Friday, November 12, 2010

Southern Chicken and Cornbread Dressing with Homemade Chicken Gravy

Chicken and cornbread dressing in a casserole form and served with homemade gravy is pure comfort food anytime of the year. It's a perfect dish to carry to a potluck or church social too!

Southern Chicken and Cornbread Dressing

I previously posted my Chicken and Herb Dressing recipe, because, while chicken and dressing is more traditionally made with cornbread, I happen to be a southern gal - yes born and bred - who loves herb and bread dressing.

I know. I am such a rebel.

Seriously though, that's the kind of dressing my southern born and bred Mama always made and what I grew up with.  Mostly though, when I posted that herb dressing with chicken, I needed to use up a bunch of odds and ends pieces of bread that had accumulated in the pantry.  And, that is one thing you can be absolutely certain of. We are all about using it up Down South. Okay. It might have also had a little somethin' to do with me being downright lazy and not feeling up to making a skillet of cornbread first too.

So here's the chicken and cornbread dressing because, yes we also do indeed love our cornbread - though you can get in a big ole argument with some southerners about that even.  But guess what? I use both cornbread and bread in my chicken and cornbread dressing, cuz that's how we rebels roll.

You can use any kind of leftover chicken, boil a chicken, or grab one of those rotisserie chickens from the deli and let them do the work! Here I used about 3 pounds of chicken thighs that I roasted in a 425 degrees F oven for about 35 minutes or so. Use homemade chicken stock if you've got that, otherwise, a commercial broth is fine, just be mindful about the overall salt unless you're using a reduced sodium version.

Consistency is one of those areas that can take a few times with a dressing. Too much liquid and it's far too gooey. Not enough and it's way too dry. I used 4 cups of broth this time - here's the consistency. A little soupy, but not too much.


This produced a nice dressing that will hold together in squares as in the top picture, yet still be moist, as hopefully shown in the picture below.


Before turning it out into the casserole dish, you can mix it all together if you like, but I'm kinda into this concept of layering with the chicken sandwiched between the layers of dressing. Neither way is right or wrong, so do what you prefer. I do dressing first on the bottom layer, then topped that with the cooked chicken.


And then topped that with the rest of the dressing.


Bake it uncovered at 350 degrees F until bubbly and golden brown, about 45 minutes or so.


Recipe: Southern Chicken and Cornbread Dressing with Homemade Chicken Gravy

©From the Kitchen of Deep South Dish
Prep time: 10 min |Cook time: 45 min | Yield: About 10 to 12 servings

Ingredients:
  • 3 cups of cooked, shredded chicken
  • 1 pan of cornbread, cooked and crumbled (about 6 cups)
  • 4 slices of bread, toasted and crumbled
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) of butter
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 1 cup of chopped celery
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt, or to taste
  • 1/2 teaspoon of Cajun seasoning (like Slap Ya Mama), or to taste, optional
  • 1/4 teaspoon of freshly cracked black pepper, or to taste
  • 1 teaspoon of Bell's seasoning, or homemade copycat, optional
  • 1 teaspoon of poultry seasoning
  • 4 to 6 cups of chicken broth
  • 3 eggs, beaten
  • Additional butter, sliced, optional
  • Homemade Gravy, recipe below
For the Gravy:
  • 1/2 cup of fat (bacon drippings, canola oil, butter, or a combination)
  • 1/2 cup of all purpose flour
  • 2 cups (more or less) of room temperature chicken stock or broth
  • Kosher salt and freshly cracked black pepper, to taste
Instructions:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Butter a 9 x 13 inch oblong baking dish or coat with non-stick spray; set aside.

In a large bowl, combine the cornbread and bread. In a separate skillet, saute veggies in butter; let cool. Add to cornbread mix. Add 4 cups of the broth and let stand 5 mins. Add the beaten eggs; gently toss. This is where you fix the consistency. If you want a more fluffy stuffing, you'll use less stock. If you prefer a wetter stuffing, add additional stock as needed to reach desired consistency, taking care not to get too overly soupy! In the recipe pictured here I used 4 cups.

