This Cheesy Italian Sausage Stuffing recipe is an incredible Thanksgiving stuffing prepared with Italian sausage, kale, and provolone cheese! A wonderful combination of savory, hearty, and cheesy, all in one bite.
AN EASY & DELICIOUS STUFFING RECIPE
This Italian sausage stuffing recipe is one of my mom’s recipes and it all started with me and my demands for non-boxed stuffing. At the fine young age of 12, I knew there had to be more to turkey stuffing than soaked, seasoned, and baked bread cubes.
For that reason, that same year I begged my mom to stir in some ground beef, and she did. And we loved it. The next year, I asked her to add cheese. We loved it even more!
The following year, she just gave me the bread cubes and told me to take care of the Stuffing.
Thanksgiving traditions. They’re awesome, and I am a traditionalist at heart, but man, I get sick of the same old food, year after year. Thus, adding a twist to our Stuffing will make things a little different, but still in line with tradition. Right?! Definitely.
This Cheesy Sausage Stuffing recipe has delicious Italian sausage, flavorful and textured kale, onions, garlic, and celery that are pan-seared on stovetop, then combined with bread and cheese, and finished off in the oven.
HOW TO MAKE ITALIAN SAUSAGE STUFFING
We start with our bread. Because I make my own bread cubes, I almost always choose plain, sliced white bread since it easily soaks up all the great flavors that you add to it. If you decide to make your own bread cubes, I suggest baking/drying them at 350F for 15 minutes, but start checking at 12 minutes.
In the meantime, we have to prepare the sausage. Mild (or HOT) Italian sausage pairs perfectly with thyme, rosemary, and sage, plus a bunch of kale and veggies.
All of that gets cooked for about 10 minutes before we combine it with the prepared bread cubes.
Next, we will transfer the sausage mixture to a baking dish, stud it with cubed provolone cheese, cover and bake for 30 minutes. Remove the cover and continue to bake for 20 more minutes, or until golden brown.
Remove from oven and serve.
HOW TO MAKE STUFFING AHEAD OF TIME
- Prepare this dish one day ahead, but don’t bake it. Cover the baking dish and set it in the fridge over night.
- When ready to bake it, take it out of the fridge and let stand 20 minutes on the counter. Bake and serve warm.
- If you do not want to use kale, definitely try it with spinach or any other hearty greens, like chard or collard greens.
- Muenster is a great substitute for Provolone cheese. Swiss cheese is good, too, and you can always use mozzarella.
- 1pound stale white bread, cubed (see notes on how to make your own)
- 6tablespoons butter, divided, plus more for baking dish
- 2small yellow onions, diced
- 4stalks celery, chopped
- 3cloves garlic, minced
- 1pound mild or hot Italian sausage, casings removed
- 1/2tablespoon sweet or smoked paprika
- 2tablespoons tomato paste
- 1teaspoon dried thyme
- 1/2teaspoon dried rosemary
- 1/4teaspoon dried sage
- salt and fresh ground pepper,to taste
- 1bunch kale, stems removed, chopped (1 bunch just refers to how much you can grab in one hand)
- 3cups low sodium chicken broth or beef broth
- 1/4cup chopped fresh parsley
- 1cup cubed provolone cheese
- Preheat oven to 375F.
- Butter a 3-quart baking dish and set aside.
- In a dutch oven, melt 4 tablespoons butter over medium-high heat.
- Add onions and celery and cook for 2 minutes.
- Add garlic and stir in the sausage and paprika; cook, breaking up the meat with a wooden spoon for about 6 minutes, or until cooked through and browned.
- Stir in tomato paste and season with thyme, rosemary, sage, salt, and pepper.
- Add the kale and cook for 3 minutes, or until softened.
- Add the broth and bring to a simmer; remove from heat and set aside.
- In a large mixing bowl whisk the eggs and parsley; add prepared bread cubes and the sausage mixture; stir to combine.
- Stir in the cheese.
- Transfer to prepared baking dish.
- Cut the remaining 2 tablespoons of butter into several pieces and dot over the stuffing.
- Cover with foil and bake for 30 minutes.
- Remove foil and continue to bake for 20 minutes, or until golden brown.
- Remove from oven and serve.