The Best Vegetarian Gravy

Photo by Sarah Karnasiewicz
The Best Vegetarian Gravy 4.8 4 5 1
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  • Makes 4 cups
  • Hands-On Time
  • Total Time

A clever combination of umami-rich mushrooms, caramelized onions, soy sauce, and slow simmered stock lend this meat-free gravy a mahogany color and a deep, rich flavor that will please vegetarians and carnivores alike.


  1. Check 2 tablespoons olive oil
  2. Check 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
  3. Check 2 onions, diced
  4. Check 1 clove garlic
  5. Check ½ pound mushrooms, such as cremini, Portobello, or button, diced
  6. Check 1 tablespoon dry red wine, Marsala, or sherry
  7. Check 1 tablespoon nutritional yeast
  8. Check 3 cups vegetable stock
  9. Check Kosher salt and black pepper
  10. Check 2-4 tablespoons soy sauce


  1. Heat the olive oil and butter in a large skillet over medium high heat. Add the onions and cook until they turn a deep brown, stirring often, about 10-15 minutes.  Add the garlic and mushrooms, reduce the heat to medium, and cook until the mushrooms have given up most of their liquid and the mixture is deeply fragrant, 10-15 minutes. Add the wine to the skillet and scrape any crispy bits from the pan. Stir in the nutritional yeast.
  2. Add the stock and bring to a boil, then reduce the heat to low and simmer, uncovered, for 10 minutes. Add a pinch of salt and a few grinds of black pepper. (Just add a small amount of salt now to distribute the flavor; you’ll finish seasoning the gravy at the end, after adding the soy sauce.)
  3. Pour the mixture into a blender and blend until smooth. Transfer to a bowl. Stir in two tablespoons of the soy sauce. If you want the gravy to be a darker brown, add another tablespoon or two. Taste and season with salt.