Country style sausage gravy

When I was a kid, I never liked biscuits and gravy. Both of my grandmothers would make it for breakfast whenever we’d visit, but I was a picky eater and didn’t want to try it. It wasn’t until I was older that I had the courage to try it and discovered what I’d been missing the entire time.

Eventually I had both my dad’s mom and my mom’s mom teach me their recipes, which were almost identical. I blended their recipes and started tinkering with them on my own, like adding MSG, bouillon, and the other spices.

Later, around 2017, I was visiting Denver for work and was served gravy with chilies in it, which was incredible. By then I had cream on hand for making whipped cream, and buttermilk to make ranch. I was short on milk one time and used cream and buttermilk to make up for it, which was a great change, so I started doing that on purpose.

Over time I decided to focus on the buttermilk, because that’s what’s used to make the biscuits too. But cream is a great alternative for a richer gravy if you don’t like the slight sour taste of buttermilk. You can use them both at the same time too, if you really want to get nuts.

Lots of people will add splashes of hot sauce (Louisana, Frank’s, Cholula, Tapatio, Valentina, etc) over the top of their gravy when serving.

But no matter what you do, if you serve this over biscuits, split the damned biscuits before adding gravy. My God people, split the effing biscuits.

Country style sausage gravy

Like grandma made, but with a Colorado style bite
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 45 minutes
Course Breakfast
Cuisine American


  • large sauce pot
  • 1 wooden spatula / stirrer


  • 1 lb loose sausage I prefer "hot" and "country style" but other types work.
  • 1/2 stick unsalted butter or ghee
  • 2 tbsp bacon grease
  • 1/2 c flour approximate, use more or less to thicken as preferred
  • salt
  • black pepper
  • 4 c milk approximate, use more or less to thin as preferred
  • 1/2 pint buttermilk or cream
  • 1 tsp onion powder more or less as preferred
  • 1/4 tsp garlic powder more or less as preferred
  • 1/8 tsp red pepper flakes more or less as preferred
  • 1/4 tsp monosodium glutamate Aji-No-Moto or other
  • 1 tsp vegetable Better than Bouillon
  • 1 7 oz can green chilies
  • 1/8 tsp white pepper
  • 1/4 tsp celery flakes


Prepare sausage mix

  • Set stovetop to high and let heat until the pan starts smoking
  • Set out 4c of milk from the fridge so it starts warming up
  • Add sausage to pan and chop roughly with the wooden spatula
  • Let crust form on bottom of sausage
  • Once crust forms, turn heat down to medium-high
  • Continue chopping and stirring sausage to brown it thoroughly
  • Once the sausage has browned, add the butter and bacon grease
  • Push the sausage to the side

Make a roux

  • Fold in flour to the butter-grease mixture, ensuring it is fully absorbed without lumps
  • Toast the flour to golden
  • When the flour-grease starts to toast, mix it into the sausage
  • You have enough flour when all the oil is absorbed and the sausage easily sticks together
  • Flatten the sausage cake across the bottom of the pan to let it toast a little more

Make the gravy

  • Add the tin of chilies, if you're using them
  • Add onion powder, garlic powder, red pepper flakes, MSG, and veggie bouillon, if you're using these ingredients
  • Add buttermilk or cream, depending on what you're using
  • Begin adding milk while chopping & stirring the sausage-roux patty
  • Continuously add milk while stirring, make sure to break up sausage clumps and that the milk is hydrating the roux
  • Stir continuously, ensuring to constantly scrape the bottom of the pan to take off the fond and mix it into the gravy
  • Once most or all of the milk is added, turn the heat down to medium / medium-low
  • Add salt and fresh-cracked black pepper
  • When the gravy begins to thicken, sticking to the spoon and the bottom of the pot, taste and adjust any spices
  • Keep stirring constantly, if it's too thin, keep it on the heat so the flour blooms more, if it's too thick, add more milk

Let it rest

  • When you're satisfied the gravy is thickening properly, shut off the heat, put a lid on the pot, and let it rest for 10-15 minutes
  • Serve over buttermilk biscuits, waffles, chicken, potatoes, or in breakfast burritos
  • Crack more black pepper over the top of whatever you're serving


For a “classic” or “traditional” country gravy, only use: 
  • Sausage
  • Butter
  • Bacon grease
  • Flour
  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • Milk
All other ingredients are optional, delicious, and add a lot of flavor, but aren’t “traditional” midwestern country gravy. If you’re doing “traditional”, don’t toast the roux, because traditional country gravy uses an untoasted, white flour roux. 
I prefer buttermilk to cream, and adding chilies (and all the other spices). 
For the love of God SPLIT YOUR BISCUITS! (I would underline that statement too, if I could.)
You can always tell who knows how to make biscuits and gravy and who’s faking it by whether or not they split their biscuits horizontally in the middle of the biscuit and pour the gravy over the soft insides, whereas poseurs will pour the gravy over the top of an unsplit biscuit. 
The outside of the biscuit is toasted, and doesn’t absorb the gravy well. The inside is not toasted. Not only does the biscuit absorb the gravy better when it’s split, serving biscuits without splitting them screws up the biscuit-to-gravy ratio. You end up with a small dash of gravy on a thick piece of biscuit. That’s not what you want. You want roughly equal amounts of gravy and biscuit in each bite. So split the damned biscuits. 
Country style gravy is a very black pepper oriented dish. Use fresh cracked pepper for best results. 
If you really want to get wild, put shredded cheddar cheese over the top of the hot biscuits and gravy, then put it in the oven at 350 to melt & brown the cheese before serving.
Or make a combination of french fries and tater tots, put gravy on them, put cheese on top, and broil that. Then eat it with a splash of hot sauce.