Add half of the dressing to the prepared baking dish, top with the shredded chicken, top with the remaining dressing on top and spread out, but do not pack down. Dot the top with slices of butter, and bake at 350 degrees F, uncovered, for about 40-45 minutes, or until light golden brown on top. Cook longer for a crunchy consistency on top. Let rest 5 to 10 minutes before serving.

For the gravy, heat the fat in a cast iron skillet over medium high heat. Stir in flour, cooking and stirring with a wooden spoon until fully incorporated. Continue cooking, stirring constantly until mixture turns a very light brown color. Reduce the heat if needed - just take care not to burn the roux! Remove skillet from the heat and turn heat source down to medium. Slowly begin adding in at least one half of the stock, stirring constantly until fully incorporated, adding more stock as needed to reach the desired consistency. Taste, season with salt and pepper as desired. Drizzle over individual servings of the chicken and dressing.

~Cook's Notes~

Tip: Use a 9 x 9 inch pan of homemade cornbread, or use the back of the bag recipe, or two boxes of Jiffy cornbread, made in a 9 x 9 inch glass baking dish. Can also substitute the large (16 ounce) bags of pre-seasoned Pepperidge Farm Cornbread Stuffing - just be sure to adjust seasonings since those are pre-seasoned crumbs.

Be sure to check out my 7 Top Tips to Perfect Your Holiday Stuffing. See my gravy tips for additional information.

Source: http://deepsouthdish.com

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©Deep South Dish
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Check These Recipes Out Too!

Southern Chicken and Herb Dressing
Southern Cornbread Dressing
Seafood and Eggplant Dressing


Posted by on November 12, 2010
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80 comments:

  1. This is a very good recipe...may I ask you ..if I can use olive extra virgin oil instead butter or canola oil for gravy?? TY...from Italy

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    1. EliFla, since this is a very light roux, you might be able to get away with a very light olive oil. I have never used olive oil to make a roux - the flavor is a bit predominant - especially with an extra virgin, but with the wider variety of lighter olive oils available now, for this very blond roux, it might work. Let me know if you try it!

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    2. I use olive oil to make roux all the time. It works fine, even for gumbo. Though for this I would probably use some butter too, just because I like the flavor of butter with chicken and stuffing.

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  2. Now I'm hungry for chicken and stuffing!

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    1. LOL Eva!! Well, it might be good for breakfast.

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  3. This looks great, filling and warming. I am really wondering where you get such cute plates? I love the little designs!

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    1. Thanks Shawn! Blue and white china and everyday dinnerware is very common & well loved in the south. Google "blue and white china" and you'll see a wide variety of them. My mother in law actually gave me the ones in this picture.

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  4. Why I do declare....you ARE a rebel now aren't you!! This is something I have never tried and am going to have to. My mother in law is making the dressing for thanksgiving this year...otherwise I would sign up to make this! She makes a peach/sausage stuffing that is to die for.

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    1. Haha Debbie, that I am. I am so beyond all that old school stuff that something southern must be this way or that way!! It's just not true since "the south" is very regional in and of itself. We cook southern different here than they do in Alabama, or Texas, or even North Carolina - but we are all still southern! I tell you what - that dressing sounds divine! Sure would like a taste of that!

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  5. Oh oh oh that looks good! I am Southern too, and will eat it both ways. I will admit I want chicken or turkey dressing, though. It is made here a lot with duck. No thanks!

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    1. Hey Deana! We have our share of duck and other game down here too but I've never been fond of any kind of it to be honest so I'm with you on that. I'll take my domesticated chickens and turkeys and maybe an occasional Cornish hen thank you!

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  6. Must admit--I've never heard about chicken and dressing, even though my mom also mixed cornbread and regular bread. This looks amazing. It would be wonderful as a brunch item.

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    1. JelliDonut - you must remedy that! It's an old fashioned casserole in the south, and I'm sure that it was first thought up as a way of using up leftover bread, dressing & the remains of the Sunday chicken!!

