Skip to Content

Amazing Homemade Gravy Without Drippings Recipe

This perfect and easy homemade gravy without drippings can be made ahead and reheated. Perfect with roast chicken or turkey; Ina’s recipe is great!

Finally, a totally awesome Thanksgiving gravy recipe without drippings!

I am in love with this easy gravy recipe that I adapted from Ina Garten.

No need for pan drippings, or turkey drippings, just chicken broth or turkey stock, and some fresh herbs.

Of course there are a few secret tips that make this a really good gravy.

The best part of this easy recipe is the flavor given by the wine and cognac or brandy.

And yes, the heavy cream adds richness.

It’s amazing how just a little bit adds tons of flavor.

But you do have drippings?

If you want to add drippings make sure they are defatted and then just make up the difference in liquid with your choice of broth or stock to make 2 cups.

Also make sure it is heated before adding to the onion and flour mixture.

If you don’t have fresh herbs, add in a bit of poultry seasoning, along with the salt and pepper.

Gravy without drippings in gravy boat

So let’s get started  making this easy turkey gravy without drippings:

In a large saute pan melt butter and onions, along with the minced garlic cloves over low to medium heat for about 12 mintes or until the onions are lightly browned.

Do this slow if you want delicious gravy.

Now sprinkle the all-purpose flour into the skillet, add the kosher salt and fresh ground black pepper and poultry seasoning if using and cook for a couple of minutes.

Add HOT chicken stock or turkey broth and the cognac or brandy, fresh sage leaves and a bay leaf and cook uncovered for 4 to 5 minutes until thickened.

Stir in 1 tablespoon of white wine and heavy cream if desired.

Trust me. You desire the extra flavor this gives.

Season to taste for salt and pepper.

To be honest, I didn’t grow up with gravy. And if Mom somehow put it on the table I’m sure it was from a jar.

We always smoked our Thanksgiving turkey – and still do – so no roasting pan to collect drippings of any sort.

Once I tried to make a gravy from the smoked turkey, but I was not in love.

Gravy without drippings in ladle

But I will tell you where I fell in love with gravy…

My friend Robin makes really good gravy. In fact it was at her house celebrating the numerous holidays that we celebrate together, that I discovered I really like gravy.

It was at her house that my kids discovered they really like gravy, too!

I have to also mention that it was here at my house on one Thanksgiving Day when Robin’s husband was carving THE turkey.

Thinking he was being helpful he poured the drippings into a measuring cup he saw on the counter that contained a caramel colored liquid.

Well, it was not only a caramel colored liquid, it was caramel for the bread pudding that I had made for dessert!

He didn’t know that I bought gravy that year, probably from Whole Foods!

So began my quest to create an easy homemade gravy that was the best gravy ever.

Thank Ina for that!

I must say that even though several have compared me to Ina, I really haven’t cooked many of Ina’s recipes.

However the ones I have, I must say I’m impressed with their simplicity and flavor.

But let’s backtrack…Seems I do that a lot!

Gravy without drippings, orange napkin, turkey platter, ladle

How do I compare to Ina?

I am short. And Ina is short.

I have kind of a pageboy haircut though without bangs, and Ina has bangs.

I don’t wear a lot of Oxford shirts, but I suppose I could!

Ina and I are both Jewish.

Ina has a Jeffrey and I have a Manservant, and of course, we are both good cooks!

I think Ina and I would get along well, and I certainly could keep up with her when it comes to drinking a Cosmopolitan.

Now that would be fun!

But until that day, I must satisfy myself with just cooking Ina’s gravy!

This year we will be in Philly and I will be in Zoe’s kitchen on Thanksgiving Day.

Words of wisdom to my dear daughter: yes, the kitchen will get dirty and yes, it will get cleaned up!

So don’t stress! Especially with this classic turkey gravy that should be on your table for Thanksgiving dinner.

Gravy with turkey platter

Can this homemade gravy be prepared ahead of time?

I love making gravy ahead of time as it’s one less thing to do before the feast.

