So last week I shared my journey going gluten-free and how I live on a daily basis not eating any gluten. You may be thinking if you read my post, how would I handle a holiday going gluten-free?!?
For years, many of my family members most likely remember me sleeping on the couch after Thanksgiving or Easter. No, this wasn’t so I could avoid cleaning up the dishes… my energy levels had merely shut down and all I could do was rest! No amount of caffeine could change that! My stomach was in a lot of pain and my head was foggy! Given the countless reasons I went gluten-free, it is not worth me giving-in and eating foods with gluten on any holiday. Two years ago, on Thanksgiving, I tried to limit my gluten (extremely hard if you are eating traditional Thanksgiving foods lol) partly because at that time I was just doing my research on it and it wasn’t till January that I cut-out gluten completely. So last year was really my first gluten-free Thanksgiving, where I started bringing my own gluten-free dishes!
As I briefly go through the meal that my family has, I know turkey, cranberry sauce, glazed carrots, squash, and sweet potatoes all do NOT contain gluten … at least at my family’s Thanksgiving. I know I can eat all of those things without any issues. While I love veggies, I enjoy stuffing and cornbread even more! After all, it is Thanksgiving! Regularly, I try to keep a clean diet but on holidays such as Thanksgiving, I allow myself to indulge moderately as long as they have no gluten!
With all that said, this year I am bringing gluten-free stuffing and gluten-free cornbread to the table ;). I am sharing my newest sausage stuffing recipe on the blog today! If you are looking for a gluten-free stuffing, this is one not to miss!! I shared it with my family over the weekend just to get their feedback even though none of them follow the GF diet, and the response was so positive they said they didn’t need any other stuffing on Thanksgiving day!! I took this as a big compliment from my Italian father! This stuffing is not just your traditional plain stuffing. It also has sausage, cranberries, and pignolis which add a ton of flavor! Let me know your thoughts if you try it! 🙂
The BEST Gluten-free Stuffing
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- 1 box Trader Joe's Gluten Free Stuffing Mix
- 1 1/2 lbs. Italian pork sausage (I like 1 lb. sweet and 1/2 lb. spicy.) You can substitute chicken or turkey Italian style but I find the pork is tastier for the holidays.
- 2 tsp olive oil
- 1 stick butter
- 1 C celery, chopped
- 1 C yellow onion, chopped
- 3/4 C dried cranberries
- 1/3 C pine nuts
- 1 medium Granny Smith Apple (peeled and chopped)
- Preheat oven to 350.
- In a saucepan put pine nuts and toast over medium heat, no oil is needed. Watch they burn fast so stir constantly :(. Remove the nuts from skillet and set aside.
- In the same saucepan add 1 1/2 C water and the cranberries. Bring to a boil and simmer 3 minutes. Drain well and set aside.
- In a large skillet add the 2 tsp olive oil and heat. Remove casing from sausage, break up into pieces and add to skillet. Cook completely but DO NOT OVERCOOK. Add cranberries and pine nuts and cook for 2 minutes. Pour into greased 13 x 9 casserole dish.
- In a separate skillet add onion, celery and 2 Tbs butter. Cook to soften celery and onions for 4 minutes. Add apples and continue to cook for 3 more minutes, stirring constantly. Set aside.
- Next, empty the bread stuffing into bowl and set aside. In a medium sauce pan put 3 cups of water, 5 Tbs of butter and the seasoning pouch and bring to a boil for 3 to 5 minutes or until butter is completely melted. Remove from heat, pour liquid over bread stuffing. Add celery, onion and apple mixture and gently fold until all are moistened. Empty ingredients into casserole on top of sausage, and mix gently. Do not overmix. Cover with foil and let sit for 10 minutes. Put in oven for 35 minutes covered. Take out, uncover and put in for 5 minutes longer to toast. This will be moist and delicious! If you like your stuffing VERY, VERY moist, add a little more water with the butter, up to 1/2 cup, no more. I happen to like it with 3 cups of water.
Alyssa Grieco http://alyssagrieco.com/