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  7. Dressing is one of my favorite Thanksgiving dishes. This one I must try..

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  8. This looks like something my DH would like, this is another one of those comfort foods, you get the comfort before (aroma) and after
    (taste) and over full, ooops did I say that...well I do tend to like
    my viddles....thanks again Mary

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  9. I think I'm from the south in a previous life, becaue I could see myself eating most of your recipes on a daily basis!!

    anne

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  10. Any reason I should know of that I couldn't sub the 4 slices of bread for some day old buttermilk biscuits I have left from last night's dinner?

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  11. Thanks for the gravy making tips Mary. My homemade gravy has the taste, but it's never smooth and creamy. No more jar gravy. I can do this now,lol Much appreciation for all that you do. Chicken and cornbread dressing this sounds wonderful. What sides would you serve this meal? I did see a salad on the plate in the photo, any other veggies? Can't wait to make it!!!

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  12. Hey Tracey! Happy to help and you're right, it really is pretty easy to make gravy. I only served the side salad since there a protein and a starch in the casserole - a side of green beans or broccoli would be good too though.

    Have a great weekend!

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  13. I just finished eatin' this. It was sooo good. Ultimate comfort food.

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  14. Love the layering Mary. Think I'll try this tomorrow night. The cool weather is finally here and probably for a shorter time than I'd like. These comfy and fab dishes taste so much better when the weather sets the mood you know.

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  15. That looks so good! I am strangely excited about a new thing (to me) to make a casserole out of. :-)

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  16. WOW THAT SOUNDS DELISH: Chicken and Dressing is my favorite comfort food. Have you ever considered writing a cookbook, with all of the wonderful recipes, I know it would be a success. Especially since you have so many faithful followers. We love you and your recipes. I am an old school cook from the south,cooking in Illinois, and every one loves my cooking. Just like your recipes.I am new to this site less than a month but I love it, and can't wait to see what's new.

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  17. Hey Jim! Thanks so much for taking the time to come back and leave a review!! Means the world to me - I'm so glad you enjoyed it!!

    Hey Kathy, I sure know what you mean! We've warmed back up here now too for a bit. Such is the south!

    Enjoy Serene!

    Rose Mary, yes I have thought about it! I think I probably have a way to go yet before I can get published but what a fantastic compliment! Thank you so much.

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  18. See when dressing is like that, it's a meal in itself!

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  19. Good grief this looks good. I make a mean white chicken gravy and would love to give this a try. I've always made my chicken gravy with milk. I think the chicken broth sounds really interesting. I've always preferred bread and seasoned stuffing. Not a fan of the corn bread variety.

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  20. Thank you so much for sharing this recipe! I've been wanting a good chicken and dressing recipe for a long time, and this sounds just perfect. I can't wait to try it :)

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  21. Hi Mary,
    Thanks for stopping by and commenting about the angels..I hope I can finish them up...I start too many things...but hey you only go round once....have a good w/e...

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  22. nice post. thanks.

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  23. This is the best Chicken & Dressing recipe I've ever tried! I totally love your site, thanks!

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  24. Oh Lori, what a wonderful compliment - thank you so much!!

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  25. My maman used crushed cornflakes instead of bread. How's that for being a rebel! LOL

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  26. This is the BEST site!! I stumbled upon it while using pintrest..Thanks goodness! this site has the best recipes!

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  27. Hi Tammigirl - thanks so much and welcome!!

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  28. awesome- this is just like i made mine- only difference is i add chopped red apples, along with the onions and celery. yummy

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  29. This sounds really good ... wondering how it would be to add some cooked yellow squash and cheese in it too?

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  30. I tried it on Thanksgiving this year (2011). I loved it!!! My recipe always turned out so dry. My husband liked this recipe waaaaay more than mine. I will be using this one every year, from now on.

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  31. Thank you so much and thank you especially for taking the time to come back by the site and leave a comment to let me know you enjoyed the recipe. I am grateful for that. Happy Thanksgiving!!

