Saturday, January 24, 2009

Homemade Southern Sausage Gravy

Delicious milk-based sausage gravy, sometimes called sawmill gravy, is a southern favorite. Serve this delectable goodness over some hot homemade buttermilk biscuits for a little piece of heaven.

Homemade Southern Sausage Gravy

Southern biscuits and sausage gravy - talk about some good ole comfort food. I've made my gravy this way for as long as I've been cooking, but it's not like there's really much of a secret to it really. To be honest, I'm guessing just about all of us southerners make it pretty much the same way.

Today's breakfast sausage is far leaner than it used to be and doesn't create a lot of pan drippings, so I do add in additional butter, bacon fat, or even a combination of the two. I really think that it adds a wonderful richness to the flavor of the gravy.

The milk will depend on the consistency that you want for your gravy. Start whisking in about 2 cups, then add additional milk as needed to reach the consistency that you prefer.

A plate of soft scrambled eggs and a side of creamy grits would sure round that meal out pretty good if you ask me. I don't care who ya are, that is some good eatin' y'all!

Pick up my homemade buttermilk biscuit recipe here, or browse all my biscuits here, including the fabulously easy old fashioned, flour hoe cake skillet bread.

Now... let's go make some good ole southern biscuits and sausage gravy!

Recipe: Homemade Southern Sausage Gravy

©From the Kitchen of Deep South Dish
Prep time: 10 min |Cook time: 20 min | Yield: About 4 to 6 servings

  • 1 pound roll of bulk pork breakfast sausage (like Jimmy Dean)
  • 1/2 cup of butter, bacon fat or vegetable/canola oil
  • 1/4 cup of all purpose flour
  • 3 to 4 cups of milk, more or less, as needed
  • 1/4 teaspoon of freshly ground black pepper, or to taste
  • 1/2 teaspoon of kosher salt, or to taste

Brown sausage in a large skillet, breaking up and crumbling the meat as it cooks, then start your biscuits. By the time the sausage in browned up, you'll be ready to pop the biscuits in the oven, and get the gravy going. Once the meat is fully browned, stir in the butter or bacon fat to the skillet until melted. Sprinkle the flour on top of the meat and bring the pan up to a medium high heat. Cook, stirring often, for 5 minutes.

Slowly begin whisking in the first two cups of milk until fully incorporated and mixture begins to bubble. This will provide a fairly thick gravy. Continue whisking in additional milk a little bit at a time, until the gravy reaches the desired consistency. Grind plenty of pepper directly into the gravy, add salt to taste, mix well and serve over hot, split biscuits.

Cook's Notes: Tennessee Pride, Jimmy Dean, and Rudy's Farm are all good breakfast sausage products. I favor Jimmy Dean and love to use the hot version. Follow this tip to make breaking up the sausage easier!


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©Deep South Dish
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Posted by on January 24, 2009

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  1. This was so good! I haved the recipe and it was enough for two with a little extra. I give this 5 stars!

  2. Thanks so much! I admit that I'm a sucker for sausage and gravy over biscuits. I'm so glad that you enjoyed it & really appreciate you taking the time to come back and let me know. Happy New Year!

  3. this is almost my standard recipe for biscuits and gravy the little difference is I add a dash or two of hot sauce, not enough to put serious heat to it but just wake up all the flavors...

  4. Yeah Mama, I guess there's really not much unique about a basic southern sausage gravy - we all probably make it about this same way. I really put it up for those folks who have never made this traditional southern recipe at home. I like to use the spicy hot sausage for mine, but hot sauce is good too!! Thanks for stopping by & hope you'll visit again real soon.

  5. I moved from TN to NH almost 4 years ago and haven't had good gravy since! Gravy-making was not one of the skills I acquired growing up. I plan to make this Saturday! Yum.

    1. Hope you enjoy it Stoneygirl!! It had been awhile since I'd made some sausage gravy & just woke up with a craving for it this morning. Sure was good! By the way, I have a link on here too with tips on how to make homemade gravy that might be helpful.

  6. Actually, I like the ziggity looking potato masher better .. it really breaks up the sausage (or hamburger) when browning .. another tip: cut the metal clamps from the ends of the sausage roll and microwave for 1 minute .. the sausage will slide right out without all the waste as when you try to squeeze out the sausage ..

  7. Actually, I like the ziggity potato masher better .. it really breaks up the sausage (or hamburger well) ... also, I removed the metal clips from the ends of my sausage rolls and microwave for 1 minute ... the sausage will slip right out without the waste as when trying to squeeze out the cold sausage ...

  8. My gravy is without the extra 1/2 cup of oil, etc. I brown the sausage, sprinkle flour over and 'cook' for awhile. Then add milk and heat/stir until desired thickness. Since I don't measure, sometimes it needs more flour so to add flour to gravy, put in a small plastic container, add some liquid (milk or water, depending on type of gravy you're making), SHAKE (don't stir) and pour into gravy mixture. Will not lump.

  9. Thanks for the option of butter vs bacon grease. I never have any & can't make recipes that call for it. It's not like you can buy it at the grocery store LOL

  10. Thanks for giving the option of butter vs bacon grease. I can't make recipes that call for bacon grease because I never have it. It's not as if you can just buy it at the grocery store lol. BTW, can I substitute butter for bacon grease in all recipes?? I'm guessing no, that it only works in this one due to the sausage drippings. Any other suggestions?

    1. Hi Scarlett! I would say for the most part, yes! I imagine there might be one or two recipes where bacon drippings would be more appropriate but pretty much butter or another fat will sub in just fine.

  11. I tried this recipe for the first time and my boyfriend said and I quote, "In my 43 years of life and through hundreds of plates of biscuits and gravy, THIS is the best damn sausage gravy....EVER!!" He is a Mississippi boy so he knows good gravy. He said he was going to brag to all his co workers about it ^_^ . Hell he even took another serving of it for lunch!

    1. I love it!! So glad to hear that he enjoyed it & thanks for taking the time to stop back by and let me know!

  12. Mmm mmm mmm. Always the best breakfast ever. :)

  13. breakfast for dinner tonight. this is the fifth or sixth time I have made this. everyone loves it. I use aldi's sausage, it has such good flavor. thanks for posting this recipe!

    1. You're very welcome Kelly! I LOVE LOVE LOVE this for breakfast for dinner too!


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