Cornbread Stuffing Recipe (2024)

By Martha Rose Shulman

Updated Nov. 13, 2023

Cornbread Stuffing Recipe (1)

Total Time
40 minutes
Cook Time
35 to 40 minutes
Read community notes

This is the best cornbread stuffing because it starts with homemade cornbread that is grainy and savory. I find most cornbread to be very sweet. You can bake the cornbread to serve on its own or make a double batch to use in this stuffing. If you need an even larger quantity of stuffing, quadruple the cornbread recipe and double the stuffing recipe to bake in a 3-quart baking dish (it will take about 45 to 50 minutes) or in two 9-inch pans. Discover more ideas for the big day in our best Thanksgiving recipes collection.

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Learn: How to Cook a Turkey

Learn: How to Make Stuffing

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Yield:8 to 10 servings

    For the Cornbread

    • 1cup yellow cornmeal, preferably organic stone ground
    • ½cup all purpose flour or whole wheat flour
    • ¾teaspoon salt
    • 1tablespoon baking powder
    • ½teaspoon baking soda
    • 2eggs
    • 1cup plain low-fat yogurt or buttermilk
    • ½cup milk
    • 1tablespoon mild honey
    • 2 to 3tablespoons unsalted butter (to taste)

    For the Cornbread and Sage Stuffing

    • 2tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, or 1 tablespoon each olive oil and unsalted butter
    • 1large onion, finely chopped
    • Salt to taste
    • 4stalks celery, cut in small dice
    • 4garlic cloves, minced
    • 2teaspoons rubbed sage, or 2 tablespoons chopped fresh sage
    • 1tablespoon fresh thyme leaves or 1½ teaspoons dried thyme
    • ½cup finely chopped flat-leaf parsley
    • Freshly ground pepper
    • A double batch of cornbread (see above), crumbled you can do this in a food processor fitted with the steel blade
    • ½cup milk, or as necessary, for moistening
    • 4tablespoons unsalted butter if baking separately

Ingredient Substitution Guide

Nutritional analysis per serving (10 servings)

252 calories; 13 grams fat; 6 grams saturated fat; 0 grams trans fat; 5 grams monounsaturated fat; 1 gram polyunsaturated fat; 28 grams carbohydrates; 2 grams dietary fiber; 6 grams sugars; 6 grams protein; 321 milligrams sodium

Note: The information shown is Edamam’s estimate based on available ingredients and preparation. It should not be considered a substitute for a professional nutritionist’s advice.

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Cornbread Stuffing Recipe (2)


  1. For the Cornbread

    1. Step


      Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Place a 9-inch cast iron skillet, a heavy 2-quart baking dish or a heavy 9-inch square baking pan in the oven while you prepare the batter.

    2. Place the cornmeal in a bowl, and sift in the flour, salt, baking powder and baking soda. Stir the mixture with a spoon or whisk to amalgamate. In a separate bowl, beat together the eggs, yogurt (or buttermilk), milk and honey. Whisk the cornmeal mixture into the liquid mixture. Do not overwork the batter.

    3. Step


      Remove the pan from the oven, and add the butter to the pan. Swirl the pan so that the butter melts quickly before it gets too brown, then quickly whisk the butter into the batter. Brush the sides of the pan with any butter remaining in the pan.

    4. Step


      Quickly scrape all of the batter into the hot pan, and place in the oven. Bake 35 to 40 minutes, until golden brown and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. It will be quite brown on the edges. Allow the bread to cool in the pan, or serve warm.

    5. Step


      Heat the olive oil (or oil and butter) over medium heat in a large, heavy, nonstick skillet, and add the onion. Cook, stirring often, until it begins to soften, about three minutes, and add ½ teaspoon salt and the celery. Cook together for another few minutes, until the onion is tender. Add the garlic, and stir together for 30 seconds to a minute, until fragrant. Transfer to a large bowl, and add the remaining ingredients. Combine well. Taste and adjust salt. Moisten as desired with milk.

    6. Step


      Stuff the cavity of the turkey, or transfer to a buttered or oiled 2-quart baking dish. Dot with butter. Cover with aluminum foil, and heat through in a 325-degree oven for 30 minutes.


  • Variation: Sage CornbreadStir 1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh sage or 1 teaspoon rubbed dried sage into the batter before turning into the pan.
  • Advance preparation: You can make the cornbread several days ahead and the stuffing a day ahead.



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Cooking Notes


There is a mistake in the recipe. It should read 1 teaspoon baking powder, not 1 tablespoon, for the corn bread. I followed the recipe exactly against my better instinct, and I had to throw the first batch away. All I could taste was baking powder. The corrected version is great.


Do we need to dry out the cornbread first or is freshly baked ok when making the dressing?


