This easy brown gravy recipe is a spot-on copycat of that famous KFC gravy! All you need is 5 simple ingredients and 20 minutes to make it!
Copycat KFC Gravy
For those of you who don’t know, my husband is actually the chef in our family. For Thanksgiving this year, he’s been working on a new gravy recipe.
Funny thing, when I tasted his gravy, I immediately said, “this tastes just like KFC!” How cool is that?!
Of course, KFC’s gravy recipe is a closely guarded secret — but I think we’ve created a spot-on imitation! It looks, smells, and tastes JUST like the original!!
And the best part is that it is super easy to make at home, with only 5 simple ingredients!
So, if you’ve been wondering how to make gravy like KFC, or are looking for a quick and easy way to top your Thanksgiving turkey, you will love this recipe!
Related: Try our Copycat KFC Chicken Seasoning too! It’s low carb!
What is in KFC Gravy?
Ok, so after we made this gravy, I went online to see if I could find out what KFC gravy is actually made of to see if we guessed it correctly (and if that is why ours tastes just like it).
Well, of course I couldn’t find out the *real* ingredients, but I did see some other copycat recipes out there. Most of them feature bouillon cubes — both chicken and beef.
What I’ve ascertained is that KFC gravy is a brown gravy, with a secret blend of herbs and spices. There’s definitely some black pepper involved too!
Our KFC Gravy Ingredients
Our recipe uses liquid beef broth instead, so that is the main difference. Bouillon cubes are pretty high in sodium, so that is one reason we usually stick with actual broth.
Plus, I like the taste of real broth, without all of the additives that you sometimes get with bouillon. Instead of salt, we used garlic and onion powder to amp up the flavor!
We made black pepper “optional” in our recipe, because we always cook with our kids in mind. They are very adventurous eaters, but for some reason black pepper is one of the few things they don’t enjoy yet.
Feel free to add black pepper to your gravy to get the most authentic flavor possible!
Here’s what we used:
- Butter — We used unsalted butter, though you can use either. Keep in mind that salted butter will of course make your gravy taste a little bit saltier. It’s all a matter of preference!
- Onion powder and garlic powder
- Flour — All purpose flour works just fine
- Low sodium beef broth — You can use regular beef broth instead, though again, this will make a slightly saltier flavor and increase the sodium content. If you use salted butter, I definitely recommend low sodium broth, and vice-versa.
- Black pepper (optional) — Our original recipe did not use black pepper at all, and I still think it tasted SO much like the gravy at KFC. We omitted black pepper because our kids don’t like it much, but you can absolutely add a pinch (or two or three) depending on your preference.
How to Make Brown Gravy with Beef Broth
Add butter to saucepan over low heat. Allow butter to melt slowly, whisking as it melts, so that it starts to brown.
Add garlic powder, onion powder, and flour so that they are evenly distributed around the pan. Whisk for 5-10 minutes until a paste begins to form.
Every couple minutes, give the pan a shake and swirl so that the gravy covers the entire bottom of the pan.
Add broth 1/2 cup at a time, whisking until gravy becomes a dark, rich brown color.
Increase to medium heat and allow gravy to simmer until you have your desired thickness. Keep in mind that the gravy will thicken a tad more after you remove it form the stove and it cools.
Be sure to keep stirring every 20-30 seconds or so while it simmers, to prevent scorching.
When done cooking, stir in a Tablespoon of butter to add a little extra sheen, then remove from heat.
How long does it take gravy to thicken?
For this recipe, you’re going to need about 10 minutes of cook time after you add the broth.
If you like a thinner gravy, plan for about 8 minutes. If you like extra thick gravy, give yourself about 12 minutes to cook it.
What to do if gravy is not thickening
There are a couple reasons why your gravy might not be as thick as you’d like it.
- The gravy hasn’t cooked long enough. Once you add the beef broth, cook (whisking regularly) for about 10-12 minutes for thick gravy.
- You may need more thickener. We tested this recipe a few times and I’m confident in the proportions, but like anything else in life, “stuff happens.” If you’ve already cooked for 10 minutes and it’s not getting any thicker, try this trick. Mix 2TB flour with a little bit of water until you have a thick paste. Whisk this paste into your gravy and cook a couple more minutes — it should thicken up.
More of our favorite Thanksgiving side dish recipes:
- Slow Cooker Mashed Potatoes — A must with gravy!
- Ginger Ale Glazed Carrots — Only 2 ingredients needed!
- Parmesan Ranch Green Beans — Crispy green beans and SO much flavor!
- Maple Bacon Brussel Sprouts — A sweet and savory delight!
- Copycat Texas Roadhouse Rolls — Another awesome copycat recipe!
- The Best Broccoli Casserole — A must have in my family!
Easy Brown Gravy Recipe (Printable Copy)
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Copycat KFC Gravy - Easy Brown Gravy Recipe
- 3 Tablespoons butter unsalted
- 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
- 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
- 3 Tablespoons flour
- 2 cups low sodium beef broth
- Add butter to saucepan and melt gradually over low heat.
- Slowly add garlic, onion powder and flour so that it is evenly distributed around the pan. Whisk slowly for 5-10 minutes.
- Every couple minutes, give the pan a shake and swirl so that the gravy covers the entire bottom of the pan.
- Add broth 1/2 cup at a time until gravy becomes a dark, rich brown color.
- Turn to medium heat and allow to simmer until you have your desired thickness. Stir every 20-30 seconds while simmering. Cook for 8 minutes for thinner gravy and up to 12 minutes for thick gravy.
- Stir in a Tablepsoon of butter at the end to add sheen. Remove from heat.
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