Easy Traditional Beef Gravy Recipe

Onion Gravy. Elaine Lemm
  • 25 mins
  • Prep: 10 mins,
  • Cook: 15 mins
  • Yield: 8 servings
Ratings (46)

Traditional beef gravy is the best accompaniment to Roast Beef and Yorkshire Puddings, the national dish of Great Britain, so why would you ever buy ready made gravy when making it is so easy and tastes so much better than anything you can buy?  It is not challenging and once you try it, you will never go back to granules and jars. 

The success to great gravy is to use the delicious pan juices from your roast and you will have these after the meat is cooked and you have put it to rest. The all you need are a few simple ingredients and your Sunday roast or supper dish will be transformed. 

What You'll Need

  • 1 cup pan juices from roast meat (more or less; see note below)
  • 1/2 glass red wine or port
  • 500ml (1 pint)  meat or vegetable stock
  • 1 tsp butter, ice-cold (put in freezer for an hour before use)

How to Make It


Once the roast meat is cooked remove it from the oven, wrap loosely in aluminium foil and leave on one side to rest. The roasting pan will contain all the meat juices from the roast which are an essential part of the gravy. Pour away any excess fat before starting the recipe.

  • Place the roasting pan on the stove top over a high heat until the meat juices begin to bubble taking care not to burn as it bubbles up quickly
  • Pour in the red wine at once,  and scrape all the juices from the bottom of the pan with a wooden spoon or spatula. Allow this to bubble until it is reduced to a sticky, concentrated glaze. Again, do not leave the pan unattended as the reduction happens very quickly.
  • Add the stock and stir thoroughly to incorporate the reduced glaze.
  • Strain the gravy through a fine sieve into a saucepan and bring to a gentle boil and reduce by one-third.
  • Once the gravy is reduced, add the butter in tiny pieces shaking the pan gently until the all the butter is absorbed - adding the ice cold butter not only adds flavour, it gives the gravy a glossy shine.  
  • Check the resting meat to see if it has given up any more meat juices (beef and lamb often will as the meat relaxes). Add these juices to the gravy and give it another quick boil. 
  • Keep warmed until needed then strain into a warmed sauceboat. 
  • This gravy also freezes well, so make lots.

This technique for gravy can be used for other meats. With pork and chicken, use a white wine instead.