This super-speedy Thanksgiving dressing is double-quick in that it is quickly baked in muffin tins and uses store-bought, packaged salad croutons (NOT stuffing mix) eliminating the need to cut and toast bread. To make it even faster, use pre-chopped onion and celery. Since the croutons and sausage are already highly seasoned, you won't need any additional salt. One caveat, the stuffing is a wee bit drier than some making them sturdier and easier to remove from the muffin pans. Resist the urge to add more broth—you'll be in a world of pain trying to unmold them! Of course, good nonstick muffin pans will eliminate that nerve-wracking moment of suspense. Bonus aside from being adorable? Everyone gets crispy edges and soft centers!
Make-ahead: The muffins can be baked up to 2 days ahead and reheated on a baking sheet at 325°.
- 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted, plus more for the pans
- 12 ounces bulk pork or turkey sausage
- 1 medium onion, finely diced (1 ¼ cups)
- 2 inner celery ribs, finely diced (1/2 cup)
- 1 tablespoon chopped fresh sage
- ½ teaspoon freshly ground pepper
- 3 cups unsalted turkey stock, preferably home made or canned unsalted broth, divided
- Three 5-ounce bags seasoned salad croutons (8 cups)
- 2 large eggs
- Gravy, for serving
1. Preheat the oven to 425° and position a rack in the lower third. Butter 18 muffin cups.
2. In a large, deep skillet, cook the sausage over moderately-high heat, breaking it into lumps with a wooden spoon until no longer pink, about 8 minutes. Add the onion, celery, sage, and pepper and cook over moderate heat, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables are tender and the sausage is browned, about 8 minutes longer. Add 2 cups of the stock and bring to a boil, scraping up any browned bits stuck to the pan.
3. Scrape the mixture into a large bowl and add the croutons. In a small bowl, whisk the eggs with the remaining 1 cup stock. Add the liquid to the bowl and stir to combine. Let sit for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally, to soak. Divide the mixture between the cups, gently packing, and brush the tops with butter.
4. Bake until browned on top and sizzling all around, 30 to 35 minutes. Let rest 10 minutes. Run the tip of a knife all around each muffin to loosen and top with a cutting board. Holding both, invert and give it a sharp rap on the table to dislodge. Remove the pans and invert onto a platter. Serve with gravy.
Grace Parisi is a New York City-based food writer, cookbook author and food stylist. Her book, Get Saucy, was nominated for a James Beard award. Her latest book, Quick Pickles comes out in Spring 2016. Follow her on Instagram and Twitter.