Thanksgiving stuffing gets an ingredient and nutritional makeover! This is definitely not a classic stuffing. Instead, this version is loaded with flavor, texture, and whole food ingredients to nourish the body. I can guarantee you'll come back to this one again and again; I know we certainly have.
I always saw classic stuffing as a kid and thought it was just the weirdest. Soggy bread crumbs stuffed inside a turkey's cavity?? I could just never wrap my head around it. It wasn't until I started making my own stuffings, based in chewy wild rice instead of bread, that I got excited about them. This version unites long-grained wild rice, succulent caramelized onions, crunchy buttery macadamias, sweet fall fruits, and fragrant seasonal herbs for a holiday-worthy dish.
I'm guessing you've never heard of a macadamia stuffing before. My wonderful friends at Mauna Loa Macadamias deserve full credit for this awesome idea. They asked me to work on a macadamia stuffing recipe this holiday season and I was immediately smitten with the idea. I'm so excited for you to try this!
As you know, macadamias are my absolute most favorite nut. They have just the right amount of crunch, and a beautiful, delicate, almost buttery flavor. I have so many macadamia recipes on this blog already, both sweet and savory. I love to use them in everything from blondies to granola to salads to sweet potato dishes. I even have a macadamia taco filling and a macadamia flatbread!
I have to say, though, that this stuffing might just be my favorite macadamia recipe. I know pecans or walnuts might be more traditional, but they both tend to get a little soggy. I'm quite sure I'll be putting macadamias in my stuffing from now on, and I'll certainly be making this stuffing recipe at least a few times each fall!
Some of you may take issue with this, but I've actually listed this recipe in the "main course" category since that's how we've been enjoying it. This stuffing is just so satisfying and hearty, and has a lot of protein thanks to the macadamias. Paired with some roasted veggies or a big harvest salad, it makes for a great fall dinner.
That said, stuffing is so versatile and you can use this dish in many different ways. Serve it as a side for Thanksgiving, or stuff it into roasted squash for a stunning plant-based centerpiece. Mix it into salads for extra texture, or bring it as a healthy lunch option. The recipe makes a pretty big batch, probably enough for 3-4 main courses, 6-8 hearty sides, or 10-12 small sides, although you can certainly double it if you need to feed a crowd or want leftovers (yes please!).
Good news! This recipe is very make-ahead friendly. You can cook the rice and prepare up through Step 6 several days in advance. Store the rice mixture in a sealed container in the fridge. Before serving, transfer the rice back to a skillet and start at step 7: add the macadamias and apple, cooking for just several minutes to bring the flavors together and soften the apple. If needed, add another splash of apple cider to the rice to re-moisten it. Transfer to a serving dish and garnish with fresh fall fruits.
Here's what you'll need for this recipe, as well as some thoughts, tips, and possible substitutions. If you make any substitutions, I'd love to hear about it in the comments section below.
Doesn't this comforting stuffing seem so perfect for Thanksgiving or any fall meal? It has such cozy, decadent vibes, yet is made with whole food ingredients to nourish the body. This is definitely not your average stuffing, and while it requires a bit of time to make, I can assure you it's worth every second. Let's say goodbye to bland, soggy stuffings and instead embrace this plant-based, flavorful, nutritious version.
With ingredients and flavors like this, I plan to be making this one at least several times each fall!
It makes me so happy to hear from you and see your creations! Please leave a comment below and let me know what you think about this recipe. If you post a photo on Instagram, hashtag #TheRogueBrusselSprout and tag me (@TheRogueBrusselSprout) in the post text so that I'm sure to see it.
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Disclosure: This recipe has been developed through a paid partnership with Mauna Loa Macadamias. However, all opinions and thoughts are my own. Thank you for supporting the brands that keep The Rogue Brussel Sprout running.
Filled with festive harvest flavors, this holiday-appropriate stuffing is much better for the body than a traditional stuffing. It features chewy wild rice, crunchy macadamias, sweet seasonal fruits, and aromatic fall herbs. Make this hearty dish for Thanksgiving or even all fall long!
Did you make this recipe? Did you make substitutions? How did you serve it? Any helpful tips? Please share your thoughts, since these insights are really useful to both me and to other readers.
I love to create colorful, veggie-filled, seasonal dishes that celebrate the beauty and diversity of plants. Take a look around at all my favorite recipes, there's so much to explore here!
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