Cornbread Stuffing Muffins are everything you love about stuffing or dressing baked in a muffin tin for delicious muffin size servings. Full of Italian turkey sausage, onion, celery, dried cranberries, apple and more.
Many people feel like stuffing is the best part of Thanksgiving dinner. This recipe is no different. Full of homey flavors perfect for the holiday and still delicious to serve with leftover turkey. It's easy enough for a side dish anytime (think with roasted chicken).
The leftover stuffing is just as good. Great served with our turkey breast roast, air fryer green beans or maple air fryer carrots and don't forget the skinny pumpkin pie!
What is a Stuffing Muffin?
It's stuffing that is baked in a muffin tin to make individual servings of stuffing in muffin form instead of a big batch. It's a fun presentation and perfect for portion control. Everyone gets their own (or two) and it's unexpected.
What makes this skinny?
- The biggest thing is the portion control. With a traditional stuffing recipe you really can't gauge how much you are eating. With stuffin' muffins you know exactly how much.
- Making the cornbread with non-fat milk
- Using fat-free chicken broth or stock
- Only 1 tablespoon of butter used for the entire recipe and no olive oil
- Almost 3 cups of fresh vegetables and fruit included
- Lean Italian turkey sausage versus regular higher fat pork sausage
Recipe Ingredient Notes
Prepared Cornbread. You'll need 12-ounces of prepared cornbread cut into ½-3/4 inch cubes. Consider using cornbread that is more savory than sweet for fewer calories.
The nutritional info and WW Personal Points are based on using non-fat milk when preparing the cornbread (if the recipe calls for milk). Regular or gluten-free cornbread can be used.
Italian Turkey Sausage. We used Jennie-O Italian Style turkey sausage. It's an all natural sausage and usually found in the freezer section.
Onion. We used yellow onions but red onions or white onions may be used.
Apple. You'll use half and apple and Honeycrisp is a variety we love for strong apple flavor. Tart apples are another great choice. Any apple will work. Dice the apple into small pieces for better mixing with the other ingredients.
Chicken stock or chicken broth. Use fat-free.
How to make Stuffing Muffins - Step-by-Step
STEP 1. Dry out the cornbread
Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Place the corn bread cubes in a single layer on a rimmed sheet pan (photo 1). Bake for 15 minutes or until the cubes are dried out and golden brown in color.
Allow to cool.
STEP 2. Sauté
Using a non-stick large skillet sprayed with non-stick cooking spray, cook the turkey Italian sausage (photo 2). Crumble sausage into small pieces while cooking.
Remove from pan with a slotted spoon and allow to cool. Discard any liquid rendered in cooking.
Add the melt butter to the same skillet over medium heat (photo 3) . Sauté the onion, celery and apple for 5 minutes (photo 4). Scrape up any browned bits of turkey while cooking.
Add the cranberries, sage, salt and pepper (photo 5). Stir and cook 2 more minutes (photo 6). Remove the vegetable mixture from heat and allow to cook for a few minutes.
STEP 3. Combine ingredients
In a large bowl combine the cornbread, sausage, vegetables and ¼ cup of Italian parsley (photo 7-8). Stir to fully combine.
Whisk the egg into the chicken stock (photo 8). Pour onto the stuffing muffin mixture and stir to fully combine. Allow to sit for 5-10 minutes.
STEP 4. Make muffins
Spray 12 regular-size muffin cups in a muffin pan with non-stick spray. Use a large cookie scoop to evenly distribute the stuffing mixture between the prepared muffin cups (photos 9-11). If needed push down on the top of the mixture so it all fits.
STEP 5. Bake
Bake for 30-35 minutes until the stuffing is fully warmed through and the top is golden and crispy (photo 12). Remove from oven.
Allow to sit in the muffin pan for 15-20 minutes before removing from the pan.
To remove muffins gently, run a pliable small spatula or dining knife around the edge of the muffin cavity and lift out using a fork underneath the bottom. Serve warm or at room temperature.
How to make it ahead
To avoid the stress of holiday cooking you can prepare some of the recipe the day before.
- Toast the cornbread, allow to cool and store at room temperature in an airtight container.
- Cook the sausage and vegetables. Allow to cool slightly and store in an airtight container in the refrigerator.
- The day of serving combine the cornbread, sausage mixture, fresh parsley and proceed with the recipe.
NOTE: because part of the stuffing ingredients has been chilled cooking time may need to be lengthened.
