Cooks are harried on Thanksgiving, so any dish they can make days in advance is highly welcome.

Consider turkey gravy, for example. Sure, you can make it the traditional way from the turkey pan drippings. It’s great if you want to do that and have the time.

But sometimes making gravy can be a pain. What you’re hoping for is glossy, smooth gravy, but what you end up with is a greasy, lumpy mess.

We’ve resolved to always make gravy in advance. It gives us a head start, and we love how it turns out. This is our favorite go-to recipe. Over the years, we’ve tweaked it a bit.

One of the most important steps we added to the recipe involves defatting the strained broth by putting it in the freezer. On Thanksgiving Day, you can also add pan drippings from your cooked turkey to enhance the gravy.