Gluten Free Turkey Gravy

Gluten Free Turkey Gravy

Make this gluten free turkey gravy ahead of time with some roasted dark meat turkey parts. Enjoy a stress free holiday!

Mashed potatoes with gravy on white plate

I’m not making a big turkey on Thanksgiving. Now you know. I’m just not making a whole bird. But there will be turkey. And gluten free turkey gravy.

I’m roasting parts (a large breast + thighs and legs). Just no whole bird. And nobody’s gonna miss it, either. But I’ve already made my gravy, and it’s chilling in the refrigerator.

Turkey gravy in a jar on wooden surface

You can use this gluten free turkey gravy recipe to make your gravy with the pan drippings from the fresh turkey you just roasted on the Big Day. Or you can make it ahead, and roast some dark-meat turkey parts (or even some chicken parts if you have trouble finding turkey parts – who’s gonna know?) just for their drippings (full instructions below, after the asterisk).

Even though I have a fat separator (which is really just a measuring cup with a spout at the bottom which allows you to pour off the drippings and stop once you get to the fat, which has risen to the top) I don’t use it. I just chill the fat with the drippings until the drippings gel (thank you, collagen in the bones), and then pour off the fat from the top.

How To Make Gluten Free Turkey Gravy

The gravy will gel in the refrigerator, but it will liquify when you reheat it. Thin it to the proper consistency with more stock, and serve hot. Over …. the most perfect mashed potatoes:

Close up of mashed potatoes with gravy on white plate

How to make the perfect mashed potatoes

Want to make perfect mashed potatoes every time? Peel russet potatoes and chop into 1-inch pieces. Place in a large stockpot and cover with salted water. Bring the water to a rolling boil, and boil the potatoes until they’re just fork tender (about 7 minutes, or longer if the pieces are larger).

Drain and immediately run the potatoes through the fine blade of a food mill (or with a potato masher, if you don’t have a food mill – even a fork will do in a pinch if the potatoes are at the proper consistency). Add 1 tablespoon of unsalted butter and 1 tablespoon sour cream per cup of chopped potatoes, and mix to combine.

Finally, add salt and pepper to taste, and plenty of gravy. Happy Thanksgiving, one and all!


Like this recipe?

Prep time: Cook time: Yield: About 2 1/2 cups gravy


4 tablespoons (56 g) unsalted butter

6 tablespoons (54 g) basic xanthan gum-free flour blend (36 g superfine white rice flour + 12 grams potato starch + 6 grams tapioca starch/flour)

1 1/2 cups (12 fluid ounces) roasted turkey pan drippings, drained of the fat*

Aromatics (like fresh sage leaves, fresh rosemary, fresh thyme and/or fresh parsley) to taste (optional)

2 1/2 cups (20 fluid ounces) low-sodium chicken stock

Salt and pepper to taste


  • Place the butter in a large, heavy-bottom skillet, and melt over medium heat. Add the xanthan gum-free flour blend, and mix to combine. Cook over medium heat, stirring frequently, until the mixture is golden brown and nutty smelling (about 3 minutes, and it will go from very blond to golden brown and fragrant quite suddenly, so pay close attention). Add the pan drippings, and mix to combine. If your pan drippings have solidified, break them up with a spoon and allow them to melt, stirring frequently. Stir until smooth.

  • Add the aromatics, if using, and then 2 cups of the stock. Whisk to combine. Bring the mixture to a simmer over medium heat, and cook, stirring constantly, until thickened (2 to 3 minutes). This will happen quickly since the drippings have a fair amount of collagen from the roasted turkey bones. Remove the solid aromatics (if you used any), and stir in the salt and pepper to taste.

  • If serving immediately, add as much of the remaining stock as desired to achieve your preferred gravy consistency. If you are making the gravy ahead of time, do not add any of remaining stock. Place the gravy in a sealed container and refrigerate for up to 4 days. Before you are ready to serve the gravy, place it in a medium-size heavy-bottom saucepan with the remaining stock, and heat (stirring frequently), until liquified and heated through.

