Challah, Wild Mushroom & Herb Stuffing

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challah wild mushroom stuffing

There are as many versions of Thanksgiving stuffing as there are cooks who make it. The truth is, as long as you stick to the basic bread-to-liquid ratio, you can pretty much add any vegetables or seasonings that you like. This is an updated version of my grandmother’s challah stuffing. It’s golden and crispy on top and loaded with a flavorful and earthy mix of onions and wild mushrooms. A few tips: buy the “poultry blend” of fresh herbs if your supermarket carries it, as it contains all the herbs you’ll need. And try to buy your mushrooms pre-sliced to cut down on prep time.

how to make challah wild mushroom stuffingCut the challah into 1-inch cubes and spread onto a rimmed baking sheet.

how to make challah wild mushroom stuffingBake for about 25 minutes, or until dry and lightly toasted. Set aside.

how to make challah wild mushroom stuffingMelt the butter in a large sauté pan. Cook the onions over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until soft and translucent.

how to make challah wild mushroom stuffing

Add the celery, herbs, mushrooms, salt and pepper.

how to make challah wild mushroom stuffingCook until celery is slightly softened, about 5 minutes more.

how to make challah wild mushroom stuffingIn a large bowl, combine bread cubes, onion/vegetable mixture, and chicken stock.

how to make challah wild mushroom stuffing Toss well.

how to make challah wild mushroom stuffingTransfer the stuffing to the prepared baking dish and cover with foil.

how to make challah wild mushroom stuffingBake for 20 minutes. Remove the foil and continue baking until golden, about 25 minutes more. Serve immediately.

challah wild mushroom stuffing

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Challah, Wild Mushroom & Herb Stuffing

Servings: 8 to 10

Ingredients

  • 1 large loaf challah
  • 1 stick unsalted butter, plus more for buttering baking dishes
  • 2 cups yellow onion, diced (from 2 medium onions)
  • 2 cups celery, diced
  • 2 cups wild mushrooms, diced
  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh thyme (or 1 teaspoon dried)
  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh rosemary (or 1/4 teaspoon dried and crumbled)
  • 1/2 teaspoon finely chopped fresh sage (or 1/4 teaspoon dried)
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 3 cups chicken broth

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 300°F and set an oven rack in the middle position. Butter a 9x13-inch baking dish.
  2. Cut the challah into 1-inch cubes and spread in a single layer on a rimmed baking sheet. Bake for about 25 minutes, or until dry and lightly toasted. Set aside.
  3. Increase the oven temperature to 350°F.
  4. Melt the butter in a large sauté pan. Cook the onions over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until soft and translucent. Add the celery, mushrooms, herbs, salt, and pepper and cook until celery is slightly softened, about 5 minutes more.
  5. In a large bowl, combine the toasted bread cubes, onion/vegetable mixture, and chicken broth and toss well.
  6. Transfer the stuffing to the prepared baking dish. Cover the dish with buttered foil and refrigerate until ready to bake (up to overnight).
  7. Bake for 20 minutes. Remove the foil and continue baking until golden, about 25 minutes more. Serve immediately.
  8. Freezer-Friendly Instructions: This dish can be frozen after baking, tightly covered, for up to 3 months. Defrost it in the refrigerator overnight then reheat it, covered with foil, in a 325°F oven until hot.

Reviews & Comments

  • You say 1 large loaf of challah. About how many cups of bread cubes is this?
    Thank you.

    • — Gail Beckman on November 20, 2018
    • Reply
    • Hi Gail, I’ve never measured it in cups, but I would guesstimate that it would be somewhere between 10 and 12 cups. Hope that helps!

      • — Jenn on November 20, 2018
      • Reply
  • Hi, I just sent a review in, we absolutely love everything that you post! We are preparing for Thanksgiving, and always make the Challah with herb stuffing recipe that you post. However, right now we are finding that all Challah bread is sold out. What can we do if we can not find it???? Can we use use your Honey Challah bread from the cook book to make it right to put in stuffing? I hope it is possible – Jen , you are the absolute best!!!!!!!