Cut the vegetables and apple into small pieces. The muffins will hold together best if the onion, celery and apple are cut into small pieces. Think small chop.
The cornbread may crumble. Depending on what type of cornbread you use you may find there is some crumbling when mixing the stuffing. No worries! When the stuffing muffins bake everything will combine whether it's cubed or crumbled.
For moister muffins: the muffins will be moist but if you really like very moist stuffing use 2 cups of chicken stock instead of 1 ¾ cups. Monitor baking so they are cooked through.
How to Store
Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 4 days. Reheat in the microwave for 30-40 seconds or until warmed through.
Frequently Asked Questions
Yes. Allow them to fully cool and place in a freezer-safe airtight container. Adding parchment paper between layers. Freeze for up to 2 months and thaw in the refrigerator.
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WW Personal Points
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Cornbread Stuffing Muffins
- 12 ounce cornbread cut into ½-¾ inch cubes
- 1 pound turkey Italian sausage
- 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
- 1 cup diced celery
- 1 cup diced onion
- ½ cup peeled diced apple suggest honeycrisp
- ⅓ cup dried cranberries
- 1 teaspoon dried sage
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- ⅛ teaspoon black pepper
- ¼ cup Italian parsley
- 1 egg
- 1 ¾ cups fat free chicken broth
- Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F. Place the cornbread cubes on a rimmed baking sheet in a single layer. Bake for 15 minutes or until the bread is dried out and golden on the outside. Allow bread to cool and turn oven temperature up to 375 degrees.
- Spray a large non-stick skillet with cooking spray and brown the turkey sausage. Crumble into small pieces as it cooks. Cook fully. Remove from pan with a slotted spoon and allow to cool.Discard any cooking liquids from the pan.
- Melt the butter into the same skillet. Add the onion, celery and apple and cook over medium heat for 5 minutes.
- Add the cranberries, sage, salt and pepper. Stir together and cook 2 additional minutes. Remove from heat and allow to cool a few minutes.
- In a large bowl combine the cornbread, sausage, vegetables and ¼ cup Italian parsley. Stir to fully combine.
- Whisk the egg into the chicken stock. Pour into the muffin mixture and stir to fully combine. Allow to sit for 5-10 minutes.
- Spray a 12 cavity muffin pan with non-stick spray. Using a large cookie scoop, scoop the mixture evenly into the prepared pan. Push the mixture gently so it all fits.
- Bake for 30-35 minutes until the stuffing is fully warmed through the top is golden and crisp. Remove from oven and allow to cool 15-20 minutes before removing from the pan.
Could you omit the turkey sausage? I realize you may lose some of the flavor, but my family is plant based and the Turkey is probably enough for us 😄
Toni Dash says
First I should say I've only made the recipe as written so am only guessing. The turkey sausage helps hold the ingredients together so omitting that might both reduce the volume but also lessen the 'muffins' staying together and alter the overall flavor. I think if I were serving this for Thanksgiving I'd want to make a test batch before making it on the day to serve in case omitting a main ingredient left a less appealing result.
I Just tried this recipe and my family loved it. It was so easy and the flavors were fantastic.
This is such a great way to serve up cornbread stuffing! SO much flavor in them.
Delicious muffins! I tried them yesterday and I am definitely making them again for Thanksgiving!
Perfect for entertaining a large crowd! We made a test batch and loved them! Will be using this recipe for TG this year. Thank you!
Stuffing is the best part of the holiday meal. I will make these ALL year long. What a great idea.
Lauren Michael Harris says
This is such a great idea! I was just planning my recipes for Thanksgiving and thinking I may not have enough baking dishes, but this is an awesome solution and such a fun way to serve stuffing!
Beth Sachs says
Such a delicious stuffing recipe. Great with Turkey at Christmas.
What a great idea! Stuffing is my favorite part of Thanksgiving dinner and these are delicious. Such a fun change up.
Love this!! My family loves stuffing, and they went crazy for these muffins. Will definitely make again!
Danielle Wolter says
I am just loving this idea for thanksgiving! It's a great way to have stuffing 🙂
what a great recipe idea and perfect for the holidays toO!
How brilliant is this?!? Love this! Perfect portions of delicious dressing! Making this again soon - probably Thanksgiving!!
My favorite part of the stuffing has always been the crunchy parts on the top. This recipe gave me plenty of crunchy sides. So good!!
What a great idea!! Combining two delicious sides into one makes it even better! Totally going to do this for my family!
Great idea! Will be making this again for the festive season!