Classic fruit stuffing recipes for your Thanksgiving turkey

Classic recipes for turkey stuffing with apples, cranberries, oranges apricots

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These classic recipes for fruit stuffing combine a traditional bread stuffing or rice stuffing with apples, cranberries, oranges, apricots and other fruits — the perfect way to spice up your Thanksgiving turkey! The details come direct from newspapers published in the ’50s, ’60s and ’70s, and feature some good old-fashioned flavors and ingredients.

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Turkey with orange rice stuffing recipe (1977)

Whatever the weather this Thanksgiving, the holiday meal is sure to be delicious and eye-appealing.

Although many couples and single persons whip up a Thanksgiving dinner with a menu built around steak, pork chops, chicken or lamb, traditionalists cling to the turkey as an American symbol of this very special day.

Here is a special roast turkey that takes an added flavor with the use of an orange rice stuffing and a fruity basting liquid.


1/2 cup uncooked brown rice (2 cups cooked)
1/2 cup orange juice
1 pound bulk pork sausage
3/4 cup chopped onion
1 teaspoon poultry seasoning
1 cup raisins
1 cup chopped walnuts
4 oranges; sectioned, drained (reserve juice)
Salt and pepper
1 12-pound turkey
1 cup water


Cook rice according to package directions, substituting orange juice for 1/5 cup of the water. Break up sausage in large skillet and cook with onion until meat is done and onion is golden but not brown. Add cooked rice, poultry seasoning, raisins, walnuts and orange sections. Mix lightly. Sprinkle salt and pepper in cavities of turkey.

Stuff turkey with rice mixture. Tie legs together, then to tail. Fasten wings behind back to hold neck skin. Place in roasting pan and rub outside of turkey with orange juice reserved from sections. Cover loosely with foil.

Bake in 325 F oven for 2 hours. Uncover and continue baking 1-1/2 to 2 hours or until turkey tests done, basting occasionally with pan drippings. Remove turkey from oven; transfer to heated platter. Add water to drippings; bring to a boil. Thicken, if desired, with 2 tablespoons flour mixed with 1/4 cup cold water. Makes 8 servings.

(To section oranges, cut off peel round and round in a spiral fashion. Go over fruit again, removing any remaining white membrane. Cut along the side of each dividing membrane from outside to middle of core. Remove section by section over bowl to retain juice from fruit.)

Mandarin orange bread stuffing recipe (1958)


2-1/2 quarts soft bread crumbs
1 cup or (11-oz.) can mandarin orange sections
1/2 cup orange juice
3/4 tsp, salt
1/4 tsp celery salt
3 tablespoons melted butter or margarine


Combine soft bread crumbs, orange sections and juice, salt, celery salt and butter.

Makes 2 quarts mandarin orange bread stuffing

Cranberry-bread fruit stuffing recipe (1958)


1 quart fresh cranberries
1/3 cup butter or margarine
1 cup chopped celery
1 gallon soft 1/2″ bread cubes
2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. sage or marjoram
1 cup milk or bouillon


Chop cranberries and add sugar. Melt butter in a skillet; add celery and saute until tender. Combine cranberry and sugar mixture, celery, soft bread cubes, salt, sage and milk.

Yield: 2-1/2 quarts cranberry bread stuffing

ALSO SEE: Cranberry-mushroom, sausage-pecan & other sensational ’70s stuffing recipes

Onion-apple stuffing (1975)


6 medium-sized dry yellow onions (approx. 2 lbs.)
3 quarts day-old bread crumbs or squares
2 tablespoons ground dried sage
1 teaspoon poultry seasoning
2 to 3 teaspoons salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
4 cups diced, unpeeled red apples


Boil onions in water to cover until crisp-tender (about 15 minutes); drain and chop fine. Combine with remaining ingredients and toss lightly. Stuff neck and body cavity of 12-pound ready-to-cook turkey. Double recipe for 18-pound bird. Bake any remaining dressing in covered casserole for last hour, basting occasionally with turkey drippings.

Fruit and cognac stuffing (1961)

Fruit and cognac stuffing for Thanksgiving turkey is an exotic departure from the usual bread or meal dressing. It also blends perfectly with duck or any other game bird.

Cover a mixture of prunes and raisins with cognac and let soak 4 days in a tightly covered jar to prevent evaporation. Dot cavity of bird with butter, salt, and pepper and stuff with drained fruit. Reserve cognac. Roast according to your usual method. Just before serving, pour cognac in which fruit was soaked over the hot bird and set aflame. Douse flames by placing roaster cover over bird for a few seconds. Do not allow skin to char.

Apricot-prune fruit stuffing recipe (1960)


1 8-oz. pkg. stuffing mix
2/3 cup finely cut dried apricots
1/2 cup finely dried prunes
1/4 cup finely chopped onion


Prepare stuffing mix according to directions on package for moist stuffing. Add apricots, prunes, and onion; toss. Lightly spoon stuffing into body and neck cavities of bird — do not pack.

Makes about 5-1/2 cups stuffing – To prepare: 15 mins.

ALSO SEE: How to cook a turkey: Two classic methods (1911)

Apple-rice stuffing recipe (1960)

4 cups cooked rice
1/2 cup butter
1 cup diced celery
4 cups (about 4 medium-size pared) coarsely chopped apples
1-1/2 teaspoons grated lemon peel (grated through colored part only; white is bitter)
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 cup (about 5 oz. golden raisins
1 cup (about 3 slices) fine dry breadcrumbs
1-1/2 teaspoons salt
3/4 teaspoon ground ginger
1/2 teaspoon poultry seasoning


Heat butter in a saucepan. Add celery and cook until just tender, occasionally moving and turning with a spoon.

Meanwhile, gently toss apples with lemon juice. Add rice, lemon peel, raisins, bread crumbs, and a mixture of the salt. ginger and poultry seasoning. Blend with celery mixture. Just before roasting, lightly spoon stuffing into neck and body cavities of bird — do not pack.

Makes about 9-1/2 cups stuffing – To prepare: 30 mins.

Spicy fruit stuffing recipe (1962)

Combine the following ingredients and blend lightly:

4 tart apples, diced (2 cups); 1-1/2 cups chopped dried apricots; 1 cup diced celery; 1 stick butter or margarine, melted: 1/2 cup warm water; 4 cups bread, cubed; 1-1/2 teaspoon poultry seasoning or 2 teaspoons onion salad dressing mix; salt and pepper to taste. Makes enough for 14-16 pound turkey.

ALSO SEE: 14 easy classic stuffing recipes (1910)

Cranberry-pecan dressing/stuffing (1968)

1 7-ounce package cube stuffing
1 cup chopped onions
1 cup sliced mushrooms
1/2 cup chopped pecans
1/4 cup butter or margarine
1 cup cranberries, cut in half
3 tablespoons sugar
1/4 cup chopped parsley

Prepare stuffing according to package directions. Meanwhile, saute onions, mushrooms and pecans in butter 5 minutes. Combine cranberries and sugar. Add all ingredients to stuffing, stirring only to blend.

Place in 1-1/2 quart casserole and bake, covered, last 30 minutes of turkey roasting time.

Makes 6 servings

Classic recipes for turkey stuffing with apples, cranberries, oranges apricots

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