  • *The turkey gravy can be made ahead of time, before roasting the turkey you plan to eat on Thanksgiving Day, by roasting turkey parts separately and using those pan drippings in this recipe.  To do so up to 4 days ahead of time, preheat your oven to 350°F. In a large roasting pan (disposable is fine), place 4 pieces raw dark meat turkey parts (a combination of skin-on bone-in turkey thighs and legs works well) + 2 stalks celery, chopped + 2 large carrots, chopped + 1 large yellow onion, peeled and roughly chopped + 2 stems fresh rosemary. Sprinkle with kosher salt and drizzle with extra-virgin olive oil, then toss to coat. Cover the roasting pan tightly with aluminum foil, and place in the oven for 1 hour. Remove the foil, and continue to roast until the turkey registers 165°F on an instant-read thermometer in the thickest part of the flesh. If you have at least a couple hours to spare, drain off the drippings into a glass container with room for expansion. The fat will rise to the top immediately. Allow the drippings to cool for about 1 hour at room temperature, and then place the glass in the freezer for at least 30 minutes, or until the drippings have begun to solidify. Remove the glass from the freezer and pour off the fat at the top, leaving the solidified drippings below. If you don’t have the time, you can always use one of those fat separator contraptions, with the spout at the bottom so you can pour off the drippings, leaving the fat behind. Continue with the recipe for turkey gravy.



P.S. Help me reach 500 new Bakes Bread Book orders by December 10 to trigger the BIGGER Giveaway and maybe I’ll fly to your house to bake (and break!) gluten free bread!

Comments are closed.

  • Lynn A. Decker
    December 3, 2013 at 4:01 PM

    This was DELICIOUS and EASY! Thank you SO MUCH for helping us make our Thanksgiving gravy so wonderful that we didn’t notice or care that it was GF! (I used the white rice flour/potato starch/tapioca starch mixture.)

  • Stacy
    November 28, 2013 at 10:11 PM

    This was great, and easy! The rest of the guests didn’t even notice the gravy was gluten free! The sour cream apple pie with gf pastry crust was also a big hit! Thanks for helping make our Thanksgiving delicious!

  • Emily
    November 27, 2013 at 11:13 AM

    This looks awesome! But the only flour I have is Better Batter (and I’m not able to get to the store today to get the ingredients necessary for a xanthan gum-free blend). Can I still make this successfully? Is there any way to modify it with other ingredients I might have on hand?
    I attempted to make gravy last year with GF flour (*with* xanthan gum) and it didn’t turn out very well… Lumps remained…

    • November 27, 2013 at 11:22 AM

      Hi, Emily,
      I’m afraid that Better Batter just does not make a good base for gravy, for exactly the reason you mentioned. I would try using something else (like roasted, pureed butternut squash) to thicken your gravy. Sorry!

      • Emily
        November 27, 2013 at 1:17 PM

        Rats! That’s what I was afraid of.
        Do you think corn starch or arrowroot powder would be okay?

  • Kristy B.
    November 26, 2013 at 10:12 PM

    l am shooting for stress free T day too! This will be perfect. I have made everything possible ahead of time. I’m feeding around 20 people so it’s better this way. I want to enjoy the holiday, too! SO excited though because I think my copy of the new boom comes tomorrow.

    • Kristy B.
      November 26, 2013 at 10:14 PM

      The new book that is. Or boom. Boom works too.

      • November 27, 2013 at 11:20 AM

        I spit out a little bit of my coffee reading that, Kristy! I hope your boom arrives today!! And wishing you a stress-free T’giving. :)

  • Laura
    November 26, 2013 at 7:28 PM

    I stumbled upon your blog a few days ago and I love your recipes. I ordered your first cookbook and I can’t wait to dig into it! Thank you!

  • Candice
    November 26, 2013 at 4:09 PM

    Just got an email that my copy will be here on Friday!! And all my ingredients should be here shortly after. I’m thinking of holing myself up in my room and reading it cover to cover. Am I the only weird person who likes reading cookbooks?

