Make Ahead Holiday Side Dish: Crockpot Mushroom and Wild Rice Stuffing

If your Thanksgiving Day is anything like mine, it starts EARLY!  You have meals to make, kids to clean up, and car seats to buckle.  It's a long but lovely day, and you need as many shortcuts as you can!  One recipe I tried this year that I know will help make the occasion more enjoyable is this savory mushroom and wild rice stuffing you can make in the slow cooker!

Wild rice stuffing crockpot recipe

The ingredients are all easily found at your local supermarket:

You will need:
  • One box of Uncle Ben's Long Grain and Wild Rice with Seasoning
  • One box chicken broth or vegetable broth
  • One bag of Oroweat seasoned bread cubes OR your own homemade cubes
  • Red Onion (diced)
  • Celery (diced)
  • One pound fresh mushrooms (any variety, washed and sliced with stems removed)
  • Salted Butter
  • 1 teaspoon chopped fresh sage (optional)
To begin, start by preparing the wild rice blend according to package directions. 

While the rice mixture is cooking, melt 2 tablespoons salted butter in a pan, adding as much of the onion and celery you'd like to use in the recipe.  (To fill a large slow cooker, I would use at least 1/4 cup onion and 3 stalks celery.)  Cook until tender.

Add the mushrooms.  Cook with a lid on until the mushrooms are moist and tender.

Pour 6-8 cups of the stuffing cubes into the crockpot along with the sage, if using.  Add the mushroom, onion, and celery mixture and mix gently. Then, add the broth.

Remove the rice from the stove and pour into the crockpot mixture, being careful not to break up the bread too much.

Cook on high for 2 hours and serve!

You can also make this ahead of time by either cooking in the slow cooker, allowing it to cool, and then freezing in a freezer bag OR by putting the cooled but unbaked mixture straight into the bag.  Freeze until the day before your meal, allow it to thaw in the fridge for 24 hours, and bake at 350 degrees in the oven until hot.  You may pour a small amount of additional chicken broth or water on the stuffing to moisten while baking.

Do you have any make-ahead recipes for the holidays?