    • — Michelle Raleigh on November 19, 2018
    • Reply
    • Sure, Michelle – that will work but you won’t use the whole homemade challah (it’s huge!). If you don’t want to go to the trouble, it really is fine to substitute another type of bread. Brioche is a good option. Hope that helps!

      • — Jenn on November 19, 2018
      • Reply
  • I have used this stuffing for our family dinner the last few years – absolutely divine! I would never want to make something else: so rich, comforting, there truly are no words for this (and also the brussels sprouts gratin). Your dishes are truly top notch, and I appreciate you so much and the work you put into this. You are a true holiday hero, Jen!!!!!

    • — Michelle Raleigh on November 19, 2018
    • Reply
  • Hello,
    I love your recipes and use them them constantly.

    I am having a vegetarian family over for thanksgiving. I would like to use this recipe but they do not like Mushrooms. Any suggestions on what I could use substitute the mushrooms with? I really appreciate your help. Thank You so much.

    • — Rani on November 14, 2018
    • Reply
    • Hi Rani, Glad you like the recipes! The one other vegetable that may work here in place of mushrooms is cauliflower, chopped into very small pieces, but I also think you could get away with just omitting the mushrooms. The onions and celery will provide plenty of flavor.

      • — Jenn on November 14, 2018
      • Reply
  • Really do not like to use celery but do when absolutely necessary. Can you use the spice of celery seed as a substitute for this and some of your other recipes?

    • — Carol on October 11, 2018
    • Reply
    • Sure, Carol – that’s fine. You can also just omit it, if you like.

      • — Jenn on October 12, 2018
      • Reply
  • I wonder if these ingredients could be adapted for a stuffed mushroom recipe? They are one of my favorite fall and holiday treats.

    • — PaulainVA on August 16, 2018
    • Reply
    • I think that’s a great idea!

      • — Jenn on August 17, 2018
      • Reply
  • I found dried wild mushrooms. Can I use them dry or do I have to add water to them?

    Thanks!

    • — Mary on December 23, 2017
    • Reply
    • Hi Mary, I would reconstitute them before using. I’d love to know how it turns out. 🙂

      • — Jenn on December 23, 2017
      • Reply
      • Hydrating the dried mushrooms worked great! My guests loved the stuffing and couldn’t believe that it didn’t come from a turkey.

        • — Mary on January 11, 2018
        • Reply
        • So glad – thanks for letting me know!

          • — Jenn on January 11, 2018
          • Reply
  • This is by far the best recipe

  • Hi Jen!

    I loved the taste of this stuffing. Unfortunately, I didn’t quite understand what a “large” loaf of Challah bread meant, and ended up buying the only one in the store (I think it may have been “medium” sized rather than “large”). It may be useful to add __cups to the end of the challah bread to know how much we’re working with. 3 cups of chicken broth added to mixture was a bit too much. I might try adding a little bit less chicken broth, maybe 2 cups, to the “medium sized” challah bread just in case, the next time I try this recipe.

    It was my first time making stuffing – I love your recipes and I follow yours to learn how to cook, since I recently started living away from my mom that cooked a lot of things for me 🙂 Thanks for all of your awesome recipes!

    • — Jenny Gould on November 30, 2017
    • Reply
    • Hi Jenny, glad you like the recipes (but sorry to hear you struggled with this one). While they may vary a bit based on where you buy them, a good rule of thumb to keep in mind is that the standard sized challah is 16 ounces. If you find you’ve bought a loaf that weighs less than that, you’ll need to cut back on the liquid a bit. Hope that helps!

      • — Jenn on December 1, 2017
      • Reply
  • I made this stuffing for myThanksgiving meal this year. I have been making similar recipes for years..probably for around 20 years, and this is now the favorite of my family. I really like the use of challah as it adds a little sweetness. I found the amount of spices to be perfect. And you know what, I can give this recipe 5 stars without making any changes.😃😃😃😃😃

    • — Gail Beckman on November 30, 2017
    • Reply
  • I am certain my family will LOVE your stuffing recipe but I am wondering if I could use vegetable broth instead of Chicken stock?

    • Sure, Sandy – that’ll work fine. Happy Thanksgiving!

