How to Make Perfect Gravy

Food Network Magazine's rules for making perfect gravy, every time.

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Photo by: Levi Brown

Levi Brown

The Rules

To get started, check out our step-by-step instructions for making perfect gravy.

Start the gravy when you start the turkey. You should simmer your broth for at least two hours to flavor it, so you'll want to do this while the turkey roasts.

Get rid of the grease. A degreasing cup works great: The spout pours from the bottom while the fat rises to the top. If you don't have one, pour the drippings into a measuring cup and chill until the fat separates, then spoon it off.

Scrape the pan clean. Those little bits cooked onto the bottom of the roasting pan are key, so pour in a little broth, scrape them free with a wooden spoon and pour each one into your gravy.

Thicken if necessary
. No one likes thin gravy. If you need to thicken quickly, make a slurry (a paste of equal parts water and flour or cornstarch) and whisk it into the hot gravy.

Tip: Don't worry if your gravy has a few lumps. Just strain it before serving.

As you like it: Gravy variations

  • Creamy: Whisk in a splash of cream before serving.
  • Mushroom-y: Sauté 1/2 cup chopped mushroom stems with the onion.
  • Buttery: Whisk in a few tablespoons cold, cut-up butter before serving.
  • Dark: Cook your roux (flour-fat mixture) a little longer, until it's medium to dark brown.
  • Boozy: Add a splash of bourbon, cognac or sherry before serving.
  • Chunky: Add chopped giblets with the drippings.

Make the Perfect Gravy

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The Perfect Gravy

The classic turkey-and-potato topper is much easier than you think!

Photo By: Levi Brown

Step 1

Heat the vegetable oil in a saucepan over medium heat. Add the onion and turkey neck and giblets; cook, stirring, until browned, about 15 minutes. Add the broth, herb sprigs and bay leaf; cover and simmer about 2 hours (do this while the turkey roasts).

Photo By: Levi Brown

Step 2

Once your turkey is done, transfer it to a cutting board to rest and pour the pan drippings into a large degreasing cup. Strain the broth; save the giblets for chunky gravy, if desired.

Photo By: Levi Brown

Step 3

Put the roasting pan on the stovetop over low heat. Add a splash of the broth to the pan and scrape up any browned bits with a wooden spoon. Transfer the liquid and bits to the degreasing cup.

Photo By: Levi Brown

Step 4

The fat will rise to the top of the degreasing cup. Spoon off 1/2 cup fat and transfer to a saucepan. Scatter in the flour; cook over medium heat, stirring in a figure-eight motion with a wooden spoon, until the flour mixture browns slightly, about 4 minutes.

Photo By: Levi Brown

Step 5

Gradually ladle the hot broth into the flour mixture, whisking constantly (this is key, or your gravy will be lumpy). Bring to a boil, then adjust the heat so the gravy simmers gently.

Photo By: Levi Brown

Step 6

Add the remaining turkey drippings to the gravy, leaving any extra fat behind in the degreasing cup. Simmer, whisking occasionally, until the gravy thickens, about 10 minutes. Add the Worcestershire sauce and season with salt and pepper.

Photo By: Levi Brown

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