Classic (Whole Wheat) Bread Stuffing

This is the stuffing of my childhood – minus the store bought boxed croutons and canned condensed soup that is. Before I knew better I used to absolutely love this stuff and crave it every Thanksgiving (and would be outright upset if for some reason it was left off the menu)! So I just had to sit down and figure out how to “real foodinize” this recipe so I could bring it back to our Thanksgiving table and also share it with all of you of course! And just like with any “made over” recipe that no longer contains processed ingredients or unwanted additives – it’s even better than the original. :)

Classic (Whole Wheat) Bread Stuffing from 100 Days of #RealFood

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Classic (Whole Wheat) Bread Stuffing from 100 Days of #RealFood

Classic (Whole Wheat) Bread Stuffing

This is the stuffing of my childhood - minus the store bought boxed croutons and canned condensed soup that is. Before I knew better I used to absolutely love this stuff
5 from 3 votes
Prep Time: 10 mins
Cook Time: 7 mins
Baking Time: 40 mins
Total Time: 57 mins
Print Recipe
Servings: 6 people

Ingredients
  

  • 6 tablespoons butter
  • 1 onion diced
  • 1 green bell pepper diced
  • 4 cloves garlic minced
  • 8 oz mushrooms sliced or diced
  • 4 tablespoons whole-wheat flour
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1 cup chicken broth
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 6 pieces whole-wheat bread sandwich, cut into 1" cubes (about 6 cups worth)
  • 2 eggs beaten

Instructions
 

  • Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
  • In a large saute pan over medium heat, melt the butter. Add the diced onions and bell peppers and cook while stirring occasionally until soft but not brown, about 3 to 4 minutes. Add the garlic and mushrooms and saute for another 2 to 3 minutes.
  • Sprinkle the flour over top and stir vigorously while it gets absorbed by the mushrooms and browns, about 1 to 2 minutes. Be careful not to let the flour burn. Pour in the milk, broth, and salt and cook while scraping the brown bits off the bottom of the pan until the liquid thickens to the consistency of gravy, about 1 to 2 minutes. Turn off the heat and fold in the bread cubes until evenly coated.
  • Remove the pan from the stove and let it cool for a few minutes. Stir in the eggs and then transfer the whole mixture to a rectangular baking dish (or stuff it inside the turkey). If cooking as a separate casserole bake until golden brown on top, about 40 minutes.

Notes

We recommend organic ingredients when feasible.
Nutrition Facts
Nutrition Facts
Classic (Whole Wheat) Bread Stuffing
Amount Per Serving
Calories 190 Calories from Fat 126
% Daily Value*
Fat 14g22%
Saturated Fat 8g50%
Cholesterol 89mg30%
Sodium 484mg21%
Potassium 295mg8%
Carbohydrates 11g4%
Fiber 2g8%
Sugar 4g4%
Protein 6g12%
Vitamin A 570IU11%
Vitamin C 21.7mg26%
Calcium 73mg7%
Iron 0.8mg4%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

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57 thoughts on “Classic (Whole Wheat) Bread Stuffing”

  1. Are the eggs absolutely necessary and if so is there a replacement you would recommend?
    I am excited to try this. Thank you!

    1. While we haven’t tried without, it seems like many of our readers have omitted the eggs without any issues. One person suggested adding more broth. – Nicole

  2. I just made this and before I put the eggs in, I took a taste… Soooo yummy! Of course I knew I was going to like it because I love mushrooms, onions, and green peppers. I can’t wait to taste test it when it comes out of the oven. Thank you so much for sharing!

  3. Looks yummy! I turn to this blog ALLLL the time for yummy recipes. Since I am cooking for a crowd that is used to boxed stuffing, I’m planning to add some traditional seasonings, like sage powder, rosemary, thyme, and turmeric.

  4. Made this today in preparation for thanksgiving. Both my mom and husband sampled it and thought it was bland. What would cause that? I used homemade chicken stock-maybe that wasn’t as flavorful as it should have been? I am not a huge fan of stuffing anyway so I don’t think I’m a very good judge.

    1. Amy Taylor (comment moderator)

      Hi Carrie. I made it using a really rich stock and it turned out really good. I did add some salt. ;)

    1. Amy Taylor (comment moderator)

      Hi Ana. Sorry, we are often unable to answer recipe questions in real time. Hope you tried it! :)

  5. This is my go to site for any and all recipes- thank you so much! Would it be a big deal to omit the mushrooms? Would I substitute something in it’s place? Thank you again.

