So gravy is just another type of sauce, and sauces would logically be made in saucepans, right? Well, in the case of making gravy, a saucepan is not the ideal piece of cookware to prepare it in. Instead, I prefer to make gravy in a large frying pan or sauté pan, and here are three reasons why!
1. The roux cooks faster.
Gravy-making often starts with making a roux — a cooked fat and flour mixture. The wide surface area of a frying pan allows the mixture to spread out in a thinner layer than in a saucepan, making it easier to whisk and helping the roux cook and brown faster.
2. It's easier to whisk.
The sloping sides of a frying pan also make it easier to whisk in general, with no harsh angles that a saucepan might have where lumps of roux can get stuck. If you happen to only have a large whisk, the large surface area of the frying pan gives the whisk more room to move easily.
3. The pan has a large surface area.
Finally, the large surface area of a frying pan means that more of the pan sits directly on the heating element, helping the gravy cook and reduce down faster than in a tall-sided saucepan.