Ahhhh….stuffing. Or is it called dressing? Whatever your family calls it…it’s usually a favorite side dish of the Thanksgiving meal, at least for me it is! But really, there’s no need to wait for Thanksgiving to make stuffing. These Cornbread Chorizo Stuffing Muffins are wonderful to eat any time of the year!
I suppose technically, it should be called stuffing if it’s cooked inside the turkey and maybe dressing if it’s cooked out of the bird? That makes sense to me. Or maybe it just depends on what part of the country you’re from.
The past few years I’ve made my stuffing with chorizo and apple and we really like it that way. It’s a perfect compliment to the BEST turkey ever…my favorite Ancho Chile Brined Turkey. This year I thought I’d experiment a little, step out of the box and turn the stuffing into muffins! My motivation being there’s some built in portion control, something I’m not very good at when it comes to stuffing. And, as an added bonus, they freeze easily in muffin form which is especially ideal for empty nesters like myself. All I have to do is take a couple out of the freezer, let them thaw, then heat them up. A great accompaniment to roast chicken or pork any time of the year.
About the Chorizo:
Every chorizo I try is different so if you have a favorite brand of chorizo, use it. Some have more fat and practically melt, some are more sausage-like. Any kind will taste great and work, the only difference might be the spice level and how seasoned it is. The chorizo I used today was quite flavorful and spicy so I didn’t feel the need to add any additional seasoning. However, in the past I have added additional cumin, smoked paprika, sometimes cayenne. Just take a little taste once it’s cooked and mixed up and add a bit of additional seasoning if you think it needs it. If it’s seasoned enough for your tastes your good to go.
About the Cornbread:
I used a packaged cornbread stuffing mix. This time I used one from Pepperidge Farm. Typically I use Mrs. Cubbison’s (affiliate links) but I couldn’t find it around here so maybe it’s not sold on the East coast. I also hear Trader Joe’s has a good one as well. I’ve never made stuffing with homemade cornbread, but if you have and prefer that, go right ahead. I’m impressed!
About the Texture:
I realize people tend to have distinct preferences about the texture of their stuffing. Some like a drier texture, some soggier. I usually like my stuffing on the drier side and not a big mushy glob but for these muffins I made the mixture wetter than I normally would because I thought it would help to keep their shape. I recommend not adding all the liquid at once, just add half, then a little at a time to get the texture you want. Making the mixture a little wetter than normal I think helped hold their shape better once cooked. I used a full 2 cups of the liquid.
Finally, I must confess…I totally forgot to add the cilantro when I made ’em. That’s why there’s no little green specks in the muffins. Maybe you didn’t notice? Should I have kept my mouth shut? Oh well, It didn’t seem to matter, I still totally loved these Cornbread Chorizo Stuffing Muffins. Just gotta go with the flow…
- 1 lbs. chorizo, casing removed
- 1 onion, diced
- 2 stalks celery, diced
- 1 carrot, diced
- 2 cloves garlic, chopped
- ½ green apple, peeled and diced
- 1½ - 2 C. chicken stock
- 1 egg
- ¼ C. chopped cilantro
- 14 oz. pkg. cornbread stuffing (I used Pepperidge Farms. Mrs. Cubbinson's is my favorite but not available where I live)
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease muffin pan with butter or cooking spray and set aside.
- In large pan, cook chorizo (breaking apart as you cook it), with onion, celery, carrot, apple and garlic. Continue to cook until chorizo is cooked and veggies are softened.
- Remove from heat. Add cornbread stuffing mix and stir to combine.
- Blend chicken stock and egg together, then add 1½ cup to mixture in pan. If it seems too dry for you, add a bit more until it's however moist you like your stuffing. Combine well. Add cilantro and stir again to combine.
- Add stuffing mixture to prepared muffin pan.
- Bake 25-30 minutes (depending on how moist they were to begin with).
- Let cool a few minutes to set before removing from muffin tin.