Raise your hand if you’ve ever felt personally victimized by a dish of wet and spongy stuffing sitting across from you at the holiday dinner table?
(Hands raised and waving wildly here.)
Trust me when I tell you that you can let your guard down for my Gluten Free Stuffing with Sausage and Parmesan. This buttery, herby, equal parts crispy and tender gluten-free stuffing recipe will make a convert out of even the most die-hard stuffing haters — which, up until now, was led by me!
Gluten Free Stuffing
Toasted gluten free bread cubes are tossed with sizzling Italian sausage, savory Parmesan cheese, buttery vegetables, and fresh herbs and garlic, then drizzled with just enough broth to create a stuffing that’s creamy in the center and crispy on top after baking.
The amount of PURE FLAVOR in each forkful is indescribable beyond incredible! Definitely rivaling Party Potatoes Deluxe as my new favorite holiday side dish, and so good that it’s earned a spot on the Thanksgiving table beside my Best Ever Wild Rice Stuffing. Step aside, cranberry sauce!
Scroll down to the recipe card below this post for ingredient quantities and full instructions.
- Gluten free white bread – More on my recommendations below.
- Gluten free sweet Italian sausage – I like Johnsonville brand, which is gluten free.
- Butter – Feel free to use a plant-based vegan butter, like Earth Balance, to make this stuffing dairy-free.
- Yellow onion and celery – These provide slow cooked, cozy flavors.
- Salt and pepper – Freshly cracked pepper is best.
- Garlic – Adds lots of craveable flavor.
- Fresh sage, thyme, and rosemary – Since this side dish is for a special occasion, I like to splurge and use fresh herbs. If you need to sub in dried herbs, use 1/3 of the amount of fresh.
- Grated parmesan cheese – Adds SO much depth of flavor! Use a plant-based Parmesan like Violife for dairy-free stuffing.
- Eggs – Beat them lightly before adding to the recipe.
- Gluten free chicken broth or chicken stock – Or if you happen to have turkey stock or broth on hand, you can use that. Vegetable broth or vegetable stock also works!
What Is the Best Gluten-Free Bread for Stuffing?
Some stuffing recipes taste like mealy, mushy disappointment, but the key to getting it right is choosing a loaf of bread that stands up to being paired with a bowl of soup to sop up the broth. Is that specific? Yes, but for a good reason. A gluten-free bread that can’t stand up to soup will disintegrate in this stuffing.
Choose the right bread, use this recipe, and you’re guaranteed a winning Thanksgiving side dish!
I tested this recipe using an 18oz loaf of Canyon Bakehouse Mountain White bread which I cut into cubes then toasted in the oven before mixing with the rest of the ingredients.
No need to cut off the crusts, no oil needed—just cube and bake. It is perfection.
How to Make the Best Gluten-Free Stuffing
No disappointment! No weird spongy texture! Here’s how to make perfect gluten free stuffing.
Prepare. Coat 2 medium baking dishes (8×8″ or 9×9″) or 1 large baking dish (9×13″) with cooking spray then set aside.
Toast the bread. Preheat your oven to 350ºF then arrange a loaf of gluten free bread that’s been cut into 1/2″ cubes on a parchment-lined baking sheet. Toast the bread for 15 to 20 minutes, tossing a few times, until they’re dry and golden brown.
Cook the sausage. While the bread is in the oven, heat a large skillet over medium-high heat. Brown the sausage then drain and set aside.
Sauté the veggies and aromatics. Return the skillet to the stovetop and reduce to medium heat. Melt butter inside then add the onion and celery. Season with salt and pepper then cook until the vegetables have softened, 8 to 10 minutes. Stir fresh garlic and fresh herbs into the pan then cook for 2 to 3 minutes, or until fragrant.
Combine all of the ingredients. Transfer the cooked sausage and vegetable mixture to a large bowl with parmesan cheese and the toasted bread cubes. Whisk the egg and chicken stock in a separate bowl then pour half of it over the stuffing mixture. Stir until all the liquid has been absorbed then drizzle in the remaining liquid and continue to stir until the liquid is absorbed.
Bake. Transfer the stuffing mixture to the prepared baking dish(es) then cover with foil. Bake for 20 minutes then remove the foil and bake for another 25 to 30 minutes, or until the top of the stuffing is golden brown and feels dry to the touch.
