Southern Cornbread Dressing Recipe

Southern Cornbread Dressing makes a comforting, classic dish for the holidays! Moist and delicious, cornbread dressing makes the perfect side dish!

Southern Cornbread Dressing makes a comforting, classic dish for the holidays! Moist and delicious, cornbread dressing makes the perfect side dish! // addapinch.com

 

Cornbread dressing could easily take center stage at my family’s table during the holidays, especially at Thanksgiving.  On that special day, the cornbread dressing really rivals the turkey for attention.

There’s just one rule.

No stuffing in this house, and no funny stuff in our dressing. I think I’d no longer be allowed to make it for my family if I “messed” with this traditional family recipe.

But you know, every family makes their recipes a little bit differently, and that’s what makes family recipes so special, I think! The special touches to suit your family’s taste preferences lets you know that those recipes were made with tons of love and care for each person who would gather at the table to enjoy them.

Southern Cornbread Dressing Recipe

Southern Cornbread Dressing makes a comforting, classic dish for the holidays! Moist and delicious, cornbread dressing makes the perfect side dish! // addapinch.com

 

For our dressing, we use my Grandmother Verdie’s recipe that she got from her own mother. It starts with a skillet of my  southern buttermilk cornbread. You can prepare it the day ahead and cover tightly, if you’d like.

Likewise, we use leftover biscuits from the day before, but you can also use sliced white bread like my Grandmother showed me one day when Granddaddy had grabbed the last couple of biscuits she’d stashed away for her dressing as a “snack.” The bread works perfectly, too!

How to Make Southern Cornbread Dressing Recipe

Crumble up your cornbread in a large bowl. Go ahead and use the largest bowl you have. You’ll want to really mix this up well. If you don’t have a really large bowl, grab a stockpot. It works perfectly for when you need to mix large amounts but don’t have a bowl big enough! Now, you’ll crumble your leftover biscuits or bread into the cornbread crumbles. This is a good thing to get the kids to help you do. Making crumbles was always one of my favorite things to do to help for Thanksgiving. That and taste testing! Ha.

For the cream of chicken soup, I prefer to use my homemade recipe. If you’d rather use canned cream of chicken soup, by all means it works great as well.

Another tip is to make sure you use plenty of Chicken stock when you make your dressing. It makes for the most moist and tender dressing. If you don’t use enough, you’ll have dry dressing and nobody likes dry dressing. Well, at least no one that I know, anyway!

This recipe yields two 9×13 dishes of cornbread dressing and you may think that sounds like way too much dressing. But, since my sister doesn’t care for onions, I always make one pan with and one without the onions.

Here’s the recipe for my family’s Southern Cornbread Dressing. I sure hope you love it as much as we do. We always like to finish it off with a drizzle of giblet gravy.

Yield: 12
Course Side Dish
Cuisine American
Keyword cornbread dressing, cornbread dressing recipe, easy cornbread dressing, southern cornbread dressing, thanksgiving dressing

Southern Cornbread Dressing

Total Time 1 hour
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 45 minutes
Cornbread Dressing is a classic southern dish served especially during the holiday season. Moist and delicious, cornbread dressing makes the perfect side dish!
4.86 from 42 votes
Did you make this recipe?

Ingredients

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 350º F.
  2. Crumble all of the cornbread and biscuits (or white bread slices) into a large bowl. Add salt, pepper, eggs, onion, celery, butter, cream of chicken soup, and chicken stock. Stir until well-combined.
  3. Pour dressing into two 9x13 baking dishes and bake until lightly browned, about 30 - 45 minutes. To test doneness, shake casserole dish lightly. If the center of the dressing moves, then the dressing is not cooked through in the center. Continue to bake until the dressing is set throughout.

Notes

You can pour dressing into two smaller casserole dishes to reduce cooking time to about 35 minutes. I like to do this for one pan with onions and the other without for those who do not like onions.

Nutrition Facts
Southern Cornbread Dressing
Amount Per Serving
Calories 226 Calories from Fat 135
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 15g 23%
Saturated Fat 7g 35%
Cholesterol 77mg 26%
Sodium 1077mg 45%
Potassium 222mg 6%
Total Carbohydrates 14g 5%
Sugars 3g
Protein 7g 14%
Vitamin A 9.7%
Vitamin C 1.5%
Calcium 4.6%
Iron 9%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

All images and text © Robyn Stone for Add a Pinch

 

Make-ahead Cornbread Dressing Tips:
– Make cornbread for your dressing the day before. Wrap it up tightly until ready to mix your dressing.
– Mix up all of your dressing up to two days ahead of the big day. Wrap it up tightly and place in your refrigerator.
– Freezer-Friendly – prepare without baking up to two weeks in advance, wrap tightly and freeze. Thaw in refrigerator two days in advance and bake on Thanksgiving Day.

