Most Excellent Gluten-Free Holiday Stuffing

Most Excellent Holiday Stuffing

It took Founder Debbie more than a few tries to make her Mom's great family-traditional Holiday Stuffing. And, of course, she had to start with the family's treasured gluten-y recipe and adapt it to be gluten-free.
Along the way, she discovered the most important ingredient was the bread cubes. She tried numerous recipes with different kinds of bread and even bought some premade gluten-free bread cubes from the store. But it didn't really give her the kind of delicious stuffing her Mother used to make. 
So Debbie made a loaf of French Bread from our Inspiration Bakery and Mixes Pizza Crust Mix and knew immediately it was the right bread to use. Just the right consistency and flavor.
She cubed up the bread, blended it with the rest of the ingredients, and baked the stuffing in her turkey. The stuffing was great and had that traditional taste and texture she was looking for.
Debbie also discovered that you can bake the Holiday Stuffing outside the turkey, a thing she discovered by making it and then forgetting to stuff the darn turkey a couple of times! A mistake that paid off because, if you are vegetarian or vegan, you can forget the bird and just make the stuffing. Why not!
Variations of Debbie's recipe shown below let you make Holiday Stuffing dairy-free, egg-free, and, of course, Always Gluten-Free.
Pro tip: for best results (and peace of mind) think of doing this recipe in smallish "bites" over 3 days. Make the French Bread part of this recipe at least a day before you make the bread cubes. Bake the bread cubes another day. And prepare the stuffing on the third day. That way you can make sure the bread is in the right stage of dryness at each step to get a great Holiday Stuffing to the table.
Prep Time 35 mins
Cook Time 50 mins
Rise Time 30 mins
Total Time 1 hr 55 mins
Course Bread, Main Course, Side Dish
Cuisine American
Servings 6 servings

Equipment

  • Oven
  • Stand Mixer (with paddle attachment)
  • Dry Measuring Cups and Spoons
  • Liquid Measuring Cup
  • Saucepan (small)
  • 9-inch Loaf Pan (1) or 12-inch by 4 1/2-inch Loaf Pan (1)
  • Spatula
  • Wire Whisk
  • Spray Oil
  • Wire Rack
  • Bread Knife
  • Baking Sheet (large)
  • Frypan
  • Baking Pan or Dish (9-inch by 9-inch, or 9-inch round, for baking your stuffing separately)

Ingredients
  

French Bread (Day 1)

  • 1 Box Inspiration Bakery and Mixes Pizza Crust Mix
  • 1 Tablespoon Baking Powder
  • 2 Tablespoons Active Dry Yeast (or 2 packets rapid-rise yeast)
  • 1 1/3 Cup Water
  • 3 Tablespoons Oil
  • 2 Tablespoons Granulated Sugar
  • 3 Egg Whites or 1/2 Cup Applesauce
  • 1 Egg (whole, omit if egg-free)
  • 1 Tablespoon Apple Cider Vinegar
  • 1 Tablespoon Maple Syrup or 2 Teaspoons Vanilla Extract

Egg-Wash or Oil Option (Day 1)

  • 1 Egg White plus 1 Tablespoon Water (for egg wash on top of the loaf, omit if egg-free)
  • 1 Tablespoon Oil (use if egg-free)

Bread Cubes (Day 2)

  • 2 Cups French Bread Cubes (from above)
  • Salt (to taste)
  • Poultry Seasoning (to taste)

Stuffing (Day 3)

  • 1/2 Cup Seasoned Sausage (ground) or Vegetarian Substitute
  • 1/2 Cup Onion (chopped fine)
  • 2 Stalks Celery (chopped fine)
  • 1/2 Granny Smith Apple (chopped fine)
  • 1/4 Teaspoon Salt
  • 1/2 Teaspoon Garlic Powder (or fresh garlic)
  • 3/4 Teaspoon Sage (ground, or poultry seasoning)
  • 1/2 - 1 Cup Chicken Broth or Vegetarian Substitute
  • 1 Egg (lightly whipped or omit if egg-free)

Instructions
 

French Bread (Day 1)

  • Preheat your oven to 200° F
  • Grease a 9-inch loaf pan (or 12-inch by 4 1/2-inch loaf pan) with spray oil or other oil
  • Use your wire whisk to combine yeast, baking powder, and the Inspiration Bakery and Mixes Pizza Crust Mix. Set aside
  • In your saucepan, heat 1 1/3 cups water, oil, and sugar on low until the sugar dissolves. Set aside to cool
  • Turn off your oven and allow it to start cooling 5-10 minutes before you place your bread in it to start its' rise
  • Put the rest of the French Bread wet ingredients in the stand mixer bowl and mix on low until all elements are combined (about 30 seconds). Add the cooled water, oil, and sugar mixture to the wet ingredients and then mix on medium for about 2 minutes
  • Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients in the mixing bowl and blend them on low or about 30 seconds. Scrape the bowl to make sure all the ingredients are combined and then mix them on medium-high for 2 minutes, pausing the mixer long enough to scrape the bowl at least one more time
  • Pour the French Bread dough into the greased pan. Put the pan in the oven and allow it to rise until it doubles in size (20-30 minutes)
  • Remove the pan from your oven
  • Heat the oven to 400° F
  • Blend up your egg and water mixture (omit if egg-free), then brush your egg and water (or plain oil if egg-free) mixture across the top of the loaf
  • Once the oven temperature is reached, put the pan in the oven and bake for 20-30 minutes
  • Towards the end of your bake time, insert a toothpick into the center of the bread to make sure it's not doughy (the toothpick should come out clean)
  • Remove the pan from the oven and put it on your wire rack for about 10 minutes. Then turn your French Bread loaf out onto the wire rack and let it cool completely
  • For best results, leave the bread uncovered for at least a day to dry it out before cubing it to make stuffing

Bread Cubes (Day 2)

  • Heat your oven to 325° F
  • Take your loaf of French Bread and slice it as you would for making sandwiches. Turn the slices on their sides and cut enough of them into cubes to make at least 2 cups after baking
  • Put the cubes onto your large baking sheet. Season them to taste by sprinkling salt and poultry seasonings over them
  • Put the baking sheet in the oven and bake for about 25 minutes (until the cubes are golden brown and no longer soft)
  • Remove the pan from the oven and allow the cubes to fully cool. They should be left out overnight and then put in a sealed bag for later if not used on Day 3
    [Note: any unused cubes can be ground up in a blender to make breadcrumbs and then used in other dishes like meatloaf or stuffed mushrooms]

Holiday Stuffing (Day 3)

  • In your frypan, cook the ground seasoned sausage (or substitute) just enough to be done. Drain off any grease and then stir in the onion, celery, tart apple, salt, garlic, and sage (or poultry seasoning) you have measured out. Keep stirring until combined
  • Take 2 cups of your baked French Bread cubes and stir in the whipped egg if you are using egg. Then carefully stir in the chicken broth (or substitute) until the cubes have some moisture. Don't soak the cubes!
  • Stuff your turkey (or other poultry) and bake as instructed
  • Or, if you want to bake your stuffing separately, put the stuffing mixture in a 9-inch by 9-inch baking pan (or 9-inch round dish), cover with aluminum foil) and put in the oven at 350° F for about 30 minutes.
    Try to time this bake with the end of your main-dish bake so you can serve them hot together. Then watch family and friends enjoy your Most Excellent Holiday Stuffing!
Keyword Dairy Free, Egg-Free, Gluten-free, Gluten-free Stuffing, Non-GMO, Stuffing, Vegan, Vegetarian

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