by Olena

Turkey Gravy Recipe

by Olena

5 from 1 reviews

Easy Turkey Gravy Recipe you can make with or without turkey drippings. See how easy it is to make homemade gravy without unhealthy packets using simple ingredients.

Turkey Gravy Recipe

Turkey Gravy

This turkey gravy is absolutely delicious made with or without drippings. I would argue that gravy is the best part of Thanksgiving table. It binds all dishes together!

I didn’t grow up eating neither turkey nor gravy. Nor even celebrating Thanksgiving or Christmas. I come from a very small non-religious family and our Ukrainian Holiday table revolved around New Year’s, which included a lot of mayo based salads. But hey, there were mashed potatoes. 🙂

turkey breast roast on a rack

Past 19 years we have been celebrating Canadian Thanksgiving and Christmas with traditional table. Because this is our “new” home. My boys absolutely love gravy. Since it’s just 4 of us, I often make a turkey roast. Over the years I learnt how to make the best gravy even without full turkey drippings. With what I have on hand.

Our Holiday table absolutely has to have homemade gravy or I will be “fired”. Imagine who will be cooking?! Yes, there is a line up of people to cook in my house haha. Um, not really.

So, here is how I make gravy from scratch a million different ways.

How to Make Gravy from Turkey Drippings

Turkey Gravy in a metal pot and mashed potatoes and turkey by the side

  • Use straight drippings or skim the fat. If you let turkey drippings cool off, fat will solidify on top. You can remove it with a fork and discard.
  • If you want lighter gravy and have no time to skim the fat, use half drippings and half water.
  • Make slurry by whisking 1 tbsp of cornstarch plus 2 tbsp cold water for each cup of drippings in a separate small bowl.
  • Bring desired amount of drippings to a boil in a small pot and whisk in previously prepared slurry with cornstarch. Make sure to whisk slurry again right before adding to hot drippings. Cornstarch settles very fast.
  • Simmer on medium heat for 1-2 minutes or until gravy has thickened.
  • Taste and adjust salt and pepper to taste.

How to Make Turkey Gravy Without Drippings

hand holding stainless steel pot with drippings and butterstainless steel pot with drippings and cornstarch and fork

“Drippings” from a boneless turkey breast roast are not true turkey drippings. Well, kind of. They have seasonings from the breast but completely lack fat.

And often there is not much juice left at the bottom of the roasting pan after baking turkey breast uncovered in the oven. No worries!

  • Pour desired amount of boiling water to the bottom of the pan and scrape off the drippings with a spoon to combine.
  • Or use any low sodium broth like vegetable, chicken, beef or mushroom broth as a base and omit any drippings altogether.
  • For each cup of “drippings” or broth, add 1 tbsp butter.
  • Then follow the recipe above for turkey gravy with drippings.

All you have left to do is bring mixture to a boil to melt the butter and then thicken with a slurry. That’s it. I promise you, gravy without turkey drippings is just as delicious.

And below I give you even more tips and variations for perfect gravy.

Turkey Gravy Variations

  • Creamy: Add whole milk. For each 1 cup of gravy, add 1/4 cup milk. This is the gravy pictured, see its light brown colour? Milk makes gravy so creamy and adds another layer of flavor.
  • Mushroom: Saute sliced brown mushrooms and add them to gravy.
  • If Using Broth: Gravy would benefit from more flavorings like smoked paprika, dried thyme or even liquid smoke.
  • Thickened with Flour: You can thicken gravy with all-purpose or whole wheat flour instead of cornstarch. Just double the amount.

mashed potatoes with gravy, sliced turkey breast garnished with cranberries and black fork on a plate

Store and Make Ahead

Store leftover gravy in an airtight glass container for up to 5 days.

