This biscuits and gravy recipe is among one of my favorite breakfast recipes. It’s not only simple and delicious, but also reminds me of how lucky we are, to be in a time of peace.
Where Biscuits and Gravy Originates
It all started out in the American Revolutionary War that took place in the late 17th century— when the Europeans moved to America. Food supply at that time was in extreme shortage, so people had to find something easy to make, cheap, yet could be stored for a long time.
Soon, the idea of having biscuits dressed in gravy and sausage came to them, which unsurprisingly, were common parts of their meals and didn’t cost much. People baked biscuits twice to remove all moisture, so that they could be made and stored in large batches for future use.
From such a simple idea of using storable things (accessible), now biscuits and gravy is known to be a staple of the southern states of America. From a bare essentials meal to a famous comfort food, known for its creamy, meaty sauce and buttery, flaky biscuits.
Is Biscuits and Gravy Healthy?
To judge whether this dish is healthy, we checked the nutritional values of popular biscuits and gravy recipes online, to see if they follow our healthy eating guidelines.
Since we’re viewing biscuits and gravy as a breakfast dish, we’d say that it’s best to yield 600 calories, no more than 8 grams of saturated fat and 600 milligrams of sodium.
We saw that most biscuits and gravy recipes online have either insufficient calories per serving, or way too much saturated fat and sodium. The main reason being what they use in their recipes: store-bought buttermilk biscuits and ready-made Italian sausages, which can contain lots of saturated fat and sodium.
We tried adjusting their recipes, in terms of nutrition, to see if there was a way to make their recipes healthy. As we did, we realized it was either healthy or satisfying— there was no way the adjusted recipes could be satisfying.
So, as a last resort, we decided to make everything from scratch. It may sound crazy, but it’s not as hard and time-consuming as you might think.
How We Make Our Healthy Biscuits and Gravy Recipe
First, we bought our own minced pork and several ingredients to make a marinade. It’d take less than 5 minutes to measure and mix them all together, and another 30 minutes to let the mixture sit in the fridge. Your homemade sausage meat now only has less than 150mg of sodium per serving.
Other recipes make their biscuits from scratch too, but our secret is, we used half butter, half vegetable shortening from Crisco. It contains less saturated fat, and less than 0.5 grams of trans fat per serving. By adding shortening, the biscuits should be flaky and buttery, but contain a moderate amount of saturated fat per serving.
Can Biscuits and Gravy Be Made Ahead of Time?
If you’re busy in the morning, making biscuits and gravy the night before is a possibility.
To prepare the meat, instead of letting it marinate in the fridge for 30 minutes, cover it with cling film and let it sit overnight. The longer it sits, the more flavorful it will be.
You can also freeze (not refrigerate) the biscuit dough. Biscuit dough is best kept frozen so that the butter doesn’t melt before baking. To make it more convenient, don’t freeze the dough as a whole, but divide it into portions first. In the morning, you just have to take them out, brush them with a quickly-made egg wash, and throw it into the oven. It may need about 10 minutes more, but will turn out just as good.
What to Serve with Biscuits and Gravy
Since our biscuits and gravy are creamy, salty and a bit sweet, we thought that a side of lemonade would be a simple, yet perfect choice. The acidity in lemonade can cut through the richness of the dish, plus, cranks the calories up to around 600:
|Recipes||Course||Calories (kcal)||Saturated Fat (g)||Sodium (mg)|
|Biscuits And Gravy||Breakfast||459||7.9||533|
Biscuits And Gravy Recipe
For the biscuits
For the sausage
- 6 oz 85% lean ground pork
- 3/4 tsp fennel seeds
- 1/4 tsp nutmeg
- 1/4 tsp ground pepper
- 1.5 tbsp parsley
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 3/4 tsp sugar
- 1 tbsp garlic
- 1 tsp white vinegar
- 2 1/2 tsp white wine Sauvignon Blanc
- For the gravy
- 1/2 tbsp unsalted butter
- 1 3/4 cups whole milk
- 2 tbsp all-purpose flour
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp black pepper
- 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
Marinate the sausage
- Mix ingredients for the sausage in a bowl, making sure the seasonings are evenly distributed throughout the meat.
- Cover and let marinate for 30 minutes in the fridge.
Make the biscuits
- While the meat is marinating, preheat the oven to 400ºF.
- Mix the flour, salt, sugar, and baking powder in a large bowl.
- Grate frozen butter and shortening in, and using a fork, gently toss to coat the butter and shortening evenly with flour. Put the bowl in the freezer to keep the butter from melting.
- Place the buttermilk in a small bowl. Gradually add cold water (one teaspoon at a time) and mix it well. It’s okay if there are still very small lumps.
- Take the flour bowl out and pour in the buttermilk mixture. Using a fork, mix it until it comes together as a dry dough. Do not use your hands, as they may melt the butter.
- Turn out the dough onto a large sheet of parchment. Cut out another sheet with the same size, and place it on top of the dough. Use a rolling pin and roll the dough out to about 1 inch thick. Do it quickly to keep the dough cold.
- Cut the dough sheet into 8 equal pieces. Place them onto a lined baking sheet.
- Prepare egg wash and brush the top of each piece of dough. Bake them for 15 minutes. The sausage meat should be done marinating by now.
Prepare the gravy
- Melt butter in a saucepan on medium heat. Add the marinated meat and cook for 2 minutes.
- Add salt, pepper and flour. Stir until everything combines.
- Pour milk in and simmer for another 3 minutes on low heat. If the sauce looks too thick, add one tablespoon of water at a time until it reaches your desired consistency.
- Take the biscuits out of the oven. If you are plating up, put 2 biscuits on a plate and smother with a small ladle full of gravy.