When you’re talking Thanksgiving, there’s no gravy more flavorful than old-fashioned turkey giblet gravy. Made with pan drippings, giblets, and turkey broth, this gravy adds so much flavor to turkey, mashed potatoes, and anything else you want to pour it on!

Giblet gravy ladled over turkey and mashed potatoes in white plate.


 

If you’re looking for maximum flavor in a gravy, giblet gravy is the way to go!

For our recipe, we combine the turkey giblets (excluding the liver), with a homemade turkey broth, roasted turkey pan drippings, wine, and gravy for the tastiest giblet gravy!

This gravy adds so much flavor when poured over turkey and your favorite sides such as mashed potatoes and sage and onion stuffing.

Recipe Ingredients

All ingredients for this recipe are shown in the pic below and special notes are made in this bulleted list to assist you.

Ingredients shown: celery, carrot, onion, flour, butter, thyme, sage, bay leaf, white wine, turkey parts and giblets, and water.
  • Giblets. Turkey giblets are usually packaged along with a full turkey and include the heart, gizzard, neck, and liver. We do not include the liver in our giblet gravy recipe because the minerally flavor can be overpowering.
  • Backbone. We used the backbone removed from our spatchcocked turkey, however, it is optional and you can easily omit it if you’re not planning to spatchcock your bird.
  • Butter. Unsalted butter for both the broth and for finishing the gravy.
  • Carrots, celery, and onion. For additional flavor.
  • Herbs. For added Fall flavor, we combine thyme, sage, and bay leaf.
  • White wine. This gives great flavor to the giblet gravy, but you can omit if you prefer to not use alcohol. Use a dry white, like sauvignon blanc or pinot grigio.
  • Turkey drippings. Pan drippings from our roasted spatchcock turkey. You can use the pan drippings from any roasted turkey.

See the recipe card for full information on ingredients and quantities.

How to make it

Each number corresponds to the numbered written steps below.

  1. Chop 1 medium onion, 1 medium carrot, and 2 celery ribs and set aside. Heat a large pot to medium heat and add 3 tablespoons of butter along with the turkey neck, the giblets (minus the liver), and the backbone if using. Saute for 7-10 minutes or until browned. (Photo #1)
  2. Add the chopped vegetables and continue to cook for another 5-7 minutes or until soft. (Photo #2)
Giblet gravy recipe collage number one showing browning of giblets in pot, sauteing of vegetables, and bringing pot to boil.
  1. Add 6 cups of water to the pot along with 1 bay leaf, 5 large sage leaves, and 5 sprigs of thyme and bring to a boil. (Photo #3)
  2. Once boiling, reduce the heat to low, partially cover the pot with a lid, and simmer for 2 hours. (Photo #4)
  3. After 2 hours remove the backbone and discard. Remove the neck and set aside. (Photo #5)
  4. Strain the vegetables and using a spoon, press the vegetables to release some of their liquid into the broth. The vegetables can then be discarded (Photo #6). Note: it’s recommended to not use and puree the vegetables since they could have bone fragments from the backbone.
Recipe collage number two showing removing of turkey parts, straining the broth, mincing giblets, and sauteing the giblets in butter.
  1. Remove the meat from the turkey neck and mince it along with the giblets and set aside. (Photo #7)
  2. If you’ve already roasted a turkey, pour the pan drippings into a container and let them sit for a few minutes. Then remove the top layer of fat and set the drippings aside. Note: If you just roasted a turkey, you can use 6 tablespoons of skimmed-off turkey fat instead of butter in this step. Place the roasting pan or large pot over medium heat and add 6 tablespoons of unsalted butter (or turkey fat) and let it melt along with the giblet/neck meat. Saute for 3 minutes. (Photo #8)
  3. Add 1/2 cup of all-purpose flour and whisk it in stirring frequently to avoid burning until the flour has darkened, about 4-5 minutes. Lower the heat if necessary to avoid burning. (Photo # 9)
  4. Add 1/2 cup of dry white wine, and 5 cups of the turkey broth and continue to whisk. (Photo #10)
Recipe collage number three showing browning of flour in pot, whiskin in turkey stock, bringing gravy to boil, and pouring in roast turkey pan drippings.
  1. Turn the heat up to high and whisk until smooth, cooking until the gravy has thickened, about 3-4 minutes. (Photo #11)
  2. Lower the heat and add 1 cup of reserved turkey pan drippings and taste test. For a more tangy gravy, add a bit of Dijon mustard or Worcestershire sauce. Serve with your turkey and favorite sides and enjoy! (Photo #12)