      • — Jenn on November 22, 2017
      • Reply
      • Thank YOU! I really meant to say vegetable stock. 😊

        • — Sandy on November 22, 2017
        • Reply
  • Excited to try this recipe! What’s the best way to dry the challah? Do i cut it up and stick it in oven overnight or just leave it in one big loaf? Thanks so much!

    • — Lillian on November 21, 2017
    • Reply
    • Hi Lillian, It’s best to cut it into cubes. Enjoy!

      • — Jenn on November 21, 2017
      • Reply
  • Jenn- i am making the stuffing ahead on Wednesday for Thanksgiving on Thursday. Can i cut the celery up tonight – Tuesday? If so, do i need to put it in water in the frig or is it better to chop on Wednesday? Thanks!
    Best stuffing ever – 2nd time making it!

    • — Amy Schneider on November 21, 2017
    • Reply
    • Hi Amy, You can actually chop the celery, onions and mushrooms all a day ahead, if you’d like. Just store them separately in plastic bags in the fridge (no water necessary). Happy Thanksgiving!

      • — Jenn on November 21, 2017
      • Reply
      • Thanks so much for the quick reply! Think i can toast the Challah tonight too (Tuesday) or is that pushing it?

        • — Amy on November 21, 2017
        • Reply
        • Sure!

          • — Jenn on November 21, 2017
          • Reply
          • So should i toast and cool on the counter and then put in a plastic bag overnight? You are a god send! ❤️

            • — Amy on November 21, 2017
          • That’ll work — hope you enjoy!

            • — Jenn on November 21, 2017
  • I can’t wait to try this! Unfortunately, I bought regular sliced mushrooms. Will it taste okay if they’re not “wild” mushrooms. I didn’t know what that meant and they weren’t labeled “wild” at the Whole Foods!

    • — Lisa on November 21, 2017
    • Reply
    • It will still be delicious, Lisa – just won’t have quite the same flavor. Happy Thanksgiving!

      • — Jenn on November 21, 2017
      • Reply
  • Hello Jenn, please include me to your long list of admirers who totally trusts you and your recipes to always make me shine with family and friends. Thank you. I plan to make your challah stuffing for Thanksgiving 2017 and am requesting your opinion on adding 2 cups of roasted pumpkin to your recipe. If I do add the pumpkin, should I keep or omit the mushrooms? Sincerely, Marcine Mu.

    • Hi Marcine, That is so sweet – thank you! I’m glad you’re enjoying the recipes. I think you could add up to 2 cups of roasted pumpkin — and I’d keep the mushrooms since they add a lot of wonderful flavor.

      • — Jenn on November 20, 2017
      • Reply
  • Is it OK to prepare the challah/mushroom stuffing a day ahead? If so, should I bake it a day ahead also – or wait til Thanksgiving Day to bake it?

    • — Marilyn Bier on November 17, 2017
    • Reply
    • Hi Marilyn, It’s definitely fine to prepare the stuffing a day ahead (and regarding when to bake it, either way will work — Whatever is easiest for you. Enjoy!

      • — Jenn on November 17, 2017
      • Reply
  • Hi Jen,
    I always make challah stuffing like my mom did. I add several eggs to recipe that she made. Can I do that with your recipe.

    • — Evie on November 13, 2017
    • Reply
    • Sure, Evie – but you might reduce the broth a bit to make up for the added moisture. Please lmk how it turns out!

      • — Jenn on November 13, 2017
      • Reply
  • Hi. This looks like what I’m looking for. Two questions – we have dairy allergy – do you think will taste ok with dairy-free margarine. I know you said can be reheated day of, but how long?covered?how hot? I don’t want to ruin it. Could I bake it the first 20 mins day before and then finish off the 25 mins to get golden right before serving?

    • — Linda on November 1, 2017
    • Reply
    • Hi Linda, I think it’s perfectly fine to use dairy-free margarine. And I think your plan to bake the first 20 minutes the day before and finish it off before serving is perfect; that way it won’t overcook.

      • — Jenn on November 3, 2017
      • Reply
  • Followed your recipe but added sausage. It was very good, but it was soggy and not at all crispy on top as you stated. Wonder why?

