Not Ya Mama's Oyster Dressing


Thirty-five years ago, a group of friends went to a little Italian restaurant south of New Orleans. We all fell in love with their oyster dressing. We ate it so often the guys made a bet to see who could duplicate the recipe. After many tries, one of our friends figured it out and won the bet. Last year I found the original restaurant recipe in a New Orleans cookbook; our friend hit the nail on the head. This is his version.

close up view of Oyster Dressing in a white baking dish with a spoon
Prep Time:
15 mins
Cook Time:
30 mins
Total Time:
45 mins


  • ½ cup butter

  • 1 large onion, chopped

  • 2 cloves garlic, chopped, or more to taste

  • 1 ½ tablespoons dried parsley

  • ½ teaspoon dried oregano

  • ½ teaspoon dried thyme

  • 1 teaspoon salt

  • ¼ teaspoon black pepper

  • ¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper, or to taste (Optional)

  • 1 quart fresh shucked oysters, drained and liquid reserved

  • 1 cup Italian seasoned dry bread crumbs

  • ½ cup grated Parmesan cheese


  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Grease a 9x9-inch square baking dish.

  2. Melt butter in a large skillet over medium heat. Add onion and garlic; cook and stir until onions are translucent, about 5 minutes. Stir in parsley, oregano, thyme, salt, black pepper, and cayenne pepper until combined. Gently mix in oysters; cook, stirring often, until the edges of the oysters begin to curl, about 8 minutes. Stir in bread crumbs and reserved oyster liquid until thoroughly combined. Spoon dressing into the prepared baking dish; sprinkle with Parmesan cheese.

  3. Bake in the preheated oven until top is golden brown, 15 to 20 minutes.


I have never used this to stuff a bird but have used it as a side dish, or to stuff mirlitons, or as an appetizer with crackers.

Nutrition Facts (per serving)

430 Calories
25g Fat
27g Carbs
24g Protein
Nutrition Facts
Servings Per Recipe 6
Calories 430
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 25g 32%
Saturated Fat 13g 66%
Cholesterol 181mg 60%
Sodium 1494mg 65%
Total Carbohydrate 27g 10%
Dietary Fiber 2g 6%
Total Sugars 2g
Protein 24g
Vitamin C 11mg 55%
Calcium 248mg 19%
Iron 17mg 95%
Potassium 479mg 10%

* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.

** Nutrient information is not available for all ingredients. Amount is based on available nutrient data.

(-) Information is not currently available for this nutrient. If you are following a medically restrictive diet, please consult your doctor or registered dietitian before preparing this recipe for personal consumption.

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