All Aboard the Gravy Train

If I’ve learned anything over the course of 30+ Thanksgivings, it’s that you can never have too much gravy. While battles could be fought over canned or fresh cranberry sauce, Brussels sprouts or green beans, everyone agrees that the standard serving size for gravy is about a pint per person. No matter what’s on the menu, it’s always much more palatable when swimming in a pool of this savory sauce.

In my early years as a newly minted vegan, I distinctly remember my first tentative meals with the extended family. It was a classic situation where misunderstandings meant there was chicken stock in the rice, butter in the roasted vegetables, and of course not a scrap of plant-based protein to be seen. Prepared to fend for myself, I did come armed with the one thing I knew would enhance any meal: gravy.

Though simple, made from sauteed onions and blended chickpeas, it was a golden elixir that brightened everything on the plate. My only mistake was offering to share because as soon as it hit the table, the pitcher was dry as a bone. Even my picky, omnivorous family who would never dream of forsaking the traditional spread drank down every drop. After that, I learned to at least double, if not triple, my gravy contribution.

My cooking has evolved considerably since then, resulting in a much more complex gravy that’s even easier to whip up. Adding in volumes of umami flavor with a little pinch, Sugimoto shiitake mushroom powder is the ace up my sleeve. Like whole dried shiitake mushroom caps, this miraculous seasoning gains even greater depth when allowed to soak overnight, which makes it an ideal candidate for including in my greatest make-ahead gravy.

Becoming more flavorful the longer it sits, this gravy is your new best friend for Thanksgiving. Prepare it well in advance of the main meal so you don’t need to worry about such a critical component when the day of the big feast arrives. It can scale up almost infinitely, as leftovers keep like a dream. Since there is genuinely no such thing as too much gravy, you won’t regret making this investment in culinary currency.

Yield: Makes About 4 1/2 Cups

Make-Ahead Chickpea Gravy

Make-Ahead Chickpea Gravy

Becoming more flavorful the longer it sits, this gravy is your new best friend for Thanksgiving. Feel free to double or triple the amounts, because there's no such thing as too much gravy.

Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Additional Time 1 day
Total Time 1 day 15 minutes


  • 3 Tablespoons Olive Oil
  • 2 Shallots or 1 Yellow Onion, Diced
  • 3 Cloves Garlic, Minced
  • 1⁄4 Cup Garbanzo Bean Flour
  • 2 Tablespoons Nutritional Yeast
  • 1 Tablespoon Dried Shiitake Powder
  • 1/2 Teaspoon Smoked Paprika
  • 1/2 Teaspoon Dried Rosemary
  • 1/2 Teaspoon Dried Thyme
  • 1/4 Teaspoon Dried Sage
  • 1/4 Teaspoon Ground Black Pepper
  • 1 1/2 Cups Mushroom Stock
  • 3 Tablespoons Soy Sauce
  • 1 Tablespoons Apple Cider Vinegar
  • 1 (14-Ounce) Can Chickpeas, Undrained


  1. Pour the oil into a medium saucepan over medium heat on the stove. Once shimmering, add the shallots or onion and garlic, stirring well. Saute for 4 - 6 minutes, until softened and lightly browned.
  2. Meanwhile, whisk together the garbanzo bean flour, nutritional yeast, shiitake powder, smoked paprika, rosemary, thyme, sage, and pepper in a separate small dish. Sprinkle the dry ingredients evenly over the aromatics, whisking vigorously to incorporate. Make sure there are no lumps and cook for 1 minute.
  3. While continuing to whisk, slowly pour in the mushroom stock, soy sauce, and vinegar. Bring to a boil and let simmer for 2 minutes longer. Turn off the heat and let rest for about 5 minutes.
  4. Transfer the hot liquid to your blender, followed by the chickpeas, aquafaba and all. Blend on high speed until thoroughly pureed and completely smooth.
  5. Although you can serve this right away, it will taste even better if you can let it sit for at least 24 hours. Store in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 1 week.
  6. To reheat, when ready to serve, gently warm the gravy in a small saucepan over medium-low heat for 4 - 8 minutes. Thin with additional mushroom stock, if needed, to reach your desired consistency.


To make this gravy fat-free, omit the oil and saute the shallots or onion and garlic in 1/4 cup of water, until softened.

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Nutrition Information:



Serving Size:


Amount Per Serving: Calories: 90Total Fat: 4gSaturated Fat: 1gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 3gCholesterol: 1mgSodium: 253mgCarbohydrates: 10gFiber: 3gSugar: 3gProtein: 4g

All nutritional information presented within this site are intended for informational purposes only. I am not a certified nutritionist and any nutritional information on should only be used as a general guideline. This information is provided as a courtesy and there is no guarantee that the information will be completely accurate. Even though I try to provide accurate nutritional information to the best of my ability, these figures should still be considered estimations.

This post was made possible as a collaboration with SUGIMOTO Co. My opinions can not be bought and all content is original. This page may contain affiliate links; thank you for supporting my blog!

4 thoughts on “All Aboard the Gravy Train

  1. It’s funny! I LOVE Sauces, Dips, Spreads, etc but I stopped doing gravies YEARS and YEARS ago. I don’t even remember why. Maybe because most of the vegetarian ones from 20+ years ago seems too salty to me. Regardless…I need to step outside my box and try making them myself again!

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