Chocolate gravy

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Gravy made with bacon, cocoa, and milk, served over buttermilk biscuits

Chocolate gravy is a variety of gravy made with cocoa powder, sugar, butter and flour and is part of traditional Appalachian cuisine. It is most often served as a Sunday morning dish with fresh biscuits in the Ozark[1] and Appalachian Mountain[2] regions.


The origins of chocolate gravy are unknown. The Oxford Encyclopedia of Food and Drink in America describes it as a traditional part of Melungeon cuisine.[3] It theorizes that chocolate gravy might be connected to the use of chocolate in Mexican cuisine, having been transmitted through trade between Spanish Louisiana and the Tennessee Valley.[4] Professor Fred Sauceman theorized that it might have developed more recently as Hershey's cocoa powder became popular in the United States.[5]


Typical chocolate gravy recipes call for milk, sugar, cocoa powder, flour and a fat such as butter[6][7] lard, or bacon grease.[8] Milk is commonly used as the liquid in chocolate gravy, while some recipes use water.[9] Some recipes devised in eastern Oklahoma use more sugar, and butter is added after the gravy is complete, making it similar to warm chocolate pudding served over biscuits.[10] In a traditional gravy, a roux is made with fat and flour before the milk is added; in chocolate gravy all the dry ingredients are mixed first, milk slowly incorporated, then stirred continuously until cooked. When a thick and rich consistency is achieved, the butter and vanilla are added. Other ingredients, such as crumbled bacon, are usually added afterward near the end of preparation.[11]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "The Chocolate Gravy Myth....And How I Think It Started!". Me and My Captain. 2017-05-26. Retrieved 2018-12-27.
  2. ^ "Chocolate Gravy Is the Pride of Appalachia". MyRecipes. Retrieved 2018-12-27.
  3. ^ Smith, Andrew (2013-01-31). The Oxford Encyclopedia of Food and Drink in America. OUP USA. p. 698. ISBN 978-0-19-973496-2.
  4. ^ South, Taste of the (2022-11-28). "Chocolate Gravy". Taste of the South. Retrieved 2023-06-18.
  5. ^ "Chocolate gravy has a strong Southern tradition". The State Journal-Register. Retrieved 2023-06-18.
  6. ^ "Chocolate Gravy". Southern Living. Retrieved 2023-06-18.
  7. ^ Urben, Jenna (2021-10-19). "This Is How to Make CHOCOLATE Gravy Like a Southerner". Taste of Home. Retrieved 2023-06-18.
  8. ^ "Chocolate Gravy". Atlas Obscura. Retrieved 2023-06-18.
  9. ^ "COOK/Marketplace to feature artisans - The Neshoba Democrat - Philadelphia, Mississippi". The Neshoba Democrat - Philadelphia, Mississippi. Retrieved 2 May 2017.[permanent dead link]
  10. ^ "Kim's Chocolate Gravy". Retrieved 2018-12-27.
  11. ^ Oden, Steve (2013-04-30). "Oden: Chocolate gravy and other food cravings". Independent Herald. Retrieved 2018-12-27.