This gravy is easily prepared last minute and it can also be prepared ahead and reheated by adding a bit more chicken stock or turkey broth or a dash of heavy cream to reach the consistency you prefer your homemade turkey gravy to be.

Want to make it ahead? Just store it in an airtight container and slowly reheat in the microwave for a perfect make-ahead gravy.

How to Reheat Gravy:

To reheat leftover gravy, I prefer using the microwave.

In a glass measuring cup, heat the amount of gravy desired, along with a bit of stock or water, over low to medium heat.

With my microwave, that would be a power level 6.

Cover with plastic wrap in case it decides to spurt and heat 45 seconds.

Microwaves heat the outside of the food so that’s why you have to whisk to redistribute the food in the container.

Using a mini-whisk, whisk and reheat until desired temperature is reached.

You will probably have to add more broth or heavy cream because gravy when it’s cold solidifies.

Gravy can also be reheated in a medium saucepan while whisking until desired temperature is reached.

Don’t think that the turkey broth needs to come from the turkey.

I found turkey broth right next to the chicken broth in my local grocery.

Gravy without drippings, turkey platter, ladle, orange napkin

Want to know the difference between broth and stock?

Stock is made with bones whereas broth is made with meat and vegetables.

Broth is usually thinner.

To be honest I prefer broth but when I make chicken soup I use a whole chicken which means I use bones and meat and veggies.

Someone please tell me what you call that – besides soup, LOL!

Tip: It doesn’t matter which you use!

It’s amazing that with a few simple ingredients you can make a very flavorful gravy.

This is a perfect gravy and I’ll tell you why.

It’s easy to make and it tastes amazing.

I even broke down and bought a gravy boat when I became a gravy convert!

This simple recipe will forever be a part of my Thanksgiving recipes.

In fact it will be my gravy recipe forever.

No reason to change a good thing.

Happy Thanksgiving!

gravy without drippings

Need Some More?

Make Ahead Duchess Potatoes

Duchess Potatoes

The Ultimate Hot Brown Sandwich

Ultimate Hot Brown Sandwich

Heavy Cream Biscuits

cowboy biscuits

This post may contain affiliate links from which I may or may not earn a small commission.

clock clock iconcutlery cutlery iconflag flag iconfolder folder iconinstagram instagram iconpinterest pinterest iconfacebook facebook iconprint print iconsquares squares iconheart heart iconheart solid heart solid icon
Gravy without drippings in ladle

Homemade Gravy Without Drippings Recipe

5 Stars 4 Stars 3 Stars 2 Stars 1 Star No reviews
  • Author: Abbe Odenwalder
  • Prep Time: 5 Minutes
  • Cook Time: 20 Minutes
  • Total Time: 30 Minutes
  • Yield: 3 cups 1x
  • Category: Sauce
  • Cuisine: American


This simple Ina Garten recipe make the best gravy ever even if you don’t have drippings!


Units Scale

1 stick unsalted butter

1 1/2 c chopped yellow onions

2 minced garlic cloves

1/4 c flour

1 t kosher salt

1/2 t fresh ground black pepper

7 fresh sage leaves

1 bay leaf

Defatted turkey or chicken drippings, plus chicken stock to make 2 cups, HEATED

1 T cognac or brandy

1 T white wine

1 T heavy cream


In a large saute pan, cook the butter, onions and garlic over medium-low heat for 12 to 15 minutes or until the onions are lightly browned. Don’t rush!

Sprinkle the flour into the pan and whisk in, then add the salt and pepper and poultry seasoning, if using.

Cook for 2-3 minutes. Add the hot chicken or turkey stock mixture and Cognac and cook uncovered for 4- 5 minutes until thickened. Add wine and cream, if desired. Check for seasoning and serve.

Recipe rating 5 Stars 4 Stars 3 Stars 2 Stars 1 Star


Thursday 24th of November 2022

This is a delightful read! I swore I would not make gravy once my mom passed. Too much trouble! Well…. darn if I don’t keep trying to recreate hers. This looks wonderful and I will absolutely try this. Thank you for the smiles you brought to my face.