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December 2, 2013

How To Make Thanksgiving Dinner Simple With Crockpot Stuffing


How to make your Thanksgiving dinner preparations simpler with stuffing made in the Crock-pot.

Stuffing is one of my favorite holiday foods. My early efforts weren't terribly successful though. I like it moist, not dry. It was moist if it was cooked in the bird, but then we were told NOT to make stuffing inside the bird.

But stuffing from a casserole dish is too dry and too crunchy, at least for me. I resorted to prepackaged stuffing-on-the-stove for several years. Now that I'm eating "real food" as much as possible, I've given up The Box. Which left me with a dilemma: how to make moist stuffing in a safe manner.

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Actually, the reason we're encouraged to not make stuffing inside the turkey is because it doesn't get hot enough to kill bacteria. If you insist on making "stuffing" instead of "dressing" (which technically is what this is, because it's not "stuffed" inside the bird), you should move it to a casserole dish at the end of the turkey cooking time and bring it up to a safe temperature before consuming. The problem with this extra step is that the turkey is ready and the stuffing isn't!

I discovered this slow-cooker dressing recipe several years ago and adore it. I can't remember where I found it though; if you know, please tell me.


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The slow-cooker ensures that the stuffing will be moist and delicious. Another bonus: it doesn't require room in your oven, or a pan on top of the stove. There's never enough burners or oven space in the kitchen for all the goodies we want on our Thanksgiving table, is there? Or enough pots and pans, for that matter. When I was a child, our next-door neighbor always brought her pies over to bake at our house, because we had a double oven and we didn't make desserts because my father was diabetic.

Using the Crock-pot (affiliate link) also gives you more space in the kitchen on a very hectic day. And once you have the vegetables chopped (which I do the day before), it's very quick and easy to prepare. Just plan ahead, because it takes six hours to cook - every one of which is worth it!


Crock pot Stuffing

1 cup butter
2 cups chopped onion
2 cups chopped celery
1/4 cup chopped parsley
2 cups of sliced mushrooms, or 2 8-ounce cans sliced mushrooms, drained
12 cups day old bread cubes
1 tsp poultry seasoning
2 eggs, well beaten
1 1/2 tsp dried sage leaves
1 tsp dried thyme leaves
1/2 tsp pepper
1/4 tsp garlic powder
3 1/2 cups chicken or turkey broth


How to make your Thanksgiving dinner preparations simpler with stuffing made in the Crock-pot.

In a heavy skillet, melt butter over low heat. Add onion, celery, parsley, and mushrooms, and cook and stir for 2-3 minutes.

Add the seasonings and mix well.

Add the herbs to the cooked vegetables.

Put twelve cups of bread cubes in a large bowl. Mine is REALLY large, which is good because twelve cups of bread cubes is A LOT.

Measure 12 cups of dry bread cubes in a LARGE bowl.

Pour the vegetable/seasoning mixture over the bread cubes and toss well. Pour in enough broth to moisten and toss it all with a fork. Add eggs and mix well.

Mix the bread cubes, herbs, vegetables, eggs and chicken broth well.

Spoon lightly into your slow cooker. Do not pack it in or the stuffing will be sticky and heavy. The best stuffing (ahem, dressing) is moist but not dense.

Cover your slow cooker and cook on Low for 6-8 hours. If you like crunchier dressing, cook it closer to eight hours, the bottom will be more crusty and crunchy. If you like a texture that's reminiscent of stuffing, six hours will probably make you happier.

Spoon it all lightly into your slow-cooker. For best results, don't pack it down.

While the dressing is cooking away on the counter top, your oven and burners are available to cook the rest of your Thanksgiving dinner, and you won't have to bake your pies in your neighbor's oven.

Dig in and enjoy! This is so delicious; I hope you will love it as much as my family does.


Save space in your oven and on your stove-top by making this easy, delicious stuffing (or dressing) in your slow-cooker or Crock-pot.


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Related Posts:
Don't Throw Out the Turkey Carcass!
How to Make a Pumpkin Pie When You're Out of Evaporated Milk
Turn Cheap (or Free) Pumpkins into Pumpkin Puree


This post has been shared at some of my favorite blog hops.

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12 comments:

  1. My girls love stuffing!
    I will have to give it a try.
    We do cook it in the Turkey on Thanksgiving. I had never heard that you shouldn't. Ignorance is bliss, I guess :)

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  2. Hi Sandra! Yes, "they" say you shouldn't cook it in the bird anymore, too much chance of bacteria in that environment. :-(

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  3. Oh wow! This looks so delicious! What a great idea to put this in a slow cooker! Angie xo

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    Replies
    1. I can't take credit for the idea, Angie, but it keeps it moist and delicious.

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  4. This sounds wonderful! Using the crockpot frees up a spot in the oven! -Marci @ Stone Cottage Adventures

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  5. Yes, Marci! I like that it doesn't use the oven or the stovetop, leaving room for other things!

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  6. I LOVE this! Good stuffing has always had a soft spot i my heart, and this sounds like 'good' stuffing!

    I love that it's in the crock pot, too. That just means it is one less thing to fuss with when I'm working on other things.

    Thank you for bringing this lovely recipe over to *Mostly* Homemade Mondays last week. I will be featuring this on tomorrow's new edition. I hope you'll stop back by, share more, and feel free to grab a badge while you are there.

    Thanks again,
    Jess
    www.scratchmommy.com

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  7. Thank you for featuring my post, Jessica! And thank you for the invitation.

    ReplyDelete
  8. Love the idea of making the stuffing in a crockpot!

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  9. Wow, this looks wonderful! I do appreciate you sharing with Home and Garden Thursday,
    Kathy

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  10. Thank you, Kathy and Nancy.

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  11. I love how easy the crockpot makes the stuffing, and how moist your recipe looks! Thanks for sharing it, just in time for the holidays, on our Celebrate365 Slowcooker Link Party!

    ReplyDelete

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