Blending an indulgent, creamy texture with a flavorful hint of pepper, this White Pepper Gravy recipe is one that every home cook should know.
It’s the perfect accompaniment to a long list of family favorites, including chicken fried steak, fried chicken, biscuits, Southern mashed potatoes and more! Best of all, it’s incredibly easy to make, using simple, store cupboard ingredients and just a little bit of know-how.
As with any homemade gravy recipe, White Pepper Gravy starts with two key ingredients – butter and flour. When combined together in a pan, this creates what’s known as a roux, that acts as the thickening agent when you start to add your liquids.
It may sound fancy, but a roux can be made in a matter of minutes. Simply melt your butter in a pan and add in the flour, letting it cook for a few minutes before whisking both ingredients together.
It’s important that you don’t start adding your liquid straight away, as the short cooking time helps get rid of that raw flour flavor that could ruin your dish.
If you happen to have cooked some meat in your pan, there’s no need to wash up before making your White Pepper Gravy! Any drippings that are leftover can be cooked along with your roux to add in even more flavor.
Milk is used rather than stock in this White Pepper Gravy recipe as it gives that creamy consistency that goes so well with black pepper.
Whole milk works best in this instance, though if you only have other milks on hand feel free to use them instead.
The key to making any gravy is to add the liquid a little at a time (½ a cup at once is a good rule of thumb) and whisking thoroughly before adding more. This helps ensure that there are no lumps in your gravy.
If you would rather not use milk then any high-quality stock would work too, though naturally the end result will be rather different. If you do go down this route, I recommend whisking through a little extra unsalted butter at the end to enrich the taste and texture.
It goes without saying that white pepper is one of the main flavors of this dish, and is perfectly complemented by a little bit of salt. Using freshly cracked pepper has a much stronger taste, so it’s always preferable to ground pepper if you happen to have it on hand.
If you want to add in an extra complexity, a little garlic powder or dried thyme help enhance the flavor of this White Pepper Gravy and make it all the more delicious.
How To Store
Any leftover gravy can be put in an airtight container once cooled and kept in the fridge for 3-4 days. It will thicken up as it chills, so when it’s time to reheat your gravy, add an additional splash of milk. Then, simply let heat up on the stove until it reaches the desired temperature.
All you need is a handful of basic ingredients to prepare this gravy:
- 4 Tbsp. Butter – This will provide richness to the gravy.
- ¼ Cup All-purpose flour – Is needed to make the roux and is needed to thicken the gravy. If you are gluten free, consider using a gluten free flour.
- ½ Cup Vegetable broth, or desired broth & 1 Cup Milk – This broth will provide a rich depth of flavor.
- ½ tsp. Salt & 2 tsp. White Pepper – Is needed to season the gravy and is used as the base.
- 1 Bay Leaf – Provides an earthy flavor.
In a medium saucepan over medium heat, melt the butter.
Add in the all-purpose flour, mix until the lumps are no longer visible.
Slowly add in the broth while mixing. Once the roux starts to thicken, add in the salt, pepper, bay leaf, and milk.
Stir and cook until the gravy thickens.
Serve over your favorite biscuits or poultry.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
We’ve included some of the most common questions from readers when preparing our southern white gravy recipe.
This type béchamel sauce typically made with these ingredients: Flour, Butter, Milk.Once prepared, it can be served with biscuits like in this biscuits and gravy meal, fish, or poultry.
White gravy is a form of bechamel. Depending on the region it may be prepared in various ways. The main difference is that bechamel is slightly thinner whereas the white gravy is creamy and thicker.
Tips To Make This Gravy Perfectly
There are different ways to make this recipe. Here are a few tips to consider when making this recipe.
If you are allergic to gluten, consider using a gluten free flour. Use yuca flour or cornstarch to help thicken the roux.
You’ll notice that the sauce will start to stick to your spoon; especially if you are using a wooden spoon. This is a great indication that your white gravy is ready.
Feel free to experiment with flavor. Spice things up if you need to. Consider adding dashes of cayenne pepper to enhance the flavor.
Try adding fresh herbs like thyme, rosemary, or sage to give it an earthy flavor.
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White Pepper Gravy Recipe
- 4 Tbsp. Butter
- ¼ Cup All-purpose flour
- ½ Cup Vegetable broth Or desired broth
- 1 Cup Milk More if needed (to thin out the gravy)
- ½ tsp. Salt Or to taste
- 2 tsp. White Pepper
- 1 Bay Leaf
- In a medium saucepan over medium low heat, melt the butter.Add in the all-purpose flour, mix well to combine. Slowly add in the broth while mixing until the lumps are no longer visible.
- Once the roux starts to thicken, add in the milk, salt, pepper, and bay leaf.Lower the heat to low. Stir and simmer until the gravy thickens.Serve over your favorite biscuits or poultry.
I made this recipe with vegan butter, brown rice flour, and full fat oat milk. It came out great, but I used teaspoons instead of tablespoons and it’s still too much white pepper for my liking. Next time I’m gonna try 1/2 tsp white pepper.
Thank you so much, Jason!
Elsie S. Stewart
I tried this recipe and it’s really good. I would definitely recommend it to anyone who wants to try the recipe.
Thank you, Elsie.
Gave this a try with dinner last night and it was hands down delicious! Perfectly creamy and flavorful; easily, a new favorite gravy recipe!
So glad to hear it, Sara. Thank you
Recipe is creamy and has flavorful taste! Our steak night was a success because of this.
a really delicious recipe !!
This is a total game changer! A must-have recipe for every kitchen!
I can definitely use this pepper gravy in my fried chicken. Looks delicious.
Yesssss! This is exactly what we have been waiting for. Creamy and flavorful. I cannot wait to make it.