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Dairy Free Country Gravy

This dairy free country gravy, or white gravy, is made without milk or butter and is perfect to top chicken fried steak and chicken fried chicken. It also makes for a nice vegetarian biscuits and gravy.

Country gravy in a cast iron pan on a white marble counter

Country gravy is also known as white gravy popular in the South.

It can be served over biscuits but is commonly served over chicken fried steak and chicken fried chicken.

This dairy free country gravy can be made with any dairy free milk you want but I like to make it with water or almond cooking milk.

What kind of dairy free milk to use

While many recipes can hide mask flavors of dairy free milk, like how you can’t taste the coconut milk in my dairy free pumpkin pie, this recipe has too simple a flavor profile for that.

Dairy free milks may add their own flavor to white gravy. Water has no flavor and almond cooking milk is specifically created to be used in dishes like this so they both work well here.

White Gravy vs Brown Gravy

White gravy and brown gravy are just what they sound like. White gravy is white and brown gravy is brown.

However, what gives them their colors also makes a big difference in their flavor profiles.

White gravy is made with milk or water so it keeps the natural color of the flour.

Brown gravy is made from beef stock and is often served over mashed potatoes or dishes like loco moco.

Traditional gravy regular table gravy can be a brown gravy, but is usually made with whatever drippings and stock of whatever it’s being served with.

So, brown gravy should be served with beef rather than thicken or turkey. However, there aren’t any strict rules about these things.

Browning Flour

People often see instructions like “brown the flour” and avoid this step because they aren’t making brown gravy.

Browning flour means you’re cooking the flour. This removes the flour flavor so it won’t ruin the taste of your gravy.

What Kind of Oil to Use

Neutral oils like vegetable oil, safflower oil, and sunflower seed oil work well here.

Flavored oils like olive oil and coconut oil can be used as well but may add an undesired flavor to your dish.

Schmaltz or other rendered animal fats can also be used in place of oil and may add a nice savory flavor.

Gluten Free

For gluten free, you can replace flour with (gluten free) cornstarch, potato starch, or most any other starch.

You also can replace it with (gluten free) oat flour.

None of these can be replaced at a 1:1 ratio but can easily be eyeballed.

Can it be made ahead of time?

Yes. You can make this gravy a day or two before and simply reheat it shortly before you’re ready to serve.

How to Store

Once the gravy has cooled, place it in an air tight container. Keep up to 5 days in the refrigerator.

How to Freeze

Once the gravy has cooled, place it in an air tight container or a resealable freezer bag.

You can freeze gravy for up to 5 months. After that, it is still safe to eat but the quality begins to degrade.

Yield: 6 servings

Dairy Free Country Gravy

Country gravy in a cast iron pan on a white marble counter

Dairy Free country gravy, or white gravy, made without milk. Perfect for pouring over chicken fried steak and chicken fried chicken.

Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 20 minutes


  • 1/2 cup oil
  • 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 4 cups water or dairy free milk


Heat the oil in a large skillet or frying pan over medium heat.

Whisk in flour, salt and pepper until smooth.

Stir over medium heat until browned, about 10 minutes.

Gradually stir in water or dairy free milk so that no lumps form. Continue cooking and stirring until thick.


If the gravy becomes too thick, you can thin it out with a little more water or dairy free milk.

Nutrition Information:



Serving Size:


Amount Per Serving: Calories: 223Total Fat: 19gSaturated Fat: 1gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 17gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 359mgCarbohydrates: 12gFiber: 1gSugar: 0gProtein: 2g

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