Day of tips:
– Bake your dressing early in the morning and then place in the refrigerator. While your turkey is resting, place your dressing back in the oven to thoroughly reheat.

Enjoy!
Robyn xo

Southern Cornbread Dressing - Southern Cornbread Dressing makes a comforting, classic dish for the holidays! Moist and delicious, cornbread dressing makes the perfect side dish! // addapinch.com

 

From the Add a Pinch recipe archives, originally published 2010.

333 comments on “Southern Cornbread Dressing Recipe”

  1. Can the 3 slices of bread or biscuits be omitted? I’ve made my cornbread but do not have any bread on hand.

  2. You could also use 1 or 2 sleeves of saltine crackers or slices of bread.

  3. Am about to make your cornbread dressing – made Grandma Verdie’s cornbread and chicken stock yesterday. Will be making your homemade cream of chicken soup shortly. Am so excited to use your recipes for today. However, as I am reading the dressing recipe, I see it calls for 1/2 cup of butter, but I don’t see where/how to use it in the recipe directions. Is it just for melting to put in the 9×13 pans for cooking. I am hoping like hick you are not knee deep in cooking this morning and are able to receive this and post back your answer here post haste. Regardless, am wishing you and your family a very Happy Thanksgiving. I am thankful I found all of these recipes (all 4) for our Thanksgiving Dinner.

    • Hi Sherry!
      I am so excited for your Thanksgiving! Grandmother’s Dressing and Sweet Potato Casserole take center stage for me! 🙂 For the butter, it is all mixed in step 2 of the recipe. I hope you have a blessed Thanksgiving! xo

  4. Robyn, never mind. I discovered in copying your recipe down by hand, I inadvertently failed to include butter in the list of ingredients to combine into the dressing. So, the problem was not in your recipe but in my haste to write it down. Sorry to have bothered you with this. Happy Thanksgiving!

  5. When ur preparing it and everything mixed together is it supposed to be real liquidity? And also I crumbled the cornbread and biscuits kind of fine is that ok? Or should that have been bigger pieces?

    • Yes Jennifer it sounds like you did it just fine.
      It will seem sort of “liquid-y” when it’s just mixed and ready for the oven. Just check the recipe instructions when making sure it’s done. Enjoy! xo

  6. Love the recipe- it is in the oven now.  Can’t wait to taste it.  Thanks for posting.

  7. I am making this recipe for the first time and I’ve added everything and put in 4 cups of chicken stock and the mixture is already very soupy.. do I continue with adding the other 2 cups?? Is it supposed to be really runny before baking it???

  8. My mother in law showed me how to make dressing and she baked the onions and celery into the cornbread. This makes sure the vegetables are done and not crunchy.

  9. I made my dressing mix last night with eggs and everything and immediately put into the refrigerator and put it into the oven about 12:00 this afternoon. Is it safe to eat?? I’m so confused after I read your tips to make thanksgiving dinner it says I could make it up to two days. But now I’m scared with what others are saying? It smells so good. I haven’t ate it yet . But now I’m scared. 

    • Yes, if you refrigerated your dressing mixture before baking immediately, it should be just fine to bake and eat today. I hope you enjoy it!

  10. Super excited to taste this! I have it in the oven right now 🙂 The only alteration I made was adding some shredded chicken (not too much) into the mix. I like dressings that have shredded meat so wanted to add that element into this recipe. Happy Thanksgiving and thank you for sharing this!

    • It sounds like the perfect addition, Mary! My Grandmother Verdie would add some in from time to time as well! I hope everyone enjoys it! xo

  11. Hi! Can I just cut the recipe in half if I only need one 9×13 pan? Only cooking for 4, but would love to try this recipe! I know sometimes cutting recipes in half can backfire, so just wondered if you’d tried it. Thanks!