- The recipe calls for doubling the cornbread part (not the stuffing). However, this made A LOT of stuffing, even more than I thought was needed for the proper ratio. Next time, I would make one recipe for stuffing, which is enough to feed 8 people.
- One person noted that there was a mistake in the amount of baking powder called for. I made the recipe as is and thought it came out wonderfully airy to make a nice stuffing. With less baking powder, you would get a denser bread.


So If I'm doubling this recipe, does that mean I'm actually quadrupling the cornbread portion (because the stuffing part calls for a double-batch of cornbread)? Thanks!


This is one of the best cornbread recipes I have found. The bread comes out with great flavor and texture. There is a comment that says the recipe mistakenly lists too much baking powder. Disregard that comment, the recipe is written correctly and comes out beautifully. As a stuffing/dressing recipe, this yields a very full 13x9 pan. If you are used to moist, cake-like dressings, be aware that this is a fairly dry stuffing recipe, even with the full amount of added milk.


I only used one batch of cornbread, the rest as stated and it came out great.


I have made cornbread dressing all my life and I am 79 years old. I use buttermilk and bacon grease in the skillet to heat before pouring the batter in the skillet. In my dressing, I add sage, pecans, giblets, seasonings, baking powder, and baking soda. I also add leftover biscuits. When I cook the dressing on 400 degrees it has a crust and is not hard nor crusted, but wet with juice from the turkey.


If making a day ahead, does one bake the stuffing and then refrigerate? Or put it together, refrige and bake on the big day?


Just prepared recipe as written, except--doubled recipe and used stainless 12x9 hotel pan and used 1/2 buttermilk & 1/2 yogurt.It is perhaps the best cornbread I've had aside from that served at the fabulous Florida Ave. Grill in D.C.--it is certainly the best I've made. While it's pleasantly chewy now when warm, I expect it will become more crumbly as it dries out-perfect for stuffing. Real bread, not sweet cornmeal cake.

Viviane Van Giesen

I read the comments before I baked the cornbread and decided to make the changes suggest by reader "IF" and used 1 teaspoon of baking powder. It was delicious!

David Look

Martha suggests you put together and bake on the big day. You can moisten with milk or broth if it seems dry.


This recipe is a bit drier than works well for a dressing. The second time I made this, I added some additional chicken stock until the mixture was fairly moist, tasted to adjust seasoning, and then mixed in 2 beaten eggs. I followed the original recipe directions to dot the top with 6 Tbsp unsalted butter and baked, covered for 45 min (up from 30 to ensure thorough cooking); then baked uncovered for 15 more minutes to crisp the top. It came out perfectly.


You can use a larger cast iron pan and double the recipe. I doubled the recipe for the cornbread and baked it in a 12" cast iron dutch oven, and it came out perfectly. I'll make the rest of the recipe tomorrow for Thanksgiving.


I have never made the stuffing, but this is my favorite cornbread recipe to date. I sticked to the 1 tbsp baking powder and it turned out extremely fluffy. Saving this for the ages.

David Look

Martha has made the stuffing with freshly made cornbread and she says it’s fine. Either will work.


My cornbread was very dark on the outside and undercooked inside. Not good.

for those questioning how much stuffing to make...

Martha says: "You can bake the cornbread to serve on its own or make a double batch to use in this stuffing.".


I had high hopes for this five-star recipe but it was awful. The cornbread was dense and the middle was undercooked, and the stuffing was dry and bland. After attempting to salvage it by drenching it in more salt, butter, and chicken stock, we ended up pitching it and making boxed stuffing instead.


Made the cornbread as it was written (without doubling, with 1 tbsp of baking powder, and used buttermilk) and it was perfect. I think if I did double it it would have been too much. Will definitely a regular on my Thanksgiving menu.


This did NOT HIT. The cornbread recipe wasn’t very good, the texture was very very gritty. The stuffing didn’t have much flavor even after adding a lot of chicken stock and also eggs to try to bind it. I doubled it and have an entire pan untouched. Would definitely not recommend.


Agree with IF that there is too much baking powder, which makes it noticeably bitter. The stuffing also doesn’t crumble or come together properly

Julie Cohen

Cornbread:VERY good cornbreadMust be doubled for stuffing. Used 1/2 yogurt and 1/2 buttermilk1.5 TB baking powder (3/4 of recipe amount due to others’ comments) worked great13 x 9 heavy metal baking pan worked well


If the recipe calls for a double batch of cornbread, why would it give the recipe for a single batch and not mention the double batch until page 2? Since I didn’t read ahead, I decided to just add the one batch plus a batch of breadcrumbs.

Sharon M

Do NOT use a food processor to crumble the cornbread or you'll wind up with corm mush. Fortunately, I only tried it with one wedge.

Ben R.

I am confused.In the stuffing recipe, it lists "A double batch of cornbread (see above)" as an ingredient.Does that mean that the cornbread recipe above is a double batch?Or does it mean you should cook two batches of the above cornbread recipe?If the latter, do you use two separate pans or one bigger pan?