    • Hi Diane, The sausage probably added a lot of additional fat to make the mixture “wetter.”

      • — Jenn on December 28, 2016
      • Reply
  • tried this for the first time for christmas day dinner needless to say it was a winner and will definetly make this every time a stuffing is need I did not put mushrooms in it and cooked it uncovered for 25 minutes longer than it said

    • — tem on December 26, 2016
    • Reply
  • I made the challah bread since I cannot get it here where I live. I really wanted to eat this stuffing and after a whole day working on that bread it was sooo worth it. Why to even ever go back to regular stuffing! It is addicting!!!

    I will even switch the challah for the bread cubes from your sausage stuffing which was also really good! I made both!

    Thank you

    Sara

    • — Sara MacMillan on December 1, 2016
    • Reply
  • Hi and Happy Holidays!
    I mistakenly did not cook Challah and am now pre cooking 25 minutes with the entire ingredients… Major oops! I plan to entirely cook tomorrow when guests arrive. Any adjustments I might make?!

    • — Deanna King on November 23, 2016
    • Reply
    • Hi Deanna, Absolutely no worries at all – it will be fine and no need to make any adjustments.

      • — Jenn on November 23, 2016
      • Reply
  • We prepared everything the day before (serving it tomorrow!) Is it better to bake now and reheat tomorrow? or keep in the refrigerator and bake tomorrow to serve tomorrow? THANK YOU

    • — Stacey on November 23, 2016
    • Reply
    • Hi Stacey, Honestly, it doesn’t matter either way. Whatever is easiest for you. Happy Thanksgiving!

      • — Jenn on November 24, 2016
      • Reply
  • Hi Jen, if I wanted to halve this recipe, approximately how many cups of bread would I need to use to get the ratio of bread to liquid right? Excited to try this for Thanksgiving!

    • — Julie on November 23, 2016
    • Reply
    • Hi Julie, I’m not certain how many cups of bread the diced challah would be, but I would just use half the challah. If you’re using a different type of bread, I’d just use enough so that the diced pieces cover the bottom of a 9 x 13 dish. Hope that helps!

      • — Jenn on November 23, 2016
      • Reply
  • Can this recipe be frozen? And if so when and how?

    • Hi Deborah, I haven’t frozen this, but I think you could. I would bake it first; it can be frozen for 2 – 3 months.

      • — Jenn on November 22, 2016
      • Reply
  • This looks so delish and easy, (like every recipe of yours that I’ve made)! Can I substitute homemade turkey stock instead of the chicken broth?

    • — Allyson on November 17, 2016
    • Reply
    • Absolutely!

      • — Jenn on November 18, 2016
      • Reply
  • Hi – This recipe looks amazing! I’m making a stuffed turkey breast for Friendsgiving, (day after Thanksgiving). I would like to add pork sausage to this and was wondering whether I should adjust any of the ingredients because it’s being stuffed in the turkey breast? Thanks!

    • — Donna on November 14, 2016
    • Reply
    • Hi Donna, Italian sausage sounds like a great addition — refer to my easy sausage stuffing recipe for technique. And I’d probably reduce the broth by a little (about 1 cup) if you’ll be stuffing this into the turkey. Enjoy!

      • — Jenn on November 14, 2016
      • Reply
  • I love your stuffings and want to make both this year. For the challah one, I have some guests with mushroom allergies. What would be good as a substitute that would give a hearty flavor? Or is there another recipe that would work well with challah?
    Thanks!

    • — Karen on November 4, 2016
    • Reply
    • Hi Karen, Glad you like the stuffings! The one other vegetable that may work here is cauliflower, chopped into very small pieces, but I also think you could get away with just omitting the mushrooms. The onions and celery will provide plenty of flavor.

      • — Jenn on November 4, 2016
      • Reply
  • can this be made the day before?

    • — Erica Peale on October 29, 2016
    • Reply
    • Yep!

      • — Jenn on October 29, 2016
      • Reply
  • What kind of wild mushrooms do you use for this recipe?

    • — norma o. riess on November 30, 2015
    • Reply
    • Hi Norma, I use a mix of Shiitake, oyster and portobello mushrooms.

