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As any Southern girl will tell you, Real Southern Cornbread dressing is NOT ever used for stuffing or made with white bread! After perusing the very few Cornbread Dressings on the 'Zaar, I wanted to post this one for those wanting the "real deal"! This recipe is a combination of my mother's family recipe and the recipe of my cousin who lived in New Orleans. I have tweaked it over the years and this is the result. No matter where we go for Thanksgiving or Christmas, people always ask me to bring my dressing. It always gets raves and I'm always asked for my recipe. The men in my family won't eat any other kind. That said, I hope you enjoy it, too!
- 5 -6 cups of cooked unsweetened cornbread, equal to 1 9 x 11 pan
- 1 1⁄2 bunches green onions, finely chopped
- 1 yellow onion, finely chopped
- 6 stalks celery, finely chopped
- 1 (8 ounce) can cream of chicken soup (I know, but it works)
- 1 lb cooked sausage, pulsed to fine crumbles in food processor (not sage)
- 8 -10 leaves finely minced fresh sage
- 7 -8 cups chicken broth, homemade is even better
- 2 cups shredded chicken meat (optional)
- fresh ground pepper
- Crumble cornbread into large bowl. Do not use cornbread mix (such as Jiffy) because it has sugar. Some mixes do not have sugar and those are fine.
- Put onions and celery into microwave-safe dish with 1/2 cup Chicken broth. Cook vegetables until softened - approx.6-8 minutes.
- Pour vegetables into cornbread bowl. Add sausage, sage and chicken,if using. Sometimes it's easiest to use your hands and mix, making sure all the ingredients mix together.
- Stir in cream of chicken soup. Slowly adding broth as you stir.
- The cornbread will beging to soak up the broth, so let it rest a bit in between adding all the broth. The final consisitency should be very soupy.
- Add salt and fresh ground pepper to taste.
- Refrigerate overnight if you have time - the flavors will meld and create a tastier dressing. Add more broth as needed if it has thickened. It still needs to be soupy or it will be too dry once it is cooked.
- Pour into lightly greased 9 x 12 baking dish. I usually have enough to fill another 9 x 9 baking dish, as well. Bake at 375*, covered, removing foil last 10 minutes so it is golden brown on top - usually 45 minute - 1 hour. You want it to be very moist even after it is baked so do not overcook.