A perfectly cooked Thanksgiving turkey is nothing without gravy, but somehow the sauce is always the hardest to master. If you have suffered from runny or lumpy gravy far too long and are determined to make this your year of a standout gravy, look no further than these foolproof recipes. We’ve turned to some of your favorite celebrity chefs and Food Network personalities for their tried-and-true gravy recipes, and we promise they’ll turn you into a total pro.
Alton Brown: With a Secret Ingredient
Alton Brown’s best gravy ever doesn’t just call for chicken stock; it calls for wine, too. You might think that white wine would go with turkey gravy, but Alton goes with red wine instead for the rich flavor that it adds to the hearty gravy. The stock and wine work together to pull the juicy bits of turkey from the bottom of the roasting pan, and the liquid reduces to form a deeply colored, gorgeous sauce. In the recipe, Alton reminds his readers, “Remember, your gravy should be slightly thin in the pan as it will thicken once you serve it.”
Giada De Laurentiis: A Hint of Sophistication
Usually it’s Mario Batali who adds truffle to everything, but when it comes to turkey gravy, Giada’s on board. Giada’s crispy truffled turkey is slathered in truffle butter, and the accompanying gravy gets a dash of truffle salt to enhance the earthy flavor even more.
Ina Garten: Booze Makes It Better
Don’t forget to pick up a bottle of brandy or Cognac if you plan on making Ina Garten’s homemade gravy. Ina sweats onions in a generous amount of butter before adding flour, salt, pepper, and chicken stock. Things take an interesting (and delicious) turn when Cognac or brandy and white wine join the party, and a tablespoon of heavy cream rounds it all out and delivers a smooth consistency.
Tyler Florence: Tons of Garlic and Herbs
Chef Tyler Florence is a huge fan of garlic and herbs (for good reason), and his roasted turkey gravy recipe makes a strong case for the flavor combination. The flavor-packed gravy calls for a whole head of garlic, the classic mirepoix (onion, carrot, and celery), and plenty of fresh herbs like sage, thyme, and parsley. For a truly memorable meal, pair it with Tyler Florence’s epic mashed potatoes.
Gordon Ramsay: With a Touch of Crunch
You wouldn’t expect Gordon Ramsay’s gravy recipe to be basic, and it’s anything but. Gordon’s recipe calls for fresh tomatoes that simmer with onions, bacon, dry cider, and stock until all the tomatoes have softened and the flavors have married. Once the gravy has reduced and thickened, chopped walnuts get added to the mix for a crunchy contrast to the soft turkey pieces.