Culinary DIY: Gravy

Every fluffy mashed, crunchy roasted, crispy fried, or creamy boiled potato cries out for a bath of concentrated richness of pan juices treated right.

Leftover gravy need never go to waste. So versatile, you’ll run out of gravy before you run out of ways to incorporate it into other recipes—from pot pies, hot sandwiches, and rice dishes to a topping for breakfast hash or Benedict-style egg entrees.

But don’t worry, you can always make more.

01 Title

As always, the first step in any recipe is to assemble and prep your ingredients. Below are the ingredients for creating gravy from some type of roasted meat or poultry. And don’t forget to check out our How To Oven-Roast a Beef Roast tutorial—the same principles apply whether you are roasting beef, pork, lamb, veal, or poultry.


1 large onion, coarsely chopped
3 ribs celery, coarsely chopped
2 cups baby carrots, coarsely chopped
5–6 cloves garlic, bruised, unpeeled
2–4 cups stock (see below)
4–5 sprigs of thyme
8–10 sprigs of parsley
1/2 cup olive oil
1/2 cup flour, or more as needed
Salt and pepper to taste

02 Ingredients

03 Ingredients

Throughout the cooking process, you’ve basted the roast and there is an accumulation of juices among the aromatic ingredients that are rich in flavor. Once you remove the roast from the pan, you’ll be left with just the liquid and aromatics. You should have 2 to 4 cups of liquid. If you don’t have quite that much, add stock to make up to 4 cups total.

04 Juice

Pour the roasting pan solids and juices through a sieve lined with cheesecloth into a large measuring cup or bowl. Press against the solids firmly with the back of a wooden spoon or potato masher to extract as much liquid as possible. Discard the solids.

06 Cheesecloth

De-fat the liquid or pour it into a gravy separator.

07 Fat

In a saucepan with your stove burner on high, heat the olive oil until the first wisp of smoke appears, then mix flour into the hot oil to make a cooked blonde roux for thickening the gravy (1 tablespoon of flour and oil per 1 cup of stock). Stir constantly—roux burns very easily—until smooth. Be sure to scrape all sides of the pan.

08 Roux

Reduce the heat to medium and add the stock to the hot roux in a steady stream, stirring or whisking as you go.

09 Roux and Stock

Stir until the gravy is thick enough to coat the back of a spoon. Taste and adjust with salt or pepper as needed. Pour into a serving vessel and serve hot.

10 Gravy

Don’t worry about a few lumps—you can run the gravy through a sieve into your gravy boat, if necessary.


Other than some type of potato, what’s your favorite food to bathe in gravy? Do you make gravy from scratch? Do you add other ingredients to your homemade gravy such as sautéed mushrooms, caramelized onions, or giblets?



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