    I usually thicken with cornstarch and water for my GF gravy, but this sounds like it would add another level to the flavor. I’m not having a whole turkey either. 5 lbs of roast chicken seemed a better option for two adults and two kids. One that won’t eat meat.

    I have made my pie dough. Will roll it out and make pumpkin pie tomorrow! It looks like pie dough, so far so good:)

    • Jennifer S.
      November 26, 2013 at 5:01 PM

      I just got my notice right now – it says I will have it Monday 12/2. Awesome sauce! :) So excited!!! can’t wait to see people post what they make these upcoming weeks….

  • Mare Masterson
    November 26, 2013 at 1:22 PM

    It appears that Corn Products International is now Ingredion. There is absolutely no mention of Expandex Modified Tapioca Starch on Ingredion’s website.

    • November 26, 2013 at 1:23 PM

      Yes, I know, Mare. It’s a very, very recent development. I have been in contact with them to try to get them to put the Expandex information back up in a visible portion of the site. It’s not gone, just hidden. Nothing about the production or sale of the product has changed.

    • November 26, 2013 at 6:23 PM

      Yes, I know, Mare. It’s a very, very recent development. I have been in contact with them to try to get them to put the Expandex information back up in a visible portion of the site. It’s not gone, just hidden. Nothing about the production or sale of the product has changed.

  • Linda
    November 26, 2013 at 12:32 PM

    We did our gluten free Thanksgiving early this year — last Sunday! It was a glorious day. The gravy I made was very similar to yours except I only used white rice flour and I used soy-free Earth Balance instead of butter. I roasted a turkey breast so there weren’t many pan drippings. That was fine. The gravy was awesome and no one complained at all! When I reheated the next day, I whisked in a little unsweetened coconut milk and — voila! — a new gravy much more like a classic pot pie type of gravy. Nicole, I love your blog and your books and get so many great ideas from them. We are a gluten/dairy/soy-free family so I usually have to make adjustments, but most of the recipes I’ve tried this with have worked great. Not trying it with bread though — way too touchy I think! Keep up the great work!!!

  • Mare Masterson
    November 26, 2013 at 11:12 AM

    I have just been making my gravy the way my mom taught me but with King Arthur GF flour. It has worked great. I put in a little drop of Gravy Master (yes it is gluten free) for added browning.

    Nicole – thank you, thank you, thank you, thank you!!!! Pastry crust for 3 gluten free pies are made and in the fridge. Bottoms are in pie pans. Top crusts not rolled out yet. I will roll them tonight. Can I fill and leave unbaked in fridge until tomorrow, or do I need to bake the pies tonight if I fill them?

    • November 26, 2013 at 1:24 PM

      I would not fill your pies before you are ready to bake them, Mare.

      • Mare Masterson
        November 26, 2013 at 1:33 PM

        Thanks, Nicole.

  • Debrah
    November 26, 2013 at 10:12 AM

    I’m going to try your recipe this year. I have been making a Madera gravy in the past that was from Martha Stewart and I just swap the flour for Better Batter. I want to try the xantham gum free blend. Do you recommend a brand of food scale? Mine doesn’t do grams so I’m in the market for a new one.

    Happy Turkey Day to you and yours, Nicole!

    • November 26, 2013 at 10:24 AM

      Hi, Debrah, I have an Escali scale. It’s this one. Cheap, and it works just fine! Happy Thanksgiving to you too! Oh, and Better Batter is far from ideal for gravy, since it has a fair amount of xanthan gum, which really makes gravy gummy!

      • Debrah
        November 27, 2013 at 4:45 PM

        Thanks, I just ordered the scale. :). Yes, BB made my gravy super gummy. Lol!

