I am so excited to bring you another post in our All the Healthy Things “Just the Basics” series. These posts are focused on helping you master basics in the kitchen and, hopefully, inspiring you with a few new ideas along the way.
If you are new to cooking, or just need a refresher on the basics, these posts are designed to help you feel more confident in the kitchen. Once you have a handle on a few basic concepts and techniques, you can easily build upon them to create new and exciting recipes dishes without a second thought.
If you have ever wondered how some people just seem to know how to cook without a recipe or can quickly throw together a meal in a moment’s notice, it’s likely because they have a good grasp of the basics. I want that for you! It’s my hope that every just the basics post helps you feel more comfortable so that you can enjoy your time spent in the kitchen even more!
Be sure to check out the other how-to guides in the series!
Delicious homemade gravy is one of my favorite things and honestly, it may just be my favorite part of holiday meals. Unfortunately, I feel like the gravy can be an afterthought but I’m here to change that and give you everything you need to make the most delicious turkey gravy you’ve ever had!
Thankfully, this homemade turkey gravy recipe is incredibly easy to make. If you’re making my simple spatchcock roasted turkey or citrus herb turkey breast, half the work is already done and you’re well on your way to delicious gravy. With just a few simple ingredients and a few minutes you’ll have perfect turkey gravy!
Ingredients You’ll Need
Butter: a little butter adds both flavor and richness to the gravy. You won’t need much because we’re using pan drippings from the turkey but a little goes a long way. I like to go with unsalted butter in this recipe and then add my own salt to taste.
Flour: you’ll need a bit of all-purpose flour to thicken your gravy. I’ve included notes below on how to make this gravy gluten-free if needed.
Turkey Pan Drippings: the turkey pan drippings are what give your gravy that delicious rich flavor. After you roast your turkey, you’ll transfer all of the turkey drippings to a large measuring cup. Let them cool to allow the fat and liquid to separate a bit and then skim the layer of fat off the top before using.
Turkey or Chicken Broth: you can use turkey or chicken broth in this recipe. If you prefer, you can use homemade broth or if you’re short on time buy your favorite store-bought brand. If you do buy your broth, be sure to go with a low-sodium version so that you can better control the salt level.
Step Two: Add the butter and let melt. Once the butter is melted, add the flour and whisk until well combined. Let the flour and butter mixture cook for 30 seconds to 1 minute until golden.
Step Three: Slowly whisk in the turkey pan drippings until they are all incorporated.
Step Four: Next, pour in the chicken or turkey broth, whisking continuously as you pour it in. The gravy should thicken as it continues cook. If the gravy is too thick for your liking, you can slowly whisk in another 1/4 cup of broth at a time until it reaches the desired consistency. Lower the heat to low.
Step Five: Give the gravy a taste and season with salt and pepper as needed.
Step Six: Once the gravy has reached your desired consistency, remove it from the heat.
What if I Don’t Have any Pan Drippings?
If you don’t have any pan drippings left from roasting a turkey you can still make this gravy! While the pan drippings are what make this turkey gravy recipe so flavorful, it’s still possible to make things work in a pinch without them.
You’ll need to replace the liquid pan drippings with more broth to make things work. So, for example, instead of using three-fourths a cup of pan drippings you would use an additional three-fourths a cup of broth.
Be sure to taste and season the broth as well. Because you aren’t using any of those flavorful pan drippings you may need to add a bit of extra salt, pepper, and fresh herbs at the end.
Tips and Tricks to Get the Best Turkey Gravy from Drippings
Remove the fat. There is nothing worse than a greasy, oily gravy. It’s just not enjoyable. To prevent a greasy gravy, be sure to remove any fat from the pan drippings prior to using them in the gravy. The easiest way to do this is to remove the turkey drippings from the pan and transfer them to a large measuring cup. Then, let the drippings cool so that the fat rises to the top and hardens and the liquid drippings are underneath. Use a spoon to remove as much of the top layer of solid fat as possible.
Whisk in the drippings and broth slowly. To avoid any lumps in your turkey gravy, slowly whisk in both the drippings and broth to ensure that everything is well incorporated.
Add a splash of cream. If you like your gravy to be a bit on the creamier side, you can add a splash of half and half or whole milk. My mother-in-law gave me this tip and it’s such a good one! I usually start with a tablespoon or so.
Add more liquid. Remember, if your gravy is starting to become too thick you can a bit more broth, a little bit at a time, to thin it out. Just whisk the liquid in bit my bit until you reach the desired consistency.
Salt and pepper to taste. Be sure to taste the gravy and season with enough salt and pepper to taste. Depending on how salty your drippings were you may need more or less salt and pepper.
Finish with fresh herbs. Once the turkey gravy has finished cooking and you’ve removed from the heat feel free to finish it with some fresh herbs. I love adding a little fresh thyme at the very end.
The Best Way to Store and Reheat
You can store your turkey gravy in an air-tight container in the fridge for up to 3-4 days. When you’re ready to reheat you can do so in the microwave or in a small heat over medium-low heat on the stove. The gravy will thicken as it chills so you can a splash of broth while heating if needed.
Can I Freeze My Turkey Gravy?
Yes! You can freeze your gravy if needed. Once the gravy has come to a complete cool, transfer to a freezer safe storage bag or container. Let the gravy thaw in the fridge overnight and then reheat in the microwave or on stovetop.
Can I Make This Recipe Dairy Free?
Yes! Feel free to swap the butter in this recipe for a vegan butter instead. If you can tolerate dairy, you could also use ghee instead of butter. I would stay away from using coconut oil in this recipe as it will give the gravy a coconut oil flavor.
Can I Make This Recipe Gluten Free?
Yes! If you need to make a gluten free version of this turkey gravy recipe, simply swap the all purpose flour for your favorite all purpose gluten free flour.
What to Serve with Homemade Turkey Gravy?
These dishes will pair perfectly with your delicious homemade gravy! Plus I’ve included a few of our favorite Thanksgiving and holiday dishes if you need some more inspiration.
I hope you give this Turkey Gravy a try! It’s easy to make and so delicious.
If you do give this recipe a try, I want to know! Leave a comment with a star rating below. You can also snap a photo & tag @allthehealthythings on INSTAGRAM. Your reviews help support All the Healthy Things and make it possible for me to continue to create the recipes you know and love.
2 cups low-sodium chicken or turkey broth, plus more if desired
salt and pepper, to taste
Heat a skillet over medium heat.
Add the butter and let melt. Once the butter is melted, add the flour and whisk until well combined. Let the flour and butter mixture cook for 30 seconds to 1 minute until golden.
Slowly whisk in the turkey pan drippings until they are all incorporated.
Next, pour in the chicken or turkey broth, whisking continuously as you pour it in. The gravy should thicken as it continues cook. If the gravy is too thick for your liking, you can slowly whisk in another 1/4 cup of broth at a time until it reaches the desired consistency. Lower the heat to low.
Give the gravy a taste and season with salt and pepper as needed.
Once the gravy has reached your desired consistency, remove it from the heat. Transfer to a serving container and serve immediately.
Keywords: turkey gravy recipe, turkey gravy, how to make turkey gravy, how to make gravy from turkey drippings, homemade turkey gravy
Recipe by: Ashlea Carver / All the Healthy Things | Photography by:Eat Love Eats
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