Do you smell that delightful aroma? It’s nearly dinner time. The family is gathered and the turkey is carved. Your mom is putting the final touches on her homemade stuffing and you’re ready to dig in and fill up those plates.
Stuffing makes a great meal side any time of year. It doesn’t have to be used just for those special holiday meals! You can make your own homemade stuffing or you can buy those simple box mixes that are pretty tasty as well.
No matter which way you make your stuffing, there are bound to be leftovers. Stuffing is incredibly filling and it always seems like there is so much leftover at the end of the meal. It’s almost like it multiplies while you’re eating it!
Can you freeze stuffing to save those leftovers for later? Stuffing freezes quite well for up to 6 months and is also simple to reheat. I recommend freezing it in portion sizes because once the bread is thawed, you won’t be able to freeze it again.
The process for freezing stuffing is really quite simple and we will dig a little deeper into that later in this guide
In this guide, we will walk you through all of the details for freezing stuffing. We will cover some basic information about how stuffing is made and additional uses for stuffing if you need ideas to use up your leftovers.
Keep reading to learn about freezing stuffing and so much more.
Your Guide to Freezing Stuffing and More
Stuffing is perhaps most known for being a side dish to turkey or ham. It’s commonly served at meals like Thanksgiving, Christmas, and Easter. Really, stuffing can be served at any time, there’s no need to limit it to special occasions. Of course, you can limit it to those special occasions if that is your preference.
Stuffing is typically made with bread, onions, celery, butter, and fresh herbs or seasoning. You might also hear it referred to as dressing. The two are the same type of dish with the same types of ingredients.
There are a ton of different ways to make stuffing. Some people add their own flair while some people follow the strict traditional means of making stuffing.
Then there are different ways to add to your stuffing and some people make it moist while others make it slightly dry.
You might even know someone who uses leftover bread heels or croutons to make their stuffing. It’s quite versatile and there are so many different ways to enjoy it or make it. All of this is before you even start talking about boxed stuffing mixes from the grocery store.
How Stuffing is Made
We already discussed that there are hundreds of ways to make stuffing. But we also think it’s pertinent to talk about how stuffing is made so you understand just what we are working with as we progress to freeze your stuffing.
Here we will share a classic stuffing recipe instructions.
Don’t worry, if your stuffing isn’t made exactly like this, the freezing instructions should still be compatible. The concept remains the same through various recipes and the ingredients are similar across the board as well.
This recipe is shared primarily as a point of reference for what is in stuffing so you know how freezing may affect those ingredients.
- Choose your bread, we recommend French bread or sourdough bread but you can use any kind you want. Slice your bread into 1-inch cubes.
- Dry the bread. You can dry it by laying it out on the counter and letting it air dry for 1-2 days or you can dry it out in the oven. It’s up to you and your planning skills.
- Fresh herbs are best but feel free to use dried herbs if you need to. You can also purchase poultry seasoning for a premium spice blend.
- In a skillet, melt butter over medium heat. Add onion, celery, and seasonings (not the fresh herbs) to the pan and cook them on low-medium heat for about 10 minutes, just until tender.
- Place your bread cubes in a large bowl and add in your onion mixture. Then add any fresh seasonings such as parsley or fresh herbs of your choice.
- Pour broth over the top until your bread is slightly moist and gently toss together. You don’t want your mix to become soggy so add broth with care.
- Add salt and pepper to taste.
- Layer into a baking dish. You can add pats of butter to the top for additional buttery moisture if you prefer.
- Bake at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for 35 minutes, covered. Remove foil and bake an additional 10 minutes.
- Serve and enjoy.
Making stuffing is really pretty simple and it’s quite affordable. It doesn’t take any fancy ingredients or challenging steps. The ingredients and the process involved are all quite simple and the results are a delicious side dish that many people list as one of their favorites.
Uses for Stuffing
If you’ve got the after-holidays blues and you want to use that leftover stuffing but you’re tired of plain stuffing, there are options for you.
Here are some ideas for putting that leftover stuffing to use.
- Make a layered leftover casserole
- Use in stuffed peppers
- Leftover sandwich with stuffing
- Make waffles (it’s good!)
- Use the stuffing to make meatballs
- Thanksgiving leftover ring (like a taco ring)
- Breakfast hash
- Cheesy breakfast cakes
- Chicken, stuffing, and rice casserole
- Stuffing muffins
These are just a few fun ideas for using up that leftover stuffing. Don’t be afraid to get creative and add your own creations to this list for good ways to put leftover stuffing to use!
Freezing Leftover Stuffing
Stuffing stores and reheats pretty well. You can typically store stuffing in the refrigerator for up to 5 days. It’s easy to reheat using either the oven or the microwave. If you need a quick reheat, the microwave works well but the best way to reheat stuffing is in the oven.
Stuffing also freezes very well and lasts in the freezer for several months. You might even be able to store your leftover stuffing long enough to last until the next special dinner you want to use it at!
Here are the recommended steps for freezing stuffing.
- We recommend freezing in portions of what you think you will use. You should not try to re-freeze stuffing if you have leftovers yet again.
- Place stuffing into an airtight container or into a heavy-duty freezer bag. If you use a container, cover with a layer of foil or plastic wrap prior to applying the lid.
- Label, date, and seal all packaging.
- Store in the freezer for up to 6 months.
Reheating Stuffing After Freezing
You can reheat your stuffing in the microwave or the oven. If it’s an individual portion, the microwave works well but any more than that and we recommend using the oven. The best results for reheating come in the oven.
There is no thawing required when you reheat your stuffing but you can thaw it in the fridge overnight.
- Preheat your oven to 325 degrees.
- Place stuffing into an oven-safe dish and cover with foil.
- If you are concerned the stuffing will be dry, drizzle some broth over the top prior to baking.
- Bake for 15 minutes.
- Remove foil and bake an additional 5 minutes or until warm throughout
We hope that you find this guide to freezing stuffing to be both useful and informative. Freezing and reheating stuffing is really quite simple and we’re confident your taste buds will thank you when you get to enjoy those delicious flavors again at a later date.
Below, we have compiled some common questions and answers related to stuffing. We invite you to take a look to see if there is any additional information that you might find resourceful.
Can You Add Egg to Stuffing?
Some recipes do call for eggs to be used as a binder in a stuffing recipe. Traditional stuffing does not require eggs so this is purely a matter of preference.
You will need to ensure that you refrigerate your stuffing in a timely manner if you do decide to use eggs in your recipe.
How Do You Keep Stuffing from Being Soggy?
The key is in the broth. When you’re adding broth, do so slowly. The key is to get the stuffing slightly moist but not overly wet as this is what causes the stuffing to become soggy.
What Can You Do if Your Stuffing is Too Dry?
Dry stuffing is salvageable! You can simply add a bit more broth and bake it slightly into the stuffing or you can melt butter and combine it with broth and spoon some into your stuffing.
Let it soak in before serving. It doesn’t hurt to bake it a few minutes either.
Can You Eat Stuffing Cold?
There is nothing harmful about eating stuffing cold. As long as it has been stored properly, you can absolutely enjoy it cold if that is what you prefer.