Giblet Gravy is a classic Southern favorite made with turkey or chicken stock, along with cooked, chopped giblets.
This recipe is the best as it calls for making homemade stock and adding a little cream at the end. You’ll want to pour this easy giblet gravy on everything!
To some, the gravy is what Thanksgiving is all about. On this day of decadence, you have full rein to douse everything on your plate with gravy, from the turkey to the dressing to the mashed potatoes and whatever is in between.
I must confess I’ve never been successful at making regular gravy. Giblet gravy, however, is a little more forgiving. I’ve always been an avid reader of food magazines, and about 25 years ago, I came across a recipe for giblet gravy with cream in Bon Appetit magazine.
I tried it and was hooked. Just the slight addition of 1/4 cup of cream gives this gravy a flavor lift, while still incorporating the traditional giblets and turkey stock and drippings.
How to make giblet gravy
Step 1. Make the stock.
You make the stock while the turkey is cooking: just add your giblets to a pot along with water and broth, onion, celery, carrots, and a bay leaf. Bring to a boil and then turn down to a simmer for about 2 hours.
You can also just simmer the giblets for about 45 minutes or until done and use canned stock for the gravy, although it won’t be as rich and flavorful.
Step 2. Prepare the meat.
Chop the neck meat and giblets into small pieces once cooked.
Step 3. Make the gravy.
You want to be sure to have everything ready before you start cooking the gravy. Measure the cream, chop the giblet meat, measure out the flour, the stock and the reserved turkey pan juices. Otherwise, your gravy can turn into glue while you’re trying to find something or pour out the correct amount.
Melt butter over medium heat in a large, heavy pot. Add flour and whisk for a couple of minutes. Slowly whisk in turkey stock, heavy cream, and up to 1 cup of juices from the roasting turkey.
Cook’s Note: I also save a couple of tablespoons of my pre-baked dressing and throw that in the mix.
Step 4. Cook the gravy.
Simmer the giblet gravy for about 5 minutes, whisking frequently, until it thickens slightly and reaches the consistency you like. Add the chopped meat and giblets and season to taste with pepper. You probably won’t need additional salt if you’re using drippings from the turkey.
And if you want to make traditional Southern giblet gravy, you need to add a chopped, hard-boiled egg.
There you go! Giblet gravy that’s easy and will wow your guests with how awesome it tastes.
Be sure to spread my flavor-packed Herb Butter on your turkey and use those drippings in your gravy!
Can you freeze giblet gravy?
In most cases, yes you can. For this recipe, however, I don’t recommend freezing the gravy because of the cream. Cream-based recipes can separate when thawed.
Can you make ahead?
If you make this easy giblet gravy recipe a few days in advance, you’ll have to omit the drippings from the turkey. For that reason, I always finish this gravy when I’m roasting my turkey.
You can make the stock and chop the giblets in advance and then just finish with the turkey drippings the day of. This will ensure your gravy is perfect, while still saving some time.
Allow the gravy to cool and then store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 2 days.
What to serve with giblet gravy
Um, EVERYTHING? But seriously…
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For the stock:
- Reserved turkey neck, heart, and gizzard
- 6 cups water
- 3 ½ cups low-sodium chicken broth
- 2 carrots, coarsely chopped
- 1 onion, halved
- 1 large celery stalk, chopped
- 1 small bay leaf
- 3 cups turkey stock
- 5 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 5 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- ¼ cup whipping cream
- Cooked, chopped meat from turkey neck and giblets
- 1 hard-boiled egg, chopped (optional)
- 2 tablespoons pre-baked cornbread dressing, (optional)
To make the stock:
- Place turkey neck and giblets in a large saucepan; add 6 cups water and 3 1/2 cups chicken broth, carrots, onion, celery and bay leaf.
- Bring to a boil and then turn down to simmer over medium heat for about 2 hours. Stock should be reduced to about 3 cups.
- Strain stock into a bowl and chop the neck meat and giblets.
To make the gravy:
- Melt 5 tablespoons butter in large saucepan. Whisk in 5 tablespoons all-purpose flour and continue whisking for 2 minutes.
- Slowly whisk in 3 cups turkey stock, 1/4 cup cream, up to 1 cup reserved turkey pan juices and 2 tablespoons pre-baked cornbread dressing.
- Simmer gravy for 5 minutes or until thickened to desired consistency, whisking frequently.
- Add chopped meat and chopped hard-boiled egg and season to taste with pepper.
UPDATE NOTES: This post was originally published November 19, 2011, and on October 10, 2022, was updated with one or more of the following: step-by-step photos, video, updated recipe, new tips.