    1. Amy Taylor (comment moderator)

      Hi Sabrina. Sorry that we can’t answer recipe questions in real time very often. The mushrooms add a lot of flavor and texture but you could just leave them out.

  6. Hello- I was wondering what you would recommend as subs for the butter and milk. Olive oil for the butter and either almond milk or more broth for the milk?? Would love your input before I try it out. Thanks!!

  7. 5 stars
    I made this for my family of 8 tonight. I doubled it so we would have plenty and I didn’t have any mushrooms. Everyone liked it, but most of us LOVED it (right down to the 3 year old!). My husband and I both had to force ourselves to stop eating and then he said, “I can’t believe that was healthy!” Thank you for sharing this. I love your site!

  8. I am going to try this recipe. I use the weight watcher bread 100% whole wheat. I was having some health issues and lost 62lbs by cutting portions and using the ww bread. I have never eaten processed food and always ate healthy, exercise. I love the recipes Lisa, especially the muffin ones. I eat organically when I can and only eat hormone/antibiotic free meat, chicken. I have totally changed my life and love the way I feel.

  9. I enjoy reading the recipes, and I do try to eat locally-grown produce, meat and eggs, plus our family has cut out most dairy because we had our children tested for allergies. We also watch our intake of highly-processed foods because of the OVERWHELMING amounts of MSG (LOVE, LOVE, LOVE the crock-pot chicken and overnight-stock recipes–I keep the stock in GLASS jars in the freezer)!! I try not to be fanatical about anything, but I do try to keep nutritious, mostly whole-food in the house. I’m not perfect, I hit the drive-thru still sometimes. However, we have cut WAY back. I love the “lab-rat” analogy. I was eating a date today and thinking, “Gee, I’m glad someone ate one of these a long time ago, hoping that it was good for food and that they wouldn’t die.” Think about it–how do we know that some plants are poisonous? Because someone died after consuming it–and we only know of the ones that are fairly immediately-toxic.

  10. Thanks so much for great recipes, as well as for choosing great sponsors. I jumped onto Plan to Eat’s wagon during their sale and have already converted my mother and sister. This will be a great help to our families eating more healthy. Thanks again!

  11. 5 stars
    I made this recipe for our Thanksgiving meal and it was a HIT!! I added celery into the mix ( I love using celery) and it was fantastic. Thank you for this wonderful and tasty recipe that helps my family still eat real food around the holidays! :)

  12. Oh my gosh. the creamy base you mix the bread crumbs into was soooo good. I am going to make it for dinner one night as a dinner of itself! With a nice cup of tea and some warm homemade bread and butter. YUM!

  13. Lisa, I love your site, it is very inspiring and I agree with so much of what you write in your posts.

    However, I wanted to leave a comment in reference to your response to Rhonda about wheat. I agree, we have been eating wheat for a long time, but the wheat we eat now does not resemble the same wheat our ancestors enjoyed. It has been genetically-modified (by breeding, the old fashioned “peapod” genetic way, not in a lab) to be very short and heat/insect/drought-tolerant. And from what I have read, because of this, the number of genes wheat contains has increased drastically due it this “natural” manipulation.

    This is a fairly recent change and it is impossible at this time to have enough data to support that this new-and-improved wheat is as safe to eat. Saying this modified wheat is safe to eat because our ancestors ate wheat would be no different than saying genetically-modified corn, soy, veggies, etc. are safe because our ancestors ate them long ago in their “original” form. Perhaps they are just as safe, but this is all new territory and unknown at this time.

    Personally, as a whole-food advocate, I stay away from genetically-altered foods such as wheat. This is not the wheat my great-grandparents in Germany enjoyed in their bread. I am a geneticist and find it frustrating that people are generally only frightened by foods genetically-modified in science labs. Cross-breeding plants to change character traits, as in wheat’s case by increasing the number of genes drastically, has the same type of outcome; a genetically-altered food source being tested for the first time by this current generation. I don’t want my children to be lab rats for the wheat industry.

