It’s hard to imagine Thanksgiving without gravy. Silky and savory, this simple sauce makes many of our favorite Thanksgiving dishes shine. And it can cover up those dishes that don’t exactly sparkle. (Dry stuffing…sigh.) If you’re looking for a stellar, classic recipe for foolproof turkey gravy, we’ve got you covered. But what to do when your gravy is too thin, too thick, or lumpy? Well, we still have you covered with these three simple solutions for how to fix gravy. Because we’re here to help.
And we just really love gravy.
How to fix gravy solution #1: Get rid of the lumps.
If there are stubborn lumps of flour in your gravy, your best bet is to whisk like hell to break them up, then strain the gravy through a fine mesh strainer. If the gravy is really lumpy, try using an immersion blender to process until smooth. If after straining or blending, your gravy appears thin, see below.
Pro tip: Always dissolve your flour or cornstarch in a little cold liquid before adding it to your pan with drippings. If you dump the flour directly into the pan, it will definitely clump!
Pan Gravy from Drippings | Martha Stewart
How to fix gravy solution #2: There is such a thing as too thin.
The classic fix for thin gravy is to start by mixing equal parts cornstarch and water, often referred to as a slurry. Then, with the gravy over medium heat, whisk the slurry into the gravy and bring it to a boil, whisking all the while. Lower the heat and continue cooking until the gravy takes on your desired consistency.
While that method is tried and true, this year I’m taking a tip from my friend and culinary expert at Martha Stewart, Thomas Joseph. Thomas recommends using instant flour, also known as Wondra, because it dissolves quickly and evenly. Check out his video for a great tutorial on making gravy, including his tips for fixing lumpy or thin gravy.
How to fix gravy solution #3: Thin out too-thick gravy without thinning out flavor.
Of all the potential gravy mistakes, this is the easiest to remedy. If your gravy is too thick, simply whisk in some more turkey stock or chicken broth (even water will work, but make sure to taste for salt and pepper as it may need more seasoning). Add liquid a 1/2 cup at a time until the gravy reaches your desired consistency.
Oh, and if all these solutions just stress you out even more at the thought of making gravy at the last minute, try one of these make-ahead Thanksgiving recipes instead — four gravy options are included.