Southern Cornbread Dressing Recipe (2024)


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A traditional Southern Cornbread Dressing recipe perfectly seasoned with onions, celery, and sage. Makes a delicious addition to every holiday table.

Southern Cornbread Dressing Recipe (1)

Southern Cornbread Dressing

Southern cornbread dressing is easy to make, but so delicious and makes the perfect addition to the holiday table.

In my Midwestern family, we almost always make my grandma's stuffing for the holidays. But lately I've been embracing my husband's southern roots, so I wanted to give this Southern classic a try. (You can read more about the difference between stuffing and dressing here, if you're curious.)

I have to say, this may be my new favorite holiday dish. (Don't tell my family!) I'm definitely bringing it to my hubby's family Thanksgiving.

Southern cornbread dressing is moist, more like a casserole than the stuff you get it in a box. It's also savory and perfectly seasoned with onions, celery, and sage.

What Kind of Cornbread Do You Use for Southern Cornbread Dressing?

The right cornbread makes all the difference in southern cornbread dressing.

Good cornbread = good dressing.

So it's really important that you use the right cornbread for your dressing.

Good southern cornbread means a salty savory cornbread. Not sweet. Closer to sandwich bread in it's flavor than to the boxed mix cornbread. Plus, slightly crispy edges are a must to give it a little extra color and flavor.

This Southern Skillet Cornbread recipe is what I always use, and it's just perfect for this dressing. Make it, and cut it into 8 slices about two days before you plan to make the dressing.

Southern Cornbread Dressing Recipe (2)

Can Southern Cornbread Dressing be Made Ahead of Time?

Yes, you can! Southern Cornbread Dressing is a great make ahead dish!

To make ahead, prepare dressing according to recipe instructions. Don't bake. Instead, cover and refrigerate for up to 2-3 days.

Then just bake on the big day. You may need to add 5-10 minutes to the usual baking time, due to starting with a cold dish.

Alternately, you can prepare the recipe without baking up to 3 months in advance, and cover and freeze. Thaw in the refrigerator the night before, then bake.

More Holiday Recipes You'll Love

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Southern Cornbread Dressing Video

Southern Cornbread Dressing Recipe (3)

Southern Cornbread Dressing

A traditional Southern Cornbread Dressing recipe perfectly seasoned with onions, celery, and sage. Makes a delicious addition to every holiday table.

5 from 24 votes

Print Pin Rate

Course: Side Dish

Cuisine: American

Keyword: Cornbread Dressing, Southern Cornbread Dressing

Prep Time: 45 minutes minutes

Cook Time: 30 minutes minutes

Total Time: 1 hour hour 15 minutes minutes

Servings: 12 servings

Calories: 310kcal

Author: Michelle


  • 1 batch Southern cornbread crumbled
  • 8 tablespoons butter
  • 1 medium onion chopped
  • 4 celery ribs chopped
  • teaspoons dried sage
  • 1 teaspoon poultry seasoning
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon black pepper
  • 3 bread slices toasted and crumbled
  • ½ cup milk
  • 3 eggs lightly beaten
  • 3 cups chicken broth
  • 2 tablespoons butter


  • Preheat oven to 350°F. Butter a 9"x13" baking dish, and set aside.

  • In a medium skillet over medium heat, melt 8 tablespoons butter.

  • Add onions and celery to skillet and sautee until tender.

  • Stir in poultry seasoning, sage, salt, and pepper. Remove from heat, and set aside.

  • In a large mixing bowl, add cornbread crumbles and toast crumbles. Stir in chicken broth.

  • Add onion mixture to cornbread mixture, and stir to combine. Test seasoning now and adjust as necessary.

  • In a separate bowl, whisk together milk and eggs. Pour into dressing mixture and stir to combine.

  • Transfer dressing mixture to prepared baking dish, and spread gently and evenly.

  • Cut the remaining 2 tablespoons butter into small slivers and scatter on top of the dressing.

  • Bake for about 30-40 minutes, or until browned on the top.


Nutrition facts include cornbread from the recipe linked.

  • Make the cornbread at least one day before (or up to 3 days). Let the cornbread sit out, uncovered to get a little stale. Then crumble before adding it to the recipe.
  • Use this recipe to make your cornbread. And DO NOT add sugar or honey. Regardless of your feelings on sweetened cornbread, it should not be sweetened for dressing.
  • Add all of the seasoning before you add the eggs. This way you can test the seasoning and more of anything you need to.
  • Dressing mixture should be very moist, but not soupy. If your dressing mixture is not wet all the way through after adding all ingredients, add an additional ½ cup of broth.
  • Make Ahead Instructions: Prepare dressing as instructed in the recipe, without baking. Cover and refrigerate for up to 2 days before baking.
  • Freezer Instructions: prepare without baking. Then cover, label, and freeze for up 3 months. Thaw overnight in the refrigerator before baking.
  • Storage: Store baked dressing covered in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.