Tips for Success
Here are a few simple tips for making the best gluten free stuffing of your life!
- Adjusting the moisture level. If you prefer a drier stuffing, cut the amount of chicken stock or broth down to 1-1/2 cups. As written, this recipe is moist in the center and crispy on top.
- Get a head start. You can toast the bread several days ahead of time. Cool the bread cubes, then store in a gallon-size Ziplock bag or other airtight container.
- Make it meaty. Rather than breaking the sausage into little bits, I like leaving it in bigger chunks to add more texture and flavor to the stuffing.
The extra amazing part about this recipe is that it can be assembled a day ahead of time. Follow the recipe up to the point of baking, then cover and refrigerate. Let the baking dish sit at room temperature for 30 minutes then bake according to the recipe instructions.
How to Store and Reheat Leftovers
Wrap leftovers in the baking dish, or transfer to an airtight container and refrigerate for 3 to 4 days. Reheat a scoop in the microwave, or cover the baking dish with foil and reheat in a 350ºF oven until warmed through.
Can This Recipe Be Frozen?
Absolutely! Freeze leftover gluten-free stuffing in an airtight container for up to 2 months. Let thaw in the refrigerator then reheat according to the instructions above.
More Gluten Free Thanksgiving Side Dish Recipes
- Gluten Free Green Bean Casserole
- Best Ever Wild Rice Stuffing
- Party Potatoes Deluxe
- Fall Shredded Brussels Sprouts Salad
- Gluten Free Dinner Rolls
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Gluten Free Stuffing with Sausage and Parmesan
Gluten Free Stuffing with Sausage and Parmesan is full of savory fall flavors. This simple side dish is a must for your holiday dinner table!
- 18oz loaf gluten free white bread, sliced into 1/2" cubes (I like Canyon Bakehouse Mountain White)
- 1lb gluten free sweet Italian sausage (I like Johnsonville)
- 1/2 cup (1 stick) butter
- 1 medium yellow onion, chopped
- 3 stalks celery, finely chopped
- salt and pepper
- 4 cloves garlic, pressed or minced
- 2 Tablespoons minced fresh sage
- 1 Tablespoon minced fresh thyme
- 1 Tablespoon minced fresh rosemary
- 1 cup freshly grated parmesan cheese
- 2 eggs, whisked
- 2 cups gluten free chicken stock or broth
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Add bread cubes to a parchment paper lined baking sheet then spread into an even layer and bake until toasted and dried out, 15-20 minutes, stirring a couple of times. Bread cubes don’t need to be rock hard like croutons, but should be dry and golden brown. Can be done several days ahead of time. Cool then store in an airtight container.
- Meanwhile, heat a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add sausage then brown (I prefer to leave the sausage in larger hunks vs breaking it down finely) and drain. Set aside.
- Place skillet back onto burner then turn heat down to medium. Melt butter then add onion and celery, season with salt and pepper, and saute until vegetables are tender, 8-10 minutes. Add garlic and fresh herbs then saute until very fragrant, 2-3 more minutes.
- Add cooked sausage and vegetable mixture to a very large mixing bowl then stir to combine. Add toasted bread cubes and parmesan cheese then mix to combine. Whisk egg and chicken stock together then drizzle half over the bread cube mixture. Stir until all the liquid has been absorbed then drizzle in remaining liquid and stir until all the liquid has been absorbed.
- Spray 2 medium baking dishes (8x8" or 9x9") or 1 large baking dish (9x13") with nonstick spray then divide stuffing mixture between baking dishes, or add to the large one. Cover with foil then bake for 20 minutes. Uncover then bake for an additional 25-30 minutes or until the top is golden brown and crispy. Scoop onto plates then serve.
- If you prefer a drier stuffing, cut the amount of chicken stock or broth down to 1-1/2 cups. I wouldn't call this stuffing recipe excessively moist, but if you don't like a soft center, cut back to 1-1/2 cups.
- You may assemble this dish a day ahead of time. Follow instructions up to the point of baking then cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate. Let sit at room temperature for 30 minutes before baking.
This recipe is courtesy of Iowa Girl Eats, http://iowagirleats.com.