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  32. I'm from Texas and you were right, each state seems to have their own little differences. I make a chicken and dressing similar to this. I use only white meat chicken (just what hubby and I prefer) and I add hard boiled, chopped eggs to my dressing. I also don't use Jiffy cornbread. It's too sweet to me. Other than that, yours is very similar to mine. I couldn't even begin to guess at the measures of ingredients though, as I don't measure anything. lol :)
    Oh and I have the same set of dishes and mine are called Blue Willow. I think they're so very pretty.

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  33. Ain't it the truth? Regional differences can be big across the south. That's why I don't get stuffy much about there being only one right way to do anything. I say make it your own when you cook! I don't do the boiled eggs in my dressing, not that I wouldn't, I would - I put them in my hot chicken salad casserole - just didn't grow up with it that way. I also like Jiffy just fine & use it for my corn spoonbread, but I prefer my own homemade cornbread here. Many use the Jiffy boxes for ease of preparation I guess & not a thing wrong with that! You are right - they sure are sweet!!

    I never used to measure much either... until I started a recipe site that is. I've caught myself many times having to scoop seasonings out of my hand just so I could measure them for the recipe post LOL!

    I love my Blue Willow!! Those are my everyday dishes so you'll see them in a lot of photos here since I post what we eat.

    Thanks for stopping by and taking the time to comment - I appreciate that and hope you'll come back to visit from time to time!

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  34. This is a great site! I was wondering if this casserole freezes well. Have you ever tried to make this ahead (if so, how long), or freeze for later use?

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  35. I have not personally made this ahead just because I really don't do much freezer cooking these days. You can freeze it though, just prepare it but don't bake, seal tight with foil and freeze, but I would use it within a couple of weeks, a month at the most. Let it thaw in the fridge overnight, then bake. You can make the gravy ahead and freeze it separately also if you like, or make it fresh the day you expect to cook the dish. Hope that helps!

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  36. I am originally from Mississippi and have been looking for a cornbread dressing recipe for years. I made this yesterday and it's perfect! Thank you so much for sharing. It will definitely be on my table for thanksgiving this year.

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    1. Hi Donna and welcome! I'm so glad that y'all enjoyed the chicken and dressing and hope that you will return and visit again!!

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  37. Blonde question---do you use cooked cornbread for the dressing?

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    1. Not dumb at all, in fact I probably should clarify that in the recipe, but yes, cooked and crumbled cornbread. Sorry about that Michelle!

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  38. Made this today with homemade buttermilk cornbread made with yellow cornmeal. It was great! I made the first batch of gravy using bacon grease but it tasted too much like biscuit gravy so I made a 2nd batch with veggie oil & it was perfect.

    Thanks for the GREAT recipe!

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    1. Oh thanks Mike! I'm so glad y'all enjoyed it & I really appreciate you coming back by to share. Thank you!! Now... please tell me you did save that gravy for some biscuits or something. I don't wanna cry over that bacon grease LOL - you can freeze it too! I LOVE having already made gravy in the freezer.

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  39. Reading your recipe brings back memories of when I was a child. My mother must have been a real rebel! She would crumble cornbread and biscuits. She would boil her chicken giblets, the neck and back along with chopped onions and celery. The giblets went into her gravy. Now, here is where the big difference came in...after mixing the dressing ingredients, she would tuck the RAW pieces of chicken into the the pan of dressing! She would bake until the chicken was done. It was so juicy and delicious! In later years, when the family was larger, she graduated to roasted turkey, accompanied by a pan of cornbread dressing. She still put some extra meat into it--meat from boiled turkey necks.

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    1. Sherry, I think I love your Mother!! And, I'm guessing that was the BEST dressing because my Mama used to stuff her turkey and THAT was my favorite!! Fortunately, I'm still here despite her being a rebel. :)

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  40. When I was a child, my mother also was a rebel, who combined cornbread with biscuits, broth, and seasonings. The big difference was that she tucked RAW chicken pieces (bone in) into the pan of dressing. She then baked it until the chicken was well done. It had a delicious flavor and was so moist and good!