Make ahead gravy by following the recipe. Cool and refrigerate in a container for up to 2-3 days. To reheat, simmer on low in a pot with a splash of water or low sodium broth to thin gravy out. Add small amount before heating, let gravy heat up (about 10 minutes depending on amount) and see how is the consistency. It’s all up to your judgement. 🙂

More Healthy Thanksgiving Recipes

turkey gravy

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Turkey Gravy Recipe

5 from 1 reviews

Easy Turkey Gravy Recipe you can make with or without turkey drippings. See how easy it is to make homemade gravy without unhealthy packets using simple ingredients.

  • Author: Olena of ifoodreal.com
  • Prep Time: 1 minute
  • Cook Time: 2 minutes
  • Total Time: 3 minutes
  • Yield: 1 cup (4 servings) 1x
  • Category: Side Dish
  • Method: Stove
  • Cuisine: North American
Scale

Ingredients

  • 1 cup drippings or any low sodium broth
  • 1 tbsp cornstarch or 2 tbsp flour
  • 1 tbsp butter and seasonings (if not using drippings)

Instructions

How to Make Gravy from Turkey Drippings

  1. Use straight drippings or skim the fat. If you let turkey drippings cool off, fat will solidify on top. You can remove it with a fork and discard.
  2. If you want lighter gravy and have no time to skim the fat, use half drippings and half water.
  3. Make slurry by whisking 1 tbsp of cornstarch plus 2 tbsp cold water for each cup of drippings in a separate small bowl.
  4. Bring desired amount of drippings to a boil in a small pot and whisk in previously prepared slurry with cornstarch. Make sure to whisk slurry again right before adding to hot drippings. Cornstarch settles very fast.
  5. Simmer on medium heat for 1-2 minutes or until gravy has thickened.
  6. Taste and adjust salt and pepper to taste.

How to Make Turkey Gravy Without Drippings

  1. If you roasted a turkey breast, pour desired amount of boiling water to the bottom of the pan and scrape off the drippings with a spoon to combine. Or use any low sodium broth like vegetable, chicken, beef or mushroom broth as a base and omit any drippings altogether.
  2. Add to the pot along with 1 tbsp of butter for each cup of “drippings” or broth. Bring to a boil and make sure butter has melted.
  3. Make slurry by whisking 1 tbsp of cornstarch plus 2 tbsp cold water for each cup of drippings in a separate small bowl.
  4. Bring desired amount of drippings to a boil in a small pot and whisk in previously prepared slurry with cornstarch. Make sure to whisk slurry again right before adding to hot drippings. Cornstarch settles very fast.
  5. Simmer on medium heat for 1-2 minutes or until gravy has thickened.
  6. Taste and adjust salt and pepper to taste.

Notes

Gravy Variations

  • Creamy: Add whole milk. For each 1 cup of gravy, add 1/4 cup milk. This is the gravy pictured, see its light brown colour? Milk makes gravy so creamy and adds another layer of flavor.
  • Mushroom: Saute sliced brown mushrooms and add them to gravy.
  • If Using Broth: Gravy would benefit from more flavorings like smoked paprika, dried thyme or even liquid smoke.
  • Thickened with Flour: You can thicken gravy with all-purpose or whole wheat flour instead of cornstarch. Just double the amount.

Nutritional info is very approximate as it will vary on drippings. Just eat it.:)

 Did you make this recipe? Please give it a star rating in the comments.

olena osipov in the studio

Hello and welcome to iFOODreal.

My name is Olena Osipov. I'm a mom to 2 boys and a wife to Alex. And this is our healthy family recipes blog. I grew up in Ukraine on real food. As an adult, I tried many diets without results. Now for over 10 years, I cook quick and easy healthy meals for my family. I can help you with “What’s for dinner?” too.

What You Will Find Here

Healthy family recipes with simple ingredients. Many are inspired by my Ukrainian heritage. I share mostly dinner recipes because it just never ends... I’m obsessed with healthy freezer meals. And more than in love with my Instant Pot.

A Little More About Me

Originally from Ukraine, I now reside on magic Vancouver Island in British Columbia, Canada with my family. I started this blog in 2012 when I ended up at home with 2 small kids unemployed and a wee bit chubby.

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