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Wild Rice Stuffing with Cranberries, Bacon and Pecans


With Thanksgiving quickly approaching, I realized I had not shared a new stuffing recipe I made a few weeks ago when I made a rack of pork.

Stuffing or Dressing

Traditional, modern or just different.  Every Thanksgiving the age old debate arises……..“stuffing or dressing”?  Both terms are used to describe a traditional Thanksgiving side dish,  a moist bread (or rice), seasoned with herbs and vegetables.  Many will argue that stuffing is cooked inside a turkey, while dressing is cooked along side the bird.  But, in most homes and cookbooks, the words are interchangeable…… although stuffing seems to be more prevalent in the south and east.

I don’t care what you call it…………as long as it’s delicious!

Stuffings and dressings can be prepared many ways. This recipe is not a traditional bread stuffing that you usually see at Thanksgiving, but makes an elegant and delicious side dish.  Dried cranberries add a touch of sweetness to the nutty taste of this wild rice stuffing.

Wild Rice Stuffing with Cranberries, Bacon and Pecans

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 55 minutes

Yield: 8

Wild Rice Stuffing with Cranberries, Bacon and Pecans

Summary: recipe from


  • 1 1/4 cup wild rice, uncooked (I used long grain and wild rice)
  • 4 slices Bacon, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 1 cup onion, chopped
  • 1 14-oz can chicken broth
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 2 tablespoons dry sherry, (optional)
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme leaves, crushed
  • 2 cups celery, chopped
  • 3/4 cup dried cranberries
  • 1/2 cup pecans, chopped and toasted


  1. Rinse wild rice in cold water. Drain well; set aside. In a large saucepan, cook bacon over medium heat until crisp. Remove bacon, reserving 1 tablespoon drippings in saucepan. Drain bacon; set aside.
  2. Add onion to saucepan; cook until tender, stirring occasionally. Add wild rice; cook and stir for 3 minutes. Add chicken broth, water, sherry and thyme. Bring to boiling; reduce heat. Cover and simmer for 10 minutes. Remove from heat. Stir in celery and dried cranberries.
  3. Meanwhile, heat oven to 350 degrees F. Transfer rice mixture to a 2-quart casserole. Cover and bake for 45 to 55 minutes or until rice is tender and liquid is absorbed, stirring once. Stir in pecans and bacon.

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The best holidays are those shared with family and friends.   What dish do you look forward to the most at Thanksgiving?  And do you serve stuffing or dressing?

More dressing and stuffing recipes you may enjoy

Aimee’s Fruit and Herb Bread Stuffing at Simple Bites

Leek and Bacon Stuffing at Goodlife {eats}

Traditional Bread and Celery Stuffing at The Little Kitchen

Skillet Stuffing at Georgia Pellegrini

Sourdough Stuffing at Two Peas and Their Pod

Stuffing with Sweet Potatoes and Cranberries at Family Fresh Cooking

Savory Bread Pudding at A Cummunal Table

10 Stuffing Recipes at Better Recipes

Rustic Herb Skillet Stuffing at What’s Gabby Cooking

Caramelized Onion and Cornbread Stuffing at Deliciously Organic

Traditional Thanksgiving Dressing at Ingredients Inc

Oyster Dressing at Tickled Red


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About TidyMom

A self-proclaimed neat freak, Cheryl chronicles her journey through homemaking on her blog,, where she shares recipes, tutorials, crafting and her ever-growing love for photography. This St. Louis mom juggles her passion for life, her daughters and her tiger-loving husband, all while her obsession with tidiness cleans up the trail blazed behind her. Google+


  1. 1

    Your stuffing looks beautiful! I’m loving all of the Thanksgiving food…I’m hungry for Thanksgiving now!!!

  2. 2

    Currently I serve NEITHER! I’m the only one who will eat “stuffing”. The husband has never liked it! I think he would love this recipe, however. I was in Minnesota this summer and stocked up on Wild Rice – one of his favorites! Thanks!

  3. 3

    Your recipe looks delicious! The last couple of years I’ve been making a dressing with apples and nuts in it, but I might have to give your version a try. Yum!


  4. 4

    Love the use of rice in this stuffing! Thanks for including a link to our recipe:)

  5. 5

    Looks fantastic!! I cant wait to try it… we love wild rice anything around here!

  6. 6

    My great-grandmother is insistent that our dish be called “dressing.” This recipe might totally blow her mind. We’ve never made dressing with rice before… but I love it!

  7. 7

    I think I actually prefer my stuffing with wild rice rather than bread. I bet the addition of pecans is a nice crunchy touch!

  8. 8

    That stuffing (dressing) looks delicious!

  9. 9

    That looks to die for. I love wild rice. I bet I would LOVE this recipe. It looks delicious!

  10. 10

    We always called it “stuffing” in our home. Either way, you are right – it is delicious!

  11. 11

    Ooo…Love your wild rice stuffing. We also make a wild rice dressing that my mom has been doing for years but it doesn’t have cranberry’s. Your version looks so nummy. Thanks for the dressing luv {{hugs}}

  12. 12

    Love this recipe…bacon and pecans…yum! Your rack of pork looks delicious too.

  13. 13

    I love your dressing recipe. I may have to try it for something new. Thank you for including my recipe as well! Happy holidays to your family

  14. 14

    This sounds and looks fabulous!

  15. 15

    We grew up calling it stuffing. Stuffing or dressing is one of our favorites at Thanksgiving time. Your Wild Rice Stuffing sounds like a nice alternative to the typical bread stuffing, and versatile enough to serve with so many different types of meals. It’s like a pilaf chock full of everyone’s favorite ingredients.

  16. 16

    Oh does this sound delish! Reminds me of a family favorite wild rice recipe that we enjoy for Christmas that I’ll be sharing sometime soon!

  17. 17

    I LOVE rice stuffing, and this recipe sounds delicious! I think I need to make if for Thanksgiving dinner. :0)

  18. 18

    Cheryl: This sounds like a delicious addition to a Thanksgiving spread — I especially like the combo of cranberry and bacon!

  19. 19

    While I am typically a bread stuffing kind of gal, I have to admit that I am very tempted by this recipe. So many great flavors!

  20. 20

    Was ridiculously excited for this recipe and I had an entire meal planned around it. I was so dissapointed in the end result. I followed the recipe to a T and the rice came out hard and completely uncooked. I even tried cooking it for an additional 1/2 hour but to no avail.

    I immediately came back to the site to make sure I had followed all the steps correctly and I had. I noticed in the image of your dish that it looks more like brown rice rather than wild rice. I don’t know if that’s the case but if I use actual wild rice again I would probably completely cook it before putting it in the oven to cook.

    • 21

      I’m sorry Rachel – wild rice is a little hard and nutty even when cooked.
      I did use long grain and wild rice, I just made a note on the recipe.

  21. 22

    This looks delicious Cheryl! My family has always made our stuffing with ditalini pasta, stuffing mix, sausage and spinach…it’s delicious! I would love to try this…doesn’t have to be Thanksgiving :)

  22. 23

    I am a huge stuffing fan. I often do bread, but have been meaning to try a rice-based one. Thanks for the recipe!

  23. 24

    I love the sound of this recipe and plan to make it for Thanksgiving. I have a small kitchen and lots of people coming for dinner so I’m wondering if this dish might be made in my crockpot. If so, I could do the sauteing, etc. early on and then put it all together in the crockpot and forget about it until time to serve. Is this possible?


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