Chef's Choice 60 Days of Holiday Edition: Gravy

Nov, 25 2020


Chef's Choice 60 Days of Holiday Edition: Gravy

Traditional Pan Dripping Turkey Giblet Gravy

(Gramma Vera's Turkey Gravy)

Yields: +/- 12 servings

This recipe includes the neck and giblets(that little pack you find inside the turkey). This is the classic, old school gravy my gramma made. You don't have to use the giblets. It's still delicious without it. To make this gravy, you'll need to make sure you have a good roasting pan for your turkey so you can get all those precious drippings!

What are Drippings? Those are what's left in the pan after cooking the turkey, including any little pieces that have fallen off the bird and the all-important fat.

Giblets? So, what's inside that little bag we usually throw away? That bag will usually include the neck, liver, heart, and gizzard. ( I throw the liver away. Its flavor is a bit too strong and funky for me when cooked in the gravy) Always remove the giblets before cooking your turkey.



  • Turkey drippings
  • ½ cup all-purpose flour
  • 4 cups low-sodium chicken broth or homemade chicken/turkey broth.
  • Giblets and neck (optional)
  • Salt and pepper to taste



  1. Place the neck, heart, and gizzard in a saucepan and completely cover with cold water. (Remember, I discard the liver but, you do not have to.) Bring to a boil and then down to a simmer. Cook for one hour.
  2. Remove giblets and neck from the liquid. Discard cooking liquid.
  3. Once cool enough to touch, remove meat from the neck with your fingers. Finely chop the heart and gizzard. Set aside.
  4. When the turkey is removed from the oven, remove the turkey from the roasting pan and loosely tent with aluminum foil.
  5. Pour all liquid in the pan into a bowl, being careful to get as many little bits off the bottom of the pan as possible. Allow to cool enough for the fat to separate from stock. Remove as much fat from the stock as possible.
  6. To make a roux, add 1 cup of drippings to a large saucepan. On medium heat, add flour and stir. Once incorporated. Continue stirring until the mixture turns a reddish-brown.
  7. Add the chicken broth and any leftover drippings. Stir until thickened to your liking, about 5 minutes. Once the gravy has tightened to your liking, add giblets and season with salt and pepper. If gravy is too tight, add a little chicken stock or water to loosen it. Readjust the seasoning.


Chef's Notes:

  • Add fresh herbs at the end, when tasting for seasoning. I like to add a pinch of rosemary and thyme.
  • Add a pinch of cayenne.
  • Deglaze pan after removing the turkey with white wine and/or chicken broth to get as much fond (little bits) off the bottom of the pan as possible. Try Marsala wine!
  • Add a dash of fresh lemon juice. It will brighten all the flavors.
  • To thicken the gravy, add a slurry of 1 tablespoon cornstarch and 1 tablespoon water to the gravy. Bring to a boil then, immediately down to simmer. Adjust seasoning once again.


Thanksgiving Gravy

Yields: +/- 8 servings 

What I like best about this recipe is that it is made ahead of time. I don't know about you but, I hate scrambling that last two hours before dinner is served. Invariably, I miss something along the way, don't have enough oven/burner space for everything I'm preparing or, worse yet, overcook something because I'm moving faster than my brain! This year try this recipe instead of rushing to get that gravy on the table! (It's also great for potlucks.)



  • 1 large onion, chopped medium
  • 2 carrots, chopped medium
  • 2 celery rib, chopped medium
  • 2 teaspoons vegetable oil
  • 2 large turkey wings
  • 10 cups + 2 tablespoons cold water
  • fresh thyme, 4-6 sprigs
  • 2 cloves garlic, split in half,
  • 3 tablespoon unsalted butter
  • ½ cup all-purpose flour
  • salt and pepper to taste



  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees
  2. Place mirepoix (the onions, carrots and celery) into a roasting pan or heavy-bottomed oven-proof skillet, pour oil into the pan and mix together. Place turkey wings on top of the mirepoix.
  3. Place roasting pan in oven and roast for 60 minutes. Toss vegetables around after 30 minutes. You want them to get nicely browned and caramelized but, not burn. Make sure the turkey wings are back on top of vegetables.
  4. Transfer the mirepoix and turkey wings to a 6 or 8-quart stockpot. Add 10-cups water, fresh thyme, and garlic
  5. In the now-empty roasting pan, place it on a stove burner and heat. Pour in two tablespoons of water and loosen all the brown bits (fond) on the bottom of the pan. Pour into the stockpot.
  6. Bring stock to a boil then, immediately turn down to a simmer. Simmer on lowest setting for 3 hours. During this time, you will see fat accumulate on top. Use a spoon to scoop the fat off and reserve about two tablespoons. The rest can be thrown away.
  7. Strain turkey stock. Press as much liquid out of the solid ingredients as possible. Discard the solids.(All of their flavor is now in the liquid.)
  8. In a 3-quart saucepan, heat butter and reserved turkey fat. Add flour and stir continuously until it becomes slightly browned and smells like pie dough.
  9. Stirring continuously, slowly add turkey stock
  10. Increase heat to high and simmer until thickened and warmed through.
  11. Once the gravy is thickened to your liking, be sure to adjust salt and pepper to taste.


Chef's Notes:

  • Add fresh herbs at the end, when tasting for seasoning. I like to add a pinch of rosemary and thyme.
  • Add a pinch of cayenne.
  • Once your turkey is out of the oven, you may have some drippings left in the pan. Add those to your gravy and taste for seasoning again.
  • Instead of adding water to the bottom of the pan (deglazing), add white or Marsala wine.

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