rye stuffing with wild rice, sausage, apple & dried cherries
an elegant side dish

After making an elegant entrance to the holiday table as a side dish, this flavorful stuffing is equally impressive when it tops leftover turkey in a sandwich! For extra flavor and crunch, stir a handful of chopped pecans into the stuffing just before serving.

  • 8 ounces wild rice (1 ¼ cups)
  • 4 cups cubed rye bread
  • 1 pound sweet Italian sausage, casings removed
  • 2 medium white onions, chopped
  • 2 tart apples, chopped
  • 1 cup sliced celery
  • 3 cups chicken or vegetable broth
  • 1 cup dried cherries
  • 1 ½ tablespoons fresh marjoram, chopped (or 2 teaspoons dried marjoram)
  • 2 teaspoons fresh thyme, chopped (or 1 teaspoon dried thyme)
  • Sea salt and freshly ground pepper


  1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees Fahrenheit.
  2. Pour the rice into a medium saucepan and add enough water to cover by about 1 1/2 inches. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat, cover and cook for 60 minutes, or until tender. Drain rice well.
  3. Spread bread cubes on a baking sheet. Bake about 15 to 20 minutes, stirring once halfway through, until toasted. Remove from oven and set aside.
  4. In a large skillet, cook the sausage and onion over medium heat until the onion is soft and the sausage is browned, about 8 minutes. Stir in apples and celery; cook for 3 minutes more.
  5. Raise oven temperature to 425 degrees Fahrenheit. Coat a 4-quart baking dish with cooking spray.
  6. In a large bowl, combine the sausage mixture, rice and toasted bread. Stir in broth, cherries, marjoram, thyme and salt and pepper. Transfer to the greased baking dish and cover with a lid or foil.
  7. Bake for 35 minutes. Uncover and bake another 15 to 20 minutes, or until the top is nicely browned.