I make many of my Thanksgiving recipes using old family traditions, including my cornbread dressing. I make it the old fashioned way, with plenty of fat and homemade cornbread. Click to see the cornbread recipe I use for this dressing. I like to make my cornbread several days ahead of when I’m going to make my dressing. Dry cornbread works better in the recipe. Also, use a 13 x 9 metal pan or high-heat glass dish for this recipe.
You’ll need a good bit of chicken broth or chicken stock for your dressing – about six to eight cups, depending on how stiff you want your dressing to be. You can use canned chicken broth, but I prefer to make my own chicken stock from chicken backs. I place 8 chicken backs in 12 cups of water, along with 1 tablespoon salt, 2 teaspoons black pepper, and 2 teaspoons poultry seasoning. Cover the pot and boil slowly until chicken is done. This will give you more than enough stock for your dressing, and you’ll have enough for your gravy, too. Save the small bits of meat from the chicken backs for your gravy.
Holle’s Southern Cornbread Dressing recipe
What you’ll need:
- 1 round skillet homemade cornbread
- ½ cup butter
- 1 ½ – 2 cups diced Vidalia onions
- 1 cup diced celery (I include some of the leaves)
- 6-8 cups chicken stock, cooled
- 3 eggs, beaten
- 2 teaspoons dried sage
- 1 teaspoon garlic salt
- 1 teaspoon black pepper
- 1 teaspoon poultry seasoning
- Crushed saltine crackers (optional)
Crumble cornbread in pan, but don’t make crumbs too small.
Melt butter in a frying pan and add onions and celery. Cook until soft. Add vegetables and butter to cornbread crumbs.
Add chicken stock, eggs, and seasonings. You want the batter to be somewhat soupy if you like a soft dressing. If it gets too thin, add some crushed crackers. If the batter is too thick, add more chicken broth or stock.
Bake the dressing at 400 degrees for 40-50 minutes. The dressing should be soft in the center and brown around the edges.