This sweet and savory cranberry sausage stuffing will be the star of your Thanksgiving menu this year! It’s filled with toasty sourdough, cranberries, celery, and hints of smokey maple syrup.
Festive Cranberry Sausage Stuffing Recipe
Imagine a combo of savory sausage, sautéed veggies, tart cranberries, and chunks of crusty sourdough bread. That’s what this cranberry sausage stuffing is all about! Way better than store-bought, the best time of the year deserves a hearty, moist stuffing just like this one. Packed with sweet onions plus some crunchy celery, this herby and aromatic stuffing will be the star of your dinner menu. Baked until golden, you’ll watch it disappear before you’ve even placed the turkey on the table.
Why You’ll Love This Cranberry Stuffing
Don’t be surprised to see guests pushing their turkey to the side so they can load up on more of this cranberry sausage stuffing.
- Homemade. This beats store-bought any day! You know exactly when it was made and have full control over the salt and sugar.
- Easy. Once you mix the bread, sausage, and veggies, you can pop it into the oven and forget about it for a little bit.
- Freezer-friendly. Beat the holiday craze and make it ahead of time so all you have to do is reheat it the day of your gathering.
- Versatile. Add more sausage, make it spicy, add more cranberries… You’re in charge!
What You’ll Need
Sage, thyme, cranberries, and hints of maple syrup will make this your go-to stuffing recipe every year. Check the recipe card at the bottom of the post for exact amounts.
- Sourdough bread – You can use leftover, stale bread.
- Sausage – Use your favorite kind!
- Unsalted butter – Skip the salt in the rest of the recipe if you use salted butter.
- Diced celery – It adds lots of crunch.
- Diced onion – Yellow or white onion is best.
- Garlic cloves – Feel free to use garlic powder.
- Dried sage – Add double the amount if you’re using fresh sage.
- Dried thyme – Feel free to use dried rosemary.
- Salt and pepper – Kosher salt and freshly cracked pepper are best. Don’t use white or pink pepper because they’re too fruity.
- Vegetable broth – Chicken stock is a great swap. I prefer low-sodium versions.
- Maple syrup – Raw honey and agave syrup are okay for this.
- Egg – This is the binding agent.
- Dried cranberries – Fresh cranberries won’t work because they’ll release too much moisture.
How to make Cranberry Sausage Stuffing
As long as the bread is toasty and the sausage is browned, this cranberry stuffing recipe is guaranteed to be a hit. Check the recipe card at the bottom of the post for more detailed instructions.
- Toast the bread. Preheat the oven to 400F. Spread out the bread in a baking sheet. Make sure it’s in a single layer. Bake it for 8-10 minutes or until golden.
- Brown the sausage. In a skillet over medium-high heat, add the ground sausage. Cook it for about 5-7 minutes, breaking it into smaller pieces with a wooden spoon until it’s slightly browned. Then, remove the sausage from the pan and set it aside.
- Sautée the veggies. In the same pan, add 2 tablespoons of butter, onions, celery, and garlic. Sauté them for 3-4 minutes until the onions soften. Add the sage, thyme, salt, and pepper. Give it a good stir, then remove it from the heat.
- Prepare the broth. In a small bowl, whisk together the vegetable broth, maple syrup, and egg until you get an even mixture.
- Combine it. In a large bowl, combine the bread, sausage, sautéed celery-onion mixture, and dried cranberries. Pour the vegetable broth mixture over the top and toss everything together until it’s well mixed.
- Bake it. Transfer the stuffing to a 13×9″ baking pan. Cover it with foil and bake for 20 minutes. Then, remove the foil and bake for an additional 20 minutes uncovered until it’s slightly browned. Remove it from the oven. Let it rest for 10 minutes and carefully remove the foil. Serve immediately.
Tips for Success
Even if it’s your first time making cranberry stuffing, you’ll nail it with the help of these tips and ingredient hacks.
- Skip the toasting. If you’re using stale, leftover bread, you don’t need to toast it in the oven.
- Watch the moisture. Add the broth little by little and stir well. The stuffing should be moist, not soaked. If it’s too wet, let it bake for another 5 minutes or until most of the liquid evaporates.
- Make it nutty. 1/3 cup of chopped pecans, almonds, or walnuts will give this recipe extra texture and nuttiness.
- Add fruits. Stir in 1/4 cup dried fruits like raisins, figs, apricots, and apples for natural sweetness.
- Prep ahead. Toast the bread, brown the sausage, and cook the veggies in advance so you can just pop it into the oven before dinner.
- Use veggies. Mix in 1-2 cups of diced mushrooms, butternut squash, or broccoli florets.
- Make it spicy. Sprinkle in red pepper flakes or cayenne pepper to taste for a kick of heat.
This cranberry sausage stuffing will go great with your Thanksgiving dinner menu. Try my Thanksgiving Turkey Recipe, Maple Smoked Turkey, or Garlic Herb Turkey for main dishes. My Arugula Salad with Roasted Grapes is a yummy salad idea. For veggie sides, go for my Roasted Brussel Sprouts and Mashed Potatoes.
How to Store & Reheat Cranberry Stuffing
Once fully cooled, refrigerate any leftovers in an airtight container for up to 5 days. Reheat it in the microwave for up to a minute or until warm. For larger portions, pop it into the oven at 350F for 20-30 minutes. For longer storage, transfer into freezer-friendly bags or containers. Freeze it for up to 3 months. Reheat it straight from frozen.
More Holiday Side Dishes
- The Perfect Mushroom Gravy Recipe
- Sweet Potato Casserole with Pecan Streusel
- Easy Cheesy Scalloped Potatoes
- Best Ever Cornbread Sausage Stuffing Recipe
- Homemade Maple Cranberry Sauce
This sweet and savory cranberry sausage stuffing recipe is a hearty side dish packed with toasty bread and aromatic herbs everyone will love.
- 6 cups cubed sourdough bread
- 1 lb. sausage
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 1 1/2 cups diced celery
- 1 cup diced onion
- 3 garlic cloves
- 2 teaspoons dry sage
- 1 1/2 teaspoons dry thyme
- salt & pepper to taste
- 1 1/2 cups vegetable broth (or chicken broth)
- 1/2 cup maple syrup
- 1 egg
- 1/2 cup dry cranberries
- Preheat oven to 4000°F.
- Spread cubed sourdough on a baking sheet in a single layer.
- Bake for 8-10 minutes, or until bread is slightly browned and dried out.
- In the meantime, heat a medium skillet to medium high heat. Add ground sausage to the pan and cook until slightly browned, approximately 5-7, chopping up sausage into smaller pieces with a wooden spoon.
- Once browned, remove the sausage from the pan and let rest. Then immediately add 2 tablespoons of butter, diced onion, diced celery and garlic. Saute until onions are translucent, about 3-4 minutes. Then add in dry sage, dry thyme and season with salt and pepper. Toss to coat then remove from heat.
- To a small bowl add vegetable broth, maple syrup and 1 egg. Whisk until egg is scrambled.
- To a large bowl add cubed bread, sausage, celery onion mixture and cranberries. Pour vegetable broth over the top and toss to coat. Mix everything together.
- Add stuffing mixture to a 13×9 baking dish.
- Cover with tinfoil and bake for 20 minutes. Then remove the tinfoil and bake an addiitional 20 minutes uncovered until slightly browned and serve.
- Serving Size: 1 cup
- Calories: 206
- Sugar: 12 g
- Sodium: 427 mg
- Fat: 12 g
- Saturated Fat: 3 g
- Carbohydrates: 23 g
- Fiber: 2 g
- Protein: 7 g
- Cholesterol: 38 mg
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