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Make the Best Turkey Gravy with this Easy 1,2,3 Recipe!

Updated on November 9, 2012
No Canned Gravy on your Turkey Dinner Table!
No Canned Gravy on your Turkey Dinner Table! | Source


The pure essence of the turkey has got to be in the gravy! For most people, the absence of a Thanksgiving or Christmas turkey gravy means the holiday feast is just not complete. A simply united blend of luscious roasted turkey drippings, turkey broth and a roux (a mixture of flour and fat) placed before the diner is the grand dame of the holiday meal. It's easy to make gravy right in the roasting pan, providing the pan is flame retardant, if not, just combine in a saucepan and forge ahead. Pour off the lovely liquid drippings from the roasting pan, drizzle a bit of the broth into the hot pan and scrape the bottom with a wooden spoon to lift every bit of those cooked-on, flavor rich drippings. Soon the concoction comes together in a ritual of tasteful ingredients that is fit for a King.

A Good Whisk is an Important Tool for making Smooth Turkey Gravy!

My Favorite Stainless Roasting Pan

Beautiful Stainless Steel 16-1/2-Inch Rectangular Roasting  pan with Rack
Beautiful Stainless Steel 16-1/2-Inch Rectangular Roasting pan with Rack

KitchenAid Gourmet Distinctions Roasting Pan

A Heavy Duty Roasting Pan protects your drippings from getting burned while allowing your turkey to roast evenly and completely. Nothing createsthe best drippings and roasted turkey like the proper roasting pan for your turkey!


To Recap The Gravy Formula

For each cup of gravy, use;

  • 1 cup of liquid +
  • 1 tablespoon of fat +
  • 1½ tablespoons of flour

The Turkey Gravy Formula

In most cases you compute the serving size for gravy as 1/3 cup per person. keep the following easy gravy formula in mind and you can't go wrong!

For each cup of gravy, use;

  • 1 cup of liquid +
  • 1 tablespoon of fat +
  • 1½ tablespoons of flour


To make 12 servings of turkey gravy, use;

  • 4 cups of liquid (turkey broth plus de-fatted pan juices) +
  • 4 tablespoons fat +
  • 6 tablespoons of flour

NOTE: If you don't have enough of the turkey pan drippings to make the amount of gravy to serve all of your guest, add homemade or low-sodium store bought broth to make up the liquid difference.

Giblets - Parts is Parts! And they are Always in The Best Turkey Gravy!

Every Great Turkey Gravy may well begin with the Giblets.
Every Great Turkey Gravy may well begin with the Giblets.

Giblet Gravy? What Kind of Bird is a Giblet?

I realize you probably already know what giblets are and that they make a very traditional gravy. If misused, the liver flavour can shift the taste acceptability towards a more trained and gourmet pallet, pleasing only the real die-hard liver-loving gourmets at-that. But, just in case you are not really familiar with turkey giblets; they are a complex flavor rich group of turkey by-products. Turkey giblets usually consist of the heart, liver, gizzards (stomach parts), tail and neck. You can normally find any grouping of these wrapped-up in a package within your turkey's cavity. Because of the aforementioned dominant flavor of the liver, I don't recommend using it in the making of your broth because most diners find the taste too bitter. However, feel free to sautée diced turkey liver in butter, and add it to stuffing for a masterful flavor boost.


First, don't throw away those giblets! They can make a beautifully rich and tasty turkey gravy. And get this, you don't have to simmer them for hours to get that flavor, either. You can fully jump-start the flavor extraction by sweating the giblets in a bit of oil and chopped onion before adding the water, then it only takes about an hour to develop a worthy turkey broth. Here is the bonus, you can make this broth up to three days ahead of time keeping it in the refrigerator, or up to a month if kept in the freezer! Now that's being fully prepared!


To Yield About 3½ Cups of Giblet Gravy you will need:

  • Giblets (no liver)
  • 2 TBL vegetable oil
  • 1 large onion
  • Kosher Salt
  • 4 cups cold water
  • 1 small carrot (peeled and rough chopped)
  • 1 of rib celery (chopped)
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 2 large sprigs each of parsley, sage & thyme
  • 9 black peppercorns

Having the right knife for chopping, carving and boning makes holiday prep-work a breeze!

Chop the neck into 3 pieces with a cleaver, and dice the rest of the turkey giblets coarsely. Heat the oil in a large saucepan over medium-high heat. Add the giblets and neck pieces along with the onion and about ½ teaspoon of Kosher salt. Mix to get everything coated with the oil and salt, cover and cook gently for about 25 minutes, stirring every so-often; the meat will release most of its juices because of salt and heat application, so be certain that you get enough salt into the mix.

Add the water, carrot, celery, bay leaf, thyme, parsley, and peppercorns. Bring the ingredients to a boil, cover, reducing the heat to a mild simmer. Cook the broth for about 45 minutes. Strain the broth and use right away or let it cool. You can clean the neck and tail of the meat and add it along with the chopped giblets to the gravy to enhance the flavor.

