Portobello, Sausage, and Fennel Dressing

portobello sausage and fennel dressing
Photo: David Malosh
Prep Time:
30 mins
Total Time:
2 hrs 5 mins
8 to 10 Serves

In a hearty play on Thanksgiving stuffing, portobello caps and dried bread cubes absorb flavor from the sweet sausage and fennel, which give the classic side a surprising depth. Make it ahead and refrigerate, then bake just before dinner to check a major dish off your turkey morning to-do list.


  • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter, plus more for dish

  • 14 ounces potato sandwich bread (14 slices)

  • 5 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

  • 10 ounces sweet Italian sausage, removed from casings

  • 1 large yellow onion, coarsely chopped (2 cups)

  • 2 celery stalks, coarsely chopped (1 cup), plus inner leaves for serving

  • 1 small fennel bulb, cored and coarsely chopped (2 cups), tender fronds reserved for serving

  • 1 pound portobello-mushroom caps (about 4), halved and cut crosswise into ½-inch-thick slices

  • Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper

  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh sage leaves

  • 2 teaspoons fresh thyme leaves

  • ½ cup chopped fresh parsley leaves

  • 1 ½ cups turkey stock, preferably homemade, or low-sodium chicken broth

  • 2 large eggs


  1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Brush a 2 1/2-to-3-quart baking dish or 9-by-13-inch casserole dish with butter. Shingle bread on a rimmed baking sheet, then bake, flipping once, until golden and very dry, about 15 minutes. When cool enough to handle, cut into approximately 1 1/4-inch pieces. Transfer to a large bowl.

  2. Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a large skillet over medium-high. Add sausage and cook, breaking into bite-size pieces, until browned in places but not cooked through, 4 to 5 minutes. Transfer to bowl with bread.

  3. Heat butter and remaining 1/4 cup oil in skillet over medium. When butter melts and foam subsides, add onion, celery, fennel, and mushrooms; season generously with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, until vegetables are tender but no color has developed, 10 to 12 minutes.

  4. Transfer to bowl with bread mixture along with sage, thyme, parsley, and 1 cup stock; season with salt and pepper and gently toss to combine. Whisk eggs with remaining 1/2 cup stock. Pour over bread mixture and gently stir to combine. Transfer to prepared dish. Cover with buttered parchment, then foil.

  5. Bake 35 minutes. Uncover and continue baking until top is crisp and golden brown, 35 to 45 minutes more. Let cool 10 minutes, then serve, topped with fennel fronds and celery leaves.

Cook's Notes

For a vegetarian take, skip the sausage and swap in vegetable broth.

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