Now that you have decided to roast a plump, juicy turkey for Thanksgiving, the first step is to either book your bird at the butchers' or buy frozen turkey well in advance. Normally, a fresh bird is more expensive than a frozen one. Depending upon the number of people, you will require 1 to 1½ pounds of meat per person. Next comes the delicious stuffing. You can choose from the traditional stuffing to exotic one involving dry fruits and rice. Some recipes mentioned here have been influenced by other cuisines in the world.Recipes for Thanksgiving Turkey Stuffing
Before we begin, here are some basics.
✔ While stuffing the bird, the appropriate amount of stuffing needed is ½ to ¾ cup per pound of meat.
✔ The skin of the turkey needs to be brushed with oil or butter.
✔ It is good to use a meat thermometer to ascertain whether or not the meat is getting appropriately cooked.
✔ Remember, the turkey is done when the internal temperature reaches 165ºF.
✔ Never judge whether the turkey is done on the basis of the visible change in its skin color.
Traditional Stuffing for Thanksgiving
This is a traditional bread stuffing recipe. It will make stuffing for about 12 pounds of turkey, that would easily serve approximately 10 people.
- Thyme - ½ tsp.
- Marjoram - 1 tsp.
- Poultry seasoning - 2 tsp.
- Sage - 2 tsp.
- Butter - ¼ cup
- Celery chopped with leaves - 1½ cup
- Egg (beaten) - 1
- Chicken broth - 2 cups
- Chopped onions - 2 cups
- Apples (peeled and chopped) - 2
- French bread - 1 loaf
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Begin by cutting the French loaf into pieces. In an oven, toast the bread at 200ºF.
- Take a big pan and melt butter in it. Add onions, celery, and apples to the melted butter and let it all cook, till the onions become soft.
- In a large bowl, take the toasted bread pieces and add onion, celery, and apple mixture to it. Now, add all the seasoning to this mixture.
- Next, add chicken broth to the mixture. Do not add the entire broth at once. Add only ⅓ of a cup at a time, else the bread may become soggy. You may not require all the chicken broth. Mix all the ingredients using a fork and then add the beaten egg and mix thoroughly.
For all health-conscious people, this is a wonderful vegetarian stuffing recipe. Find the ingredients mentioned below.
- Dried sage - 1 tbsp.
- Dried thyme - 1 tbsp.
- White wine - ½ cup
- Onion (chopped) - 1
- Celery - 1 stalk
- Garlic (minced) - 5 to 10 cloves
- Whole wheat bread cubes - 1 pound
- Mushrooms (sliced) - 1 pound
- Veggie broth - as needed
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Sauté all vegetables in white wine. As the vegetables are sautéing, add herbs to it. Cook till the vegetables are soft.
- In an oven, toast bread cubes at 200ºF. Make sure the bread gets a crunchy texture.
- Take a large baking bowl and put the toasted bread cubes in it. Now add the vegetable mixture to it. Add broth, so that the mixture is moist but not soggy.
- Cover the bowl and bake it approximately for 30 minutes. Uncover the bowl and let it bake for another 15 minutes.
Herbs and Dry Fruit Stuffing
This is the best stuffing recipe I have, by far, come across. You can use this recipe for Thanksgiving as well as your Christmas dinner banquet. I can tell you, it will be a big hit with everyone!
- Dried thyme - 1 tsp.
- Dried ground sage - 1 tsp.
- Pepper - ½ tsp.
- Olive oil - 1 tbsp.
- Walnuts, chopped - ½ cup
- Fresh parsley, minced - ½ cup
- Celery (chopped) - 1 cup
- Chicken broth - 1 to 1½ cup
- Fresh cornbread cubes - 6 cups
- Onion (finely chopped) - 1
- Apples (peeled and diced) - 2 medium
- Salt to taste
- Preheat the oven to 350ºF and toast the bread cubes for approximately 8 to 10 minutes, or till they become light brown. Remove them from the oven and put them in a large bowl.
- In a large skillet, heat olive oil. Thereafter, add onions and celery to it and cook till the onions become translucent.
- After the onions are cooked, add apples and cook for approximately 5 minutes. Now pour this mixture on the bread cubes, add the rest of the ingredients, and mix well.
- After mixing well, pour the entire mixture in a baking pan. Make sure you spray the baking pan with cooking spray. Cover the pan and bake for 20 minutes. Remove the cover and bake for another 10 minutes.
Pork Sausage Stuffing
This is another of my favorite recipes. With this recipe, you will be able to serve about 10 to 12 people.
- Steak sauce - 1 tsp.
- Poultry seasoning - 2 tsp.
- Celery, chopped - 2 stalks
- Salt - 1 tbsp.
- Eggs, lightly beaten - 2
- Onions, chopped - 4
- Chicken broth - 1 cup
- Crumbled cornbread - 6 cups
- Soft white bread, cubed - 6 cups
- Ground sage pork sausage - 1½ pounds
- In a skillet, place the sausages over medium heat. Cook the sausages well by breaking them apart with a fork. The sausages should become evenly brown. Keep the sausages aside but do not throw away the pan juices, as we will use it further in the recipe.
- In the pan juices, cook onions and celery. The onion should be cooked until it becomes brown. Remove the extra juices.
- In a large bowl, add sausages, cooked onions, celery, cornbread, white bread, chicken broth, and eggs. Add the seasonings, steak sauce, and salt to it and mix well.
- Now stuff the turkey with it and roast till the meat becomes brown in color.
Creamy Rice and Cranberry Stuffing
This recipe, strange as it sounds, makes for an absolutely rich and creamy stuffing with a surprisingly interesting twist to its taste. This recipe would suffice for stuffing a medium to large turkey, which can sufficiently serve 10-12 people.
- Powdered thyme - 1½ tsp.
- Powdered basil - 1½ tsp.
- Vegetable oil - 3 tbsp.
- Onions, chopped - 2
- Arborio rice - 1½ cups
- Water - 3 cups
- Cranberries (preferably fresh) - 3 cups
- Mushrooms, sliced - 4 cups
- Salt to taste
- Cook rice by boiling it in water till it has assumed a soft and smooth texture. When you feel the rice has been almost cooked, check for tenderness by taking a couple of grains on a teaspoon and pressing on them with a finger.
- Heat a skillet and pour vegetable oil in it. As soon as the oil is sufficiently hot and starts smoking, lower the flame and add the rest of the ingredients. Sauté on a medium flame.
- When the onions turn golden brown and tender, add cooked rice to it and stir properly to blend the mixture well. Remove from flame and set aside.
These recipes are sure to help you lend a special touch to your Thanksgiving banquet. You can use the aforementioned recipes to prepare a grand feast for Thanksgiving as well as Christmas.
Before we end, here are some quick and really helpful tips for you.
♨ Stuff the turkey just before it goes in the oven. It is recommended to have moist, and not overly dry stuffing.
♨ The mixture should be stuffed loosely inside the turkey so that it cooks well.
♨ Cook the turkey at a proper temperature to avoid it being uncooked or undercooked, and consequently avoid food borne illnesses.
Let the festive spirit permeate the festive banquet and give in to the joys of celebrating this fabulous Holiday season!