How to Make Perfect Gravy {with or without pan drippings}

How to Make Gravy Without Drippings | In Jennie's Kitchen

It’s game time people—also known as gravy time in these days leading up to Thanksgiving. Have you been wondering how to make perfect gravy with or without pan drippings? You’ve come to the right place. So much thought goes into sides and desserts (my pie crusts are ready, rolled out, and wrapped up in the fridge). But for me, gravy makes or breaks the Thanksgiving meal.

What goes into making perfect? Is it even worth making gravy from scratch (spoiler: YES!)? Do you need pan drippings to make gravy? What about vegetarians and vegans? Today, I’m answering all these questions.

When making gravy, perfect gravy every single time, just remember 2-2-1.

That’s two tablespoons of fat, two tablespoons of flour, and one cup of stock or broth. So, yes, in case you didn’t realize, this also means you can easily adapt this to be a vegetarian or vegan gravy recipe.

How to Make Gravy Without Drippings | In Jennie's Kitchen

Do you need pan drippings to make gravy? How can I make vegan gravy?

No! In this case we’re using butter, but of course, if you have pan drippings, then use that as the fat for your gravy base. You can even use a neutral oil (such as sunflower, grapeseed or canola) or even vegan butter. Obviously, if you’re making vegetarian or vegan gravy, you’ll want to use vegetable broth. Here’s a quick recipe you can make from vegetable peelings and scraps (there’s also this veggie broth and this recipe, too).

Can you make gravy without Wondra?

Absolutely! Regarding flour, I don’t buy into the “instant” flour, most commonly referred to by the brand name, Wondra. I’ve never had an issue with all-purpose flour, so why fix what isn’t broken?

How to Make Gravy Without Drippings | In Jennie's Kitchen

Respect the process, devote your attention to it, or assign a gravy maker, and you’ll be rewarded with truly perfect gravy every time. Not too thick, not too thin, just right, although if you prefer an intensely thickened gravy, then go with 3-2-1 (three tablespoons of fat, 2 tablespoons flour, and 1 cup stock).

Now that you know you can make it without pan drippings, gravy can be a part of your everyday meals.

The recipe below is a doubled up version, so you’ll see it calls for 4 tablespoons of butter, 4 tablespoons of flour, and 2 cups of stock. Feel free to scale down or up as your gravy needs dictate. Most importantly, have a Happy Thanksgiving!How to Make Gravy Without Drippings | In Jennie's Kitchen

Still need some ideas for your Thanksgiving menu? Check out these links below.

33 Recipes To Plan Your Thanksgiving Menu

Mikey’s Stuffing

How to Make Perfect Mashed Potatoes

7 Pie Crust Recipes You Need to Know About

How to Make Gravy Without Drippings | In Jennie's Kitchen

How to Make Perfect Gravy {with or without pan drippings}

Prep Time 1 min
Cook Time 10 mins
Total Time 11 mins


  • 4 tablespoons 56 grams butter, cut into pieces
  • 4 tablespoons 37 grams flour
  • Sea salt & freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 cups 480 ml stock or broth (chicken, beef, or vegetable)


  • Add the butter to a 2-quart pot. Melt over medium-high flame.
  • While stirring the melted butter with a wooden spoon or whisk, sprinkle the flour into the pot. Season with salt and pepper. Keep stirring constantly, cooking until the flour mixture is deeply browned, about 4 minutes.
  • Slowly whisk in the stock, and I mean slowly. If you dump it all in at once, you’ll end up with lumps. Once all the stock has been stirred in, it’ll be on the thin side. Don’t fret. Keep stirring, constantly. Really, I mean this—if you let this go without stirring, you’ll get lumps. Gravy is something you really don’t want to multi-task.
  • Continue cooking the gravy until it thickens to your liking. 6 to 7 minutes is the sweet spot for me. Taste for seasoning, adding more salt and pepper as desired.
  • Remove from heat. It’ll continue to thicken as it sits, and cools. Serve immediately, or store in a container, then heat over low flame when ready to serve. May be made up to 3 days in advance.