It’s my second year of Thanksgiving sans gluten. Luckily my mom is a saint and has me covered. She purchased two (Yes! TWO!) turkeys so that one will not be stuffed with stuffing. Because if the turkey is touching stuffing made with normal bread, I can’t eat it. Cross contamination is a bad, bad thing. Luckily, My parents have multiple ovens, so we have the ability to make one a gluten oven and one a gluten-free oven for Thanksgiving purposes. Pure amazingness. I’m getting side tracked talking about the beauty of having two ovens. Anyways.. back to stuffing.
Yes, stuffing is one of my favorite parts of Thanksgiving so in order to not miss out on it, I created this amazing recipe. It uses my recipe for masa harina cornbread, but you can use any recipe for cornbread that you would like. If you’re looking for gluten-free cornbread to purchase, Whole Foods has a really good one in the freezer bins near the bakery section. You would probably need to get two of those packages for this recipe. I made this stuffing as a practice run for Thanksgiving and it turned into a mini gluten-free thanksgiving with my boyfriend. We made some mashed potatoes and roasted chicken thighs to complete our meal. It was seriously one of the best meals I’ve had in awhile. The stuffing is so delicious and full of flavor. The fennel and spices from the italian sausage are great and make it so easy since you really don’t need to add any other spices to this recipe. This stuffing is a great alternative to the normal white bread stuffing, even if you aren’t on a gluten-free diet!
1 recipe Gluten-Free Masa Harina Cornbread (about 5 cups crumbled)
1 onion, diced
3 large celery stalks, diced
1 lb lump italian sausage (make sure it’s marked gluten-free)
3/4 cup craisins
3-4 cups chicken stock (make sure its gluten-free – Swanson is gf)
3/4 cups pecans, chopped (optional)
olive oil, for drizzling
About a day before you plan on making the stuffing, dice up the cornbread to 1/2 inch cubes and leave out uncovered so that it becomes stale. If you don’t have that kind of time, you can put it in the oven at 325F for awhile so that it dries up. Basically you want some cornbread croutons.
Preheat oven to 350F. In a large skillet, cook sausage until it browns. Remove sausage and set aside. Leaving the grease from the sausage, add the diced onion and celery to the skillet and cook until the vegetables are soft and translucent. If there isn’t enough grease from the sausage when cooking the vegetables, you can add some olive oil. Add the onions, celery, and sausage to a large bowl with the cornbread. Then add the pecans and craisins and mix until combined. Pour the mixture into a greased 9×13 pan. Gradually pour the chicken stock over the stuffing until the bread is moist. I used just under 4 cups of stock. Dot the top of the stuffing with olive oil. Bake at 350F for 35-40 minutes or until it is lightly browned on top.