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5 from 3 votes

Southern Cornbread Dressing Recipe

The quintessential holiday side dish. It would not be Thanksgiving without the dressing!
Prep Time30 mins
Cook Time45 mins
Total Time1 hr 15 mins
Course: Holiday, Side Dish
Cuisine: Southern
Servings: 12
Author: Tricia

Ingredients

  • 1 recipe buttermilk cornbread, homemade preferred or store-bought *
  • 6 cups hearty white bread cubes
  • 8 tablespoons unsalted butter, divided (113g or 4 ounces)
  • 2 large sweet onions, diced
  • 4 celery ribs, diced
  • 1 ¼ teaspoons dried sage
  • ¾ teaspoon dried thyme leaves
  • 3 ½ to 4 cups low-sodium chicken broth (28 - 32 ounces)
  • 4 large eggs
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper
  • chopped parsley leaves for garnish, optional

Instructions

  • Cut the cornbread into 1-inch pieces and place on a large baking sheet. Cut the white bread into 1-inch cubes and add to a separate baking sheet.
  • Option 1 - Preheat oven to 250° F. Place the pans in the warm oven and bake until dry, about 45 - 50 minutes. Rotate and switch the pans halfway through baking.
  • Option 2 - Instead of oven-drying, stale the cubed breads overnight at room temperature.
  • Melt 6 tablespoons butter in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add the onions and celery and cook until softened, about 5 minutes. Add the sage and thyme and sauté until fragrant, about 1 minute. Remove from the heat and cool slightly.
  • In a large mixing bowl whisk together the chicken broth, eggs, salt and pepper. Add the sautéed onion and celery mixture to the chicken broth. Stir until combined.
  • Add the dried cornbread and bread cubes to the broth. Gently fold together until combined. Allow the mixture to rest for 5 - 10 minutes, gently stirring a few times, or until most of the liquid is absorbed.
  • Preheat oven to 375° F. Lightly grease a 13x9-inch baking pan. Gently scoop the dressing into the prepared pan. Drizzle 2 tablespoons of melted butter on top and bake for 40-45 minutes. Cool 15 minutes before serving.

Notes

* Make your own cornbread! It’s very easy and tastes much better than the ultra sweet cakes you can buy in the grocery store. Click HERE for our buttermilk cornbread recipe.
** Substitute 2 1/2 teaspoons poultry seasoning for the sage and thyme, if desired
  • The cornbread can be prepared up to two days before you need the dressing. Prepare the cornbread, bake and cool. Keep lightly covered at room temperature until needed.
  • To make ahead: The day before the dressing is needed, mix all ingredients together, cover and refrigerate until ready to bake. Allow the dressing to come to room temperature for 45-60 minutes before baking.
  • To freeze the dressing ahead: Bake the dressing for 30 minutes then cool completely. Wrap the casserole in plastic wrap and then foil, and freeze. Thaw overnight in the refrigerator. Bring to room temperature for 45-60 minutes before baking. Bake, covered with foil, for 20 minutes. Remove the foil and bake an additional 10-15 minutes or until heated through.
NOTE: Remember, if your oven is full of casseroles it will take everything longer to bake. Allow more time to cook the dressing, if needed.