Mom's Thanksgiving Cornbread Dressing

"I grew up with Turkey and Dressing, stuffing was just foreign to me, until I became an adult, and while I can appreciate stuffing, nothing comes close to the dressing the women in my family made every Thanksgiving. If made properly, you'll find this somewhat lighter than most dressing recipes. I grew up in the south, and recently moved to California. Thanksgiving foods here are great, but they don't usually bear a strong resemblance to the holiday food I'm used to. The instructions may sound a little odd, but please, just follow them, and you'll have a really delicious dressing, and enough for a crowd. This does make a large amount, but Thanksgiving leftovers never go to waste in my family."
photo by a user photo by a user
Ready In:
2hrs 15mins


  • 3 -4 celery ribs, diced
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 1 pan cornbread (like a 9 inch size pan, I prefer white cornbread.. but your choice)
  • 3 -4 slices bread (wheat bread is fine)
  • turkey giblets
  • sage
  • poultry seasoning
  • salt
  • pepper
  • juice or drippings from the turkey
  • 5 -6 eggs (if using extra large 5, if large then 6)


  • Early in the day (earlier the better) make the cornbread, when done, place in a large bowl and break into large chunks. Also, I make my cornbread southern style, heating some bacon fat in the pan, as the oven heats, before pouring in the batter. (by the way, I'm doing this so early, and starving, so I usually have a small slice for breakfast - hey I'm human :) Lay bread slices on top ( you can tear those up a bit if you want). The purpose is to let it all dry out a bit. If you are cooking the turkey at home - take the giblets, neck etc out of the turkey, place in sauce pan, cover with water and bring to a boil, then simmer about an hour.
  • Remove the turkey parts from the broth, and add the diced celery and onion, bring to a boil again, then simmer about 30 to 45 minutes. If you aren't making your own turkey, use chicken broth or turkey broth (if you can find it)- Trader Joes has it, if you have one in your area, probably about 2 cans. Dump entire hot mixture of liquid and veggies onto the cornbread/bread in the bowl. Use a potato masher to start mashing it up.
  • Again if you are making your own turkey, at this point your turkey should be about done, because you would have started cooking it sometime after you finished the cornbread. Use a turkey baster to start taking turkey juice and transferring it to the bowl. (I use a cooking/turkey bag) to make my turkey, so I always have a ton of juice, enough for the dressing, and to make gravy.) After every couple of additions, mash it in some more. At this point you can use an electric hand mixer.
  • Mixture should be a bit soupy. At this point, add seasonings. I'd guess about ¼ teaspoon sage, and 1 teaspoon poultry seasoning. Taste, then add a little salt and a little pepper. Taste again, then decide if you want more poultry seasoning or sage - just remember a little sage goes a long way. Once it tastes like you want it, beat in the raw eggs, using the hand mixer, mix it on medium or high speed about 2 minutes.
  • Again, if you aren't making your own turkey, you can use chicken broth, you'll need to heat it up, and I'm not quite sure how much it would take, my guess is 3 cans, but have extra on hand just in case. The broth that comes in boxes is fine to use - I prefer to not use the swansons brand, it's not as rich as some of the other brands that come in a box. Just remember, again, this mixture should be pretty soupy - the raw eggs are what's going to make it set.
  • Generously butter a large casserole (if you don't have at least a 3quart casserole, you can use more than one, and pour the dressing mixture into that. Bake at 350 about an hour. It should puff up just a little bit, be a bit brown on top. Test for doneness by sticking in a toothpick, or you can use a butter knife, it should come out basically clean. Serve with Turkey and gravy.

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  1. ABSOLUTELY DELICIOUS!!!! My husband came in from work Thursday and said that he was asked if 'his wife' could make 2 huge pans of CORNBREAD DRESSING for the annual Christmas party!!!! YIKES!!! Thanks to this great recipe, my dressing was a success! Sometimes my moms is too soupy...This recipe was PERFECT! Unfortunately, I'll probably be asked to make it every year!!!
  2. I grew up with this dressing as well . I use alot of sage and eggs . I make alot at one time , you just aadd more corn bread and season to your taste .


<p>I've always loved to cook.&nbsp; I made my first scratch cake at age 7, (German Chocolate).&nbsp; I love all types of cuisine, but after migrating to California 10 years ago, and love the food here, and learning how to prepare the favorites of my Cali, family and friends.&nbsp; That being said, my passion in cooking is keeping the recipes and traditions I learned from my mother and grandmother, back home in the south, alive&nbsp; Not that even their recipes can't be improved.&nbsp; One example is my grandmother (in my mind) made the best pot roast to ever grace a table.&nbsp; Then, my boyfriend persuaded me to add red wine to the cooking liquid.&nbsp; It's still my granny's pot roast, only better.&nbsp;&nbsp; But, so far, nothing I've learned here, improves my Texas style Chicken Fried Steak.&nbsp; And cornbread???&nbsp; It seems Californians think it should be like cake, made mostly of flour with a hint of corn meal, rather than cooked in a bacon seasoned cast iron skillet - they key ingredient being corn meal, with a scant amount of flour.&nbsp;&nbsp; My newest interest is learning more about Asian cooking, of all varieties, with the possible exception of sushi.&nbsp; Where I come from, you hand us some fish, we roll it in cornmeal, fry it, and make some hushpuppies ;)</p>
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