Image of giblets complements of

Using a fat-separating cup can make life in the kitchen much easier
Using a fat-separating cup can make life in the kitchen much easier

Instructions For Making Smooth Turkey Gravy

  1. Heat the turkey broth. Pour the juices from the roasting pan into a heat resistant cup. Watch as the fat separates and rises to the top (it takes a few minutes). Spoon off the fat you need for the gravy (using the gravy servings formula above) and add it back into the turkey roasting pan or sauce pan if your roasting pan is not flame retardant. Skim off the remaining fat from the juices and discard (or freeze it for another time). Add the juices to the broth. Place the turkey roasting pan over two burners and set on medium heat. Scatter the flour into the pan. Stir with a whisk or wooden spoon until a golden color is present—about 2 minutes. You must cook-off the flour taste or it will find its way into your finished gravy, and that is not fit for a king.
  2. To prevent lumps from sneaking into your turkey gravy, gradually pour approximately ½ cup of the turkey broth into the pan, whisk this aggressively to break up the flour particles evenly so they blend more finely and smoothly with the liquid. The flour particles can absorb more liquid, keeping the gravy smooth, if a larger amount of the particle surface is exposed to the liquid by whisking. The mixture should thicken very quickly and turn into a paste-like substance. Don't panic, this is a good thing. When you see the mixture thickening, quickly add another ± ½ cup of the broth, while still whisking away. Continue this process until you see the gravy looking more like a silky smooth gravy rather than a thick school paste.
  3. Now it is safe to whisk in the rest of the broth and allow the gravy to rise to a boil. Add a sprig of fresh thyme and a few leaves of fresh sage and simmer for around 5 minutes. Strain the gravy through a sieve (or any medium mesh strainer), adding salt and pepper to taste. Serve in your favorite warmed gravy boat or other warm serving dish.

Comments for "make the Best Turkey Gravy with this Easy 1, 2, 3 Recipe!"

Submit a Comment
  • K9keystrokes profile imageAUTHOR

    India Arnold 

    7 years ago from Northern, California

    2patricias~ Thanks! I love this gravy recipe from start to finish! Creamy smooth, deeply rich turkey flavor, and always a real crowd pleaser. Thanks for the votes and indexing!


  • 2patricias profile image


    7 years ago from Sussex by the Sea

    Another good recipe!

    I have voted this Up and Useful - an am adding it to my Recipe Index for HubPages.

  • praveenadevi profile image


    8 years ago from Trivandrum, Kerala, India

    Nice..Happy ThanksGiving Day..

  • K9keystrokes profile imageAUTHOR

    India Arnold 

    9 years ago from Northern, California

    bettybarnesb~ Thank you so much for stopping by. I love to cook from scratch also! I hope you have a wonderful Christmas.


  • bettybarnesb profile image


    9 years ago from Bartlett, TN

    I love cooking from scratch. Sound like a good recipe.

    Merry Christmas

  • K9keystrokes profile imageAUTHOR

    India Arnold 

    9 years ago from Northern, California

    Just Ask Susan~ I am so glad that you found a few little pointers for making the perfect turkey gravy here today! I hope your gravy is delicious and appreciated! Merry Christmas to you and those close to you!


  • Just Ask Susan profile image

    Susan Zutautas 

    9 years ago from Ontario, Canada

    Great hub and now that you have made me hungry I must go eat. I can never seem to get the gravy right but with the help of your hub gravy this Christmas will be a success! Thanks and Merry Christmas.

  • K9keystrokes profile imageAUTHOR

    India Arnold 

    9 years ago from Northern, California

    Deb~Thank you so much, I am blushing! I am flattered you find the quality of this little turkey gravey hub up to your standards. Happy Thanksgiving!


  • Debhsmomof4 profile image


    9 years ago from New York, New York

    This is a GREAT hub. I think this should be the standard the rest of us try to achieve. Excellent!

  • K9keystrokes profile imageAUTHOR

    India Arnold 

    9 years ago from Northern, California

    Rosie69~Thank you for the comment and you are correct, home made is always best! Happy Turkey day!

  • Rosie69 profile image


    9 years ago

    Very useful information. The best gravy is only made by you, not out of a jar!

  • K9keystrokes profile imageAUTHOR

    India Arnold 

    9 years ago from Northern, California

    music settings313~ I am so glad you are going to give it a go! I am certain that 'Turkey gravy' failure is behind you! Let me know how it turns out for you. Thank you so much for the comments--Happy Holidays!


  • profile image

    music settings313 

    9 years ago

    GOOD IDEA, im befanitly going to try this for thanksgiving. hopefully this will be a succsess after so many thanksgiving fails

  • K9keystrokes profile imageAUTHOR

    India Arnold 

    9 years ago from Northern, California

    Fiddleman~ I too can never get enough gravy and at the Holidays, turkey gravy is my biggest nemesis! Thank you for the read and for the comments. Happy Thanksgiving 2010!

  • profile image


    9 years ago

    Great hub and recipe, the gravy makes everything better, I spread mine over my rice and dressing and sop the plate with my roll. yum yum


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