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Easy Southern Cornbread Dressing With Chicken

This Easy Southern Cornbread Dressing with chicken is the best old fashioned and homemade recipe from scratch. Drizzle it in gravy and serve it for Sunday dinners, Thanksgiving, or any occasion. 

Southern cornbread dressing in a baking dish with a large scoop in a wooden spoon

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Growing up I learned that we make a lot of our side dishes differently. By we, I mean the Black and African American community. From our mac and cheese (that must be baked) to this dish here, it definitely stands out from the rest!

When choosing how to prep your dressing you first need to decide how you like it. I prefer dressing that isn’t too soggy or too dry. If want a really moist and soggy dressing you will need to use more broth and cover the dish while it bakes. You can find more tips below.

What’s the Difference Between Dressing and Stuffing

The true definition of stuffing is when a bird, such as a turkey is actually stuffed with the side dish and cooked. But the differences between standard dressing (typically from those from the North) and Southern dressing lies completely in the preparation.

Southern recipes are made using cornbread. Stuffing is made using cubes of bread and it’s really dry. I often joke and refer to stuffing as bread casserole. Most dressing is served moist or a balance between moist and not soggy.

Some are definitely moister than others. I like to prepare mine in the middle. I don’t like it dry, but I don’t want it to be wet, either.

cream of chicken soup, raw eggs, chicken broth, sage, and poultry seasoning in separate bowls

Spices and Flavor to Use

I like to make mine using the Holy Trinity of vegetables: white onion, green peppers, and celery.

We also use sage. Sage is probably the star of the show for dressing. It’s a critical spice and you have to use it. Most times I use dried sage, but I have made it using fresh as well. Whichever you wish to use will work fine.

collage photo showing how to make cornbread dressing

Why You Need Day Old Cornbread

If you use fresh cornbread, your dressing mix will be really soupy and hard to thicken. Your cornbread has to be dry and pretty much stale.

I like to make my Southern Homemade Cornbread Recipe the night before. You can use cornbread mix if you wish.

Once baked, allow it to cool. I store mine in the fridge overnight loosely covered in foil. You don’t want to store it in a tightly sealed bag because that will lock in moisture and it won’t dry out.

If you can’t use day old cornbread, you can also over-bake the cornbread until it’s really dry.

Southern homemade cornbread sliced on a brown board

How to Make Southern Cornbread Dressing from Scratch

  1. Heat a skillet on medium-high heat. When hot, add the olive oil, celery, onions, garlic, and green peppers.
  2. Saute until the onions are translucent, fragrant, and the vegetables are soft. Remove the vegetables from the pan. Set aside to cool while prepping the remaining ingredients.
  3. Place day-old cornbread in a large mixing bowl. Use a large spoon and/or your hands to break down the cornbread.
  4. Add in the sauteed veggies, ground sage, poultry seasoning, salt, and pepper. Mix well.
  5. Add in the eggs, broth, and cream of chicken soup. Stir.
  6. Add in 1/2 of the dressing mixture to a 9×13 baking dish and spread it throughout the bottom of the pan.
  7. Add the shredded chicken on top.
  8. Top it with a layer of the remaining dressing.
  9. Bake for 40-45 minutes uncovered until a toothpick returns clean.
collage photo showing how to make cornbread dressing

How Long to Cook and Temperature

I bake the dish for 45 minutes uncovered on 350 degrees until a toothpick returns clean.

Should Dressing Be Covered While Cooking?

If you like moist dressing, cover it with foil while bakes. If you like drier dressing with a crunchy top, bake it uncovered.

unbaked cornbread dressing in a baking dish
unbaked cornbread dressing with chicken in a baking dish
unbaked cornbread dressing in a baking dish

What Type of Chicken to Use

I used 1 shredded chicken breast (about 6-8 ounces) that I make using the Instant Pot. I cook it in the Instant Pot with 1 cup of broth or water for 10 minutes on Manual > Pressure Cooking. When the time indicates it has finished, allow steam to release naturally for 10 minutes. Open, remove the chicken and shred.

