I Made Dolly Parton’s Recipe for Milk Gravy and It’s the Only Way to Eat Biscuits for Breakfast

If you want to start your day off with a hearty breakfast, Dolly Parton's milk gravy recipe is a keeper.

When it comes to Southern comfort food at breakfast time, you can’t go wrong with the classic combination of biscuits and gravy. And when Southern country music star, philanthropist and all-around living legend Dolly Parton shares a recipe for milk gravy, you know it’s going to be good.

Once you’ve tried this milk gravy, you’re going to want to come back for more of Dolly’s favorite Southern recipes.

How to Make Milk Gravy Like Dolly Parton

Toh 3 2 Dolly Parton Milk Gravy Gettyimages 1439334635 Susan Bronson JveditSusan Bronson for Taste of Home, Getty Images


  • 1/3 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1/4-1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 2-1/2 cups whole milk
  • 1/2 cup heavy whipping cream
  • Buttermilk biscuits and sausage patties, to serve


Step 1: Combine the dry ingredients

Toh Dolly Parton Gravy Dry Ingredients Susan Bronson JveditSusan Bronson for Taste of Home

In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, salt, dried thyme and black pepper.

Step 2: Add the wet ingredients

Toh Dolly Parton Gravy Wet Ingredients Susan Bronson JveditSusan Bronson for Taste of Home

Whisk in the whole milk and heavy cream. Continue to stir until the mixture is smooth.

Step 3: Cook the gravy

Toh Dolly Parton Gravy Gravy Skillet2 Susan Bronson JveditSusan Bronson for Taste of Home

Pour the mixture into a skillet or large sauce pot and bring to a boil over medium heat. Cook, whisking continuously, for 2 minutes or until the gravy has thickened. Season to taste with additional salt and pepper if needed.

Step 4: Serve it up

Serve over freshly baked biscuits and sausage patties.

Here’s What I Thought

Toh Dolly Parton Gravy Final Presentation 1 Susan Bronson JveditSusan Bronson for Taste of Home

Dolly’s milk gravy recipe is another winner, just like her recipes for chicken and dumplings, cinnamon bread, 5-layer casserole and butterscotch pie. It takes mere minutes to whip up, and it truly tastes delicious.

I served the savory milk gravy smothered over flaky buttermilk biscuits with a couple of sausage patties on the side, just like Dolly does when making this special breakfast to share with her husband Carl. Make sure your biscuits are generously sized, as you will want to use them to sop up all the gravy goodness.

Tips for Making Milk Gravy

How to make gravy in advance

When you’re workin’ 9 to 5, making both freshly baked biscuits and gravy first thing in the morning isn’t always possible. However, this gravy can be made in advance and stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to four days before using it. When reheating, bring to a simmer over low heat on the stovetop. Whisk in a little milk if the gravy is too thick.

How to store leftover gravy

In addition to refrigerating any leftover gravy for a few days, you can also freeze leftover gravy. Once cooled, spoon the gravy into airtight freezer containers. It’s best to use the gravy within four to six months of freezing.

How to make gravy without milk

If you can’t tolerate milk, you can use non-dairy milk instead. The most common non-dairy milk substitution in gravy recipes is unsweetened almond milk. It won’t taste quite the same as Dolly’s, but it’ll work.

Susan Bronson
Susan Bronson is a writer and editor based in Northern Wisconsin.