Turkey Giblet Gravy Recipe (Without Drippings!) 

Here’s a full-flavored, easy turkey giblet gravy recipe (without drippings) to make while your turkey roasts away to golden perfection. So easy it’s practically foolproof and can be made in advance. Perfect for Thanksgiving!

Turkey gravy made with no drippings being poured over turkey.

I’ve got to admit, a roast turkey without a rich, savory gravy is just not complete. This turkey giblet gravy is rich, delicious, and made with simple pantry staples.

  • Is making a gravy for your turkey with pan drippings a pain? If so, this simple gravy is for you – it can be made while your turkey roasts with no need to wait for the turkey drippings! You can even make it a day ahead!
  • It’s the perfect way to use the giblets and neck. I love a good, waste-free meal, don’t you?
  • Simple, quick, and with no major skills required.
Pouring gravy over a turkey dinner with mashed potatoes.

Here’s What You Need For This Thanksgiving Turkey Giblet Gravy Recipe

This is honestly such a quick and easy gravy recipe, especially if you make the broth ahead of time.  I love that it can be made before my turkey is ready. Meal prep at its best.

Turkey Giblet Gravy Ingredients

 You only need a handful of basics to make this yummy homemade turkey gravy.

  • Turkey giblets and neck: Some turkeys come with their giblets and neck tucked into their cavity, while others don’t. You’ll want to double-check this when you select your turkey.
  • Onion, carrot, and celery: This trio provides the savory base. You can swap the onion or celery for leeks if necessary.
  • Kosher salt: Essential for seasoning, kosher salt enhances the overall taste of the gravy. 
  • Black pepper: Freshly ground black pepper imparts a warm and pungent kick. 
  • Unsalted butter: Melted unsalted butter adds a luxurious richness and velvety texture to the gravy. 
  • All-purpose flour: Used to create a roux, the all-purpose flour acts as a thickening agent.
Ingredients for turkey Giblet Gravy Recipe without drippings

Variations and Substitutions 

Here’s how to take this recipe in a couple of different directions. You can absolutely customize your turkey giblet gravy; keep that in mind.

  • Herby: Add a tablespoon of fresh or fried herbs. Think thyme, sage, or rosemary. 
  • Citrusy: Grated lemon or orange zest can balance your gravy.
  • Spiced: Add in some cozy spices like whole nutmeg or cinnamon. Remember to fish them out at the end.
  • Dijon mustard: Stir in a small amount of Dijon mustard for a grown-up touch.

Set Out These Tools

 In preparation for your gravy, here’s what you’ll need to grab from the kitchen:

  • Saucepans: Just two regular small-medium saucepans will do.
  • Fine-mesh sieve: This is to sieve the broth to separate out the whole parts.
  • Whisk: To get that silky, lump-free gravy!

 You’ll now be set to make the turkey gravy of your dreams. Let’s get started.

How to Make Turkey Gravy Without Drippings: An Easy Guide

This is a 3 part process that is just so simple. Here are the steps, broken down:

Adding salt to turkey Giblets in pot.

How to Make the Broth

  • Add the giblets, neck, water and vegetables (onion, carrot, celery) and salt into a saucepan.
  • Simmer the ingredients together for 1-1.5 hours.
Adding butter to saucepan for gravy.

How to Make the Roux

  • In another saucepan, melt the butter on a medium heat. 
  • Once the butter has melted, add the flour and whisk the two ingredients until they have combined into a smooth roux. Cook them for about 5 minutes or until they are a deep caramel color.
  • Remove the saucepan from the heat. 
Adding flour to melted butter in making roux for gravy.

How to Combine the Broth and Roux

  • Strain the turkey stock through a fine-meshed saucepan into a bowl, cup, or jug. 
  • Add a little broth to the roux, whisking as you go. Once this is smooth, add a little more liquid and whisk again. Repeat until all the liquid has been added.
  • Simmer until thickened, about 5-10 minutes.
Adding broth to the roux for gravy.

A Few Notes

  • Keep an eye on your roux; don’t walk away from it, as it can burn easily.
  • Make sure your roux is lump-free by adding liquid gradually while whisking constantly.
  • When straining the broth, press the solids down to extract maximum liquid and flavor.
  • Check the seasoning. If it needs more salt, add a little soy sauce. This adds a deeper color, more seasoning, and umami-richness.
Turkey giblet gravy without drippings in a saucepan.

Make Ahead and Storage

 If you want to make this in advance and if you have a little extra, here’s what to do:


 There are a couple of steps you could take to save time:

  • Prepare the Broth in Advance: Simmer the turkey neck and giblets to create a broth a day or two before making the gravy. 
  • Roux: You can prepare the roux (butter and flour mixture) in advance, allowing it to cool, and store it in an airtight container in the refrigerator.
Turkey giblet gravy without drippings in a gravy boat.


 If you have extra gravy, here’s how to store it:

  • Refrigeration: Leftover gravy can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3-4 days.
  • Freezing: Allow it to cool completely before transferring to a freezer-safe container. Leave some space for expansion; it can be stored for 2-3 months.
The color of the roux when ready to add the broth to make gravy.

