- Food: Cornbread Stuffing
- Writer: Lizzie Green
- Content-Type: Food Blog
This recipe for sweet and savory homemade cornbread stuffing is spiced up with poblano peppers. Spice, not your thing? Not to worry. It still works quite fine without them.
What customs does your family have for Thanksgiving? We always have green beans, mashed potatoes, and sweet potatoes, in addition to the turkey, of course.
Oh, and Jello is usually available (but it’s “dinner Jello,” not Jello for dessert). But the stuffing is my favorite component.
Although I love the classic varieties baked with crusty bread, this year I’m switching things up by serving our Thanksgiving guests this mildly spicy poblano cornbread stuffing.
What’s in This Recipe for Cornbread Stuffing?
With a few additives for a spicy touch, this homemade cornbread stuffing is a delectable combination of traditional stuffing ingredients:
- The aromatic foundation is comprised of onions, celery, carrots, and sage. They give this novel cornbread stuffing dish a traditional flavor.
- Poblano peppers add some heat.
- I use Mexican oregano, cilantro, and onion as my Southwestern seasonings to counteract the peppers’ heat.
- It is made delectably tart by white wine.
- Corn kernels give the food some crunch and sweet taste bursts.
- It becomes rich and juicy when butter is melted.
- It is dotted with luscious, chewy chunks of dried currants.
- Kale that has been thinly sliced adds attractive green flecks and more nutrients.
- And the peppers and maple syrup work together to create a deliciously sweet and spicy flavor.
Making Cornbread Stuffing at Home
This recipe has been thoroughly tested by me. These three steps, in my opinion, are the key to making the best cornbread dressing:
- Prepare beforehand. The day of Thanksgiving is often busy around home, and making the cornbread adds a small extra step. I like to bake it a day or two ahead to make things simple. (And it’s acceptable if you try a piece.) Store-bought cornbread can also be used in a pinch.
- Seasoning to your taste. Always start with less when dealing with chiles and add more to taste as needed, based on your preferences and the heat of the peppers. It is important to proceed with caution because the level of heat in each pepper varies.
- Bake it! This dish was prepared by me as a cornbread dressing and baked separately from the turkey. If you choose to do this, turn on the broiler for the final few minutes of baking. In this manner, the top will get a lovely golden brown crust while the middle remains moist & mushy.
Variations in Cornbread Stuffing Recipe
I adore this dish exactly as described; it’s hot, flavorful, and even a touch sweet. However, feel free to modify it. Here are a few ideas:
- Ignore the spice! To make a classic cornmeal stuffing, leave out the poblano and oregano and replace the cilantro with parsley. In this variation, dried cranberries would be a great replacement for the currants.
- Add some smoke. Use this cornbread recipe to give your stuffing a smokey flavor. The spicy and smoky chipotles in the adobo sauce provide smokiness. If you choose to do this, use less poblano so the spiciness isn’t overpowering. You can always taste and add more.
- Alternate the greens. Swap out the kale for another hearty green, like collards.
- Adapt the vegetables and herbs. Scallions and celery are important ingredients for stuffing in my opinion, but carrots can be replaced with finely sliced butternut squash or sweet potatoes in the fall. Here, a teaspoon or two of thyme leaves would taste wonderful.
Stuffing with Poblano Cornbread
|20 minutes to prepare
1 hour to cook
1 hour and 20 minutes to finish.
This Thanksgiving staple has been given a spiced-up makeover with this gluten-free cornbread stuffing recipe. It’s a delightful addition to your Christmas table because it’s soft and moist.
For the cornbread:
- 1 cup cornmeal
- ½ cup all-purpose gluten-free blend (or regular all-purpose)
- ½ cup almond flour (or whole wheat flour)
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 1 cup almond milk
- ¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil
- ¼ cup maple syrup
For the stuffing:
- 1 batch cornbread
- 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 medium yellow onion, chopped
- ½ cup chopped carrots
- ½ cup chopped celery
- ¼ -1/3 cup chopped poblanos or jalapeños (depending on spice level)
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- Scant ¼ cup chopped fresh sage
- 1 tablespoon dried oregano
- ¼ cup white wine (or 1 tablespoon white wine vinegar)
- ½ cup corn (frozen works fine)
- ½ cup chopped scallions
- ¼ cup dried currants
- ½ cup thinly sliced kale
- Sea salt and fresh black pepper
- ½ cup almond milk, unsweetened
- ¼ cup melted butter (or vegan earth balance butter)
- 1½ tablespoons maple syrup
- ½ cup chopped cilantro (reserve some for garnish)
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
- Make the cornbread first: The cornmeal, flours, baking powder, and salt are all combined in a bowl. Whisk the almond milk, olive oil, and maple syrup in another bowl.
- Mix both together with a big spoon (do not overmix).
- Pour into an 8 x 8 baking dish that has been oiled, and bake for 25 minutes, or until a toothpick is removed clean.
- To make the stuffing: Heat the oil over medium-low heat in a large skillet. After adding, sauté the onions for a few minutes, or until they begin to soften. Cook the vegetables for about 5 minutes after adding the carrots, celery, and sprinkles of salt and pepper. A few minutes later, add the poblanos, garlic, sage, and oregano. Use the white wine to deglaze the pan. More salt should be added along with the corn, scallions, currants, and kale. Cook for a short while longer, or until the kale wilts. Dispose of the pan after removing it from the heat.
- Melted butter, maple syrup, and almond milk are all combined in a bowl. Place aside.
- Toss the cooked vegetables from the skillet with the crumbled cornmeal in a large bowl. On top, pour the almond milk mixture and stir once more. Add the chopped cilantro and stir. As you taste and adjust the ingredients, keep in mind that the baked version will taste (much) less spicy.
- Pour the mixture into a buttered 11-by-9-inch (or comparable) pan and bake for 15-20 minutes. You want the outside to be just barely crisped and the inside to stay soft. To produce a wonderful brown crust in the final two to three minutes, I switched on my broiler.
- If you have vegetarian guests, you may also pack this in the turkey and/or bake some of it separately.