Classic Gravy

Creating classic gravy is a culinary skill that transforms ordinary meals into memorable feasts. This rich, flavorful sauce enhances everything from roasted meats to mashed potatoes, making it a staple in comfort food dining.

Gathering Your Ingredients

You start by assembling the essential components for your gravy: fat (from meat drippings or butter), flour for thickening, and stock or broth for flavor. Seasonings such as salt, pepper, and herbs like thyme or rosemary add depth to the gravy’s taste.

Preparing the Roux

The foundation of your gravy is the roux, a mixture of fat and flour cooked together until golden and smooth. You melt the fat in a pan over medium heat, then whisk in an equal amount of flour. Cooking this mixture for a few minutes eliminates the raw flour taste and develops a rich base for your gravy.

Adding the Liquid

Gradually, you pour in the stock or broth while continuously whisking to prevent lumps. The key is to add the liquid slowly, allowing it to fully integrate with the roux before adding more. This process ensures a smooth, velvety texture for your gravy.

Simmering to Perfection

Once all the liquid is incorporated, you bring the gravy to a gentle simmer. Stirring frequently, you allow it to thicken to your desired consistency. This simmering phase also allows the flavors to meld together beautifully.

Seasoning Your Gravy

Taste-testing your gravy as it simmers is crucial. You adjust the seasonings, adding salt and pepper as needed. For a touch of complexity, a splash of wine or a dash of Worcestershire sauce can be stirred in at this stage.

Serving Suggestions

Your classic gravy is now ready to elevate any dish. Whether poured over a juicy roast, accompanying fluffy mashed potatoes, or used as a dip for crusty bread, this gravy turns simple ingredients into a heartwarming meal.

Personalizing Your Gravy

The beauty of classic gravy lies in its versatility. Feel free to experiment with different types of stock, add sautéed mushrooms or onions for extra flavor, or infuse it with garlic for a more robust taste. Each variation adds a unique twist to this beloved sauce.

Creating classic gravy from scratch is a rewarding process that adds a touch of homemade warmth to any meal. By mastering this fundamental recipe, you open the door to endless culinary creativity and the pleasure of sharing delicious, comforting food with those you love.

Exploring Variations and Flavors

As you become more adept at making classic gravy, you start to explore variations that cater to different dietary needs and preferences. For a gluten-free version, you experiment with cornstarch or arrowroot powder instead of traditional flour, discovering that these alternatives provide a silky texture without the gluten.

Incorporating International Influences

Your culinary curiosity leads you to incorporate flavors from around the world into your gravy recipes. A dash of soy sauce or miso paste introduces an umami depth that pairs wonderfully with beef-based gravies, while a hint of curry powder can transform a simple gravy into an exotic sauce that complements chicken dishes beautifully.

Enhancing with Fresh Herbs

You realize that fresh herbs can dramatically enhance the flavor profile of your gravy. Chopping fresh rosemary, sage, or thyme and adding them towards the end of cooking not only infuses the gravy with aromatic freshness but also adds a pop of color that makes the dish visually appealing.

Mastering the Perfect Consistency

Through trial and error, you learn the art of achieving the perfect gravy consistency. You find that letting the gravy simmer gently allows you to better control its thickness, and you discover the importance of stirring constantly to prevent it from sticking to the pan or becoming too thick.

Creative Serving Ideas

Beyond traditional uses, you get creative with how you serve gravy. You drizzle it over roasted vegetables to add richness, use it as a base for savory pies for an extra flavor boost, or even incorporate it into casseroles for added moisture and depth.

Sharing and Teaching

As your confidence grows, you begin sharing your gravy-making tips with friends and family, teaching them the simple joy of creating this versatile sauce at home. You host cooking sessions where you explore different gravy variations together, turning each gathering into a delicious learning experience.

Reflecting on the Journey

Through your journey of mastering classic gravy, you gain not just a recipe, but an appreciation for the simplicity and richness that good gravy can bring to a meal. You see it as a symbol of comfort and hospitality, a way to bring warmth and flavor to the table. With each batch, you celebrate the traditions behind the dish while embracing the opportunity to add your own creative touch.

Embracing Seasonal Ingredients

You begin to incorporate seasonal ingredients into your gravy, recognizing the potential to elevate its flavor profile. In the fall, a splash of apple cider adds a subtle sweetness that complements pork dishes perfectly. During spring, a hint of lemon zest brings a refreshing lightness to chicken gravy, enhancing the dish with a vibrant, citrusy note.

Experimenting with Textures

Your experimentation doesn’t stop at flavors; you also play with textures. For a chunkier gravy, you add finely diced sautéed mushrooms or onions, which provide a satisfying bite and deepen the gravy’s umami essence. This approach turns each gravy variation into a delightful sensory experience.

Utilizing Leftovers

You discover the joy and efficiency of using leftovers to enrich your gravy. The remains of a Sunday roast, whether it’s chicken, beef, or pork, contribute to a deeply flavorful stock that serves as the perfect base for your next gravy. This sustainable practice not only reduces waste but also ensures that every meal carries the richness of the one before.

Pairing with International Dishes

As you broaden your culinary horizons, you find that your classic gravy pairs beautifully with international dishes. A robust beef gravy becomes the crowning touch on a shepherd’s pie, infusing the traditional English dish with a layer of savory moisture. Similarly, a lighter, herb-infused gravy drizzled over a savory French tart elevates the meal with its complexity and flavor.