      • — Jenn on December 1, 2015
      • Reply
      • Did you buy all three kinds of mushrooms fresh? Oyster mushrooms, I’ve seen dried, but not fresh. If so, did you need to hydrate them. I made your stuffing this year without the mushrooms and it was delicious, only because both of my daughters don’t like mushrooms. But next Thanksgiving, I’ll make one of each.

        • — norma o. riess on December 2, 2015
        • Reply
        • I was able to find all of the mushrooms fresh, but if you can only find the dried version, rehydrating them would work just fine!

          • — Jenn on December 3, 2015
          • Reply
  • Can I use cornbread?

    • — Kimberly on November 23, 2015
    • Reply
    • Hi Kimberly, Yes, I think that would work well. Happy Thanksgiving!

      • — Jenn on November 23, 2015
      • Reply
      • Made it with cornbread (Jiffy 3 boxes). I had to add a tad more broth, but boy was this good! So much flavor. The smell alone from making it was sensational. I will definitely make this for Christmas!

        • — Kimberly on November 28, 2015
        • Reply
  • This has been my go-to stuffing recipe for 3 or 4 years so I’m overdue for a review. This stuffing is hands down, the best stuffing I have ever made. I ‘ve never found a reason to divert from it. I follow it to a T, and it is perfect. Very hearty, fluffy. The slight sweetness of the challah paired with all the savoriness going on, not to mention the little bit of crunch from the bits of celery, makes this fantastic. And it’s really simple to make and can be prepared ahead of time. I usually assemble the day before, store in fridge, bake the next day. Thank you for this recipe … it’s on it’s way to being a tradition 🙂

  • Hi Jenn,

    Your thoughts on possibly adding cooked crumbled sausage? If so what would you recommend. Made your Italian sausage bread pudding was amazing. Have also noticed some recipes adding egg to the stuffing what would the reason for that be?
    Looking forward to trying your recipe. Thanks

    • — Cindy on November 17, 2015
    • Reply
    • Hi Cindy, I love the idea of adding Italian sausage — see my easy sausage stuffing for technique. The egg moistens the stuffing and binds it together. I hope you enjoy the recipe, and please come back and let me know how it turns out 🙂

      • — Jenn on November 17, 2015
      • Reply
  • Can you give an approximate weight for a “large” loaf of challah?

    • — Janice on November 10, 2015
    • Reply
    • Hi Janice, I’ll have to look next time I’m at the store but really just a typical size challah is fine.

      • — Jenn on November 14, 2015
      • Reply
  • Would it be a problem if I used defrosted Challah bread for this recipe? Does it have to be fresh from the bakery? It’s hard to come by in the city and I’d like to stock up in the freezer with a few loaves once I do get my hands on it.

    • — Anna on October 5, 2015
    • Reply
    • Hi Anna, Frozen will work just fine. Enjoy!

      • — Jenn on October 5, 2015
      • Reply
  • One large loaf can you please specify approximate amount of cups and how moist the cubes should be? Thank you.

    • — Cindy Long on August 27, 2015
    • Reply
    • Hi Cindy, It’s about 8-10 cups. The bread should be moist but not soggy.

      • — Jenn on August 30, 2015
      • Reply
  • Made this for Thanksgiving dinner. Got rave reviews. Best stuffing I’ve ever made. Delicious!

    • — Chris on December 3, 2014
    • Reply
  • Could this be made in a crock pot instead of baked? My oven is broken!!!!

    • — Karen Pearson on October 6, 2014
    • Reply
    • Hi Karen, You could make it in a crock pot but you wouldn’t get the crispy crust on top. Would still be good, though 🙂

      • — Jenn on October 6, 2014
      • Reply
  • What if you want to stuff it in a turkey? Does the liquid amount need to change?

    • — James on November 25, 2013
    • Reply
    • Hi James, I’d probably just keep the liquid the same or reduce it just a bit (maybe by 1 cup) if you prefer a dryer stuffing.

      • — Jenn on November 26, 2013
      • Reply
  • can this be made in a muffin tin for individual stuffing portions?