  • Jennifer S.
    November 26, 2013 at 9:46 AM

    This looks divine but I copped out and bought some Trader Joe’s GF Turkey Gravy last weekend to take with me when we travel on Thanksgiving day.
    I did get a notice late last week from Amazon that the book would arrive sometime next week. If it arrives this week – I’m going to happy dance around the house!! Any word on your expandex dealer’s online shop opening up again?? Also who won the first contest?

    • November 26, 2013 at 10:22 AM

      Hi, Jennifer!

      I didn’t even realize that Trader Joe’s sold a gluten free turkey gravy. Good for you! The book should ship this week from amazon, if it hasn’t already, so you’ll get it sooner if your method of shipping allows! I know nothing about the Expandex people (which I find incredibly frustrating! so sorry!), but am on the verge of being able to recommend another brand of modified tapioca starch that is more widely available. It’s called Ultratex 3, but it’s stronger than Expandex but I don’t know by how much so I’m still not sure of the conversion. It is readily available on amazon, though. And the first contest winners were announced by email. You didn’t win! But maybe … you’ll win the <a href="https://glutenfreeonashoestring.com/gluten-free-bread-book-big-giveaway/"<BIGGER contest! *Fingers crossed*

      • Jennifer S.
        November 26, 2013 at 10:34 AM

        Yes – I saw the other Jennifer (there are only 5 trillion of us) mention that Ultratex3. Anneke and I tracked some Expandex down at a local store by us, so I think I might have to trek on over there to get it.
        ***FINGERS CROSSED***

        • Anneke
          November 26, 2013 at 10:55 AM

          Oh, yeah, one of us is winning!! :)

        • November 26, 2013 at 1:24 PM

          Well, your mom is doing her part, Anneke! (so adorable!)

        • Anneke
          November 26, 2013 at 8:09 PM

          I know! She says I can come to her house if she wins, I bet Jennifer and Donia could come, too, she has plenty of bedrooms!

        • Jennifer S.
          November 27, 2013 at 9:21 PM

          Man I hope so, I will travel!!!!

        • Jennifer
          November 26, 2013 at 5:49 PM

          Hey Nicole and Jennifer

          I just wanted to update y’all on my Ultratex 8 use.

          I did some research and if I understood correctly Ultratex 3 is stronger than Expandex (by how much no one knows) and Ultratex 8 is stronger than Ultratex 3 (you only need about half the amount of U3).

          For my first batch of Hawaiian rolls I used half the amount of modified tapioca (so 2.5 tsp / cup instead of 5). It was great straight out of the oven but the next day the inside texture had kind of ‘seized’ up as it cooled. Not in a super bad way…it was still a million times better than ‘cake batter bread’…but I knew from what you’ve been writing about this new technique that it shouldn’t do that.

          So for the next batch (the bread sticks) I dropped it down to 2 tsp / cup. It was better but still a little too tight the next day.

          For the third batch (more Hawaiian rolls) I dropped it down to 1 tsp / cup and it was a dream. I pulled a chunk of the dough off and stood there playing with it like adult play dough. I’m the only one in my life who has to eat gluten-free. My very traditional / set in his ways / picky dad ate a roll from of this batch and said he hoped they were going to be our Thanksgiving rolls.

          I got an update from amazon and now my book is supposed to come on Dec 4. Still can’t wait for the kindle version. Do you know if it will have the pictures in it too? (I’ve bought some eBooks before that didn’t have the pics that were in the hard copy version.)

          Happy Thanksgiving. :)

        • Jennifer S.
          November 27, 2013 at 9:22 PM

          Sounds like a dream. I.can’t. Wait.

  • Maryann Jordan
    November 26, 2013 at 9:23 AM

    Going to make this today! Do you think I can double this? Feeding an army tomorrow…. Or would it be better to do in 2 separate batches?

    • November 26, 2013 at 9:29 AM

      Hi, Maryann, You can absolutely double it! Just be sure to use a large enough skillet so that the roux browns. And a happy Thanksgiving to your army and you!

Where should I send your free guide?

By entering your email, you're agreeing to our Privacy Policy. We respect your email privacy, and will never share your information.