  12. My mother passed away a year ago this month. Sad to say, I didn’t have her recipe.
    I been asking other people for their recipe but guess theirs were all family secrets…lol
    I searched the Internet and found great reviews on your cornbread dressing.
    I boiled a chicken, deluted 3 bullion cubes, adding to the water.
    My husband can’t stop talking about how delicious my dressing turned out.
    How I have my own secret recipe for cornbread dressing…lol
    Thank you, Thank YOU, THANK YOU

    • My deepest condolences on your Mom’s passing. I know it is especially hard during the holidays. I hate that you didn’t have her dressing recipe, but so glad that my Grandmother Verdie’s helped make your Thanksgiving special and that you’ve now taken the recipe as your own family tradition. She would be thrilled that you love it. xo

  13. I normally don’t leave reviews, but I made this for Thanksgiving and it was perfect. I grew up in South Georgia, and this dressing tasted just like the best I’ve had growing up (minus some of the salt). I made the cornbread and cream of chicken soup that were linked in the recipe as well, which I did the night before to help on Thanksgiving Day. I did end up adding some more salt, and mine still looked a little pale after 45min, so I ended up cooking it for closer to an hour. 

  14. I will definitely make this again BUT too soupy. I will cut back on the liquid ingredients next time. Thanks

    • Hi Brian,
      If you made this by the recipe and it was too soupy, it sounds like it needed to cook a bit longer. My family has made it for at least three generations and it is always delicious. Just bake it a bit longer if it needs it. Thanks!

  15. Robyn,
    I made your cornbread dressing for our Thanksgiving dinner yesterday and it tasted great but I have some questions about the texture. First, a little history. I have been searching for a cornbread dressing recipe like my grandmother’s that would have all the correct measurements (because my grandmother never wrote her recipe down and we have been trying to get it right since she died several years ago). I thought yours might be the solution because your Southern Cornbread recipe is just like ours with the only difference being that we use Lamb’s Stone Ground Course cornmeal and not fine (yay for REAL cornbread and not that sweet, cake like northern stuff). Also, your dressing recipe was very similar to ours with the exception of the Cream of Chicken soup and white bread/biscuit addition (we use a bag of Pepperidge Farm Herb dressing mix and no soup). My question is if your dressing is supposed to be fairly mushy inside after cooking, almost the consistency of cooked oatmeal? We are used to a firmer dressing (but not dry). I used 2 cans of soup (10 oz each) for the 4 cups the recipe calls for because I assumed you meant 4 cups of your homemade soup which you explained you used in a ration of 2 cups homemade to 1 can store bought. Should I have used less liquid to get the correct consistency? I am so glad to have found your site because so many of the recipes remind me of foods my grandmother used to cook. I look forward to trying many more!

    • Hi Katie,
      Yes, it sounds like it turned out as it should have. My dressing is really moist – not a firm or dry dressing. I’m so glad found my site too and hope you enjoy the recipes! Thanks!

  16. So I  followed the recipe and it turned out Great! Everybody  LOVED IT!!  P.S. Yesterday was my first time EVER making cornbread dressing… Thank You Sooo Much For Sharing Your Recipe…YOU ROCK!!!! 

  17. Do you need to grease the pan before putting the mixture in it?

  18. I made your cornbread dressing for the first time … and it was delicious! Thank you for sharing… 

  19. This recipe is amazing!!! I have been looking for a cornbread stuffing recipe, that was similar to my Great Grandmother’s. I made it for Thanksgiving last week, and everyone loved it, including ME!!! Will keep this recipe forever. Thank you so much!!!!

  20. MAN, I’m SO grateful for this recipe! It helped me make my first Thanksgiving meal a charm! This dressing was definitely the highlight of my dinner! It tasted just like my late Grandmother’s dressing!!!! 

  21. I reduced the chicken stock quite a bit and it was sill too moist. There is a particular texture that I am trying to achieve and was not able to. I don’t see how you get all of that in a 13X9″ pan. The flavor was great tho. Open to suggestions.

    • Hi Ellen,
      I am glad you enjoyed the flavor! It’s been one of our family favorites and a tradition for many, many years.
      The dressing is a bit moist, but if it is still not set and still “jiggles” when you check it for doneness, it may need to cook a bit longer. I’m not sure what texture you are going for as you mention.
      The recipe calls for TWO 9×13 pans, not one. It would be a bit tough to fit it all into one of those pans as it makes enough for two of them like I mention in the recipe.
      As far as suggestions go, I can just say that the recipe has been in my family for generations, made exactly according to this recipe. Check to make sure it’s done as I mentioned. I hope this helps. Thanks!

  22. After searching and searching, I’ve found my recipe. It was delish.

  23. when you put dressing in the oven do you cover the pan are not

  24. Do you boil the eggs and celery before putting them in? If not is the celery done enough?

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