Knowing how to make white gravy is super useful. It is used for many preparations such as lasagna, pasta sauces, souffles, etc. That’s why I want to show you my tricks to make a tasty white gravy without lumps. This is the first recipe in my basic cooking series here on the blog so stay tuned for more :).

The classic white sauce has 3 basic ingredients: flour, butter, and milk. You can change the butter for oil as when we made the Serrano ham croquettes and for the milk, you can use the type you want. If you use whole / fresh milk, it will be creamier than if you use skim milk, but it will work the same. You can also use non-dairy milk if you prefer. Changing the flour is more complicated, you can but the proportion changes.

The thing that scares people the most when making white gravy is the lumps. To avoid lumps, it is important to pour the milk into the roux (a mixture of flour and butter) off the heat. You add it little by little until you have used all the milk. You can see how I do it in the video lines above.

It is good to make the white gravy at the time you are going to use it. As time passes, the texture of the sauce changes and tends to form a hard layer on top. To preserve it, cover it with something touching the surface. That way the hard cap is not formed on top. I use cotton cloths with beeswax to get away from the film. Then when you want to use it you have to return to the heat and adjust the texture with more milk.

The classic white gravy asks that the milk be first flavored with some ingredients, such as tea. This makes it taste more than milk and it is super-rich. It is not necessary to do so if it is part of preparation with other flavors such as cauliflower souffle, for example. You also have to consider that each recipe calls for a different thickness in the white gravy. To make it thicker you use more butter and flour, and to make it lighter you are useless.


  • For milk
  • 600 ml milk
  • ¼ white onion, uncut
  • 2 cloves
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 2 sprigs thyme
  • For the white gravy
  • 30 g unsalted or salted butter
  • 30 g flour without baking powder / unprepared flour
  • milk from above
  • Nutmeg
  • Salt and pepper

Step-by-step elaboration

For milk

  • Put all the ingredients in a pot over low heat. Since it breaks a light boil, leave it for 10 minutes. Move from time to time so that the milk does not stick and burn down.
  • Pass the contents through a strainer and keep the milk.

For the white sauce

Melt the butter over medium heat and add the flour.

  • Let the mixture cook for 1 minute, mixing the entire time with a hand mixer.
  • Take the pot off the heat and add a splash of milk. Mix with the hand mixer. It will form a dough at the beginning.
  • Add all the milk little by little, mixing between each splash. When the mixture is loose add the rest of the milk. Finish by adding a little nutmeg.
  • Put the mixture over medium heat and bring it to a boil. While that happens we mix all the time with a hand mixer.
  • From the moment it starts to boil, let it boil for a minute. Remove the white gravy from the heat.
  • Add salt and pepper to taste.
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Stephanie Cleghorn

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