Rustic Stuffing With Onions and Carrots

Spongy, damp, overly-salty stuffing be gone! This recipe produces a pleasantly crisp, yet warm and rich stuffing for all your Thanksgiving needs. Large chunks of bread get twice-toasted for a hearty, pleasantly chewy dish, complemented by buttery caramelized vegetables.

Serve with the bird, or eat a plateful for lunch—I won’t tell anyone.

This recipe is adapted from

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Rustic Stuffing with Onions and Carrots Recipe

This stuffing is rich and filling without overpowering your plate.

Makes: 8 servings

 Rustic Stuffing with Onions and Carrots

Prep time:

Cook time:

  • 1 pound hearty, crusty bread, cut into 1-inch cubes
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 2 large yellow onions, coarsely chopped
  • 4 medium carrots, peeled and chopped into large pieces
  • 1/3 cup butter
  • 1 tablespoon Italian seasoning
  • Salt to taste
  • Pepper to taste
  • 1 - 1 1/2 cups broth or stock
  • Optional: one large handful spinach, tossed in a drizzle of olive oil

  1. Preheat your oven to 300 degrees Fahrenheit.
  2. Place the bread cubes on a large rimmed baking sheet in a single layer, and bake in the oven for ten-fifteen minutes or until dry, stirring every five minutes to avoid sticking or burning.
  3. Remove the bread cubes from the oven, set the dried bread cubes aside to cool, and increase the oven temperature to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
  4. Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium-low heat.
  5. When the oil shimmers, add the onions and carrots. Cook until the vegetables are tender, or about ten-fifteen minutes, stirring often.
  6. Increase the heat to medium-high. Cook the vegetables for five-eight minutes more to lightly caramelize, stirring frequently.
  7. Reduce the heat to low, add the butter, and stir until the butter is melted.
  8. Season the vegetables with salt, pepper, and Italian seasoning.
  9. In a large bowl, toss the vegetable mixture with the dried bread cubes.
  10. Slowly add just enough broth to moisten the bread. You don't want bread soup, but each piece should be wet.
  11. Place the stuffing back on the rimmed baking dish, cover with foil, and bake for 40-45 minutes. For a crisp, golden-brown stuffing, uncover for the last fifteen minutes of baking. Watch carefully toward the end to prevent over-toasting.
  12. When the stuffing has finished baking, toss gently with dressed spinach for color if desired.

Notes and Nutrition Information

  • You can make this recipe up to 24 hours ahead of time. Cover and refrigerate before baking (step 11), then bake with the turkey (following the same instructions as above).

  • If you’d like to bake the stuffing in the turkey, this quantity is about right for a twelve-pound turkey.

  • One eighth of the recipe as written contains approximately 315 calories, 17 grams of fat, 35 grams of carbohydrates, 7 grams of protein, 3 grams of fiber, 4 grams of sugar, and 571 milligrams of sodium.