I am so confused about how much cornbread to make. The comments by the author and the commenters only deepen my confusion. Why can't the recipe specify what to do, rather than have us guess what is meant, which is not a usual recipe convention? Worst experience! Going to a different recipe.


Best stuffing I have ever had


Am I reading this correctly, do I make two batches of the cornbread to make this recipe?


Something was off about this recipe. It was a lot of work yet was pretty dry and lacked flavor, even when I added more than the recommended milk and chicken broth to moisten extra herbs for flavor. Hate to be a hater but I’d skip and go for the boxed stuffing next time


Tasteless and will never make again. It needed a lot of work - I added more honey, salt, thyme, sage, rosemary, vegetable broth, butter. Look for a different recipe cuz this was gross

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Cornbread Stuffing Recipe (2024)


What is the difference between cornbread stuffing and cornbread dressing? ›

The primary difference between stuffing and dressing is that stuffing is cooked inside a bird and dressing is made on the side. As with many food traditions in the U.S., regional loyalties to stuffing vs dressing abound.

What is cornbread dressing made of? ›

Add sautéed onion and celery to the crumbled cornbread. Stir in chicken stock, eggs, sage, salt, and pepper until well combined. Pour dressing into the prepared baking dish.

What does adding egg to stuffing do? ›

Eggs: Two lightly beaten eggs help hold the dressing together and add moisture.

What is cornbread stuffing mix made of? ›


What is stuffing called in the South? ›

But for the Thanksgiving side dish in the South, the term dressing was adopted in place of stuffing, which was viewed as a crude term, during the Victorian era. Although dressing and stuffing are interchangeable terms, the signature ingredient of this Thanksgiving side dish in the South is cornbread.

What is cornbread called in the South? ›

It is commonly called "cornbread" in the Southern United States and is not known by a different name in this region. Cornbread is a simple bread that is made by mixing cornmeal, flour, salt, baking powder, and milk to form a batter, which is then baked in the oven.

What is the difference between New York cornbread and southern cornbread? ›

While both styles generally use the same ingredients -- cornmeal, flour, eggs, and baking powder -- the variance lies in the flavor and texture. Northern-style cornbread tends to be sweeter, moister, and cake-like compared to its Southern counterpart.

What is the difference between cornbread and Southern cornbread? ›

She notes that Northern cornbread is sweeter, lighter, and more cake-like than Southern cornbread. Not surprisingly, it includes sugar (or molasses, in the earlier centuries), unlike traditional Southern cornbread.

Is stuffing better with or without eggs? ›

It's a matter of preference, but adding a beaten egg to your stuffing mixture acts as a binder and keeps the bread moist.

What is traditional stuffing made of? ›

Classic stuffing made with bread cubes, seasonings, and held together with chicken stock and eggs. A holiday staple!

Should you stir stuffing? ›

The bread in the stuffing absorbs moisture, but if it's dry (as it should be, see above), it takes some time for the liquid to settle in. I suggest adding a little at a time, say 1 cup of broth for every 4 cups of dry mix. Give it a good stir, then let it sit for a minute. The stuffing should be moist but not wet.

What is the difference between stuffing and cornbread stuffing? ›

So stuffing is cooked inside the bird. Dressing is cooked outside the bird, usually in a casserole dish. Additionally, dressing, especially in the American South, is often made with cornbread instead of pieces of a baguette or plain ol' white bread.

What is the difference between cornbread and traditional stuffing? ›

The significant difference between the two is the bread — the first building block that contributes the base from which the dish is prepared. Dressing is made from cornbread, and stuffing is traditionally made from other breads — sourdoughs, biscuits, etc.

What are the ingredients in Trader Joe's cornbread stuffing? ›

Made from a base of fluffy cornbread croutons, which are seasoned with rich, flavorful herbs like parsley and sage, our supplier adds in dried cranberries and roasted apples to provide a bright, contrasting pop of flavor to every bite.

What is the difference between stuffing vs dressing? ›

To understand the difference between the two, all you have to do is look at the cooking method. Stuffing is stuffed (literally) inside the cavity of the turkey, while dressing is roasted in a separate casserole dish.

Why is it called dressing instead of stuffing? ›

The term dressing, per the History Channel, originated around the 1850s, when the Victorians deemed stuffing too crude for the dish to be named. This happened around the same time that the term “dark meat” began to refer to chicken legs and thighs.

Do Southerners say stuffing or dressing? ›

Some people insist that it should be called dressing when it hasn't actually been stuffed inside a bird. But many people insist on one term or the other regardless of how it's prepared or what's in it. The term dressing is most commonly used in the South, but it's popular in pockets throughout the US.

What's the difference between cornbread and stuffing? ›

Dressing is made from cornbread, and stuffing is traditionally made from other breads — sourdoughs, biscuits, etc. Some dressing recipes incorporate a little white bread, but that does not exclude them from the Southern persuasion if cornbread is the cornerstone.


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