Yes, you can transform your ham drippings into a creamy, savory Ham Gravy! Your holiday dinners will never be the same once you discover the deliciousness and ease of this ham gravy recipe. Put the ham gravy in a jar back on the shelf. You don’t need it!
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Why You’ll Love This Old-Fashioned Ham Gravy Recipe
- The Flavor of Ham, in Convenient Gravy Form. Liquid ham? Okay, scrap that—it may not be the best descriptor. But there’s no denying that ham is delectable, and now you can make the most of its yummy juices. Pour it on your holiday ham or biscuits, or use it any way you’d use Turkey Gravy.
- Something for Your Mashed Potatoes. When you’re making Crockpot Mashed Potatoes or Instant Pot Mashed Potatoes for a holiday dinner, but your main dish is ham, you have a problem: what will you do for the gravy when you don’t have a turkey?! Ham gravy is the solution.
- A New Spin on Sausage Gravy. If you love the creamy white gravy spooned over biscuits for breakfast in the South, then you’ll appreciate this ham gravy too. It’s so similar that you can use it to make biscuits and gravy—maybe with my homemade Drop Biscuits.
- Almost Effortless. While making gravy can be a nail-biter—will it be lumpy? will it be bland and watery, or glue-y and salty?—this quick ham gravy is a cinch if you follow the tips below. In just 5-minutes, you can have the best ham gravy.
- SO MUCH BETTER Than Store Bought Gravy. Gravy packets and jars truly cannot hold a candle to the real deal. This is easy ham gravy is well worth the (minimal) effort.
How to Make Ham Gravy
- Ham Drippings. I use the liquid left at the bottom of the slow cooker after making Crockpot Ham with Brown Sugar Ham Glaze. If you’re short, add milk to make up the difference.
- Unsalted Butter. This is critical! Ham is brined, so the dripping will already be salty. You don’t want to add salted butter on top of that.
- All-Purpose Flour. I prefer using flour to cornstarch in gravy.
- Half-and-Half. For a rich, creamy ham gravy.
- Ground Black Pepper. White gravy benefits from the addition of coarse black pepper, both visually and in its flavor.
- Make a Roux. Melt the butter over medium-low heat; sprinkle in the flour and whisk until it turns golden.
- Add the Drippings. Slowly pour in the ham drippings, whisking constantly.
- Simmer. Continue to whisk while the gravy simmers. Let it continue simmering until it thickens a bit.
- Add the Creamy Factor. Stir in the half-and-half and pepper, then season to taste. ENJOY!
- To Store. Refrigerate leftover ham gravy in an airtight storage container for up to 3 days.
- To Reheat. Warm leftovers in a saucepan on the stovetop over medium-low heat, stirring frequently; don’t let it come to a boil. You can also reheat ham gravy in the microwave.
- To Freeze. Freeze leftovers in an airtight container or freezer bag for up to 3 months. Thaw overnight in the refrigerator, then reheat according to the instructions above.
What to Serve with Ham Gravy
- Pork. In addition to your holiday ham, you can make this ham gravy to serve with Baked Pork Tenderloin, Instant Pot Pork Tenderloin, or Crockpot Pork Roast.
- Potatoes. Ladle the gravy over Garlic Mashed Potatoes, Oven Roasted Potatoes, or Cauliflower Mashed Potatoes.
- Other Holiday Favorites. Serve ham gravy as part of a complete holiday spread alongside classics like Cranberry Orange Relish, Cornbread Stuffing, and Crockpot Green Bean Casserole.
Recommended Tools to Make this Recipe
- Gravy Boat. The perfect serving vessel for any gravy.
- Whisk. This small whisk is ideal for using in a saucepan.
- Liquid Measuring Cup. For measuring and pouring the ham drippings.
Recipe Tips and Tricks
- Don’t Rush the Roux. The flour should turn golden brown before you start whisking in the ham drippings. If you add the drippings any sooner, your gravy will have an unpleasant raw flour taste.
- Pour the Drippings in Slowly. Another tip to file under: don’t rush things! Slowly stream the drippings into the roux while whisking. If you dump all of the liquid in at once, or too quickly, the roux won’t incorporate smoothly.
- Don’t Settle for Lumpy Gravy. If your gravy is lumpy, you don’t have to serve it to your guests and spend the whole meal apologizing to them while dissecting the reasons for your gravy fail. Take a deep breath and then puree the gravy, either in a regular blender or with an immersion blender. No one will know! (Psst—This trick works for Mushroom Gravy too.)
- 1 1/4 cups ham drippings use as much as you have; if you’re short, add milk to make up the difference
- 4 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 1/4 cup all-purpose flour use 1:1 GF AP flour substitute to make gluten free
- 1/4 cup half and half
- 1/2 teaspoon coarse ground black pepper
- In a medium saucepan, melt the butter over medium-low heat. Sprinkle the flour over the top. Cook, whisking continuously, for 1 full minute. The flour should turn lightly golden.
- Gradually pour in the ham drippings, whisking the entire time so that no lumps form. Bring to a simmer and continue whisking, until the gravy thickens to your liking, about 2 to 3 minutes.
- Stir in the half and half and pepper. Carefully taste and adjust seasoning as desired. Enjoy hot with ham, biscuits, and anything else you like.
- TO STORE: Refrigerate leftover ham gravy in an airtight storage container for up to 3 days.
- TO REHEAT: Warm leftovers in a saucepan on the stovetop over medium-low heat, stirring frequently; don’t let it come to a boil. You can also reheat ham gravy in the microwave.
- TO FREEZE: Freeze leftovers in an airtight container or freezer bag for up to 3 months. Thaw overnight in the refrigerator, then reheat according to the instructions above.
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