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  41. Being from Alabama, let me add my little touch of rebelism. I add cream of chicken and cream of celery soup to my dressing which is similar to yours. The reason for this is to make it creamier. My kids love it that way but my mother made her's without the soup.I would like this Thanksgiving to be different but I would have to make both kinds.Oh well, I love dressing and it will freeze.

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    1. Exactly Pat!! I actually use 2 cream soups in my crockpot version of this - LOVE!

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  42. This was delicious. I followed the recipe to the letter. Made my cornbread from the recipe on the cornmeal box. The only thing I had to do was use chicken breast because my husband doesn't like dark meat chicken. I also didn't have the Bell's seasoning, so I put it all together from what I had. I served it with some roasted carrots and zucchini. Sure took the chill out of the house! Thanks for posting. I found you on Pinterest. Great blog.

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    1. Welcome! I'm so glad that you enjoyed the chicken and dressing and really appreciate you taking the time to stop back by and let me know. Thanks so much!!

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  43. I am soooo ready to try to make it but my only is I don't know how to make corn bread.

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    1. It's not hard at all Veronica! Just click the link in the recipe & that will take you to my cornbread recipe. You don't need to bake it in the skillet since you're using it for dressing - you can just pour it into a baking pan.

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  44. I am so ready to try the recipe, but my only problem is that I don't know how to make corn bread.

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  45. I just made this. It's wonderful. I used half homemade and half mix cornbread. Next time I'll use all homemade. The mixes are too sweet.

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    1. I'm so glad you enjoyed it Pam - thanks for popping back by to let me know!

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  46. This recipe is wonderful. I used 4 cups of liquid. I think next time I'll try 4-1/2 cups of liquid. This is one of those recipes I'll keep experimenting with until I get it just how I like it. It's so good.
    And next time I won't use a cornbread mix--the one I used was too sweet.

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    1. That is true! Whenever I make dressing sometimes I only need 4 cups, sometimes 5 - I think it depends on the cornbread & breads really, maybe even the humidity! But you're right, each time you make it you kinda get it closer to the consistency you like the best.

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  47. This was a great recipe. I always add cream of mushroom soup to mine. Splendid!

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  48. Made this recipe tonight with a baked ham! It was very delicious...left overs are even better!

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    1. Thanks so much Brad! I really appreciate you taking the time to come back by & let me know!!

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  49. I can't wait to try this on thanksgiving!

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  50. I was raised on chicken or turkey dressing.I always put celery and hard-boiled eggs in mine. But the cornbread MUST be made in a black skillet. It is always so good and the top is crispy. And don't wash the skillet. Just wipe it out with a paper towel and rub a little oil in it if you do have to wash it. Some pans have to be washed as some foods will stick to them. A real comfort food!! Love your site.

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  51. I must also add that I was born and bred in LA (lower Alabama). I would have to make a triple recipe as I usually have between 20 and 25 guests on Christmas Day. I put raw eggs in the dressing and boiled eggs in the gravy. Sometme I boil the giblets, take them off the bone and put them in the gravy. I usually have to make two gravies because some don't like it with the giblets and boiled eggs. And I always use a can of cream of chicken and a can of cream of celery soups.in the dressing. I don't put the turkey in the dressng because I have a big turkey. I would like to try yours on a smaller scale than mine for a small gathering or taking to a church potluck. Turkey and dressing with a little cranberry sauce is very good the day after Christmas and makes a good sandwich!! This is making me hungry!!!

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  52. This sounds so delicious but I'm adding my finishing touches to it! 2 teaspoons of Lawry's garlic salt and 1-3 tsp of sage along with boiled eggs. But I will have a much bigger portion so with this recipe you will have to triple if not quadruple this recipe and add my ingredients as suggested! Super Yummy and I can't wait to make it! Happy Holidays

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