The Speckled Palate

April 11, 2018

Cream Biscuits and White Sausage Gravy

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Cream Biscuits and White Sausage Gravy are the ULTIMATE Southern comfort breakfast! Top fluffy, buttery biscuits with a creamy white sausage gravy to create the perfect weekend meal. Makes 15 biscuits.

A fork cuts into Cream Biscuits, topped with decadent White Sausage Gravy, at brunch

Oh, you’re looking for a decadent breakfast to cook for family and friends?

Look no further than this recipe, y’all.

Cream Biscuits and White Sausage Gravy are the ultimate Southern breakfast, and I cannot think of a diner in the South that doesn’t carry this classic dish.

These beauties are a Southern breakfast staple and are absolutely delicious, decadent and kind of ridiculous. And if you’re going to make this dish, please don’t try to cut calories and use low fat sausage.

Why, you ask?

Because once upon a time, I tried to do just that… and it was not a good idea. The gravy was bland. The biscuits were, too.

So please, learn from my mistakes because I can think of few things that are sadder than bad biscuits and gravy.

If you’re whipping up this brunch favorite, dedicate yourself to going all out in the making of it and follow the principle I’ve learned in recent years: Moderation.

Other breakfast dishes we love: Vegan Coconut Oil Southern-Style Biscuits / Sweet Potato Hash with Fried Egg / Mashed Potato Chorizo Breakfast Tacos / Boudin Breakfast SandwichesSweet Breakfast Crepes

The dough for Cream Biscuits is mixed together in a large glass bowl

What are the tools and products I need to make Biscuits and Gravy?

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Cream Biscuits are lined on a baking sheet and ready to bake

How to Make Classic Southern Cream Biscuits and Gravy

Make the Biscuits

First and foremost, preheat the oven and line your baking sheet with a nonstick baking mat or parchment paper. This step is super important so your beautiful biscuits don’t stick to the baking sheet.

Next, you’ll whisk flour, salt and baking powder together to make a homemade self-rising flour. These are the only ingredients you’ll need, other than cream, for your biscuits. Hooray!

Create a well in the dry ingredients by pushing them up against the sides of the bowl. You’ll pour the cream into this well, and stir it gently, incorporating it into the dry ingredients with a rubber spatula.

You’ll mix the ingredients juuuuuust until the dough begins to pull away from the sides of the bowl. Be careful not to overmix your dough, as this will affect its rise in the oven!

If the mixture is too dry? Add the reserved heavy whipping cream to it incrementally. I suggest by the tablespoon because this ensures that the mixture doesn’t get too wet.

Sprinkle a flat surface with flour, and turn out the dough onto it. Add additional flour to the top of the dough before folding the dough in half using your hands. Pat it into a 1/2″ thick round.

You can always sprinkle more flour on the dough so it doesn’t stick. 

Using biscuit cutters, cut out the biscuits. There is an art to this, though, so listen up: Do not twist the biscuit cutters. They won’t be nearly as fluffy and get the high rise effect if you twist ’em. So just push the biscuit cutter (or your cookie cutter or cup, whatever you’re using) into the dough once and lift it out once it’s cut all the way through.
 
Move those beautiful biscuits to the prepared baking sheet, and bake ’em.
 
When they’re golden and delicious, brush with butter, turn them out onto a plate or a cooling rack and serve warm! 

White Sausage Gravy sits in a saucepan beside a pan of freshly baked Cream Biscuits

Make The Gravy

As the biscuits bake, make your gravy. (Also, please note what I said above and don’t skimp on the fat here. It’s integral. And it’s oh-so-decadent and amazing.)

Brown the sausage in a medium-sized saucepan, then remove from the pan. Leave the grease behind and add butter.

Once the butter has melted, sprinkle in the flour. Use a wooden spoon to mix it into the fat. This is a roux and will thicken your gravy! Stir it constantly until the mixture browns slightly.

Lower the heat and whisk in the milk and heavy cream. Cook until thick, and keep an eye on this mixture–you don’t want to scald the dairy products!

Season the gravy with black pepper, and add back in the sausage.

Simmer for 10-15 minutes, then serve over the homemade biscuits. 

Freshly baked Cream Biscuits sit on a baking sheet after being pulled out of the oven

Frequently Asked Questions

How can I make healthier biscuits and gravy?

This recipe is not a low calorie dish, and it doesn’t taste the same if you try to cut out fat. Simply put, using milk in the biscuits or low fat sausage in the gravy will make this dish a sad, flavorless rendition of itself.

The flavors are nowhere near as good, and the recipe will not turn out as intended. (I would know.)

After years of doing it wrong, I have learned that biscuits and gravy are all about moderation–loading up one biscuit (instead of the original three I was eyeing) with just enough gravy, then savoring those flavors throughout breakfast and not going back for seconds or thirds.

Keep this mindset because nobody wants to be a Biscuits and Gravy zombie after they’ve just eaten half a pan of both… (Trust, y’all.)

Can I use heavy cream in the sausage gravy?

If that’s your thing, knock yourself out! 

I generally use whole milk in the gravy, but if you want to add the heavy cream, DO IT and savor every bite!

Would you consider this gravy to be a sawmill gravy?

Eeeeeeeeeh. I’m not 100% sure, to be honest with you. I’d classify this as a sausage or a meaty cream gravy, BUT let’s talk history for a moment.

Sawmill gravy (or saw mill gravy, I’ve seen it spelled both ways) is a traditional gravy made from milk or cream with meat drippings and flour. It originated in logging camps, where cooks fed hundreds of men daily and were always making for hearty food to fuel the lumberjacks. Since they worked at a saw mill, the name is a nod to the workplace. 

Saw mill gravy was thickened with cornmeal (instead of flour) and was thick and lumpy. The lumberjacks would say the cooks were using sawdust instead of cornmeal to thicken the gravy, hence the name.

Cream gravy starts with a roux (like this one!) The roux includes both meat drippings and flour before milk is added and thickened. Once the gravy is nice and thick, seasonings (and occasionally meat) are added, too. You might also see it listed as country gravy or white gravy.

What else can I use this creamy gravy on?

If you’re into chicken fried steak, this would be brilliant on it!

You could also serve it on top of Sweet Tea Oven Fried Chicken for some extra flavor, too.

Cream Biscuits are topped with decadent White Sausage Gravy

Tips and Tricks to making the BEST Southern Biscuits and Gravy

  • This biscuit cutter is my favorite to use when for biscuits. If you don’t have one, use a drinking glass and a paring knife to cut out the biscuits.
  • Biscuits can be made 1-2 days in advance and toasted in the toaster oven to warm before serving.
  • The gravy is best when served immediately. Can’t make it the day of your brunch? It can be reheated in the microwave. Add milk to thin it out thicken when refrigerated. (Unsure how to host brunch? I wrote a handy guide about How to Host Brunch at Home just for you!)

A fork cuts into a Cream Biscuit, topped with White Sausage Gravy, with Pinterest text

What are some breakfast and brunch dishes I can pair with these biscuits?

Interested in taking a walk on the Southern side for breakfast?

Scroll on down to learn how you can make your own…

 

Cream Biscuits and White Sausage Gravy
Yield: 15 biscuits

Cream Biscuits and White Sausage Gravy

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 25 minutes
Total Time: 35 minutes

Cream Biscuits and White Sausage Gravy are the ULTIMATE Southern comfort breakfast! Top fluffy, buttery biscuits with a creamy white sausage gravy to create the perfect weekend meal. Easy to make and even easier to enjoy, these Cream Biscuits with White Sausage Gravy are the ideal breakfast or brunch food if you're looking for something savory, decadent and utterly delicious.

