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White Gravy, Cream Gravy, And Poor-do Recipe

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3.80 from 44 votes
Once you've made Sawmill gravy you'll wonder why you didn't do it this way the whole time. Also known as poor-do in parts of Appalachia, it will give you the energy you need to chop down a few trees.

Main Course
Sauces and Condiments
Side Dish


Servings: 4 servings


Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes


  • 4 Easy Southern Biscuits That Just Can't Fail
  • cup all purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon ground sage
  • 1 teaspoon ground fennel seed
  • 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • ¼ teaspoon chipotle powder
  • 1 pound pork sausage
  • 1 medium onion, chopped coarsely
  • 2 tablespoons bacon fat or butter
  • 3 cups whole milk or 2% milk
  • Morton Kosher Salt to taste
About the biscuits. In a pinch, you can serve the gravy over toast or English muffins.
About the sausage. A good pork breakfast sausage patty without casing is my first choice. Italian sausage works fine. If you want, you can smoke the sausage. It is wonderful that way.
About the milk. This recipe works fine with 2% milk but if you have real cream or half and half, use 2 3/4 cups (650.7 ml) of the milk and 1/4 cup (59.1 ml) of the good stuff for extra richness.
About the salt. Remember, Morton's coarse kosher salt is half the concentration of table salt so if you use table salt, use half as much. Click here to read more about salt and how it works.
Optional. I like to garnish with French's Original Crispy Fried Onions for crunch.
Metric conversion:

These recipes were created in US Customary measurements and the conversion to metric is being done by calculations. They should be accurate, but it is possible there could be an error. If you find one, please let us know in the comments at the bottom of the page


  • Prep. If you are making the biscuits fresh, don't start cooking the gravy until the biscuits are almost done. If you are using pre-cooked biscuits, warm them as you start the gravy.
  • Combine the flour, sage, fennel, chipotle, and pepper in a small bowl.
  • If the sausage is in links, remove the casings and crumble it.
  • Cook. Cook the crumbled sausage and onion in the bacon fat or butter in a large frying pan over medium heat until brown and warmed through.
  • Sprinkle the flour mixture over the sausage and onions and cook, stirring steadily, for about 2 minutes or until flour has soaked up the fat and gotten a bit tan in color.
  • Gradually stir in the milk and simmer for about 5 minutes until it thickens. If the gravy gets too thick, add more milk.
  • Serve. Split the biscuits open with a fork and spoon the gravy over the top. Wear a bib.