Homemade Gravy (Without Meat Drippings)


An easy from scratch gravy recipe made without meat drippings so you don’t have to wait for the meat to be done. You can even make gravy ahead of time, reducing stress for holiday dinners such as Thanksgiving and Christmas.

Homemade Gravy Without Meat Drippings | www.chocolatemoosey.com

We are only two days away from Thanksgiving! So far I’ve given you dessert ideas, ranging from pumpkin pie cupcakes and pumpkin tiramisu to no bake pumpkin cheesecake and pumpkin truffles. Now that I have you all hyped up on sugar, how about I share something savory? Once a year (not kidding), I make Homemade Gravy Without Meat Drippings for Thanksgiving. Wait, what? You mean you don’t have to wait for the bird to be done in order to make gravy? That’s right – you can now make gravy ahead of time!

Homemade Gravy Without Meat Drippings

I don’t know how to properly make gravy. I know you take meat drippings, but that’s the problem – I don’t make dishes where there are drippings. I don’t make a pot roast or a whole turkey. I’m not a huge chunk of meat kind of gal. Yes, I do like eating meat, but I’d rather have steak fajitas than meatloaf or pork chops. I know my parents made gravy a few times from those powdered mixes, although I think my mom has made homemade gravy once or twice.

Homemade Gravy Without Meat Drippings

If you’re worried about lack of drippings means lack of flavor, don’t be! Frying the onions adds a huge boost of flavor in addition to the stock of your choice (the more flavorful your stock is, the more flavorful your gravy will be). You can use any type of stock to complement your dish. I typically use chicken, but feel free to use turkey, beef, vegetable, mushroom, pretty much whatever you want. Speaking of onions, if you have picky eaters who freak out over onions or if your onions get a little too done, strain the gravy before serving. Nobody will ever know.

Homemade Gravy Without Meat Drippings
Homemade Gravy Without Meat Drippings
Homemade Gravy Without Meat Drippings
Homemade Gravy Without Meat Drippings

Remember when I said earlier I make gravy only once a year? I mean it. First, I don’t make meals that require gravy. Second, if I do make mashed potatoes, I make them creamy enough that I don’t need gravy. See the mashed potatoes in the pictures? That’s my Creamy Garlic Mashed Potatoes. I put actual garlic cloves in with the potatoes while they are boiling, which gives the dish a very strong garlic flavor (garlic lovers unite!) Of course you can cut back the amount of cloves and not add as much milk.

Homemade Gravy Without Meat Drippings

The best part about making gravy without meat drippings is you do not have to wait until your dinner is done cooking to make the gravy. Maybe for a normal dinner that wouldn’t be a big deal, but this is Thanksgiving we are talking about! You already have a million things going on – prep this, cook that, carve this, serve that. When everything in the oven has about 15 minutes left, I start the gravy. That way, when everything is ready, the gravy is ready too. However, if you don’t want to deal with making gravy during cooking, you can make this the day before and refrigerate. It will thicken greatly when it is cold, so right before serving, put it in a small saucepan (or a bowl for the microwave) and heat until it is smooth and pourable again.

Homemade Gravy Without Meat Drippings

Yields 1 cup (roughly 4-6 servings)

Homemade Gravy (Without Meat Drippings)
Save Recipe


4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) butter
3/4 cup onion, chopped (roughly 1 small onion)
2 tablespoons flour
1 cup broth, any flavor
1 tablespoon heavy cream or milk
Salt to taste


  1. In a large sauce pan, melt the butter. Cook the onion until lightly browned, roughly 5-8 minutes. Whisk in the flour and cook for 1 minute. Whisk in the stock and cook uncovered until thickened, roughly 5 minutes. Whisk in the cream or milk and season with salt to taste (I use roughly 1/2 teaspoon). Serve while hot.*


* You can make this ahead of time since no meat drippings are needed. It will gel up in the fridge, so when you are ready to serve, heat it back up in a sauce pan and whisk until smooth and hot.


Source: Adapted from Brown Eyed Baker

Oh is it turkey time?


Happy Thanksgiving, everyone! I’m taking the rest of the week off from posting and will be back next Tuesday.

Love what you read? Receive new posts in your inbox!

Did you make my recipe?

That makes my heart happy! Please let me know by sharing a photo on my Facebook page or uploading and tagging me on Twitter or Instagram using #chocolatemoosey (Note: If your Instagram account is private, you'll need to @chocolatemoosey as the hashtag won't make your photos public)

Comment Policy

Thank you for your comments! I read every single one and respond when possible. Your comment will show up once approved. I have the right the remove any that are spam or are downright spiteful.


