This tasty gravy made from pan drippings has
only 41 calories and 1 Weight Watchers Smart Point per serving.
I think a lot of people would agree with me that gravy is the most important part of a big turkey holiday meal. If other dishes don't turn out quite right, a generous drizzle of gravy can rescue the meal. Dry turkey? Dry dressing? Flavorless potatoes? Good gravy on top will fix all of that.
That means that getting the gravy right is essential to a good holiday meal. I've been making this recipe many years and it's a winner. The bonus is that it also happens to be low in calories and fat. Yay! I'll share my tips on making it lump-free, too.
Fat and butter not required. Allow me to bust a myth about making good turkey gravy. Contrary to the advice of most gravy recipes, you can make amazing tasting gravy with a silky, smooth texture without adding butter or using the turkey grease left in the roasting pan. My gravy gets it's flavor from the browned turkey drippings left in the roasting pan, but I remove virtually all of the fat. It's not necessary to make a roux base (cooking flour with fat and butter) as most gravy recipes recommend. You can see for yourself in my photos that my gravy has a beautiful brown color and smooth texture; and it tastes as good as it looks!
Deceptively light. In this post, I'll explain how I've been making low calorie turkey gravy for 35+ years. Even when I prepare my Make-Ahead Turkey Gravy, as explained in a previous post, I use the same method for removing fat and thickening the gravy. No need to tell guests at your holiday table that the gravy is lightened up; it has such full flavor that they'll never know. Or, tell them at the end of the meal so they can feel less guilty about the calories in the pumpkin or pecan pies they're about to eat for dessert!
Complete nutritional information is provided at the end of this post, just below the printable recipe.
You can't have too much gravy! I never want anyone at my table to have to skimp on gravy and I want to have plenty to eat with leftovers. This recipe makes a generous 7 cups. I've kept track of how much gravy gets eaten through the years, and the average is 1/3 cup per person at a Thanksgiving meal. That means this recipe makes 21 servings of gravy. In the unlikely event that you still have some left after eating leftovers, adding any remaining gravy to turkey soup provides a great flavor boost!
Step 1. Assemble the ingredients.
Step 2. Of course, you need to roast a turkey; the gravy's flavor comes from the drippings. For a fool-proof roasted turkey, check out my popular Step-by-Step Guide to The Best Roast Turkey.
While the turkey roasts, you can make some quick broth on the stovetop using the giblets and neck. I explain how here. This broth can then be used in the gravy, although you will need to supplement it with additional broth. (This is optional--you may choose to use all purchased broth instead.)
Here are the drippings left in the bottom of the pan after the roasted turkey is removed. The actual amount of drippings can vary a lot from one turkey to the next--one of the things that can cause anxiety for the novice gravy maker. I'll tell you how to easily adjust for that.
Step 3. Pour the drippings through a fine mesh strainer placed over a large bowl. Press with a rubber spatula to extract as much liquid and flavor as possible.
Step 4. Remove all or part of the fat from the drippings. I personally prefer to remove all of it, but you can leave behind up to 2 tablespoons if you like. There are 3 easy ways to remove the fat:
view on Amazon: grease separator
Step 5. After the fat has been removed, measure the drippings and add enough chicken or turkey broth (store bought or homemade) to have a total of 6 cups of liquid. Pour the stock into a sauce pan on the stovetop.
view on Amazon: mix-and-measure Pyrex bowl
Step 6. Make a slurry that will be used to thicken the gravy.
Formula for making a gravy slurry: 2 tablespoons of flour for each cup of liquid in the gravy
6 cups of broth X 2 tablespoons of flour = 12 tablespoons of flour (3/4 cup)
Pour 1 cup plus 2 tablespoons of additional broth into a mason jar. Then add the flour to the jar. Put the lid on the jar, screw it on tightly, and shake, shake shake until the slurry is evenly mixed and lump free. You can also throw the flour and broth in a blender and mix it until it's smooth, or use a hand-held immersion blender.
Step 7. Heat the drippings/broth in a large sauce pan until it starts steaming. Use a whisk and start rapidly whirling that liquid around. VERY slowly, while you're whisking, pour the slurry into the hot stock. Don't stop whisking. Add the slurry a little at a time until you get the consistency you want. If it's not thick enough, you can make up another batch of slurry--that probably won't be necessary if you follow the slurry formula. If it's too thick, add a more broth a little at a time.Turn the heat down and let it cook for 10 minutes or so to cook the flour (so it doesn't taste raw) and blend the flavors. Add salt and pepper to taste, if needed.
GOT LUMPS? Fear of lumps keeps a lot of people from even attempting gravy making. Here's a well-kept secret. There isn't a cook out there who hasn't made lumpy gravy at least once. Me? I've made lumpy gravy numerous times. It most likely happens when you add the slurry to the liquid too quickly, without stirring enough. LUMPS HAPPEN. When they do, there is a super simple solution. Pour your gravy through a fine wire mesh strainer into whatever container you're using for storing or serving your gravy. Lumps are gone. No worries. You can also use an immersion hand blender to blast those lumps apart.
Leftover gravy will store in the fridge for up to 3 days or in the freezer for up to 3 months. Reheat your gravy on the stove top or in a microwave. Once heated, whisk until it's restored to a smooth consistency. If it's too thick, whisk in some water or chicken broth.
Serve gravy in:
Make it a Yummy day!
1 Weight Watchers SmartPoint per 1/3 cup serving.
Pour this awesome gravy over these other yummy, holiday recipes: