Whether paired with poultry or eaten alone, nothing says Thanksgiving on the coast like a good recipe for seafood stuffing.

By Lauren Arieux
October 17, 2005
Charles Walton IV

Thanksgiving approaches yet again, and while most of the nation gears up for a meal based around a bird, it never fails that my family's traditions include more shells than feathers. Down on the Gulf, we flock to my aunt's house, where she greets us with fresh seafood gumbo and a massive "turducken" (a chicken stuffed in a duck stuffed in a turkey). Although the concept is intriguing in its own right, the dish would be dull without her signature oyster-and-crawfish stuffing inside the meaty trio.

Whether your family serves turducken, ham, turkey, or veal, seafood stuffing (or dressing, if you prefer) complements any meat to perfection. Sure, bread-based dressing suffices, and might even make your mouth water when accompanied by savory brown gravy and tangy cranberry sauce. But add succulent oysters or tender shrimp to the mix, and you'll never go back.

For a coastal stuffing, choose your favorite shellfish and pair it with a base of homemade cornbread, rice, herbed bread, or even couscous. Still lost? No worries―we've asked several renowned chefs to share their best seafood dressing recipes. Their versions are as varied as their locales, so we guarantee something for every family and every table. (Look elsewhere, however, if you find yourself curiously craving turducken, as our beach-bum expertise ends with shells and fins.)

Whether you're in Maine, Louisiana, Oregon, or Iowa, celebrate Thanksgiving Coastal Living-style. Start a new tradition with one of our stuffing recipe suggestions and pass it down for years to come. We wish a Happy Thanksgiving and wonderful holiday season to you and yours.