    Just some thoughts. :-). When I first discovered your blog I honestly was surprised you were comfortable feeding your family wheat. But I understand it is difficult to separate facts from fads, and I don’t have the answers either. However, I have been doing a lot of reading and feel really strongly about giving up wheat. And after 14 months of whole-foods and no wheat our family has never felt better.

    1. Are you really a geneticist? The traits you are refering to (heat tolerance, straw length etc.) were NOT altered by drastically increasing gene number. I think you are confusing things. Your review sounds like a summary of the Wheat Belly book.

      Besides that, I agree with you, breeding is also a form of genetical modification. But I am not sure if being a lab rat is that bad. In regards of food, humans have always been lab rats. Or do you think your German great-grandparents knew what a sweet potato, a grapefruit or an eggplant is?

    1. Mine too! did you try subbing celery for mushrooms? i am nervous about trying because of what the recipe says about needing mushrooms to absorb the flour. becaue

  14. Hi Lisa, I’m so glad that I found your blog, this is exactly what I am looking for since we have family gathering and I am looking for the best recipe to complete my menu. Thanks for sharing.

  15. Looks great. I’m going to give it a try but add some different seasonings and nuts, possibly dried fruit.

    Would love to see a good solution for Cranberry Sauce without the ton of sugar added to the cranberries. Didn’t know if just straight orange juice would be too overpowering.

  16. Need to get away from the wheat, it is really poisoning people, not only there guts but can effect your brain, give you neuropathy, depression and numerous other health issues. Read Grain Brain or Wheat Belly. I need to come up with a gluten free stuffing, it used to be my favorite part of the dinner.

    1. Rhonda – I hate to say that you have been misinformed. Wheat is bad for some people who have an intolerance or allergy (or even an autoimmune disorder), but it is far from the “poison” you describe. That is an incredibly extreme and unnecessarily alarming statement. Grains (like wheat) have been consumed by our ancestors for thousands of years.

      1. You are right that many people are sensitive or allergic to them, but the truth is they are just not supposed to consumed by humans, never mind be our main food source – yes, humans have consumed them for 10,000 years since agriculture began however human intelligence peaked just before then. As cavemen we never consumed them and we’ve still retained 99.9% of our DNA since then so our bodies have not adjusted to consuming them. “Wellness Mama” did a great post about the long-term effects of grain consumption called ‘How Grains Are Killing You Slowly’

      2. Also that seems like quite a serious comment so I’d like to follow it up by saying that I appreciate your site and your motives!

  17. I also wondering about drying out the bread. The recipe I used previously I would cut up the bread into cubes and let it get stale on the counter for 1-2 days. Is that necessary for this recipe? Thank you! I will be trying this for Thanksgiving :)

  18. For a healthy, whole grain bread, try Food for Life Ezekiel 4:9 bread. It is a sproated grain bread with no preservatives. You can find it in the freezer section or organic frozen food section. They have several varieties. We use the low sodium variety and it’s very good.

  19. I am definitely going to try the recipe. I don’t think you have to toast the bread. When I helped momma make ours as a kid she would put the bread crumbs in a big bowl the night before and leave it without a cover. ( My memory says we did it right after we finished the dishes the night before. I got to rip the bread up as a kid-cool!!) When she went to bed she would put wax paper over the bowl and keep it there with a rubber band, but used a fork to poke holes in it. By morning it was dried out and ready to use for stuffing. I am going to try that this year and yes, I have been dabbling in baking our own breads again.

  20. Do you toast the bread first? I always buy stuffing cubes that are unseasoned but are hard and wondered if you want to make the sandwich bread “hard” too. Thanks.

    1. Joan – I actually tried that first (I tested this recipe a few times) and it got so moist after being baked in the casserole that it honestly defeated the purpose. So I don’t see it as a necessary step.

  21. Do you have any recommendations for breads that are not full of garbage? Most store bought breads seem to have an ingredient list a mile long…any brands that you love or do you make your own?

    1. Amanda – Bread is a tricky one! We usually get ours from a bakery (Great Harvest) that only uses 5 ingredients in their 100% whole-wheat bread. They are a chain so you could see if you have one in your area. You can also check the freezer section of your grocery store for Ezekiel Bread. Good luck!

    1. If you stuff it inside the turkey you will have enough moisture and not need the eggs. Mix the wet portion with the turkey juice with the remaining dry portion (that gets baked) and it all works through.

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