This delicious, flavorful 21 Day Fix Apple-Pecan Stuffing uses 100% whole wheat bread instead of a bagged stuffing mix to make this completely 21 Day Fix approved.
Who sits up on Thanksgiving Eve thinking about eating turkey? I'm willing to bet very few of you. I love turkey as much as the next chick, but I'm here to tell you, stuffing is my weakness. That's what I'm thinking about, what I'm absolutely CRAVING prior to the big day. Believe it or not, I don't actually cook our Thanksgiving dinner. Nope. We go to my grandparent's every year and let me just say that that lady can make some stuffing (or dressing, as she calls it).
There was one year, however, that I did make an entire Thanksgiving dinner, basically just for my husband and I. It was long before my youngest was born and in fact, my oldest was only one (so she wasn't exactly eating much at the time). We were only several months into our first military move and living near Detroit when we found out that the hubs was being sent to a 5-week school, during which he would be missing Thanksgiving, but would be home just in time for Christmas. Anyway, we were missing home pretty hard core at that point and I just couldn't bear the thought of him missing out on Thanksgiving dinner too, so I made him one. And I went all out. I cooked for days, just for the three of us. I know, it was pretty over-the-top, but it made me feel good, like at least there was this one small thing that I could do for him, that we could all enjoy together, before he left for over a month.
Anyway, because I like to try new things (ok, mostly food), instead of making my grandmother's (and my mother's, and probably her grandmother's) stuffing, I decided to try out a recipe from Rachael Ray. Essentially this recipe, though I've "fixified" it for my 21DF peeps. I was - no, we were in love. Sorry Mom and Grandma, but it was hands down the best stuffing either of us had ever tasted. The thing that really makes this recipe "pop" is the chopped apple. OMG. There's just nothing like having fruit (even dried fruit) in your stuffing. It's that perfect combination of sweet and savory and is just heavenly with some turkey and gravy. Or all by itself. Don't judge.
How did I make this 21 Day Fix friendly? Easy! Instead of using the bagged stuffing cubes that often have lots of added salt and even high fructose corn syrup, I instead toasted up my own bread cubes in the oven and went from there. I had to really change up the seasoning (because the original recipe used seasoned bread cubes and didn't really need much of anything else) and the amount of liquid, but it was absolutely divine. Bonus points for my kids gobbling it up (sorry, pun intended), too. 🙂
I know that your family, like mine, probably has a certain kind of stuffing as part of your Thanksgiving tradition, but I hope that you give this healthier version a try anyway. It really is wonderful, and since it's 21 Day Fix approved, you can have it any night of the week!
If you make this 21 Day Fix Apple-Pecan Stuffing be sure to snap a pic and tag me @thefoodieandthefix on Instagram so I can check it out! It makes me ridiculously happy to see what you guys are making 🙂
- 8 slices whole wheat bread, cubed (¾"-1")
- ½ cup chopped pecans (about 2 oz)
- 1 Tbs unsalted grassfed butter
- 1 ½ cup chopped celery
- 1 cup chopped green onions (greens & whites)
- 1 large golden delicious apple, chopped
- black pepper, for seasoning
- 1 ½ cup low sodium chicken broth
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon dried, rubbed sage (or 1 tbs fresh, finely chopped)
- 1 teaspoon dried thyme (or 1 tbs fresh)
- Preheat your oven to 225 degrees. Place your fresh bread cubes on a baking sheet and dry them out in the oven for about 25 minutes. This will make them very dry on the outside, but you'll still be able to feel a little moisture on the inside. When the bread cubes are done and you've pulled them out, change your oven temp to 400 degrees.
- Meanwhile, toast your pecans in a dry skillet until they become aromatic (this is an optional step, but it really will enhance your dish.
- In a large saute pan, melt your butter on medium heat. Add your celery, green onions, apple and some black pepper to taste. Cook for 1-2 minutes, stirring occasionally.
- To this mixture, add the broth, salt, sage and thyme. Pop a lid on and bring to a boil. Once the broth is boiling, turn of the heat and stir in your bread cubes and pecans until everything is well combined. Put this mixture into either an 8X8 square baking dish or a similarly sized casserole dish and bake at 400 degrees for 10-15 minutes or until the top starts to brown and get slightly crispy.
- Try not to eat it all before dinner starts. 🙂
21 Day Fix Container Counts per Serving: ¾ Yellow, ⅓ Tsp, ¼ Blue, ¼ Green, ⅙ Purple
Weight Watchers Freestyle Points: 4
Nutrition Information:Yield: 10 Serving Size: ½ cup
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 146Total Fat: 6g
Save this delicious 21 Day Fix Apple-Pecan Stuffing to Pinterest! ↓
Check out this post for more healthy Turkey Day Favorites: