Home-made gluten, dairy and celery free gravy in a flask

The smell of roast meat cooking, the promise of crisp roast potatoes, carrots, brocolli and a big yorkshire pudding. Just the smallest wiff of my favourite meal reminds me of mum’s roast dinners, always the best after a long bike ride or exhausting football match. A hot bath and the promise of pure comfort food. Nothing quite beats a good traditional roast dinner, and it’s even better if someone else cooks it and you don’t have any washing up to do.

If you have allergies to gluten, wheat, dairy and or celery then you’ll know about the perils of eating gravy in a restaurant, pub or cafe. There are just too many ingredients, too many things that could be included, too many risks. Usually a plate of delicious food is enough, and I have eaten many a dry roast dinner in my time. Waitresses and waiters think your daft asking for no gravy but most gravy is off the menu if you have allergies.

However, we all know that gravy really adds something to the roast dinner experience, so this weekend I executed a long held plan that I’ve never quite got around to doing. I made my own and took it with me.

Home-made gluten, dairy, celery free gravy

Home made gravy in a flask

About half an hour before you need to leave prepare some gravy that you CAN eat. Put it in a flask and pop it in your bag. The experience will be transformed.

I used Free&Easy gravy granules which are gluten, wheat, dairy, egg, tomato and celery free.

Most restaurants won’t mind you doing this but do ask them first. The sight of a furtively produced flask might make them suspicious that you’re planning to have a full blown picnic or have brought your own coffee. Neither will go down very well.

This gravy was such a treat. From the phone conversation with the chef that morning I had made my mind up what I was going to have and the experience begins with the anticipation. It was such a fantastic idea and I will now be doing this more often. It was easy to do and well worth a bit of extra planning and effort.

I enjoyed the whole meal so much more without the little niggle in the very back of my mind, that little voice which says, “What if someone stirred the gravy with a different spoon, what if they added butter, what if, what if…”

The moment of pouring it on I felt so smug, so happy, so pleased I’d finally done it. Finally plucked up the courage and remembered to make my own gravy in a flask. Good job I made loads because my Dad ran out and had some too!

No ifs, no buts. The meal wasn’t cooked using any butter, they were aware of all my allergies and it was a top notch, very tasty and perfect roast dinner. Special thanks to my local pub The Russell Arms in Butlers Cross for a great meal.

This was definitely my eureka moment this week. It needs a bit of planning but it’s well worth it. Have you ever taken home made gravy with you when you’ve eaten out?

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About Ruth

Ruth works freelance as a copywriter and writes the What Allergy blog to share information with people who have allergies, eczema, asthma and food intolerances. http://www.whatallergy.com was voted in the top 5 allergy blogs and Ruth also judges regularly for the FreeFrom Food Awards and FreeFrom Skincare Awards. She also won the Foods You Can People's choice Best FreeFrom blogger award 2014.


  1. I understand how much easier it is but I can help thinking “we shouldn’t have to”. Chefs should be trained in this discipline. It should be prioritised over other skills in my opinion.

    • Of course you’re right Jenny but sadly chefs are woefully educated about allergens, cross contamination and how serious allergies can be. I’ve been poisoned so many times I don’t care to count. They say it will be OK but actually don’t know who made it what went in, who knows what goes wrong but I find that until I can trust them (poor chefs – all lumped into the same big bucket of misunderstanding) and I mean really trust them, I’m playing it safe. If I was a chef I’d be embarrassed that a paying guest felt they should bring in gravy for themselves and I’d do what I could to learn why, how I could help, what needs to be done to make gravy safe for some people who have allergies. It’s a struggle. But when you have so many allergies, like me, it gets complicated and embarassing just having that conversation. “So what CAN you eat?” I often get asked. “Well, pretty much everything else that I haven’t just mentioned!”

      Chefs know about health and safety and avoiding food poisoning but very little about allergies, coeliac disease, the processes and precautions that would be needed to really guarantee that food was freefrom, or as freefrom as it can be. They only seem to have an understanding when they have witnessed allergies close at hand, either a child, wife or themselves.

  2. What a good idea! I will try it sometime. I also have eaten many dry roast dinners out!
    I have never taken gravy, but once I took cold sweet and sour veg and chicken to an eat all you like chinese buffet restaurant, when it was an arranged work do and so much hassle to arrange anything with the restaurant. I got some of their plain rice, then decanted my cold sweet and sour over it, and it worked fine. I have programmer blood in me so don’t mind eating cold food – but hot would have been even nicer, definitely. Maybe a food flask if I ever have cause to do that again?

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