Best Turkey Gravy

This two-step gravy is well worth the effort, I promise. I recommend preparing the broth one or two days before Thanksgiving. It holds great in the refrigerator. You can make ahead the gravy, too.

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Best Turkey Gravy

Step 1: Flavorful turkey broth/base for the turkey gravy:
If you don’t have pan drippings from a roasted turkey, start with this step first. If you have pan drippings from a roasted turkey, you can skip step 1 and use store-bought broth, instead, to extend the yield.

1 tablespoon canola oil
3-4 turkey necks, each cut in half, blotted dry with a paper towel
1 set giblets from the turkey
1/2 small onion, halved
1/2 carrot, halved
1/2 celery stalk, halved
1/4 cup dry white wine
2 sprigs fresh thyme
1 bay leaf
1/4 teaspoon whole black peppercorns
2 parsley stems
1/4 teaspoon whole coriander

Set a 2-gallon soup pot on high heat. Add the canola oil. When the oil is shimmering, add the turkey necks in a single layer. Brown on all four sides, about 5 minutes per side. Halfway through cooking, add the giblets, onion, carrot, and celery, reducing the heat to medium as needed.

Pour in the wine and cook until most of it has evaporated. Pour in 7 cups water, enough to cover the necks. Add the remaining ingredients. Simmer for 1 1/2 – 2 hours, until the broth is a rich brown color and is flavorful. (Don’t worry, when you add salt at the end when making the gravy, the flavor will really pop then.)

Strain the broth through a fine-mesh strainer or regular strainer lined with a few layers of cheesecloth. Refrigerate so the fat solidifies, and you can easily scrape it off.

Pull off the neck meat and dice the giblets If you’d like to add those back into the gravy at the end, for a chunky gravy.

Makes 5 cups broth

homemade turkey stock

Step 2: Making the Turkey Gravy

If you have pan drippings, you can make the gravy directly in the roast pan and use the existing fat in the pan instead of adding butter. First, scrape all of the drippings into a fat separator.

6 cups turkey broth with the fat scraped off
1/4 cup butter, sliced
1/4 cup all-purpose or bread flour (not whole-grain)
1/2 teaspoon salt, to taste, but start with less if you are using salty pan drippings
1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar or sherry vinegar

Heat the turkey broth in a pot on medium heat and simmer until about 1 cup evaporates.

In a sauce pan on medium-low heat, melt the butter and add the flour. Stir frequently with a wooden spoon for about 5 minutes until it smells like cookies baking.

Ladle in about 1/2 cup broth while whisking. Once the clumps are gone, ladle in some more broth. Simmer for about 5 minutes while whisking frequently to prevent lumps. Taste the gravy to see where it’s at. Season to taste with salt and vinegar. (Add salt gradually, you can always add more but you can’t take it out.) Stir in the chopped neck meat and giblets, if you desire.

Makes nearly 2 cups gravy

Michelle Dudash, RDN, is a registered dietitian nutritionist, author of the best-selling cookbook Clean Eating for Busy Families, and creator of the 4Real Food Reboot, an online meal planning program for weight loss.

You may also enjoy:
Classic Turkey Stuffing (or Dressing) with Sausage
Turkey Stock
Oven Pumpkin Fries with Cumin, Feta Cheese & Pepitas

Best Turkey Gravy

By Team Dudash Published: November 14, 2018

    This two-step gravy is well worth the effort, I promise.

    Ingredients

    Instructions

    1. Making flavorful turkey broth/base for the turkey gravy: If you don’t have pan drippings from a roasted turkey, start with this step first. If you have pan drippings from a roasted turkey, you can skip step 1 and use store-bought broth, instead, to extend the yield. Set a 2-gallon soup pot on high heat. Add the canola oil. When the oil is shimmering, add the turkey necks in a single layer. Brown on all four sides, about 5 minutes per side. Halfway through cooking, add the giblets, onion, carrot, and celery, reducing the heat to medium as needed.
    2. Pour in the wine and cook until most of it has evaporated. Pour in 7 cups water, enough to cover the necks. Add the remaining ingredients. Simmer for 1 1/2 – 2 hours, until the broth is a rich brown color and is flavorful. (Don’t worry, when you add salt at the end when making the gravy, the flavor will really pop then.)
    3. Strain the broth through a fine-mesh strainer or regular strainer lined with a few layers of cheesecloth. Refrigerate so the fat solidifies, and you can easily scrape it off.
    4. Pull off the neck meat and dice the giblets If you’d like to add those back into the gravy at the end, for a chunky gravy.
    5. Making the Turkey Gravy: If you have pan drippings, you can make the gravy directly in the roast pan and use the existing fat in the pan instead of adding butter. First, scrape all of the drippings into a fat separator.
    6. Heat the turkey broth in a pot on medium heat and simmer until about 1 cup evaporates.
    7. In a sauce pan on medium-low heat, melt the butter and add the flour. Stir frequently with a wooden spoon for about 5 minutes until it smells like cookies baking.
    8. Ladle in about 1/2 cup broth while whisking. Once the clumps are gone, ladle in some more broth. Simmer for about 5 minutes while whisking frequently to prevent lumps. Taste the gravy to see where it’s at. Season to taste with salt and vinegar. (Add salt gradually, you can always add more but you can’t take it out.) Stir in the chopped neck meat and giblets, if you desire.

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