Educators, Dietitians, Nurses, Mental Health & Fitness Professionals
Menu Planning & Recipes

Turkey Gravy

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1. Dealing with excess fat - If the drippings are lean, I don't bother separating any fat from them. If you need to separate the fat however, you can draw off most the fat with a turkey-baster tool, or use a fat separator.

2. Deglazing - use a ½ cup or so of water on the bottom of your turkey roaster pan, over medium heat, stirring constantly to loosen the browned food on the bottom. That's where all your gravy flavor is coming from so do your best to "harvest" it. If you can't heat the pan you used for roasting the turkey, simply do your best, using a little water, to remove all the browned bit to a pan to make your gravy with.

3. Thickening - My rule of thumb on thickener: 1 Tbl. cornstarch per cup of liquid, or 2 Tbl. flour per cup of liquid.  So if I have around a cup of deglazed drippings, I mix 3 Tbl. of flour and 2 Tbl. of cornstarch with ½ c. of COLD water using a fork to mix well leaving no lumps. Then I add another ½ c. of cold water to that and pour into the drippings pan (over medium heat) using a wire whisk, stirring, until it starts bubbling.

  • As it thickens I add another 1½- to 2-cups of water (sometimes part milk). I'm very seat-of-the pants with this. I'm looking for both the consistency and flavor I like. No seasonings or salt are needed.
  • Once the gravy has cooked for 5-minutes or more, and you are happy with the consistency and flavor you are done. If needed, adjust with more thickener/liquid as needed to get what you are looking for.

Note: when flour is used it needs to cook at least 5-minutes to taste "right" (not "raw"). Both cornstarch and flour need a couple minutes at a slow bubble for their starch to structurally change which is what thickens the gravy. And finally, be aware that either corn starch or flour are always initially mixed with COLD water to prevent lumping.

**Estimated** Nutrition information:
Serving size:
¼ cup (4 Tbl.)
: 50     protein: 0.4g         total carbohydrate: 2.2g      total fat: 4.6g
: 0g    saturated fat: 2.9g      sodium: 32.7mg          dietary fiber: 0g

**Unfortunately, there isn't calorie information on the turkey drippings used as a base for your gravy. We also don't know how much fat is left in those drippings you are starting with. So, I based this nutrient analysis on 2 Tbl. flour and 2 Tbl. fat per cup of water. Your gravy may be much leaner. If I drop the fat (to 1 Tbl. from 2) the calories per ¼ c. drop to 30. So, that's a range for you: 30- to 50-calories per ¼ cup.