Slow Cooker Stuffing

Slow Cooker Stuffing made with celery, onions, bread, and seasonings is a savory side dish and an EASY way to free up valuable oven space this Thanksgiving!

We’re only a few short days away from Thanksgiving, and we’re just about done with our holiday meal prep, including Spatchcock TurkeyGreen Bean CasseroleEasy Mashed Potatoes, and Slow Cooker Sweet Potatoes.

Slow Cooker Stuffing
Slow Cooker Stuffing

Slow cooker stuffing is a traditional Thanksgiving side dish, but this version is made in the slow cooker to give you room in the oven for more important things. Like this pumpkin pie. Personally, I like to stick to the more traditional stuffing recipes. It’s just what my family has always made, so I have a lot of memories tied to it. We always lean towards the savory side, instead of the sweeter ingredients (except for a bit of sweet from granny smith apples because I’m a sucker for sausage and apples together).

Because there’s only a few key ingredients here, this stuffing doesn’t need a lot of prep time. Celery, onions, and sage add the key flavors in this dish, with stale bread cubes giving it texture. Then you just put the lid on the slow cooker, set the total time for 4-5 hours, and forget about it. My favorite part is that you don’t have to watch it as closely as you would if it were in the oven. The edges turn out crispy and the inside is soft and full of flavor.

HOW LONG DO YOU COOK STUFFING IN A SLOW COOKER?

Set the timer for 4 hours, then check and see if it’s done cooking. If it still looks a little bit uncooked, cook for an additional hour, then remove the lid and cook uncovered for the last 30 minutes. This helps crisp up the top, just like it was made in the oven.

CAN YOU MAKE STUFFING AHEAD?

You can do a make-ahead stuffing that only has a few quick steps to throw together on Thanksgiving. Mix together the bread and seasoning in one bag, and vegetables in another.  Combine everything together with the eggs and broth at the last minute. This keeps the bread cubes from getting too soggy before the stuffing is cooked, and it’s also better for food safety. Another option is to assemble this whole stuffing in a baking dish, then freeze it until you’re ready to cook.

Crockpot Stuffing

HOW TO MAKE THIS STUFFING IN THE OVEN

Slow cooker stuffing is easy to switch to the oven if needed. Sauté the onions and celery in a large skillet, while mixing everything else together in a large bowl. When the onions are translucent, stir everything together in the skillet and transfer to the oven. Cook 30-40 minutes, or until top looks golden brown and the sides look slightly crispy.

I’ve also made this recipe with day old cornbread in a skillet before. Whichever bread cubes you use, I always recommend having some chicken broth on the stove so you can continually give the stuffing moisture as needed, because the oven tends to dry it out.

HOW DO YOU STORE LEFTOVER STUFFING

Leftover stuffing will keep in an airtight container for 3-4 days in the refrigerator, or up to 3 months in the freezer.

HOW DO YOU MAKE TRADITIONAL STUFFING?

Traditional Thanksgiving stuffing uses a few simple ingredients, bread, celery, onions, and spices. But you can also add fresh herbs, dried fruits like raisins or dates, nuts, apples, or even meat like Italian sausage or roast pork. Stuffing is usually cooked inside of a turkey in the oven, but our aim is to make life easier so we are using the crock pot.

WHAT IS THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN STUFFING AND DRESSING?

Stuffing and dressing are actually really similar in that they have the same ingredients. But stuffing is what is actually stuffed inside of the turkey, while dressing is made in a separate dish outside of the bird. Most people use them interchangeably on Thanksgiving, so don’t spend too much time worrying about it.

MORE RECIPES FOR A SLOW COOKER THANKSGIVING

TIPS FOR MAKING SLOW COOKER STUFFING

  • You can add additional ingredients like raisins, cranberries, or apples, depending on your own taste.
  • Use a crock pot liner, and the only cleanup you’ll have to do is throwing away the bag. So you can spend Thanksgiving eating instead of cleaning!
  • If you don’t have regular bread, you can use day-old cornbread to make stuffing, too.
  • Have some broth on the stove when the dressing is done cooking. If it dried out at all, add some broth to the crock pot by the ladle full until it is a good texture again. This is more important if you’re baking it in the oven, but it’s good to have just in case.
  • Layer stuffing, cranberry sauce, turkey, and gravy together on the day after Thanksgiving to make a leftovers casserole! Just bake at 350 degrees F until everything is warmed through.