You can also cook it any other way you prefer to cook it.

You can use any cut of chicken you wish. Boneless chicken thighs will work well, too.

cornbread dressing in a baking dish

Can You Add Bread to it?

I sometimes see people add additional bread to their dressing. If you wish you can add any of the following.

  • Pieces of cubed bread
  • Pieces of cubed biscuits
  • Pieces of cubed dinner rolls
  • Croutons

Can You Make it the Night Before?

You can prepare it the night before and place it unbaked in the refrigerator. From there, you can bake when you like. Allow the dressing to come to room temperature prior to baking.

cornbread dressing in a baking dish

How to Make it Vegetarian

You can make the dish without meat by substituting chicken broth for vegetable broth. Instead of cream of chicken soup, you can use cream of mushroom.

How to Freeze It

Place the dish in sealable bags or containers. Ensure they are tightly sealed. It can be frozen for up to several months. Defrost in the refrigerator overnight and reheat it in the oven until warm.

Southern cornbread dressing on a white plate with gravy
Southern cornbread dressing with gravy and a pan of dressing

More Southern Side Dishes to Serve With It

Southern Candied Sweet Potatoes
Southern Mustard Greens
Air Fryer Cornbread
Southern Baked Mac and Cheese
Instant Pot Southern Green Beans
Instant Pot Collard Greens
Instant Pot Cabbage
Fried Cabbage
Okra and Tomatoes

Instant Pot Black Eyed Peas
Grand Marnier Cranberry Sauce

Southern Main Dish Recipes

Air Fryer Turkey
Air Fryer Baked Ham

Instant Pot Brisket
Air Fryer Whole Chicken

I love to drizzle this in Keto Gravy.

Get a full listing of Soul Food Thanksgiving Recipes here.

Southern cornbread dressing in a baking dish with a large scoop in a wooden spoon
Print Pin
5 from 1 vote

Easy Southern Cornbread Dressing with Chicken

This Easy Southern Cornbread Dressing with Chicken is the best old fashioned and homemade recipe from scratch. Drizzle it in gravy and serve it for Sunday dinners, Thanksgiving, or any occasion. 
Course Side Dish
Cuisine American, southern
Keyword cornbread dressing, soul food cornbread dressing, Southern cornbread dressing
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 55 minutes
day old cornbread 12 hours
Total Time 13 hours 10 minutes
Servings 10 servings
Calories 289kcal

Ingredients

Get the recipe for Homemade Cornbread here.

    Dressing

    Instructions

    Video

    Notes

    I use a food processor for the celery, onions, green peppers, and garlic. It will provide finely chopped veggies in seconds.
    You can omit the shredded chicken if you wish.
    I prefer dressing that isn’t too soggy. If you like moist dressing, cover it with foil while bakes.
    You can find my Homemade Cream of Chicken Soup Recipe here. 14oz is 1 and 3/4 cups.
    Recipe Tools Used in this RecipeAs an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.

    Nutrition (displayed with net carbs)

    Serving: 1serving | Calories: 289kcal | Carbohydrates: 17g | Protein: 9g | Fat: 9g
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    Recipe Rating




    Shea

    Wednesday 25th of November 2020

    What temp should the oven be on this recipe?

    Jade

    Wednesday 25th of November 2020

    What temperature do you bake it at? This recipe looks delicious!!

    staysnatched

    Wednesday 25th of November 2020

    350 degrees

    Mckinna

    Tuesday 24th of November 2020

    What’s the oven temp?!

    staysnatched

    Wednesday 25th of November 2020

    350 degrees.

    Kimberly

    Tuesday 24th of November 2020

    What temperature do you bake it at?

    staysnatched

    Wednesday 25th of November 2020

    350 degrees.

    Lakia Talley

    Saturday 21st of November 2020

    So so good! Thank you for sharing. I was able to make it last night as a practice run and it turned out great.

    staysnatched

    Sunday 22nd of November 2020

    Wonderful! I'm glad you enjoyed it.