Giblet Gravy

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Giblet gravy, a gravy made with the choicest pieces of the bird, is the queen of gravies. So full of wonderful flavor from the giblets and drippings.

What are giblets? The heart, gizzard, liver, and neck of the chicken or turkey. They are often found in a small bundle inside the cavity of the whole bird.

You can make gravy from the giblets of either a turkey or a chicken, though I think it’s more usual with a roast turkey. The giblets are bigger, and there’s more meat to put in the gravy.

Giblet Gravy

To make the gravy, you first make a stock from the giblets, which cooks on the stovetop while you are cooking your turkey. When the bird has finished roasting, you combine the stock, along with chopped up cooked giblets, with the roasting pan drippings to make the gravy.

You can also make giblet gravy with a few hard boiled eggs and 3 tablespoons of chopped pimentos thrown in. Do you make giblet gravy? If you do, what are your variations? Please let us know in the comments.

Giblets

Giblet Gravy Recipe

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  • Prep time: 10 minutes
  • Cook time: 3 hours
  • Yield: Makes about 3 cups of gravy

We've included the liver in our giblet gravy, which gives it a richer flavor. If you simply cannot abide with even a hint of the taste of liver, you can leave it out. Giblet gravy is usually served "chunky", if you want, you can purée it for a smoother gravy. One traditional option is the addition of chopped hard boiled eggs to the gravy. If you want to try that, chop up 3 hard boiled eggs finely, and add them to the gravy in step 6.

Ingredients

  • Giblets (neck, gizzard, heart, liver) from a turkey (or chicken)
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1 cup diced onion
  • 1/2 cup diced carrot
  • 1/2 cup diced celery
  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 5 cups water
  • Drippings from the turkey or chicken
  • 2-3 tablespoons flour (or 2-3 Tbsp of corn starch, dissolved first into 1/4 cup of water)
  • Salt to taste
  • 1-2 teaspoons of mustard (yellow or Dijon)

Turkeys and chickens are usually sold with the giblets wrapped in waxed paper or plastic, located inside of the cavity. On a turkey, some of the giblets may be found in the neck cavity as well.

Method

1 Brown the giblets in butter: Heat the butter in a 2-quart saucepan on medium-high heat. When hot, add the giblets to the pan. Brown them on all sides.

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2 Add onion, celery, carrot, garlic: Add the onion, celery and carrot and sauté until the onions turn translucent, about 3-5 minutes. Add the garlic and sauté another minute.

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3 Add bay leaf, thyme, water, bring to simmer: Add the bay leaf, thyme and water. Bring to a simmer. Lower the heat, partially cover so that some steam escapes, and cook on a low simmer for several hours, while the turkey (or chicken) is cooking.

4 Strain the stock, mince the giblet meat: Once the bird is close to being done, strain the giblets and stock through a fine mesh sieve into a bowl. Set aside the stock. Remove the giblets from the sieve. Finely mince the giblet meat. If you want, you can pull some of the meat off of the neck and mince that as well.

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5 Add flour or cornstarch to roast drippings: Once the bird is done, move it to a cutting board to let it rest. Pour off the excess fat (all but a tablespoon or two) from the roasting pan. Set the roasting pan over two burners of the stovetop set over medium heat.

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Add the flour (or corn starch slurry) and whisk it into the drippings. Stir in the minced giblets. Let cook for a few minutes, stirring while cooking.

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6 Add stock and minced giblets: Add the strained giblet stock to the pan drippings and giblets and mix well to combine. Bring to a boil and stir constantly until the gravy thickens, about 2-3 minutes.

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Add 1-2 teaspoons of mustard (to taste). Check for salt and add more salt to taste if needed. Serve it as-is, or purée the gravy in a blender for a smoother texture.

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Links:

Homesick Texan's giblet gravy with turmeric, paprika, and Worcestershire sauce

Jerry's giblet gravy - from Cooking by the Seat of My Pants

Giblet Gravy

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Showing 4 of 48 Comments

  • Jim Jensen

    …but don’t ever boil the liver. Just sauté it in bacon fat, bird drippings or butter before adding it to the party.

    As for the chopped eggs, one of my sisters-in-law wouldn’t eat it without them. Personally, I can take them or leave them. I don’t think they add all that much to the gravy.

  • Paula Snow

    My grandmother made her gravy much like this, but she added a couple of chopped boiled eggs. To me, that makes the gravy. RIP, Julia Gray.

  • Daria

    Best gravy recipe ever!! I’ve made it for Thanksgiving and it was a hit. People were asking for a recipe. I’ll be doing this again and again.

  • Sammy G

    I made this tonight, and it was delicious! My bird was seasoned with paprika, salt, pepper, cayenne pepper and garlic powder, so my gravy came out spicy (especially with Dijon mustard), and ohh so good. Poured the gravy over everything- even my fried potatoes, much to hubby’s dismay (his food can’t touch, as a rule). Will be writing this down in my little cookbook to keep forever.

  • Janice Hartwig

    I learned to make giblet gravy from watching and oh yes, eating my Grandmother’s giblet gravy. Each year she would put on quite the spread for Thanksgiving and Christmas but when we walked through her door, the wonderful auroma of that gibet gravy caused immediate mouth watering. I made it for my own family and I’m still making it. I wouldn’t dare lay out a holiday spread without it. My grandmother cut the giblets and also hard boilded eggs. She started her base with bacon grease. She added celery,onios, green onions, and sweet peppers as well. The best! We all loved it and we still do.

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