5 Common Mistakes When Making Gravy for Turkey with Giblets

Here are the most frequent mix-ups to avoid when making turkey gravy with giblets without drippings:

  • Boiling instead of simmering the broth: This can lead to a cloudy broth that is lacking in veggie flavor.
  • Lumpy roux: Whisk as you go!
  • Burning the roux: Don’t walk away from it – this is the most common and easiest mistake to make.
  • Adding all the broth at once: This is path that can only lead to a lumpy, bumpy gravy.
  • Under-seasoning: Taste your gravy before you serve it. Add a little soy sauce if you feel it’s bland.
Turkey giblet gravy without drippings on a Thanskgiving table with mashed potatoes, stuffing, turkey and carrots.

Final Notes, Pro Tips + Science-Based Secrets

Unlock the full potential of your turkey gravy with these key takeaways:

  • Go slowly with your roux: Be patient and allow it to become golden. This is how you’ll get a nutty flavor and eliminate the raw taste of the flour.
  • Don’t under-simmer the broth: This will lead to a bland-tasting turkey gravy.
  • Adjust the consistency: If the gravy is too thick, add small amounts of broth or water until it’s right. 
  • Balance the richness: If the gravy feels overly rich, add a splash of lemon juice or zest. 
  • Seasoning and umami-enhancement: Use a small amount of soy sauce or Worcestershire sauce to enhance the umami flavor of the turkey gravy.

FAQs About Turkey Giblet Gravy Without Drippings

Just skimming through? Here are some quick answers to the commonly-asked questions.

What do I do if my turkey giblets include the liver, and I’m not a fan of its strong flavor? You can leave out the liver if you’re not a fan of it.

Can I use chicken giblets instead of turkey giblets? Yes, you can substitute chicken giblets and make a chicken broth in your gravy-making if turkey giblets are unavailable. Keep in mind that the flavor profile may be slightly different.

How can I make this gravy gluten-free? Substitute all-purpose flour with cornstarch for a gluten-free gravy. 

Can I freeze the gravy ahead of time? Yes, you can freeze the gravy for up to 2-3 months.

Which herbs work well with this gravy? Herbs like thyme, rosemary, and sage complement the flavors of turkey giblet gravy. 

How can I fix a lumpy gravy? If lumps occur, use a whisk to stir the gravy vigorously. If the lumps persist, strain the gravy through a fine mesh sieve to achieve a smoother consistency.

Can I make the gravy in advance and reheat it? Yes, you can make the gravy ahead. Reheat it gently over low heat, stirring continuously. Adjust the consistency with broth or water if needed.

Is it necessary to strain the gravy? Straining is optional. If you prefer a smoother texture, strain the gravy to remove solid particles. If you enjoy a heartier gravy, you can skip this step.

What can I substitute for unsalted butter in the recipe? You can use other fats like olive oil or clarified butter as a substitute for unsalted butter. Adjust quantities based on your taste preference.

What to Serve with Turkey Giblet Gravy

Next reading:

Turkey giblet gravy made with no drippings being poured over turkey.

Easy Turkey Giblet Gravy Recipe (Without Drippings!) 

Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour 30 minutes
Servings 8
Side Dish
Keyword Thanksgiving Giblet Gravy Recipe, Turkey Giblet Gravy, Turkey Gravy Recipe without Drippings


For Turkey Giblet Broth

  • Neck and giblets from the turkey
  • 1 onion quartered
  • 1 carrot peeled and chopped
  • 1 celery stalk chopped
  • 3 cups water
  • 1 ½ tsp kosher salt
  • ½ teaspoon black pepper

For Gravy

  • ¼ cup unsalted butter
  • ¼ cup all-purpose flour


  • While turkey roasts, make the broth: combine giblets, neck, water, onion, carrot, celery, and salt in a saucepan. Simmer for 1-1.5 hours.
  • Melt butter in a saucepan on medium heat. Whisk in flour until smooth and cook until deep caramel brown, about 5 minutes. Don’t walk away, as it’ll go from perfect to burnt quite quickly.
  • Remove saucepan from heat.
  • Place a fine-mesh sieve on top of a large measuring cup or bowl. Carefully strain the broth through the sieve, pressing on solids to extract as much liquid and flavor as possible.
  • Add a bit of the broth to the butter mixture, whisking constantly. Once smooth, whisk in a little more. Gradually whisk in all of the broth. Simmer until thickened, about 5-10 minutes.


If it needs a little more salt, add a splash of soy sauce. That’ll season it, add umami depth of flavor, and also add beautiful brown color to the gravy. 
Whisk as you go to avoid lumps and add broth to liquid little by little.
Simmer broth for the maximum time for maximum flavor.
Simmer the broth instead of boiling it rapidly.


Calories: 91kcalCarbohydrates: 9gProtein: 1gFat: 6gSaturated Fat: 4gPolyunsaturated Fat: 0.3gMonounsaturated Fat: 2gTrans Fat: 0.2gCholesterol: 15mgSodium: 444mgPotassium: 114mgFiber: 1gSugar: 5gVitamin A: 1786IUVitamin C: 6mgCalcium: 15mgIron: 0.3mg
Keyword Thanksgiving Giblet Gravy Recipe, Turkey Giblet Gravy, Turkey Gravy Recipe without Drippings

Last Updated on January 26, 2024 by Jennifer Pallian BSc, RD

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1 month ago

5 stars
I’m bookmarking this recipe for the next family dinner. I’ve always struggled with gravy, but this method seems foolproof. Thanks for the detailed instructions!

1 month ago

5 stars
I always struggle with making gravy when I don’t have drippings. I’m so glad you posted this recipe! 

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