Stuffed Apples. When we hear those two words, we usually think of dessert, but not this time. No, no, this time we’re coming at you with savory stuffed apples: stuffing-stuffed apples. That’s right, instead of packing perhaps a cinnamon-oat mixture into our hollowed-out fruit, we decided to go with a dried-cranberry-sausage mixture that is easily devourable and all the more delicious, given we tucked it (cutely) into a set of apples. It was divine.
It might seem strange at first, but this is seriously the yummiest dish you could make during the fall months. We’ve made it when we had friends over and we’ve made it just for family dinners, either way, it makes the best side dish, striking the perfect sweet and salty balance. You can tweak the stuffing however you like – using a stovetop mix, adding other dried fruits or nuts, keeping or nixing the meat etc. – but definitely give this dish a shot…it’s too tasty to pass up!
Stuffing-Stuffed Baked Apples
- 1 (6 oz.) box stuffing mix
- 6-8 assorted apples
- 1 3/4 cups low-sodium chicken or vegetable broth, divided
- 1/2 pound ground sausage, optional
- 1/2 cup dried cranberries
- 1/2 cup onion, finely chopped
- 2 stalks celery, finely chopped
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
- kosher salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
- In a large pan or skillet over medium-high heat, melt butter and sauté onion and celery until softened. 6-8 minutes. Season generously with salt and pepper.
- Add sausage and cook, breaking sausage up as you go, until browned and cooked through. Season with salt and pepper.
- Transfer sausage mixture to a large bowl, then add in stuffing mix and dried cranberries. Pour in 1 1/4 cups chicken broth and stir until everything is combined and just moistened.
- Preheat oven to 350º F.
- To prepare apples: cut off the tops of each one, then take a tablespoon or melon baller and scoop out the core, making sure to leave at least 1/4-inch around the bottom and sides.
- Spoon sausage stuffing mixture into cored apples, then transfer to a large baking dish. Pour remaining 1/4 cup chicken broth over the apples, then remaining 1/4 cup into the bottom of baking dish.
- Place dish in oven and bake for 30-35 minutes, or until stuffing has browned and apples are tender.
- Remove from oven and serve hot.
Recipe adapted from Growing Up Gabel