Crispy on top and just soft enough underneath, no one will guess this Shortcut Thanksgiving Stuffing with Sausage and Cranberries started with a store-bought mix.
This stuffing recipe was originally published November 2014 and republished with new photos in 2021.
This boxed stuffing mix upgrade results in a savory stuffing with just the right amount of tart from the dried cranberries.
No more guessing if your bread is dry enough to make stuffing or if the seasoning is right. All the guess work is done for you in the mix!
This easy shortcut stuffing makes the perfect side dish to your Thanksgiving turkey!
This stuffing recipe is easy enough for learning how to make stuffing if it is your first time hosting Thanksgiving but after you've mastered it, you'll continue to serve it year after year.
What is the difference between stuffing and dressing
Stuffing is stuffed into the turkey.
Dressing is baked and served alongside.
This is technically a dressing.
That being said, growing up, my mom called it stuffing and it stuck. I can't break the habit, so I'm still calling it stuffing. Let's just agree I'm wrong and move along, shall we? No need to send me a message about it.
Why you'll love this easy stuffing recipe
- it's easy (obviously)
- you can prep the sausage ahead of time
- easy to find ingredients
- no drying out bread for days on the counter
- it's delicious
- store-bought stuffing mix
- bulk sausage - preferably the sage seasoned, you can find this around the holidays
- dry cranberries / craisins
- stock - vegetable, turkey or chicken
- salt & pepper
See printable recipe card for a complete list with amounts.
Step 1: Brown the sausage.
Step 2: While sausage is cooking, prepare stuffing mix by heating stock and stirring it into dry stuffing mix.
Step 3: Soften celery and onion in butter.
Step 4: Combine everything. Place in a prepared baking dish and bake in pre-heated oven.
If you want to go all out and forget calories, toss a few pats of butter over the top before baking. We don't count calories on Thanksgiving anyway, right?
- Roast Chicken
- Green Bean Casserole
- Mashed Potatoes
- Garlic Green Beans
- turkey giblets - toss them in with the sausage
- bacon instead of sausage
- green apple
- pumpkin cubes
Shortcut Stuffing FAQ
Store leftover stuffing in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.
Use your leftover stuffing in recipes like:
Because you'll be saving so much time making this Shortcut Thanksgiving Stuffing, you'll have plenty of time to put together this holiday sangria!
Printable Recipe Card
Shortcut Thanksgiving Stuffing with Sausage and Cranberries - Printable Recipe
- 1 pound bulk pork sausage sage seasoned variety
- 14 ounce bag seasoned stuffing mix
- 2 Cup vegetable stock or chicken or turkey stock
- 1 Tablespoon butter
- 1 small sweet onion diced
- 2 ribs celery diced
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- ⅛ teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
- ½ Cup craisins dried cranberries
- Butter for coating baking dish
- Preheat oven to 350.
- In a large skillet, cook sausage until browned and cooked through over medium-high heat. Drain sausage and set aside.
- While sausage is cooking, bring 2 C vegetable stock to a boil. Remove from heat and gently stir in stuffing mixture. Set aside.
- Wipe out skillet with a paper towel and return to stove over medium-high heat. Melt 1 T butter in skillet and add onions and celery. Season with salt and pepper. Cook 4-5 minutes, stirring often, until softened. Turn off heat. Stir sausage back into skillet with vegetables. Next, stir in craisins. Finally, gently fold in stuffing mix.
- Prepare a large baking dish with butter. Pour mixture into baking dish and cover. Bake 25 minutes. Remove cover and bake an additional 5-10 minutes until top is crunchy.
This is a lovely recipe! I had to pin it right away! I love the simplicity and the colours, looks perfect! Thank you for sharing 🙂
Thanks! I love to use shortcuts when they don't compromise the dish!
Sandi Gaertner (@sandigtweets) says
I love the idea of cranberries and sausage together. It will be a definite time saver!
Nicole Neverman says
This looks so delicious Christine!! If you had a moment, I would love it if you brought this over to the #PureBlogLove link party (it's open on my blog now!). Feel free to bring along 2 other recipes too 🙂
Healing Tomato says
This recipe is a great Jump start to the Thanksgiving Holiday Dinner
Kelly @ TastingPage says
So smart to include some shortcuts since time savings at Thanksgiving is a great gift!
Dorothy Boucher says
Thank you for this yumminess!! I'll definitely try this one out.