Serving: 1serving | Calories: 310kcal | Carbohydrates: 27g | Protein: 8g | Fat: 20g | Saturated Fat: 11g | Trans Fat: 0g | Cholesterol: 112mg | Sodium: 711mg | Potassium: 300mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 3g | Vitamin A: 627IU | Vitamin C: 3mg | Calcium: 109mg | Iron: 2mg

Did you make this recipe?I love seeing your creations. Snap a quick photo and mention @TheGraciousWife or tag #thegraciouswife on Instagram! Leave a STAR rating below!

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Southern Cornbread Dressing Recipe (2024)


How do you keep cornbread dressing from getting gummy? ›

Stir occasionally to ensure even drying. And if your dressing is still too mushy after baking, you can add more crumbled cornbread, dry bread, or even dry breadcrumbs or croutons to absorb excess moisture. Mix it in gently, so you don't compress the dressing too much.

Why is my cornbread dressing still wet in middle? ›

The stuffing should be moist but not wet. If there is a puddle of broth at the bottom of the bowl, you've added too much.

Why is my cornbread dressing bland? ›

Avoid bland dressing by making sure to include plenty of onions, celery, and herbs in your recipe. Now is not the time to go easy with the sage, thyme, and pepper. The dressing should taste different from your cornbread.

How do you keep dressing from drying out? ›

Bolster it with warm broth

For every four cups of dressing, drizzle the dish evenly with ½ cup warm turkey or chicken broth. Toss to mix it in evenly, cover with foil, and allow the dressing to sit and rehydrate. Alternatively, to keep warm, return the dish to an oven at a low temperature.

Why does my dressing taste gummy? ›

One potential reason for gummy cornbread dressing could be using cornbread that is too moist. It's best to use cornbread that has been left out overnight or is slightly stale to ensure a drier texture.

Is it better to use broth or stock for dressing? ›

You can use either stock or broth for keeping dressing moist or as a basis for gravy, but a strong flavor will give you better results.

How do you know when the dressing is done? ›

(Generally speaking, this should take roughly an hour) You'll know it's done when the top is golden brown and the dressing has soaked up the liquid (I check this by poking the dressing with a fork all the way through to the bottom of the pan and gently pulling a bit of it aside to see how well the liquid is absorbed ...

Should you put an egg in stuffing? ›

The most important ingredient of stuffing may be the binder, which keeps all the other elements in place. For a fluffy texture, use eggs. Stock is the most-used binder. Less conventional possibilities include fruit juice (such as apple or orange) and alcohol (wine or liqueur).

Why put egg in dressing? ›

Eggs add richness to the stuffing, and makes it cohere better. I'd use two eggs per pound of bread. I'm a no egg person - and I still stuff the bird (but also do a batch out of the bird). me, too, Chem - I make a boatload of dressing (we never stuff the bird) specifically so I have leftovers to eat with gravy.

Is it OK to make cornbread dressing ahead of time? ›

We have found that cornbread dressing tastes best re-heated the next day, so technically, you can make this dish one day early, refrigerate it and then re-heat over very low heat before serving. In our family, I make it the morning of Thanksgiving and let it rest before re-warming and serving.

What is the difference between cornbread stuffing and cornbread dressing? ›

So stuffing is cooked inside the bird. Dressing is cooked outside the bird, usually in a casserole dish.

Can you leave cornbread out overnight for dressing? ›

Be sure to leave enough time — the cornbread needs to sit out overnight to harden slightly before you make the dressing.

How do you fix bland stuffing? ›

Your Boxed Stuffing Is Flavorless

If you prefer to keep things simple with a boxed mix, but find that it always tastes bland and flavorless, we've found the solution: Cream of mushroom soup.

Can you leave a dressing on too long? ›

Patients are usually recommended to keep the dressing in place and not to shower the area for two days. After two days the patient can shower and change the dressing. The dressing will not need to be changed frequently; only to keep the area clean and dry.

Why is my dressing gummy in the oven? ›

If your dressing doesn't turn out right, don't fret. You can usually fix it. If you find your stuffing is too dry, add additional warmed broth to it, stir well, and return to the oven, checking periodically. If the stuffing is overly wet and too gummy, cook it uncovered for a bit longer, checking periodically.

Why is my cornbread gummy in the middle? ›

Cornbread, or any baked good, will fall in the middle if it is not completely baked, or if you add too much leavening, which causes it to rise more than the structure of the batter can sustain. Always use a tester inserted in the center of your cornbread to make sure it's done.

Why is my cornbread gummy? ›

Flour is sometimes added to round out the batter, but always in smaller amounts than cornmeal itself. Flip the ratio, using more flour than cornmeal, and you'll end up with corn-flavored cakey stuff (such as those gummy “Yankee-style” muffins of my youth).

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