This Wild Boar and Sourdough Bread Stuffing is hearty, comforting, loaded with flavour and a family favourite for Thanksgiving. It’s easy to make, goes perfectly with roast turkey and tastes even better the next day.
What You Need for Sourdough Bread Stuffing
- Wild Boar: Wild boar is an easy and delicious way to add some personality to your stuffing. It has a deeper, more juicy flavour than ground pork and pairs very well with the other ingredients. You can use prepared wild boar sausage, if that is available at a butcher near you. Otherwise, you can make a quick sausage mixture by combining ground wild boar with the herbs and spices listed in the ingredients. You can also substitute any sausage meat you love, such as turkey, bison, venison, beef, etc.
- Sourdough Bread: Using a day-old sourdough loaf will help speed up the initial toasting required to dry out the bread before it gets tossed with the stuffing ingredients. Although sourdough is not gluten-free, many people who have gluten sensitivities tend to notice less reactions to it. For something completely gluten-free and grain-free, you can check out this recipe.
- Aromatics: Celery, onion and garlic form the aromatic base for this stuffing recipe. If you want to up the veggie intake, you can try adding diced green bell pepper and/or sliced mushrooms. In fact, you can keep make a delicious vegetarian stuffing by substituting the sausage for a variety of chopped mushrooms, like portobello, shiitake, oyster and cremini.
- Herbs: You can’t go wrong with a combination of fresh rosemary, sage, thyme and parsley. I strongly recommend using fresh herbs for the stuffing. They add an incredible aroma that you just don’t get from the dried stuff. If you can only get dried herbs, just be sure to use around half the amount listed for fresh.
This is the same combination of herbs I use to make the compound butter for my smoked turkey recipe. So if you make that, you’ll likely have some herbs for the stuffing already. And any leftover herbs can be used as a decorative garnish for your turkey platter.
- Chicken Bone Broth: For best results, use a high-quality chicken broth to make your sausage and herb stuffing. Kettle & Fire make my favourite packaged broths. Their Regenerative Chicken Bone Broth is made with organic ingredients and pasture-raised bones using Regenerative farming practices. No fillers, preservatives, colourings, stabilizers, or refined sugars. Not only does it taste amazing, but it supports regenerative farming practices and a healthier food system.
You can use the broths to boost the flavour of your mashed potatoes, gravy, some Leftover Turkey Pot Pie Soup, or any of your favourite Holiday recipes.
- Eggs: Eggs act as a binder and help hold the stuffing together. It also gives the stuffing a soufflé-like texture. You can omit the eggs if preferred, or if there’s an allergy in the family.
What is Stuffing?
Thanksgiving stuffing, also called dressing when cooked in a separate casserole dish, is a dish that is traditionally served as part of Thanksgiving or Christmas meals in many American and Canadian households. It’s made with a seasoned mixture of bread, aromatics, herbs, spices and sometimes meat or sausage. The mixture is typically moistened with broth or stock and then baked until it reaches a golden-brown, soufflé-like consistency.
Can You Make the Stuffing In Advance?
Absolutely! You can either assemble all of the ingredients the day before and bake the stuffing the next day. Or, you can bake the stuffing the day before and reheat it in the oven the next day. I personally prefer to prepare and assemble the sourdough stuffing the day before and bake it on Thanksgiving day.
Not only will preparing the stuffing the day before take away some of the stress from cooking on the Holidays, but it will also taste better because it gives the bread a chance to absorb as much of the broth and egg mixture as possible.
Wild Boar and Sourdough Bread Stuffing
- ½ medium loaf of crusty sourdough bread preferably 1-day, cut into large cubes, around 4 cups total
- 1 pound ground wild boar
- 2 teaspoons dry parsley
- 1 teaspoon dry Italian seasoning
- 1 teaspoon fennel seeds
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon onion powder
- 1 teaspoon paprika
- ½ teaspoon kosher salt plus more to taste
- ¼ teaspoon freshly-cracked black pepper plus more to taste
- 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
- 2 tablespoon grass-fed butter substitute ghee
- 4 celery ribs diced
- 1 large yellow onion diced
- 3 cloves garlic finely chopped
- 1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh parsley
- 2 teaspoons finely chopped fresh rosemary
- 2 teaspoons finely chopped fresh sage
- 2 teaspoons finely chopped fresh thyme
- 2.5 cups Kettle & Fire Organic Chicken Broth
- 2 large eggs
- Preheat oven to 350F.
- Line a sheet pan with parchment paper. Add the cubed bread, arrange in a single layer and transfer to the oven. Cook the bread, flipping occasionally, until it is toasted and golden, but not browned, around 15 to 20 minutes depending on how fresh your bread is. Remove and set aside to let cool.
- Meanwhile, preheat a sauté pan over medium-high heat. Add the olive oil and heat until shimmering. Add the sausage mixture and cook, stirring occasionally to crumble the sausage into small pieces, until golden brown, around 12 minutes.
- Add 1 tablespoon of butter, if using, and heat until melted. Add the celery and onion and season with a small pinch of salt. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the celery is slightly softened, around 8 minutes. Add the garlic, parsley, rosemary, sage, and thyme. Cook, stirring, until the garlic is fragrant and the butter is melted, around 2 minutes. Taste for seasoning and adjust with salt and pepper as desired. Transfer the mixture to a bowl, add the toasted bread cubes and toss to combine.
- In a separate bowl, combine the chicken bone broth and eggs. Whisk until combined and smooth. Little by little, pour the broth and egg mixture into the bowl with the sausage and bread. Toss to coat and let sit at least 10 minutes so that the bread can absorb the liquid. Depending on the type of bread you use and how dry it is, you may need more or less broth. If there is excess broth, add more bread. If the mixture is too dry, add more broth.
- Grease a baking dish with 1 tablespoon of butter and pour in the stuffing mixture. Cover the stuffing with a sheet of parchment paper followed by a sheet of foil and bake for 45min at 350F. Remove the parchment paper and foil and bake until the top is golden brown, another 15 minutes.
- Remove the stuffing from the oven and let it rest 15 minutes before serving.