Top tips

  • Smooth gravy. Many people enjoy texture if their giblet gravy, but if you prefer a smoother consistency, use an immersion blender to puree the ingredients at the the end.
  • Drippings. If you have pan drippings, the gravy will taste a lot better. Be sure to remove the top layer of fat from the drippings before adding them to the gravy.
  • Remove the liver. The liver should not be included in giblet gravy as it can impart a mineral, bitter flavor.
Ladle scooping gravy over white bowl.

More Thanksgiving favorites

Here are a few of our must-have Thanksgiving favorites!

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Giblet Gravy

5 from 2 votes
Prep: 10 minutes
Cook: 2 hours 30 minutes
Total: 2 hours 40 minutes
Servings: 5 cups
Turkey giblet gravy is packed with delicious turkey flavor and is a must-have on your Thanksgiving table! The perfect topping for turkey and all the fixings!

Ingredients 

For the turkey broth

  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • 1 turkey neck
  • giblets excluding liver
  • 1 turkey backbone optional
  • 6 cups water
  • 1 medium onion chopped
  • 1 medium carrot chopped
  • 2 ribs celery chopped
  • 1 large bay leaf
  • 5 large sage leaves
  • 5 sprigs thyme

For the giblet gravy

  • 6 tablespoons butter
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • giblet meat minced, from above
  • 1/2 cup dry white wine
  • 5 cups turkey broth from above
  • 1 cup turkey pan drippings from a roasted turkey, optional
  • salt and pepper to taste

Instructions 

Make the turkey broth

  • Heat a large pot to medium heat and add the butter along with the turkey parts. Saute until browned (7-10 minutes) then add the vegetables and continue to cook for another 5-7 minutes or until soft.
  • Add the water and herbs to the pot and bring to a boil. Once boiling, lower the heat to a simmer and partially cover the pot with a lid. Simmer for 2 hours.
  • After 2 hours, strain the broth and set aside. Discard the turkey backbone. Remove the meat from the turkey neck. Mince the turkey neck meat and giblets and set aside.

Make the giblet gravy

  • If you have already roasted a turkey, pour the drippings into a container and let it sit for a few minutes. Remove the top layer of fat and set the drippings to the side. Note: If you just roasted a turkey, you can use 6 tablespoons of turkey fat instead of the butter in the next step.
  • Place the roasting pan on a burner. Add the butter (or turkey fat) and let it melt. Add the giblet/neck meat and saute for 3 minutes.
  • Next, add the flour and whisk it in stirring frequently to avoid burning. Lower the heat if necessary, but cook until the flour has darkened a bit (about 4-5 minutes).
  • Add the white wine and turkey broth to the pan while whisking. Turn the heat to high and continue to whisk until smooth.
  • Cook until the gravy has thickened (3-4 minutes) then lower the heat.
  • Add the pan drippings, taste test the gravy, and season well with salt and pepper as required. For a more tangy gravy, add a bit of Dijon mustard or Worcestershire sauce if you like. Enjoy!

Notes

  • Don’t worry about lumps!  To remove them, simply strain the gravy while whisking and pressing the lumps through the strainer.  This will smoothen out the gravy in a very easy manner.
  • Adding 1 cup of pan drippings from a roasted turkey (you probably just roasted a turkey since you’re making giblet gravy) will really amp up the gravy flavor.  If you don’t have drippings, simply serve the gravy as is or thin with a touch of water before serving.
  • Leftovers can be saved for up to 3 days in the fridge and can be reheated on the stovetop.  If needed, add a touch of water to thin.

Nutrition

Calories: 301kcal | Carbohydrates: 11.2g | Protein: 16.6g | Fat: 19.2g | Saturated Fat: 3.2g | Cholesterol: 34mg | Sodium: 103mg | Potassium: 172mg | Fiber: 0.3g | Sugar: 0.2g | Calcium: 5mg | Iron: 6mg

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

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4 Comments

  1. 5 stars
    Just made this for our Thanksgiving Dinner this afternoon. The best gravy I ever made ! Very easy recipe to follow! I never was a good gravy maker, but I will keep this recipe as a guide for other gravies.