Sauces and Gravies

The terms "sauce" and "gravy" are often used interchangeably, but they do have distinct characteristics and purposes:


A sauce is a liquid or semi-liquid condiment that enhances the flavor, moisture, and presentation of a dish.
Sauces can be made from a variety of ingredients, including stocks, broths, creams, fruits, vegetables, herbs, spices, and wines.
Sauces can be served hot or cold, and they come in a wide range of flavors, textures, and consistencies.
Common types of sauces include béchamel, marinara, hollandaise, béarnaise, teriyaki, and pesto.


Gravy is a type of sauce that is specifically made from the drippings (juices and fat) of cooked meat, often combined with broth, stock, or water and thickened with flour or cornstarch.
Gravy is typically savory and is commonly served with roasted or grilled meats, especially poultry (such as turkey), beef, and pork.
The primary purpose of gravy is to add flavor, moisture, and richness to meat dishes, as well as to moisten and complement starchy side dishes like mashed potatoes or stuffing.
Gravy is often associated with comfort food and traditional holiday meals.
In summary, while both sauces and gravies are flavorful accompaniments to dishes, the main distinction lies in the ingredients used and the specific context in which they are served. Gravy is specifically made from meat drippings and is often served with meat dishes, while sauces can be made from a wider range of ingredients and serve various culinary purposes beyond meat dishes.