – Finely chopped red onion adds an additional crunch and warmth in this stuffing.  Use a white onion as a substitute if you need to!
  • Minced Parsley – Parsley adds both an earthy flavor and lovely color.
  • Dried Sage – Sage is the star of this show and is what gives the classic sage stuffing flavor.
  • Dried Thyme – Thyme is a great compliment to sage and really elevates this dish.
  • Chicken Stock – Chicken stock helps to cook and bind all the ingredients together. I prefer using chicken stock because it has extra nutrients and a more complex flavor, but using turkey stock works as well or even chicken broth or vegetable broth if that’s all you have on hand.
  • Egg – Eggs act as a binder to create the classic stuffing texture.
  • Salt – I like to use sea salt for this dish!
  • Pepper – Freshly cracked pepper is a great finisher in this recipe.

How to Make Sage Stuffing for Turkey

  • Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.
  • Cut your loaves of bread into small cubes. If you prefer a smaller crumb texture, you can also put the cubes into a food processor for a few pulses, but be sure not to make them into bread crumbs by leaving them in there too long!
  • Place the bread cubes or pieces on a sheet pan and bake for about 15 minutes. You want the bread to be dry and crispy.
  • Place the toasted bread cubes into a large bowl and set aside.
  • In a large skillet, melt butter.
  • Add in the chopped celery and chopped red onion. Sauté until the red onion is translucent.
  • Pour the butter mixture over the bread cubes. Mix gently until the bread cubes are coated with the melted butter, and the onions and celery are mixed in well. 
  • Add in the minced parsley, dried sage, dried thyme, salt, pepper, and chicken stock. Mix well to combine everything together well. If your stuffing seems a little dry, continue adding a little more chicken stock at a time–you want your stuffing to be moist enough that you can form a ball with it and it stays formed.
  • Add more salt and pepper to taste, if needed.
  • In a small bowl, beat the egg and then stir it into the stuffing mixture.
  • From here, you can either stuff your turkey or bake it in your prepared baking dish and serve it as a side.

Side Dish/Casserole Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Spray the bottom of a large casserole dish with your favorite oil spray, olive oil, or grease with butter.
  3. Put the prepared stuffing mixture into the bottom of the casserole dish and cover with aluminum foil.
  4. Bake for 30 minutes.
  5. After the 30 minutes are up, remove the foil and bake for an additional 15 minutes until the top turns golden brown.

Turkey Stuffing Instructions

  1. Place your prepared stuffing into the cavity of the turkey. Any extra stuffing can be baked in the oven in a casserole dish (just follow the directions above)! 
  2. Follow the instructions included with your turkey on the temperature and time for roasting the turkey. 
  3. Once the turkey is done, remove the stuffing and place into a serving dish.

Frequently Asked Questions


How much sage do you put in the stuffing?


While sage is the signature flavor, you don’t want to overpower the dish! I’ve found that four tablespoons is the perfect amount!


Can I use fresh sage instead of dried?


You can definitely use fresh sage, just chop up very finely! Fresh herbs are a great option for this recipe. 


How wet should stuffing be before baking?


Your stuffing should be wet enough so that when you form a ball, it stays formed. If you like moist stuffing, this is an absolute must to get that perfect stuffing.


What spices are in stuffing?


This sage stuffing recipe has parsley, sage, thyme, salt, and pepper.


Should I cover the stuffing when baking?


Yes, you should cover the stuffing while baking to ensure that it doesn’t dry out. But you do want to uncover and bake for the last 15 minutes so that the top of the stuffing will brown nicely on top.

I hope you enjoy this perfect side dish that accompanies most Thanksgiving meals! It’s an easy side dish to throw together on Thanksgiving morning ahead of time while you are prepping your turkey! Do you have family traditions that surround your holiday seasons?! I’d love for you to share them below!

PIN FOR LATER

Sage Stuffing Recipe for Turkey

This classic traditional stuffing recipe is filled with all the savory, familiar flavors of holidays past. It’s delicious and easy, pairs so well with poultry, and makes a great side dish for any holiday meal!
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 45 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 15 minutes
Servings 10

Ingredients
  

  • 2 Large loaves of day old bread I prefer french bread
  • 1 cup Butter
  • 1 ½ cup Chopped celery
  • 1 cup Finely chopped red onion
  • ½ cup Minced parsley
  • 4 tbsp Dried sage
  • 1 ½ tsp Dried Thyme
  • 2 ½ cups Chicken stock
  • 1 Egg beaten
  • 1 ½ tsp Salt
  • 1 tsp Pepper

Instructions
 

  • Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
  • Cut the bread into small cubes (if you prefer a smaller crumb, you can also put the cubes into a food processor for a few pulses).
  • Place the bread cubes onto a baking sheet and bake for around 15 minutes. You are wanting your bread cubes to be dry and crispy.
  • Put the dried bread cubes into a large mixing bowl and set aside.
  • In a large skillet, melt the butter.  Add in the chopped celery and chopped onion.  Saute until the red onion is translucent.
  • Pour the butter mixture over the toasted bread cubes. Mix gently until the bread cubes are coated with the melted butter and the onions and celery are mixed in well.
  • Add in the minced parsley, dried sage, dried thyme, salt, pepper and chicken stock. Mix well to combine everything together.  If your stuffing seems a little dry, continue adding a little more chicken stock. You want your stuffing to be moist enough that you can form a ball and it stays formed.  You can also add more salt and pepper to taste.
  • The last step is stirring the beaten egg into the mixture. 
  • Below are the instructions on how to bake it. You can either stuff a turkey with this Sage stuffing or you can bake it in a casserole dish.

Casserole Dish Instructions

  • Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
  • Spray the bottom of a large casserole dish (you could also use butter).
  • Put the prepared stuffing mixture into the bottom of the dish and cover with tin foil.
  • Bake for 30 minutes, then remove the foil and bake for an additional 15 minutes.

Turkey Stuffing Instructions

  • Place the prepared stuffing into the cavity of a turkey.  Any extra stuffing can be baked in the oven in a casserole dish. 
  • Follow the instructions included with your turkey on the temperature and time for roasting the turkey. 
  • Once the turkey is done, remove the stuffing and place into a serving dish.

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