Whether the centerpiece of your feast is a turkey or a roast, complete your table with a gravy boat. The best gravy boats offer a mess-free way of serving and passing warm gravy, sauces, syrups, and dressings between your guests. But there's a few things to know before you shop.
There’s really nothing worse than cold gravy — except maybe having to get up from the table to reheat it. The best gravy boats come in a range of materials and designs, so look for one that does a good job of holding temperature. Thin, metal styles are lightweight, but don’t retain heat the way ceramic or stoneware styles do. If you opt for a metal gravy boat, look for one that’s insulated so it will keep your gravy at your desired serving temperature. Stoneware is a durable, natural material that’s safe to use in the oven and the microwave if warming up is needed. And dishwasher-safe gravy boats are also a great feature to have, since gravy and other sauces can thicken and become sticky as they sit.
Depending on how many people and what you’re serving, a 12- to 20-ounce gravy boat can serve several people generously. If you’re particularly worried about dripping onto your clothes or tablecloth, you may want a gravy boat with a built-in skirt or platter for containing messes.
Whichever style you choose, the best gravy boats offer an elegant way to serve your favorite sauces and gravies — no matter the season.
1. The Overall Best Gravy Boat
The low design of this 12-ounce stoneware gravy boat from Le Creuset would make a beautiful presentation on any table, and comes in several vibrant colors as well as a neutral white. The durable, heat-retaining material will keep your gravy or sauce warm for a while, and since the gravy boat is oven and microwave safe, it can be preheated before being filled. Le Creuset’s signature enameled, high-fire exterior is resistant to chips, scratches, and staining, so your gravy boat will last year to year for all of your holidays and special celebrations. It's also dishwasher safe.
According to one reviewer: "I was excited to get this piece. I have a mix of Le Creuset and Fiestaware in these colors. It is beautifully designed and so easy to use and clean."
2. The Best Budget Pick
With a slightly larger 16-ounce volume, Norpro’s porcelain gravy boat has a classic shape with a very clever design feature: a warming stand. Made from the same glossy porcelain, the stand holds a single tea candle to keep your gravy or sauce warm at the table, so you never have to worry about clumpy or cold gravy. The stand also provides a secure base for the gravy boat between uses, and since it’s elevated, it’s easy to reach for on a crowded table. The dishwasher-safe material can also be heated in the microwave, and if you decide that you don’t need the warming stand, the boat can be purchased individually saving your a few bucks. (One note: There's no mention of it being oven safe, so if you plan to heat up the gravy in the boat, do so in the microwave.)
According to one reviewer: "I love this! I purchased immediately when I saw this in hopes of using during Thanksgiving. I tested it out the other night and it works great. The material is sturdy. The gravy stayed warm throughout the entire meal. Great addition to my hostess tricks!"
3. The Biggest
If spills are a big concern for you, this extra-large 24-ounce gravy boat comes with a coordinating saucer to capture drips and other messes. The thicker porcelain construction of the boat has a sturdy handle that’s easy to grip, and its fluted spout helps pour drip-free portions of your favorite sauces. Preheating or reheating can be done in the oven or microwave, and cleanup is easy thanks to the dishwasher-safe design.
According to one reviewer: "My favorite thing about this gravy boat is the fact that the gravy boat is attached to the plate under it. It is very well made and sturdy. It also holds quite a bit of gravy, about 2 cups or more. The fact that it is one piece is great!"
4. An Insulated Pitcher To Keep Your Gravy Warm
If this gravy boat reminds you of something you’ve seen at a breakfast spot, you’re not mistaken! This 16-ounce, double-walled, stainless steel sauce jug from Rorence may not win many aesthetic design awards, but if keeping your gravy, sauce, or syrup warm is your main concern, this is a great choice. Similar to an insulated mug, a layer of air separates the contents of the jug from your room’s ambient temperature, so whether you’re serving a warm sauce or cold coffee creamer, it will maintain that temperature better than most other materials can. A hinging lid adds another layer of temperature retention, and opens easily with a press of your thumb when you want to serve your gravy. Another great feature? The jug’s ergonomic plastic handle is easy to carry and pour. One note: Since this option is made of metal, it is not oven or microwave safe. However, the manufacturer says it can go in the dishwasher for easy cleaning.
According to one reviewer: "Wonderful container to keep your gravy hot during your whole meal, Easy to use and pour without spilling the gravy anywhere."