This recipe has all the delicious qualities of our Old-Fashioned Bread Stuffing with added flavor from mild Italian sausage. Made with soft sourdough bread that’s been moistened with milk, this stuffing bakes up moist, tender, and richly flavored.
Stuffing is a versatile side dish
When we think of bread stuffing, we most often think of it as an accompaniment for roast turkey, but stuffing is a versatile side dish that can have its place alongside other entrées as well.
With its savory, Italian-inspired flavors, this sausage stuffing recipe is a good choice to serve with main dishes that are similarly flavored. If you’re serving a holiday dinner, consider it as a side for our Garlic-Herb Crusted Crown Roast of Pork, Standing Rib Roast, or Roast Capon.
For smaller weeknight meals throughout the year, consider making a batch of this sausage stuffing ahead of time and popping half in the freezer right away for another night. Just wrap it tightly in foil, put it in a freezer bag, and it will keep well for about two months. To reheat, defrost overnight in the fridge, then pop into a casserole dish and reheat for 20 to 30 minutes in a 325°F oven.
Italian Sausage and Herb Stuffing
- 2 links mild Italian sausage, removed from their casings
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 2 tablespoons butter, divided
- 1 cup onion, chopped
- 1/2 cup celery, chopped
- 1 clove garlic, finely chopped
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon oregano
- 1 tablespoon fresh thyme thyme leaves
- 12 slices good quality, firm textured, soft bread, cubed (see notes)
- 1 cup milk
- 2 eggs, lightly beaten
- 3 tablespoons fresh parsley, chopped
- Preheat the oven to 350°F.
- Heat the olive oil in a large pan over medium heat. Add the sausage and sauté until lightly browned, breaking up large chunks with a spatula, 4 to 5 minutes.
- Add 1 tablespoon of butter and cook until melted. Add the onion, celery, and garlic and continue cooking until both the onion and celery are soft and tender, 3 to 4 minutes longer.
- Season with salt and pepper, then stir in the oregano and thyme. Remove from the heat and allow to cool for 5 minutes.
- While the sausage cools, place the bread cubes in a bowl and add the milk. Using your hands, work the milk through the bread until thoroughly moistened.
- Gently squeeze out and excess milk (as you would a sponge) and pour off. Add the eggs, parsley and sausage mixture. Combine well.
- Transfer the mixture to a well-greased 1-1/2 to 2-quart casserole. Cover and bake for 40 minutes, then dot the top with the remaining butter and return to the oven uncovered for 10 minutes more.
- Remove from the oven and replace the cover to keep warm until served.