John Torode's apple stuffing recipe

(68 ratings)

Stuff your turkey or chicken with John Torode's tasty sage and apple stuffing made with fresh apples, lots of herbs and rich sausage meat, this Christmas

(Image credit: jason lowe)
Preparation Time20 mins
Cooking Time20 mins
Total Time40 mins
Cost RangeMid

A decadent apple stuffing with tangy green Granny Smiths, sweet parsnip and pork sausage meat.

With nine ingredients, this is a little more complex than the average stuffing recipe, but it’s worth the extra effort. Rather than breadcrumbs it uses starchy vegetables - potatoes and parsnips - to add bulk, for a deep, robust flavour, cut through with sharp green apple. Along with the apple, the herb sage is the star of the show. Sage has a long medicinal history, thought at different times to ward off everything from evil spirits to infertility, and from plague to toothache. However, in this apple stuffing it simply wards off blandly flavoured poultry. 


  • 2 large potatoes, peeled and chopped
  • 2 onions, chopped
  • 2 parsnips, peeled and chopped
  • 50g butter
  • 2 granny smith apples, peeled and chopped
  • 1 handful mixed chopped sage and parsley
  • 50g fresh breadcrumbs
  • 100g pork sausage meat
  • 1 egg




  1. Boil the potatoes, onions and parsnips until soft, then drain. Melt the butter in a pan then add the veg and fry for 1 minute. Season really well, adding lots of pepper.
  2. Stir in the apples and leave to cool.
  3. Mix in the sage and parsley, breadcrumbs, sausage meat and the egg and season generously. Stuff your turkey or chicken and cook according to their recipe timings, or cook separately in a baking dish.

Top tips for making John Torode’s apple stuffing

For crispy yet moist-in-the-middle stuffing, don’t cook it inside the turkey – make it separately,’ says John.

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John Torode is one of the UK’s most well known celebrity chefs, having been a judge on television cooking shows, Masterchef, Celebrity Masterchef and Junior Masterchef for oven ten years. Originally from Australia, John began his cooking career at 16 years old after leaving school to attend catering college. In 1991 he moved to London where he soon began working at famous restaurant, Le Pont de la Tour and Quaglino’s as a sous chef. It was while working at the latter restaurant that John Torode first met Masterchef co-host Gregg Wallace. Alongside his presenting work, John owns the Smiths (opens in new tab) franchise, which is located in the iconic Smithfields market in London. The Grade II listed building is set over four floors and promises to give diner a different culinary and drinking experience on each level. He’s also no stranger to philanthropy work, combining his experience the food industry with a passion for helping those in need. Torode was one of the people behind the “Come…Eat Together!” project, as featured on BBC News. The campaign encourages the elderly to get together in the community and enjoy home cooked food together, facilitating better social connections and exploring new ways for the elderly to their food shopping. John himself is a chef is best known for simple, family recipes. He once said, “My world as I know it started with my Nanna’s roasting tin, a chicken and a wooden spoon. The food she cooked was always simple but delicious. Her cauliflower cheese was awesome, her caramel slice was wonderful and I am still searching for a recipe to make her apple tea cake.” While we might not have the recipe for John's Nanna's teacake, we do have plenty of his recipes designed for indulgent homecooking. Like this one for a hearty chicken casserole (opens in new tab), and baked apples and custard (opens in new tab) for dessert. In 2019, John Torode married long-term girlfriend, fellow chef Lisa Faulker. .