Ingredients

Cream Biscuits

  • 2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 ½ teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 ¼ cups heavy whipping cream
  • Unsalted butter, for finishing

White Sausage Gravy

  • 16 oz. breakfast sausage (full fat)
  • 2 ½ tablespoons unsalted butter
  • ¼ cup unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 2 ¼ cups skim milk
  • ¾ cup heavy whipping cream
  • ½ teaspoon freshly cracked black pepper
  • Hot sauce (to taste, if you're into that kind of thing)

Instructions

Make the Biscuits

  1. Preheat the oven to 450°F.
  2. Line a baking sheet with a nonstick baking mat or parchment paper. Set aside.
  3. In a large bowl, whisk the flour, salt and baking powder together until combined. This is homemade self-rising flour and is all you need, other than cream, to make the biscuits.
  4. Push the dry ingredients up against the sides of the bowl to form a hole for the heavy whipping cream to be poured into. Pour a CUP of the heavy whipping cream in, and stir with a rubber spatula in circular motions to pull the flour into the cream. Mix until the dough begins to pull away from the bowl. (If the mixture still has lots of flour remaining, pour in the reserved 1/4 cup of heavy whipping cream in tablespoon by tablespoon until all the flour has been incorporated into the dough. You don’t want your dough to be too wet, so it's important to do incrementally. Also, please try not to overmix your dough.)
  5. Sprinkle a board or another clean, flat surface with flour. Turn the dough out onto the board and sprinkle with additional flour. Using floured hands, fold the dough in half, then pat into a 1/2″ thick round. (If necessary, sprinkle more flour into the dough because you don't want it to stick to the surface. If using additional flour, fold the dough in half again and reform another round.) 
  6. Cut out the biscuits using a biscuit cutter or a drinking glass. Start at the outside edge and cut them close together, being careful not to twist the cutter. Transfer the biscuits to the prepared baking sheet. (Use the scraps to pull together another round for more biscuits, though these will be less fluffy.)
  7. Transfer the baking sheet into the preheated oven, and bake the biscuits for 10-14 minutes or until golden brown.
  8. Remove from the oven and lightly brush with butter. Turn the biscuits out on a plate or a cooling rack, then serve warm!

Make the Gravy

  1. While the biscuits are cooking, make your gravy!
  2. In a medium-sized saucepan, brown the sausage over medium-high heat.
  3. Once the sausage has cooked through, remove from the pan while leaving the grease, and add the butter.
  4. After the butter is melted and combined with the sausage fat, sprinkle in the flour, mixing the fat and flour together to create a roux. Stir constantly until light brown.
  5. Lower the heat to medium-low, and whisk in the milk and heavy whipping cream. Cook until thickened. (Do this slowly so you don't scald the dairy products!)
  6. Season the gravy with black pepper, then add back in the sausage.
  7. Simmer for 12-15 minutes, then enjoy warm over homemade biscuits.

Notes

Biscuit recipe adapted from Southern Biscuits by Nathalie Dupree and Cynthia Graubart.

The biscuits can be doubled or tripled easily.

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Nutrition Information:

Yield:

15

Serving Size:

biscuit with 1/8 of gravy made

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 299 Saturated Fat: 11g Cholesterol: 71mg Sodium: 375mg Carbohydrates: 17g Sugar: 1g Protein: 8g
Nutrition facts are an estimate and not guaranteed to be accurate.

Have you ever tried this decadent Southern breakfast?

How do you feel about biscuits and gravy?

The photos and recipe for these Cream Biscuits and White Sausage Gravy were originally published on January 8, 2014. The photographs, along with the text of this blog post, were updated on March 22, 2018. The post was republished on April 11, 2018.


25 Comments

  1. Jenn @ Party of One

    HOLY COW! These look AMAZING. I’ve pinned it for later because I’m so making these someday. YUM, YUM, YUM!

    • Erin

      Please do, girl! This recipe is SO decadent but SO worth it! Enjoy!

  2. Courtney

    My mom recently taught me a trick for sausage gravy: Don’t remove the sausage/grease from the pan. Once it’s just about cooked through, you can thoroughly coat it in flour, let it cook another minute or so, and then cover the sausage in milk and stir til it thickens. I have to admit I’m a traditionalist and I was really skeptical of her cheating tactics, but I saw/tasted it in action, and it works. 🙂

    At any rate, you’ve really made me want to go home and eat biscuits and gravy for dinner!

    • Erin

      That’s the way to go, Courtney, and the traditional way down here in the South. All that grease from the pan is what makes the gravy SO good!

      And I really hope that you went home and ate biscuits and gravy for dinner the day you read this, haha.

