An original recipe for Chanterelle mushroom stuffing with apples and cranberry.

Chanterelle mushroom stuffing with apples and cranberry

This vegetarian mushroom stuffing makes a perfect side dish for any large gathering of family and friends – dinner or brunch!

The rich and savory flavors of sautéed chanterelles and portabellas pair beautifully with classic fall foods – apples, cranberries, and sage. This stuffing will wow all your guests, even the carnivores, with plenty left over for seconds. 

Not your grandmother’s stovetop mix… The secret to great homemade stuffing is using the best seasonal produce – Fresh-picked mushrooms and garden herbs, crisp apples, and regional sweet onions.

Make sure to splurge on a loaf of rustic French bread from the bakery for the crouton base. Cubing and toasting your bread from scratch ensures a soft moist interior, and crisp brown top!

The preparation is simple, and can be easily assembled the night before – allowing the flavors and seasonings to meld in the refrigerator overnight, and the juices to fully saturate the bread. 

Ingredients you’ll need for Chanterelle Stuffing.

Ingredients for Chanterelle mushroom stuffing with apples and cranberry

12 cups of French style bread cubes, toasted

1 large Walla Walla sweet onion (or two medium onions), chopped

2 fresh celery stalks, sliced thin

2 medium apples (Honeycrisp, Fuji, Gala) cored, peeled, chopped

¾ lb. of chanterelle mushrooms, roughly chopped (or substitute shiitake)

2 large portabella mushroom caps, finely chopped (or use brown cremini)

1 cup dried cranberries

2 Tbl fresh sage leaves, chopped fine (or 1 tsp dried)

¼ cup fresh parsley, chopped fine (plus more to garnish)

2 Tbl fresh thyme, chopped fine (or 1 tsp dried)

1 tsp dried marjoram (optional)

1 cup toasted pecans, chopped (optional)

3 ¼ cups vegetable stock/broth

4 Tbl olive oil 

6 Tbl butter (plus more to grease the pan)

¼ cup dry white wine

3 large eggs, lightly beaten

Coarse salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste

How to Prepare Mushroom Stuffing with Apples & Cranberry.

Preheat oven to 225˚for toasting bread croutons.

For the Bread Croutons

Cubes of French bread for making croutons

One of the secrets to good stuffing is dry bread, which helps the croutons absorb the seasonings and juices better than fresh bread.

Use a high-quality loaf of rustic French bread to maximize flavor. You can substitute store-bought, pre-made croutons, if you’re in a hurry. 

Slice loaf of bread into 1” slices, then cut into ½” cubes. Leave crust on for crunchy texture. Layer bread cubes on a baking sheet lined with parchment (or Silpat liner), then toast in a 225˚oven for 30- to 40-minutes, until dried, but not browned.

Set a timer so you don’t forget, while you prep the vegetables! Remove from oven, place into large, oversized bowl and set aside.

Pre-soak the cranberries

While bread is toasting, let cranberries soak in 1 cup vegetable stock (or room temp water) for about 30 minutes, until plump and soft. Then drain and roughly chop.

And preheat oven to 400˚ for the stuffing.

For the Vegetable Sauté  

Sautéed vegetables in pan

Prep the vegetables, first slicing the celery (about 2 cups). Heat a skillet with 2 Tbl olive oil over medium heat. Cook celery for 3-4 minutes while you chop the onion. 

Add the chopped onion (about 2 cups) to the pan, and 1 Tbl more oil. Stir to thoroughly coat. Season with salt and pepper and cook another 4-5 minutes over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until vegetables are soft, fragrant, and onions are transparent, but not browned. 

Halve, core, peel and chop the apples while the vegetables are cooking. Then add apples to the pan and sauté mixture 3-4 more minutes, stirring frequently, until the apples are soft and fragrant, but not browned. Stir in dried marjoram (if using, optional). Adjust seasoning to taste with salt and pepper. Remove from heat and set aside. 

For the Mushrooms

Chanterelle and Portabella mushrooms on chopping board

Lightly rinse the chanterelles if gritty, or gently brush clean, then pat dry. Trim off lower part of stems. Do the same for the portabella mushroom caps, discarding tough stem. Carefully cut the chanterelles into a rough chop, leaving small caps whole. Slice the portabella, then finely chop into smaller pieces. This should render about 4 cups total.

Heat 2 Tbl butter and 1 Tbl olive oil in frying pan over medium heat. Add the portabellas first, and sauté for 2-3 minutes until soft. Add 2 Tbl more butter with the chanterelles, then sauté for 2-3 minutes more, until soft and fragrant and moisture has cooked off. 

Sautéed mushrooms in skillet

Add ¼ cup dry white wine and increase heat to medium high. 

When wine has evaporated, add 1 cup vegetable stock and increase heat to high. Cook at a rolling boil, stirring frequently, until the stock has mostly evaporated (about 5 minutes).

Season to taste with salt and pepper, then turn off heat and sprinkle with fresh herbs (sage, parsley, and thyme). Stir in herbs and set aside.

Optional additions

If adding pecans, don’t skip the toasting step – it deepens their flavor and gives them nice crunch. In a clean dry skillet, toast coarsely chopped pecans over medium-low heat for about five minutes, until warm and fragrant. Or roast in 350˚oven for 6-8 minutes. Just keep a watchful eye, and set a timer, so the nuts don’t brown or burn! 

Combine the stuffing mixture

Ingredients for stuffing in mixing bowl

In extra large bowl, combine bread cubes, vegetables, apples, mushrooms, cranberries, and pecans – then toss well. Lightly beat 3 large eggs in small bowl, and combine with 1 cup vegetable stock, mixing well. 

Pour egg wash over mixture in bowl and toss well, until all ingredients are coated. Grease a large rectangular baking pan (at least 9 x 13) with a heavy coat of butter. Fill with stuffing, and dot the top with butter (about 2 Tbl, cut into small pieces). Pour additional ¼ cup of vegetable stock over prepared mixture before baking.

This recipe makes a lot! If you have extra stuffing, bake leftover mix in a small greased pie plate or 8” square pan. Or bake inside the turkey cavity if you’re roasting a bird! It also freezes well in an air-tight container for later.

Bake, serve hot and enjoy!

Chanterelle mushroom stuffing on the plate.

Cover stuffing with aluminum foil greased with butter (so it won’t stick), then bake in a 400˚ oven for about 30 minutes. Remove foil and bake another 15 minutes, until brown and crispy on the top. If you’re feeling decadent, you can top stuffing with shredded gruyere (or parmesan) for the last five minutes of cooking. Garnish dish with a sprig of fresh sage leaves or chopped parsley... then enjoy!

Stuffing can be prepared the day before and stored in the refrigerator overnight (covered tightly). Before baking, remove from refrigerator and allow stuffing to sit at room temp for one hour. Don’t forget to add ¼ cup stock to the dressing before putting in oven.

Serves 8-10

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