Holidays/ Sauces

Gluten-Free Thanksgiving Turkey Giblet Gravy

turkey giblet gravy in a white ceramic gravy boat with a silver spoon on a silver and white cloth

My aunt taught me how to make this gravy in her Manhattan kitchen a zillion years ago. I wasn’t all that interested in cooking at the time, but I listened to be polite. Years later, I found myself making my Thanksgiving turkey gravy exactly as she had done. She hadn’t used a recipe, but her method was simple, and, as she was a wonderful cook, the results delicious.

I cook the giblets a day or two in advance, and keep them in the refrigerator until I’m ready to make the gravy. Make sure to cook the liver separately. No one likes liver-flavored gravy. I feed the liver to my dog or, if I’m feeling ambitious, make it into a pat√©.

Sometimes, when I’m in a hurry, I make the Thanksgiving gravy a day ahead using homemade chicken broth and turkey giblets. It tastes fine, but gravy made with the juice from the freshly roasted Thanksgiving turkey always tastes richer. I’ve amended my aunt’s recipe a little to make it gluten-free, but it still tastes great. ¬†Every time I make it, I’m reminded of her.

Gluten-Free Thanksgiving Turkey Giblet Gravy

By Springhouse Turtle Serves: many
Prep Time: 20 minutes Cooking Time: 20 minutes Total Time: 40 minutes

Make this gravy a day ahead of time, or while the turkey's resting. It's an easy way to use the turkey giblets. Kids love this gravy, but don't reveal its secret ingredients. Eating nutritious organ meats isn't high on a kid's wish list.


  • Stomach, heart and neck from the turkey
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 stalk celery, halved
  • 1/2 onion (optional)
  • 1/2 carrot (optional)
  • Juice from a freshly roasted turkey. Add water to make a total of about 4-5 cups
  • 8 tablespoons of fat skimmed from the pan of a roasted turkey
  • 1/4 to 1/3 cup gluten-free flour



Cook the giblets:


A day in advance, or while the turkey is roasting, wash the turkey giblets. (Separate and save the liver for another use.)


Put the giblets in a saucepan large enough to hold them and cover with filtered water.


Add the bay leaf, onion and carrot, if using.


Bring to a boil, then turn the heat down to a simmer.


Simmer, partly covered or uncovered, for an hour.


Skim any frothy scum that accumulates on the surface.


Cool. Remove the giblets from the pan and save the broth for soup.


Pull the meat from neck and discard the bones


Mince the giblet meat into very tiny pieces.


Make the gravy:


Pour the turkey juice and water into a small saucepan. Warm over medium heat until just below a simmer.


In a larger saucepan, heat the turkey fat over medium-high heat until it starts to sizzle.


Add the flour all at once and cook, stirring constantly, until a paste forms and the flour begins to brown. Add extra flour if needed to make a thick paste.


Pour the turkey juice and water into the saucepan all at once, turn the heat to high, and stir with a wire whisk until the gravy begins to thicken. Do not stop stirring or the gravy will burn.


After about 6 minutes of constant whisking, stir in the chopped giblets. Continue stirring until the gravy gets even thicker. This can take another 5-8 minutes.


Pour into a gravy boat or serving bowl and keep warm. If a skin forms on the surface, whisk the gravy until it disappears. Serve hot.

Cooking giblets is easy. Rinse and put them in a saucepan, cover with water and bring to a boil. Turn down the heat and simmer for an hour.

giblets celery and carrot cooking in a stainless steel saucepan

Skim any frothy scum that rises to the surface.

After an hour or so, the giblets are ready to be used for gravy, and the broth can be saved for making soup.

cooked giblets in stainless steel pot on black cooktop

Springhouse Turtle Eats


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