  3. NEATLY-PACKAGED

    I want to spend like an entire week with you and be your official taste tester 🙂 lol in the most non-creepy way possible! 🙂

    • Erin

      Come on down, girl! I like the idea of having an official taste tester, haha!

  4. Jennifer B

    Great photos! The biscuits look so great!

    • Erin

      Thanks so much, Jennifer! The biscuits are pretty divine…

  5. John

    Courtney:
    Reference making the gravy with the sausage and grease in the pan. That is not cheating.
    That is the real, authentic, traditional way to do it. I grew up in the deep south many years ago and that is the way everyone did it.

  6. Nicky

    Those look slack ya mama good! My husband loves biscuits and gravy. If I made them, he’d be one of those biscuits and gravy zombies you mentioned. Sadly I can’t make biscuits to save my life. They resemble hockey pucks instead of anything edible. Luckily, my son, can make them. SO I’m pinning this for him to make very soon.

    • Erin

      Thanks, Nicky! I’m thrilled that your hubby’s a fan of biscuits and gravy. I hope you are, too!

      Girl, I didn’t make biscuits until I was well into my 20’s because I was terrified about screwing them up. These biscuits are super simple to make, and a good recipe to start off with, if you’re willing to give it a go!

      Let me know what y’all think of the recipe!

  7. laurasmess

    I’ve read a lot about biscuits with gravy but I’ve never actually tasted them. We tend to call your style of biscuits ‘scones’ over here in Australia. Yummy… I can imagine how amazing they’d be with that rich sausage gravy. I really do need to acquaint myself with southern food Erin. You’ve got some of the yummiest stuff on the internet and I haven’t tasted ANY of it! xx

    • Erin

      This sounds bad, but I promise it’s not, as I grew up in the Deep South where this dish is a staple. It amazes me when I meet folks who’ve never tried it before, though I know exactly why you haven’t, and it’s fascinating hearing everyone’s thoughts about it. And I think you should make some “Scones and Gravy” one of these days just to have a go at it. 😉

      Aww, girl! You’re too sweet. Thank you! Southern food is awesome, and I totally recommend trying it out…

  8. Jayne @ Tenacious Tinkering

    Oh my.. The flaky biscuits. The sauce. My heart. I really KNOW I’ll love this. I need to get some sausage and cream and you know this will be on the table soon enough. This looks like what my biscuits and gravy fantasies are made of. Lol! I promise I’ll report back once I get down on this. 🙂

    • Erin

      YESSSS! So excited that you’re going to make this decadent breakfast for yourself, Jayne, and I absolutely cannot wait to hear wait you think of it.

  9. Beth Somers

    I’m on a quest for the perfect biscuit, and yours look like they’re worth a try! Secretly, I hope this quest never ends. The more biscuits, the better.

    • Erin

      I love that you’re on the quest for a perfect biscuit, Beth, and I hope that the quest never ends, too, because biscuits are just so. good. If you try this recipe, I’d love to know what you think!

  10. Tylert

    Biscuits and gravy is something I could eat every day of my life…

    • Erin

      You and me both!

  11. food recipe

    Your biscuits are totally how we make Irish buttermilk scones only we serve them with lashings of butter. Or with cream and Jam with a hot Cuppa…divine. Serving them with gravy is a strange concept to me but I wouldn’t mind trying. Thanks 🙂

    Regard’s
    Amy

    • Erin

      Amy, I’ve never had an Irish buttermilk biscuit, but I love the idea of having it with butter or cream and jam. Sounds DELICIOUS! The gravy thing is so, so Southern, and we love it, but I get it being a strange concept if you didn’t grow up with it.

  12. Kismet

    Excellent recipe. Perfect gravy. Yum!

    • Erin

      So happy to hear you enjoyed this, Kismet! Thanks so much!

  13. Alan Dale

    Being from East Texas I eat my fair share of B&G but my Momma taught me to add a little more milk and whip it to a fluffy texture and spoon it on to a baking sheet. aka drop biscuits. Very airish.

    • Erin

      Mmm. You can’t go wrong with a good drop biscuit! I love that your Momma taught you how to make ’em!

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