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Slow Cooker Stuffing

Slow Cooker Stuffing made with celery, onions, bread, and seasonings is a savory side dish and an EASY way to free up valuable oven space this Thanksgiving!
Yield 12 servings
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 4 hours 30 minutes
Total Time 4 hours 40 minutes
Course Side Dish
Cuisine American
Author Sabrina Snyder

Ingredients
 

  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 1 yellow onion chopped
  • 2 cups celery chopped
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon coarse ground black pepper
  • 4 cups chicken broth
  • 1 teaspoon poultry seasoning
  • 1 teaspoon dried sage
  • 2 large eggs beaten
  • 12 cups stale bread chopped (I used a loaf of french bread I cut up and let sit out 24-48 hours in a single layer)

Instructions

  • In a large pot add the butter, onion, celery, salt and pepper and cook on medium heat for 3-4 minutes before turning off the heat and adding in the broth, poultry seasoning, sage and eggs, whisking together until combined and no extra liquid is sitting in the bottom of the slow cooker (this is important to have it cook evenly).
  • Add the bread to the slow cooker and pour over the egg mixture, tossing together until well combined.
  • Cook on low for 4-5 hours then uncovered for 30 minutes on high.

Notes

Note: click on times in the instructions to start a kitchen timer while cooking.

Nutrition

Calories: 240kcal | Carbohydrates: 29g | Protein: 7g | Fat: 10g | Saturated Fat: 5g | Cholesterol: 47mg | Sodium: 1056mg | Potassium: 231mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 4g | Vitamin A: 355IU | Vitamin C: 6.8mg | Calcium: 99mg | Iron: 2.4mg
Keyword: slow cooker stuffing

About the Author: Sabrina Snyder

Sabrina is a professionally trained Private Chef of over 10 years with ServSafe Manager certification in food safety. She creates all the recipes here on Dinner, then Dessert, fueled in no small part by her love for bacon.

Sabrina Snyder is a professionally trained personal and private chef of over 10 years who is the creator and developer of all the recipes on Dinner, then Dessert.

She is also the author of the upcoming cookbook: Dinner, then Dessert – Satisfying Meals Using Only 3, 5 or 7 Ingredients which is being published by Harper Collins.

She started Dinner, then Dessert as a business in her office as a lunch service for her coworkers who admired her lunches before going to culinary school and becoming a full time personal chef and private chef.

As a personal chef Sabrina would cook for families one day a week and cook their entire week of dinners. All grocery shopping, cooking and cleaning was done along with instructions on reheating. As a private chef she cooked for private parties and cooked in family homes in the evenings for families on a nightly basis after working as a personal chef during the day.

Sabrina has been certified as a ServSafe Manager since 2007 and was a longstanding member of the USPCA Personal Chef Association including being on the board of the Washington DC Chapter of Chefs in the US Personal Chef Association when they won Chapter of the year.

As a member of the community of food website creators Sabrina Snyder has spoken at many conferences regarding her experiences as a food writer including the Indulge Food Conference, Everything Food Conference, Haven Food Conference and IACP Annual Food Professionals Conference.

Sabrina lives with her family in sunny California.

Dinner, then Dessert, Inc. owns the copyright on all images and text and does not allow for its original recipes and pictures to be reproduced anywhere other than at this site unless authorization is given. If you enjoyed the recipe and would like to publish it on your own site, please re-write it in your own words, and link back to my site and recipe page. Read my disclosure and copyright policy. This post may contain affiliate links.

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Comments

  1. Excellent stuffing, much better than in a cassarole dish in the oven. Flavorful and moist. Added sausage to the sauté before adding to the crock pot. Just like stuffing done in the turkey. Thanks!

  2. Such a lifesaver to be able to make it in the slow cooker and use less of that precious oven space! Total comfort food for sure.