Person serving mashed potatoes

This Thanksgiving, many families will sit down to enjoy a delicious spread of turkey, stuffing, and pumpkin pie. But in Pennsylvania’s Americana Region, the PA Dutch dish Potato Filling will also be passed around the table as a traditional holiday side.

This simple yet delicious dish involves starting with mashed potatoes and adding bread cubes, parsley, and celery—among other ingredients—to form a golden crust on top once baked.

If you’re looking for a new dish to impress the host of your Thanksgiving meal, or you miss your yearly fill of the PA Dutch dish that reminds you of home, try the recipe below from Tonya Clifford, manager of Pennsylvania Dutch Cooking & Living.

Potato Filling

  • 4 cups of dried cubed bread of any variety
  • 7 medium potatoes peeled and quartered
  • ½ cup milk
  • 2 eggs beaten
  • ¼ cup finely chopped fresh parsley
  • 1 tsp salt
  • ½ tsp freshly ground pepper
  • 10 tbsp butter
  • 2 onions finely chopped
  • 3 celery stalks thinly sliced
  • ½ tsp poultry seasoning

Preheat oven to 300°. Spread the bread cubes on a baking sheet and bake for 10 to 15 minutes, stirring once or twice until browned. Remove from the oven and set aside.

Raise the oven temperature to 350°. Place the potatoes in a large saucepan with enough salted water to cover them by one inch. Bring to a boil and cook, covered, until tender, 15 to 20 minutes.

Drain potatoes and mash coarsely. Add the milk, eggs, parsley, salt and pepper and beat until smooth. Melt 4 tablespoons of butter in a large skillet over medium-high heat. When hot, add the onions and celery and cook, stirring frequently, until soft and lightly browned.

Using a slotted spoon, remove the vegetables and add them to the mashed potato mixture. Melt 4 tablespoons of butter in the skillet over medium heat. When hot, add bread cubes and toss until well coated. Add the bread cubes to the mashed potatoes and stir gently until well mixed.

Turn into a buttered 2½ or 3 qt. casserole. Melt the remaining 2 tablespoons of butter and drizzle over the mixture. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes or until the top is lightly browned and crusty. (If making ahead to freeze, do not bake or put the melted butter on top! When ready to use, thaw, place melted butter on top, and bake as directed.)

Once you try this comfort dish, you may not spend another Thanksgiving feast without adding it to your meal!