Gravy – Technique

Dear Home Ec 101:

How do you make gravy? Does it all come from a jar?

~Dry in Dover

Heather says:



There is a knack to gravy, but once you understand the secret, it’s simple to make.


Simple Homemade Gravy/ Gravy Technique

When the meat (roast, chicken etc) has finished cooking, pour all of the drippings* into a fat separator. These are one of the few kitchen gadgets I highly recommend. You’ll need to have 2 cups of liquid for this recipe. If there wasn’t enough in the pan you may add stock, canned broth, or bouillon and water.

*Be sure to scrape all the browned bits from the bottom, these are packed with flavor!

Heat 2 1/2 TBSPs of fat (skimmed from the drippings) in a skillet over medium heat. Stir in 1/4 cup flour, stirring constantly with a wooden spatula*. If you don’t have 2 1/2 TBSPs of fat, butter or bacon grease can be used in addition to or instead of skimmed drippings.

*You can use a rubber one, but I find it easier to break up any lumps with a wooden one.

The fat and flour will make a thick paste, keep stirring it over medium heat until the roux (that’s what it’s called) darkens several shades. This step eliminates a pasty, floury taste. Your arm may get, tired, but keep stirring. Call in a stunt double if you have to.

Now, very slowly add 2 cups of the broth/pan drippings to your roux. Start with just a few tablespoons and stir them in completely. Add a little more and stir that in. Each time you add broth you may add a slightly larger amount. If you add the liquid too quickly you’ll end up with lumpy gravy, so be patient Daniel-san.

Once all of your broth has been stirred into the roux bring the gravy to a simmer and season to taste. I like to add a little extra of the herbs used to flavor the main course.

Remove from the heat and serve.

Congratulations, gravy just like Grandma used to make.


  1. deneicer1 on September 10, 2012 at 12:21 pm

     @HeatherSolos Just found your reply by mistake!  LOL … Well, I definitely am not using it correctly if I am supposed to put the plug in the spout first!  I will look for a video on youtube or something…. I just don’t know how to use it.  My Dad bought it for me and it is one of those little gadgets that gets used a couple of times a year.  I don’t know if I will even choose to keep it.

  2. lmccollum on September 9, 2012 at 11:56 pm

    Great way to explain gravy making. I grew up as my grandmother’s “stunt double” and my earliest memories of her are in the kitchen with me standing on a stool at the stove stirring. As a mom, I’ve figured out that this was her way of including me while keeping me out of the way while she finished cooking everything else. 🙂

    • deneicer1 on September 10, 2012 at 12:21 pm

       @lmccollum I love your Grandmother all ready!    MUST remember!  MUST remember!  I may have grandchildren one day…. maybe!

  3. HeatherSolos on September 9, 2011 at 8:51 am

    @deneicer1 I’m not sure, what is it not doing? Do you put the plug in before adding the pan juices?

  4. deneicer1 on September 8, 2011 at 8:10 pm

    Okay ~ I have one of those “fancy” fat separators….and I find it doesn’t work very well. What am I doing wrong?

  5. Alison Moore Smith on January 14, 2011 at 6:06 am

    I make gravy once per year: Thanksgiving. It's easy enough, but I don't usually want the fat.

    Still, think your blog theme is grand — and needed!
    My recent post Paleo Beef Stew

  6. La Rêveuse on August 4, 2008 at 10:00 am

    Lumpy gravy can be saved–that’s what a blender is for. 😉 Just blend and return to the pan and cook until it thickens. Works great.

    This is pretty much how I make mine, too, and it’s yummy. Canned gravy tastes like plastic to me. Ick. Nothing beats homemade pork chop gravy made with milk instead of broth. Yum!

  7. […] Sunday – pot roast, carrots & celery, rice & gravy […]

  8. Teena in Toronto on March 29, 2007 at 9:38 pm

    I used to try to make gravy and finally gave up. Now I just buy the cans and heat ’em up. Yummy 🙂

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