Fine-Tuning with Spices

Your exploration leads you to fine-tune your gravy with a variety of spices. A pinch of smoked paprika lends a subtle smokiness that’s particularly appealing with a creamy chicken gravy, while a touch of cumin adds warmth and depth to a lamb-based sauce. Each spice carefully chosen introduces a new dimension to the familiar comfort of gravy.

Celebrating Every Success

Each successful batch of gravy becomes a cause for celebration. You take pride in the nuances of flavor and texture you’ve managed to achieve through careful experimentation and adjustment. These moments of triumph in the kitchen reinforce the value of patience, practice, and creativity in cooking.

Inspiring Others Through Cooking

Your passion for making the perfect gravy inspires others. By sharing your experiences, successes, and even the occasional mishap, you encourage friends and family to embark on their own culinary adventures. Cooking becomes not just a solitary activity but a shared journey of discovery and enjoyment.

Through your continuous exploration and creativity with gravy, you not only master a fundamental culinary skill but also embrace cooking as an art form. Each variation of gravy becomes a testament to your growth as a cook and your dedication to bringing joy and flavor to the table.

FAQs about Classic Gravy

Can I make gravy ahead of time? Yes, you can prepare gravy in advance. Simply cool it down after cooking, transfer it to an airtight container, and refrigerate. Gently reheat it on the stove, adding a little extra broth or water to adjust the consistency if needed.

How can I fix lumpy gravy? To fix lumpy gravy, use a fine mesh strainer to strain it or blend it with an immersion blender until smooth. Always whisk continuously when adding flour to the fat and liquid to prevent lumps from forming in the first place.

What can I do if my gravy is too thin? If your gravy is too thin, simmer it uncovered to reduce and thicken. Alternatively, mix a small amount of cornstarch with water to create a slurry, then whisk it into the gravy and cook for a few minutes until thickened.

How can I make my gravy more flavorful? Enhance your gravy’s flavor by using a rich, homemade stock, adding pan drippings from roasted meat, incorporating aromatic vegetables like garlic or shallots during the cooking process, or finishing it with fresh herbs.

Is it possible to make vegan gravy? Absolutely! For vegan gravy, use vegetable oil or vegan butter as the fat, vegetable broth as the liquid, and soy sauce or nutritional yeast for added depth of flavor.


Mastering the art of classic gravy transforms simple ingredients into a culinary delight that enhances any meal. By understanding the basics of making roux, carefully adding liquid, and seasoning to taste, you can create a rich, flavorful gravy that’s the perfect complement to a variety of dishes. Whether served over mashed potatoes, meat, or vegetables, classic gravy is a testament to the power of simple cooking techniques to produce complex flavors. Embrace the versatility of gravy by experimenting with different ingredients and flavors, making each batch a reflection of your culinary creativity and preferences. Gravy is not just a sauce; it’s a finishing touch that brings warmth, richness, and a sense of occasion to the dining table, turning everyday meals into special gatherings.

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Classic Gravy

  • Author: recipstep
  • Total Time: 20 minutes
  • Yield: About 2 cups 1x
  • Diet: Gluten Free


Classic gravy is a rich, flavorful sauce made from the juices of cooked meat, thickened with flour, and enriched with stock. It’s the perfect accompaniment to roasted meats, mashed potatoes, and a variety of other dishes, adding depth and moisture.



1 chicken stock cube / bouillon cube (sub 2 tsp powder)
1 beef stock cube / bouillon cube (sub 2 tsp powder)
2 1/4 cups (565ml) boiling water
60g/ 4 tbsp butter, unsalted
4 tbsp flour, plain / all purpose
1/2 tsp onion powder (ok to omit or sub garlic powder)
1/4 tsp finely ground black pepper
Salt, if needed


Prepare Stock: Crumble cubes into boiling water, mix to dissolve.
Make Roux: Melt butter in a saucepan over medium heat. Add flour, onion powder, and pepper. Mix into butter with a wooden spoon or whisk.

Incorporate Liquid: While stirring, slowly pour in half the liquid. Once incorporated into the flour butter roux (it will thicken quickly), add remaining liquid and mix.
Thicken: Stir for 1.5 – 2 minutes until it thickens to a gravy consistency (it’s quick as water is already hot). Taste, add more salt and pepper if needed.

Serving Suggestions:
Serve over chops, steak, sausages, veggies, roast chicken, pork, beef, lamb.
Pictured – KFC Potato and Gravy copycat!


Storage: Gravy gets thicker and gets a skin on the surface as it cools. Just use water to thin out, whisk the skin in and heat it up, it will be as good as new. If serving soon, just place a lid on the saucepan then reheat when required.

Gluten-Free Option: Skip flour, ensure stock cubes are gluten-free. Mix 2.5 tbsp cornflour/cornstarch with 3 tbsp water, then add that into the hot stock liquid. Mix, then pour that into the saucepan with melted butter. Will thicken in 2 minutes or so.


  • For a smoother gravy, strain through a fine mesh sieve to remove any lumps.
  • Experiment with adding herbs like thyme or rosemary for added flavor.
  • Gravy can be thinned with additional stock if too thick.

  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Cook Time: 15 minutes
  • Category: Sauce
  • Method: Stovetop
  • Cuisine: International


  • Calories: 60 kcal
  • Sugar: 0 g
  • Sodium: 150 mg
  • Fat: 5 g
  • Saturated Fat: 3 g
  • Carbohydrates: 3 g
  • Fiber: 0 g
  • Protein: 1 g
  • Cholesterol: 12 mg

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