  1. Great recipe and tips … Happy Thanksgiving :-)

  2. Yay kitty!!!

    • Good recipe. Personally, I was raised with gravy and think potatoes are naked without it. I make gravy about twice a week and often make the roux in advance.

      Today I way frying sausages (homemade, naturally) for breakfast, leaving some grease in the frypan – maybe two tablespoons worth. While the pan was still hot and after removing the sausages, I added about the same amount of flour, just eyeballing it. You want a kind of paste that isn’t too greasy. I spread it all over the bottom of the frypan, turned the heat up to near max and just stirred it constantly for about three minutes, at which point it was a rich dark brown.

      I spooned the brown roux into a bowl to use for tonight’s supper. That’s when you can add all the other ingredients and resume the recipe. I like it more or less plain – just salt and pepper, sometimes fried onions. Can’t afford cream and never use it.

      But you can do the browning in advance, cover the mix and refrigerate for a few days in advance of need.

  3. Hahhaa the kitty is hilarious! I’m not super into gravy myself, but boyfriend is, and I hate dealing with drippings! This is awesome!

  4. I’ve made gravy this way before and especially like it for poultry. I do love the traditional version for beef dishes, though. I hope you had a wonderful holiday with your family, Carla!

  5. I am not much of a gravy eater, but my other half loves the stuff. He would be delighted if I had something for his mashed potatoes other than butter :)


  7. As an Australian girl, I love your recipe xoxox thanks heaps

  8. Could you double, triple, etc. this recipe and jar it to just heat up on the spot? (I’m allergic to corn so I can’t buy premade gravy from the store because most have corn starch in it.)

    • I haven’t tried doubling it, but I don’t see why not! If you do store it in the refrigerator, it’ll become almost like jelly. Just dump it into a saucepan and reheat. Once it gets hot, it’ll turn back into liquid.

    • lisa spores says:

      Carla, Have you ever tried using bacon grease? I keep a jar in my fridge for seasoning. I also will put in about a tbsp of coffee if I have some brewed. It adds some depth. I don’t always use milk or cream. Water will do if you don’t have any other on hand. Gravy has always been easy for me for some reason. I really never measure. Same way with my cornbread dressing recipe. I just eyeball it. I really should learn to measure so I can share recipes. Sounds like you like to experiment like I do. I am going to try your easy cheesy stovetop potato recipe for Thanksgiving. Was looking for a stovetop one and yours came up and it was just what I was looking for. Thanks! Happy Thanksgiving!

      • No I haven’t, but bacon grease sounds like a brilliant idea! And sometimes the best recipes are the ones we don’t measure. I have to force myself to “measure” my pasta recipes when I want to share them as I don’t normally measure them when I cook for fun. Happy Thanksgiving!

  9. I was making meat loaf for dinner tonight with the usual corn on the cob and mashed taters. I was lazy and used the boxed mashed potatoes so I really needed gravy. I opened up my cupboard to find – no gravy powder mix. (OK, the stuff isn’t the best, but my meatloaf needs no gravy) just the potatoes do. So I scrambled to the internet and found your recipe. YUM, EASY and YUM!!!!! Admittedly, I hate onions, I hate cooking with onions and I hate touching onions so I left them out. I added a little onion powder and a little Kitchen bouquet for flavor. Worked perfect!!!!!

  10. I was brought up in the Netherlands after the war when meat was scarce but I remember my mother making gravy that tasted just like the real thing from virtually nothing. I was too young then to ask for the recipe and now that I want to know it, it’s too late, she passed away many years ago.
    I do seem to remember she used onions (the smell remains in my memory)
    I’ve tried to replicate her method in the past without much luck so far.
    Right now, I have a small, chopped finely, onion and 2 cloves of garlic, simmering away in my frypan and will sprinkle some flour over it when they are sort-of brown, then let the flour brown a little before adding water with chicken stock cubes to thicken.
    I’m sure mum never used heavy cream in her gravy though , but I happen to have some in the fridge, so will add some!

  11. I made some dressing for Thanksgiving, and it came out a little dry. I found your gravy recipe, and it made my dressing taste a lot better. Thanks for sharing!

  12. I was making it for Italian-style turkey, so instead of heavy cream, I added sour cream. I also added oregano toenhance the Italian flavor. Turned out great! What an easy recipe!

  13. Hey I’m out of butter can this be made with Parkay?

    • As long as it’s in stick form and not the tub kind you spread. My parents only have margarine, so that’s what I ended up using this year for Thanksgiving.

