Chocolate Gravy

You haven’t lived until you’ve had Chocolate Gravy.

Whenever some chef comes on television and demonstrates a 40-step process for the “perfect meal”, I wonder how we got so far away from biscuits and gravy. Specifically, biscuits and Chocolate Gravy.

Being a Southern Boy, I was lucky enough to be reared on the staples of poor folk food. Of course, I had no idea that what we were eating was poor folk food, I just knew that it tasted like a million dollars and assumed that everyone’s parents fed them meals that were built on the Southern Food Pyramid:

Beef, Potatoes, Flour and Bacon Grease

In the 60’s, many World War II and Korean Veterans were raising their families on one salary. It was a priority for a mom to be home raising the kiddos, so a dollar was stretched to the breaking point.

This meant that every single food item was made to taste as good as possible and last as long as possible. Back then, no one had ever heard about cholesterol.

Shockingly, we were surrounded by skinny people who died of old age.

When I was a lad, EVERY meal had the following: Homemade biscuits, gravy and fried potatoes. This was at breakfast, lunch and dinner. No exceptions.

On special occasions, my mom made Chocolate Gravy for breakfast.

Now, before you turn up your nose and get all Holier-than-thou, let me just tell you that people came from miles around for my mom’s Chocolate Gravy. Every time I had buddies spend the weekend, they requested it.

But, Chocolate Gravy is not what you think. It’s not really a gravy, it’s more of a dessert.

My Great Aunt Maude gets the credit for this dish. My mother tells stories about how she and her five siblings would visit Aunt Maude and looked forward to chocolate gravy.

Chocolate Gravy is more like a hot pudding, but it has the consistency of gravy.

Hence, the name.

I share this with you in the hopes that you will try it, like it, feed it to your kids, they will like it and then Chocolate Gravy will live on.

Give this a try and let me know what the family thinks. I honestly want to know. Post your comments on the newspaper’s website or on mine at

Chocolate Gravy:

1 cup of sugar

4 tablespoons of cocoa

1 teaspoon of self-rising flour

1/4 cup of butter

1 cup of milk

1/4 teaspoon of vanilla (optional)

Mix sugar, flour & cocoa together, well.

Then add milk, butter & vanilla.

Bring to a boil.
 Reduce heat & cook on low until done to preferred consistency.
 Pour over hot, buttered biscuits (split in half) and eat with a fork.

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  1. Susie Cowan  June 8, 2014

    Hi john! Just read your article about chocolate gravy. Loved it! My grandmother made “chocolate” for us in a tin pan, and many times I tried to re-create hers, even to the point of borrowing her little pan in hopes that it would taste like hers! Much to my dismay, it did not. However chocolate gravy reigns on in our family!!! I learned to make it from my mom, and even though it doesn’t have the dark, rich syrupy taste that my grandmother’s did, it is awesome. All of our children expect it when they they come home, as well as our grandchildren. A couple of our Inlaws are not converted yet!!!

    My mother also made a “butter roll.” Unfortunately I do not have her recipe for that. If you happen to have a family recipe for that, I would really like to take a gander at it!!

    Thank you for the refreshing note!!! Long live the South, and long live chocolate gravy!!

    • John Moore  June 9, 2014

      Thanks for your comment and for taking the time to write. I have to agree, my chocolate gravy has never tasted like my mom’s. She even gave me the skillet in which she made it for me as a child and I still can’t make it the same. But, it’s close. And close is good enough!

      Take care,


    • John Moore  June 9, 2014


      As for the butter roll recipe you seek, I don’t have one since my mom used buttermilk biscuits. However, hopefully, someone else will read this and chime in with one!


  2. Wanda Moore  June 9, 2014

    I enjoyed your Chocolate Gravy recipe, but my Mother had another twist. She made Chocolate Syrup, using water instead of milk. I did not like breakfast so all 12 years of school she made Chocolate Syrup and biscuits for my breakfast. To this day, I still prefer her type of breakfast. A secret to make it syrupy is to cook slowly and longer than you would gravy.
    Thanks for the memory.

    • John Moore  June 9, 2014


      Thanks for taking the time to write. The chocolate gravy fans I’ve met all seem to have a slightly different recipe, but the common thing I hear is “but, I can’t make it like she did”.

      Take care,



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