Try this easy rice dressing recipe with all the traditional flavors of bread stuffing. This homemade rice dressing is baked to tender, savory perfection with a fragrance that says “comfort.”
Rice Dressing Recipe
Here is my grandma’s recipe for southern rice dressing. It’s one of my favorite dishes on the Thanksgiving table (so hard to choose) and an absolute must for those who don’t like traditional stuffing.
Plus, it’s gluten free – a bonus if you have guests with dietary needs! As always, check your ingredients to ensure they are certified.
As a child I detested turkey stuffing. As an adult, I still avoid that dish when serving up my plate. I’ve come to realize it’s mostly a textural issue because I absolutely love the tantalizing aroma.
As a youngster I would help my grandma prep the turkey stuffing by cubing loaves and loaves of bread. I enjoyed chopping up all the vegetables, but after it was done and cooked I couldn’t abide the taste.
Mushy bread is not my jam. I even like my bread pudding on the firm side of custard. We all have these quirks, but lucky for me my grandma always used to make a dish of this sausage rice dressing as well.
It’s such a simple recipe which is always something to be thankful for when you have a big meal to execute. Fluffy rice combined with pork sausage and sautéed vegetables make up this stuffing alternative.
If you’re looking for other non-traditional Thanksgiving alternatives, be sure to check out my Cauliflower Casserole which is a great substitute for green bean casserole. This dish is spiced with curry and cheddar cheese – an unusual combination that will have everyone raving!
For dessert, skip the pumpkin pie and make Pumpkin Tiramisu instead. It’s make-ahead, no-bake (there are enough dishes contending for oven space!) and it feeds a crowd. Plus, it’s reminiscent of everyone’s favorite pumpkin spice latte!
One last bonus about this dressing recipe – it’s so good that I even serve it as a complete dinner meal outside of Thanksgiving! This baked rice is similar to Cajun dirty rice, but without the creole spice. Add a tablespoon of Cajun seasoning if you want to turn this into dirty rice.
You can spice it up in other ways as well – in fact it’s easy to change the flavor by using a different variety of sausage. Spicy hot or sage flavors would be delicious choices!
Pin this to your Dinner and Side Dishes board!
- 1 1/2 cups uncooked rice
- 1 lb pork sausage*
- 1 cup diced celery
- 1 cup diced onion
- 1 cup diced green bell pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1/8 teaspoon black pepper
- 2 3/4 cups chicken stock*
- 1 bay leaf
- 1 teaspoon poultry seasoning* or dash of sage (optional)
- Preheat oven to 350°F. Pour rice into 2-quart baking dish and set aside.
- In a large skillet, brown the sausage over medium heat until crumbly and cooked through, about 8 minutes. Remove from pan and drain excess grease.
- Add the celery, onion and green pepper to pan, cooking until softened but still crisp, about 3-4 minutes.
- Add the sausage back to pan along with chicken stock, salt, garlic powder, black pepper, bay leaf and poultry seasoning (or pinch of sage), if using. Stir and taste, adding additional salt if needed.
- Cover and bring to a boil. Carefully pour boiling broth over the rice and stir. Cover dish with aluminum foil or oven-proof lid.
- Bake for 30 to 40 minutes, or until rice is tender and all the liquid has been absorbed. Let stand for 10 minutes, then fluff with a fork. Remove bay leaf before serving.