    • — Sharon m on November 24, 2013
    • Reply
    • Hi Sharon, Absolutely, I love that idea. Just watch the cooking time…won’t take as long.

      • — Jenn on November 24, 2013
      • Reply
  • This is a Thanksgiving staple in my house (we eat vegetarian)! It’s good for the next day’s leftovers as well, but gets a bit dry after one day. Wonderful recipe!

    • — Michelle on November 5, 2013
    • Reply
  • Wow! I can’t believe all these years I had never thought of challah stuffing – can’t wait to try it! Always knew challah made the best french toast… but this sounds amazing!

    • — Cherie on May 21, 2012
    • Reply
  • Can you refrigerate overnight?

    • — Nicole on April 7, 2012
    • Reply
    • Hi Nicole, Yes it is fine to refrigerate overnight.

      • — Jenn on April 8, 2012
      • Reply
  • Thanksgiving is not complete without this amazing dish! It tastes even better the next day.

    • — Nicole on March 4, 2012
    • Reply
  • I love new stuffing recipes!! We don’t have to wait until Thanksgiving, do we?

    • — Julie on March 1, 2012
    • Reply
  • Jenn,

    My family like to use sausage in their stuffing. Do you think I’d be okay adding sausage to this recipe. It sounds delicious!

    Thanks!

    • — Katie on November 21, 2011
    • Reply
  • Hi Taryn, The only other vegetable that comes to mind is cauliflower, chopped into tiny pieces, but I think it would probably be fine to just omit the mushrooms. The onions and celery provide plenty of flavor. Hope that helps!

  • Hi Jenn, My mother is allergic to mushrooms, can you recommend another vegetable I could substitute? Thanks!

    • — taryn on November 14, 2011
    • Reply
  • I was just asking my brother-in-law for his Challah stuffing recipe and he refused to give it to me. This recipe looks so good and almost identical to his. Can’t wait to try it.

    • — Lisa Pentz on November 8, 2011
    • Reply
  • With the new 2011. Year! Congratulations.

  • I made this for Thanksgiving with some modifications (using leeks instead of onions and celery, butter flavored pam spray instead of butter, and low-sodium low-fat chicken broth) and it was delicious and easy to make the day of. I’m definitely keeping this recipe for next year.

  • I made this last year and I loved it!!!! However, I can’t remember what kinds of mushrooms I used. Any suggestions? Thanks!

    • — Nicole on November 22, 2010
    • Reply
  • did this last year and now I’d be dis-invited if I did not make the stuffing.
    WOW

    • — Susie DeMay on October 23, 2010
    • Reply
  • MsHymanroth – You are right, most stuffing recipes requre you to dry out the bread by leaving it out for a few days. The other method, which I prefer, is to toast the bread cubes in a low temperature oven…it’s much faster and works just as well 🙂

    • — Jenn on November 29, 2009
    • Reply
  • Just wondering, you don’t have to dry the bread first? I always see recipes where the bread must be dried! Thank you.

    • — MsHymanRoth on November 28, 2009
    • Reply
  • We made this for Thanksgiving and it was the best stuffing I have ever eaten! Full of flavor and the Challah is incredible, what a fantasic idea! Thanks for the beautiful recipe!

    • — Carrie on November 27, 2009
    • Reply
  • That is one tasty looking stuffing!

  • Using Challah bread for stuffing is such a great idea! I love the sweetness of Challah bread and we’re lucky enough to be able to get it from our local supermarket now.

  • I love your version of this stuffing – it’s similar to the one my family ate, until I married a vegetarian! Thanks for the mention. Happy Thanksgiving!

  • Sounds delicious, I never thought to use Challah! 🙂

  • Nice!!!! I’ve been trying to find a great vegetarian option and now viola – I’ll just use a vegetable stock instead of the chicken stock. This sounds ‘licious!!!! Thanks and have a Happy Thanksgiving!!!

    • — Christina on November 23, 2009
    • Reply
  • OH! I just love this! MMMM! Great time to post it, too! I betcha everyone is thinking today… “hmmmm, I think I will do this on Thursday!” Great pics, too! 🙂

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