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Stuffing Outside the Bird (aka Dressing)

Thanksgiving, it’s time to think outside the bird… This year, make stuffing that is cooked in the oven, not inside the turkey for a new side that everyone will love. The delicious flavors in this chicken dressing recipe make a cozy, carb-filled side dish that will make your mouth water. 

Outside the Bird Stuffing | Kita Roberts

Pair this easy to make Thanksgiving dressing recipe with chicken, pork chops, or even meatloaf. It makes a yummy sidekick to any meal, and not just in November!

Once you try this comfort food, you’ll be pairing it up with all main courses! It’s perfect for a cold night when you just want a good meal and a book. And what’s great about this recipe is that it’s almost better the next day in your lunch! Leftovers for the win!

What’s the Difference Between Stuffing and Dressing?

When you’re cooking it inside the turkey, stuffing is used as a filling for the bird’s cavity. The mixture of bread and veggies provides a hearty side dish that keeps your Thanksgiving guests full all night long.

If you’re serving outside the bird, it’s dressing! This means that traditional Thanksgiving dressing takes on a life of its own and is transformed into the ultimate comfort food. It’s sweet, savory, and incredibly filling. The top is crispy while the inside is the perfect texture.

Outside the Bird Stuffing | Kita Roberts PassTheSushi

What You Need For Thanksgiving Dressing Recipe

Because this chicken dressing recipe only needs a few common ingredients, it makes for a great cheap Thanksgiving recipe. The best part is that it’s super-easy to double or triple if you’re cooking for more people. What you want to gather:

  • Chicken stock
  • White bread
  • Celery
  • Onion
  • Spices
Selected for you :   Sage and Honey Biscuits

What Should I Serve with Thanksgiving Dressing?

This chicken dressing recipe is great when served beside another Thanksgiving side like green bean casserole or mashed potatoes! It’s easy to pair with just about any main course thanksgiving meal.

If you’re planning on serving this chicken dressing recipe with another Thanksgiving dish, why not pair it with sweet potatoes? Both great options for pairing with chicken, turkey or pork. Get creative in the kitchen!

Can You Make Dressing the Day Before Thanksgiving?

You can definitely make this dish a days in advance. Just cover the dish with plastic wrap and set it in the fridge to store. You can then bake it when you’re ready for dinner!

Because this recipe bakes in a casserole dish, it’s easy to keep warm without burning or drying out. If you want to serve this for a party, you can also heat up the stove and keep the dish warm in a pot.

Is this recipe vegan/vegetarian?

Cooking for vegetarian friends or family? No problem!  When it comes to Thanksgiving day you can easily make this a vegetarian thanksgiving dressing by using vegetable stock.

If you are looking for a vegan dressing, Thanksgiving will be a hit with a simple substitution of vegan butter and veggie broth.

How do I reheat this stuffing recipe?

Leftovers can be placed in a microwave or oven-safe  baking dish and warmed on a low heat until thoroughly rewarmed. If it is a bit dry you can bring it back to life with a bit of vegetable broth.

How do I store my leftover stuffing?

You can store your leftovers in an airtight container. Make sure to consume within 3-4 days.

Selected for you :   Sausage Cornbread Stuffing

Looking for more recipes like this one? Check out:

Whiskey-Glazed Pork Chops & Corn Chowder Mac n’ Cheese

Cheesy Garlic Homestyle Loaded Mashed Potatoes

Orange Olive Oil Cake

If you’ve tried this recipe or any other recipe on please don’t forget to rate the recipe and let me know where you found it in the comments below. I love hearing from you! You can also follow along for more good eats and travel tips on Instagram @passthesushi & @girlcarnivoreTwitter Facebook.

Yield: 10 servings

Outside the Bird Stuffing (aka Dressing)

Outside the Bird Stuffing | Kita Roberts PassTheSushi
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour 10 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 25 minutes


  • 24 oz loaf hearty country white bread, cut into 1/2? cubes
  • 8 tbsp unsalted butter
  • 2 onions, chopped
  • 3 celery stalks, trimmed and chopped
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 3 tsp Bells seasoning, if you can’t find Bells, use a mix of sage and thyme
  • 4 cups low-sodium chicken broth
  • 1 tbsp soy sauce
  • 4 large eggs
  • 1 1/2 cups half and half
  • 1/4 cup fresh snipped parsley
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 1/2 tsp ground pepper


  1. Adjust the racks in your oven to the middle top and middle bottom position. Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F. 
  2. Arrange the bread cubes on two baking sheets in even layers. Bake for 30 minutes, until golden. Stir the bread and switch pans halfway through baking. Set aside to cool.  Outside the Bird Stuffing | Kita Roberts PassTheSushi
  3. Meanwhile, grease a 9 x 13" pan and set aside.
  4. In a large skillet, melt 4 tbs butter over medium heat. Add the onions and celery and cook for 10 minutes, until starting to softened and turn golden.  Outside the Bird Stuffing | Kita Roberts PassTheSushi
  5. Add the garlic and Bells seasoning. Cook, stirring, for 30 seconds. 
  6. Stir in the broth and soy sauce. Simmer until slightly thickened, about 10 minutes. Remove from heat. Let cool 10 minutes.
  7. Whisk the eggs, half and half, and parsley in a large bowl. Slowly whisk in the broth mixture. 
  8. Fold in all of the breadcrumbs, making sure to coat all. Let sit for 20 minutes until bread is soaked with the liquid mixture (some will still be in the bowl). Outside the Bird Stuffing | Kita Roberts PassTheSushi
  9. Pour the bread mix into the prepared pan. 
  10. Melt the remaining butter and drizzle over the stuffing. 
  11. Bake on lower middle rack for 50 minutes, until top is crispy. Serve warm.

Nutrition Information:



Serving Size:


Amount Per Serving: Calories: 367Total Fat: 18gSaturated Fat: 10gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 7gCholesterol: 112mgSodium: 1202mgCarbohydrates: 40gFiber: 3gSugar: 7gProtein: 12g

Nutrition information provided is an estimate from For specific health concerns, please put the recipe into your Dr recommended nutrition calculator.

Belinda @zomppa

Thursday 21st of November 2013

I do outside the bird too - great flavor here!


Thursday 21st of November 2013

Well call ours stuffing too, but we don't stuff with it. Guess I never thought about that til just now. Dressing just sounds not food-ish, right? Any-who this looks to die for! Loving the big chunks of bread!!

Katrina @ Warm Vanilla Sugar

Thursday 21st of November 2013

Outside the bird is the only way we do stuffing! This recipe is FAB - adding eggs is such a good idea!

Erin @ The Spiffy Cookie

Thursday 21st of November 2013

I definitely call it stuffing no matter what. To me dressing is what you put on a salad. And don't worry I got the Super Troops/Willy Wonka reference

Vicki @ WITK

Thursday 21st of November 2013

Yes, it's always called stuffing! Stove top is called stuffing and that most certainly was never inside of a turkey!


Thursday 21st of November 2013

I just cracked up at the idea of someone putting stove top in a bird. I guarantee it's been done more than once.

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