  14. Ok so I was also put in charge of gravy this year. I always deep fry my turkey and the others deal with all the rest. This year my wife and I were hosting the whole shebang so my responsibilities grew. Normally the drippings make the gravy as you all know but when you deep fry no drippings so I researched and this recipe seemed easiest and sounded great. Let me tell you I just made the gravy and it’s 3:15am Christmas Eve. I can rest easy and focus on the deep fry, merriment and beer. Thank you for this. I would like to try the garlic next time as Emma suggested. Oh I added bacon fat while the onions were caramelizing. That may just be the ticket. Woop Bam!

  15. Turned out really tasty, went perfectly with my roasted chicken. Liked how as soon as my chicken was cooked I could serve it up, didn’t have to wait to make the gravy until after.

  16. Elizabeth says:

    I’ve now made this gravy twice and love it! So simple and tasty! I do find it gets a bit thick with 2 tbs of flour per cup of liquid, but it works out perfectly as I usually make my stock too strong and then need to thin it out! Thanks for the great recipe!

  17. will dukeshire says:

    I made this gravy last night with home made fish and chips, my wife luved it so much she said it was the best gravy she ever tasted!! Her father and she didn’t even save me any! LOL so I’m making it for lunch …shes at work so all is for ME! THANK YOU SO MUCH!

  18. This is a great recipe! I was just wondering though: Does the recipe make a gravy as brown as the one in the picture? I’ve seen similar gravy recipes out there but they’ve always made a light brown almost-white type gravy but yours looks a wonderful shade of brown! Did you add any browning color to it? Thank you!

    • No browning color added! For the gravy in the picture, I let my onions get very brown, which contributes to the darker color. If your onions are soft but not too brown, it’ll be lighter in color. Just don’t burn your onions like I did the first time I attempted this recipe :)

  19. I absolutley love this! It was perfect gravy! Thanks so much!!!

  20. I’m wondering what type of broth tastes the best with this recipe, beef or chicken? I plan to serve this on mashed potatoes. Thanks!

    • Honestly, it’s personal preference! For me, I prefer chicken over beef. It also depends on what you’re making for the meal. For example, if you’re making a steak or pot roast, I would go with beef. If you’re making a roasted chicken or even turkey (for Thanksgiving), I would go with chicken. Hope that helps!

  21. I made this with a cup of water instead of broth and 1 T Braggs Liquid Aminos. It was delicious.

  22. Shellice Maraccini says:

    This is the best way to make gravy without drippings. Although drippings make the best gravy, I rarely (by rarely I mean maybe twice a year) make a meal where I will have drippings to use. Tonight I am doing parmesan crusted chicken cutlets with mashed potatoes. So I am doing a no-drip gravy. While searching the Web for any new ideas for this, I came across your recipe. It is written perfectly. Very similar to what my mother taught me. I must admit, I do resort to packaged gravy from time to time, so I always have it on hand. And when I do make gravy from scratch, I will add a couple dashes of the packaged stuff to give it more color and flavor. It works great. The holidays are right around the corner so I hope everyone finds their way to your recipe. It is a time saver and a crowd pleaser.

  23. This recipe was delicious and oh so easy to make! Thank you!

  24. Patricia Pfrogner says:

    I love this recipe, was so easy and delicious. Thanks!!!

  25. This gravy was amazing!!!! thank you for an awesome recipe

  26. Jesse Saleh says:

    This gravey was amazeballs. Thank you for making my left over roast chicken pure delight.

  27. Tracey byram says:

    I like milk chocolate

  28. I make this recipe all the time. I always double the recipe and add one chicken bullion cube because i like my gravy to taste like soup :). But I am so happy to be able to make awesome gravy without actually using meat!

  29. Awesome! First time I ever made gravy without meat drippings. Thanks!!

  30. I needed some brown gravy for my oven baked pork chops and rice, but didn’t have any dripping around. This recipe made one of the best gravies I’ve ever eaten. I like my gravy a little on the thinner side, so I added a good bit more milk right before serving. The onion gives it a very unique flavor that complimented the pork chops very well. Thank you!

  31. Followed this recipe to the tee and used beef broth, however, the color looked nothing like the picture. Instead of brown, it was a creamy color which was not appealing, although it tasted better than it looked. Not sure if I’ll used the recipe again.

  32. Celia Wickersham says:

    Had leftover turkey and dressing from a friend, but no gravy! I am not a great cook, but this was really easy and delicious! I can’t wait to make it again! Thank you!

  33. How many servings is this recipe?


  1. […] Creamy Garlic Mashed Potatoes by Chocolate Moosey (also check out Homemade Gravy without Meat Drippings) […]

Speak Your Mind