Chestnut, bacon & cranberry stuffing

Chestnut, bacon & cranberry stuffing

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(40 ratings)

Prep: 30 mins - 40 mins Cook: 40 mins Plus 1 hour to soak the cranberries


Makes 24 stuffing balls
This festive stuffing brings together all the trimmings in one gorgeous mass

Nutrition and extra info

Nutrition: per stuffing ball

  • kcal123
  • fat7g
  • saturates3g
  • carbs12g
  • sugars0g
  • fibre1g
  • protein4g
  • salt0.65g
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  • 100g dried cranberries


    A tart, ruby-red coloured berry which grows wild on shrubs throughout northern Europe and North…

  • 50ml ruby port
  • 1 small onion, chopped



    Onions are endlessly versatile and an essential ingredient in countless recipes. Native to Asia…

  • 2 rashers unsmoked back bacon, cut into strips
  • 50g butter



    Butter is a dairy product made from separating whole milk or cream into fat and…

  • 2 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 450g sausagemeat
  • 140g fresh white or brown breadcrumbs
  • 2 tbsp chopped fresh parsley



    One of the most ubiquitous herbs in British cookery, parsley is also popular in European and…

  • ½ tsp chopped fresh thyme leaves
  • 140g peeled, cooked chestnuts, roughly chopped



    'Chestnuts roasting on an open fire...' that kitsch old Nat King Cole song perfectly…

  • 1 medium egg, lightly beaten



    The ultimate convenience food, eggs are powerhouses of nutrition, packed with protein and a…


  1. Soak the cranberries in the port for an hour. Fry the onion and bacon gently in the butter, until the onion is tender and the bacon is cooked. Add the garlic and fry for another minute or so.

  2. Cool slightly, then mix with all the remaining ingredients, including the cranberries and port, adding enough egg to bind – I find it easiest to use my hands. Fry a knob of stuffing in a little butter, taste and adjust the seasoning if necessary.

  3. To Cook: This stuffing can be baked in a dish, or rolled into balls that will be crisp on the outside and moist inside. To bake, press the stuffing into a greased ovenproof dish in a layer that is around 4cm thick. Bake at 190C/gas 5/fan 170C for about 40 minutes, until browned and, in the case of sausagemeat stuffing, cooked right through. Alternatively, roll into balls that are about 4cm in diameter. Roast the stuffing balls in hot fat (they can be tucked around the turkey or done in a roasting tin of their own) for 30-40 minutes, until crisp and nicely browned on the outside.

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Comments, questions and tips

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22nd Dec, 2010
Butterfingers-thank you so much for the advice but we do not have a Sainburys here. I think that it's probably better not to chance it with the frozen cranberries (as you say they could well be mushy) so I shall be trying the chestnut and cranberry roll instead!
22nd Dec, 2010
For Christine - although I haven't tried it, I imagine frozen cranberries would turn a bit mushy once defrosted and soaked in the port. I just picked up some dried cranberries tonight in Sainsburys in the baking isle. I've been making this stuffing (gluten-free) for about 5 years now. It is so worth trying to find the berries as its excellent!!!
29th Nov, 2016
Did you just substitute the breadcrumbs for gluten free breadcrumbs or did you have to change/add anything else? I'm new to gf cooking and don't want to mess it up!
23rd Dec, 2016
GF Breadcrumbs would make very little difference, if any. Go ahead, alter nothing!
19th Dec, 2010
Does anyone know if this can be be made with frozen cranberries as I cannot find dried and this looks such a lovely recipe?
10th Dec, 2010
I didn't have any chestnuts but they were still delicious. Next time I'll add the chestnuts and I'm sure they'll be even better. Definitely a keeper for the Christmas table!
9th Dec, 2010
I made them for Christmas dinner last year and they were a great hit with everyone. Already have been asked to made them again this year.
6th Dec, 2010
In answer to the questions about making ahead - I'm planning to make this recipe ahead this year. I'm going to mix all the ingredients except the cranberries before I freeze it, then add the port soaked berries on Christmas Eve to cook on Christmas morning. wish me luck!
29th Nov, 2010
Can these be made in advance and frozen? if so for how long?
15th Nov, 2009
Can these be made in advance and frozen or kept in the fridge from Christmas Eve ready for Boxing Day? We are at the in laws for Christmas but entertaining on Boxing Day at home so would like to do them ahead if poss?


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