Vegetarian Gravy Recipe for the Cooler Weather Meals

sliced mushrooms on a chopping board

Recipe: Vegetarian Mushroom Gravy for Holiday Meals and Fall Cooking

Just in time for the holidays! This is my 29th autumn as a vegetarian. That's 29 Thanksgiving holidays and Yuletide Christmas dinners being a vegetarian, which is hard to believe since I don't look old enough for that. (Maybe these things explain each other?) Anyway, I thought I would share my gravy recipe for my fellow veggies out there. Non-veggies like it too.

Plant-Based Vegetarian Mushroom Gravy Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup finely chopped baby portabella mushrooms
  • 1 heaping tsp chopped garlic 
  • 1 heaping tsp of Better Than Boullion
  • 1/2 tbs butter or a hearty plant based butter-like spread, if you're vegan or don't consume dairy
  • 1 tbs evoo
  • 2 tbs flour
  • 2 c. water or broth (preferably the drained water from the carrots or squash that you boiled as part of the meal prep, for added flavor; or put all your veggie scraps in a bot and fill it with water, bring to boil then strain. return to pot and simmer while cooking)
  • 1/2 tsp gravy master (optional)
  • 1 tsp thyme (fresh) - 1/2 dry
  • 2 tsp parsley (fresh) - 1 tsp dry
  • salt and pepper to taste

Vegetarian Gravy Recipe Directions

Add butter and evoo to sauce pan. Heat pan to med high heat. As butter begins to melt and get hot, add garlic and mushrooms. Stir. After oil, butter, garlic and mushrooms are well incorporated, add veggie bouillon and maybe a little bit of water if the bouillon needs help dissolving. Stir often until mushrooms begin to be tender. Sprinkle flour over mixture, slowly, constantly stirring. Add 3/4 cup of water and spices & gravy master. Stir well. Bring to a boil, stirring often. Once gravy begins to bubble, reduce heat. When settled, add contents to bullet blender and blend up, then check for consistency.

If too thick - add contents back into pan, set on medium heat, add more water/broth (eyeball it), bring to a boil then simmer over low heat. Note that gravy will thicken upon standing.

If too thin - in a small jar with lid, mix 1 tbs flour, 1/4 c boiling water. Slowly pour in starchy water into gravy mixture, mixing well. Bring to boil then simmer over low heat.

Serve while hot for best taste and consistency.

Notes on Bridget Eileen's Vegetarian Gravy Recipe 

The trick with a good vegetarian gravy is that you have to find a way to simulate the "pan drippings" start of a standard gravy. This comes from a mix of hearty flavors - in this case portabello mushrooms, vegetable bouillon cube and garlic - and some sort of fat - in this case, butter, and/or oil. Along with being plant-based, this gravy is  also a little less fatty.

Substitutions and Variations for Vegetarian Gravy without Mushrooms

If you're not a fan of mushroom, other hearty flavored veggies will also work, like shallots, onion, carrot (though this is far more mild), or just plain garlic. You can also add red or white wine or a good, hearty microbrew beer to the beginning veggie sautéing stage. Wait until the alcohol has burned off before adding the flour, water, etc.

And this is the end to the gravy lessons learned over nearly 3 decades of vegetarian holiday feasting.