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PS: this is really healthy for dogs / cats as well. Just leave out the onion!!!
I’ve been making chicken stock for years & drink a cup of it with just a pinch of salt. Yummy evening snack. I save chicken bones through the months until I get a lot. I roast the bones first, so my color is a lot darker. Always add chicken feet! Also, save your egg shells & plop them in as well- get the calcium. (After cracking for your dish microwave for 45 seconds). I store in an old coffee container. Of course Turkey carcass stock is just as good. Do add chicken feet though.
I buy broiled rotisserie chickens at the grocer and pull off meat for salads, etc. (I’m not finicky about cleaning it of all the meat.) When done, I freeze it until I get around to making stock in my 6 1/2 qt slow cooker. I set the cooker for 10 hours and often for another 10 to get everything good into the broth (I usually smell broth aroma in my pillows). I like to add several glurps of vinegar to leach out the collagen, and the vinegar doesn’t affect the taste. Be sure to keep skins on the onions, carrots, and other veggies for added nutrients and color. Peppercorns and a handful of herbes de Provence are great too.
Thank you so much for this post! I’ve just roasted 2 chickens and pulled the meat off the carcasses to use in meals and didn’t want to waste the bones/skin/cartilage etc. I’ll be making stock tomorrow now. Appreciate the time and effort put into this post so much.
Yum. I can hardly wait to try this. I’d head over to the butcher right now if I didn’t have soup going in the slow cooker right now. I’m on a soup and broth kick for health reasons so I’m always glad to find a healthy recipe. Thanks for sharing.
Elise,Everytime I make method 2 its perfert… I love the color and the clean flavor…You are my go to, to check out recipes and to see if you have any cooking tipes. Thank you for writing this blog and putting up with all the comments. I truly appricate your work, and I know first hand its a full time job. Patsy
Regarding meats simmered for 4 hours: “These aren’t really good to eat, by the way, because after 4 hours of cooking, all of the nutritional value has been cooked out of them.”
That’s an inaccurate statement. They may be somewhat bland, as almost all of the fat and oil will have come out, but from a nutritional perspective, the chicken will still be protein dense, with commensurate caloric value.
Hi John, point well taken! I’ve adjusted that sentence. I typically make stock with backs and wings, or a chicken carcass, where there isn’t a lot of meat to begin with. If I start with a whole chicken, then I take out the breasts and thighs after 20 minutes of cooking or so, once they’re done, and let the rest of the chicken cook for stock. As you mentioned, the meat left after 4 hours of cooking will still be protein dense, but with little flavor. Many of the vitamins and nutrients will have been cooked out into the stock.
The recipe looks easy enough but I haven’t tried it yet, however I have a question that I cannot find an answer to.
Can I just get the raw bones from our butcher so I can make large batches to can? Or do I have to use chicken bones with meat still attached? This way I can add chicken and vegetables later maybe? I want to make sure I’m not going to make anyone sick!
Hi Evelyn! Thanks for your comment. You can certainly make stock with just bones and water, but it won’t taste as good, as you likely know. Typically, I make stock, leave some out for use within a week, and freeze any stock I am not going to use within that time frame. In order to preserve this stock for longer, you could freeze it, but you asked about canning: you would need to pressure can the stock, which isn’t outlined here. However, if you are interested in alternate methods of making stock, we’ve got a great recipe for doing stock in a pressure cooker. Perhaps this will inspire you! Let us know how it goes! https://www.simplyrecipes.com/recipes/how_to_make_chicken_stock_in_the_pressure_cooker/
Tried method 1. Amazing!
Awesome tips for home made chicken stock.
Can you do this in a slowcooker
This only made a half cup of stock! It reduced way too much. Is that normal? The ingredients cost me $20 (generic, cheapest brands), so I get that this is healthier, but $20 for a half a cup of chicken stock?? I’ll just buy store bought from now on :(
Hi Emily, sounds like you simmered at too high of a heat and too much of the liquid evaporated. If you start with 6 quarts of water, you should end up with at least 2 quarts of stock.
Also, stock is something you make mostly with leftover ingredients or cheap ingredients, like a chicken carcass or backs and wings. It shouldn’t cost $20 to make a batch of stock. What I do is save leftover chicken carcasses and things like leek greens and celery tops in the freezer, and when I have enough, pull them out for stock. Or I buy backs and wings which shouldn’t be expensive.
Some points by someone who has made a **lot** of stock:
1. Don’t add salt. It doesn’t help the stock making process and can lead to over-salted dishes
2. Use whole peppercorns not ground pepper
3. Herbs should be a bouquet garnis (bay, parsley stems, thyme and rosemary) for western cookery or ginger, garlic, mushrooms and star anise for Chinese food
4. Strain through a muslin and then clarify by adding a couple of egg whites and shells to the stock. Then strain through a sieve and a muslin again to get a really clear stock that is free from bitter flavours
Could you use part cooked and part raw chicken? Or all one or the other?
Hi Kat, sure! You can easily make stock with a mix of already cooked and raw chicken / chicken bones.
Why, when using method #1, do you simmer partially covered, but in method #2, covered?
Hi Dana, you can simmer uncovered, partially covered, or covered. It sort of depends on how much liquid you have in the pot and how long you intend to simmer the stock. An uncovered pot will lose more water to evaporation as it simmers.
I remove the veggies and purée them and add them back to stock, makes a richer flavor
Why u guys put “Cover with water. Add salt and pepper, about a teaspoon of salt, 1/4 tsp of pepper.” isn’t seasoning the last part??
And i usually dun season the stock 1st … later u continue to make it thicker and concentrated it will be more and more savory …
Hi Benji, it’s only a teaspoon of salt and a 1/4 teaspoon of pepper. It doesn’t matter if you put it in at the beginning or the end. You’ll still have a very lightly salted stock, even when you boil the stock down to concentrate it. You’ll still need to add more salt to it to use it for a recipe.
I usually drop half a lemon in would that replace the vinegar?
Hi, Teri! Emma here, managing editor for Simply Recipes. Yes, I think a half a lemon sounds like a great addition and would work fine in place of the vinegar. Enjoy!
Thanks, Emma! We love the lemon in chicken broth. I even tuck one into the cavity of my roasting chicken along with the veggies and herbs before popping it into the oven. Sometimes I roll it and pierce it all over and other times I cut it in half, depending on the size of the chicken.
Simply Recipes is always my “go to” site and I love Elise’s recipes.
When I dont’ have time to deal with veggies, I just throw a pack of wings in a pot, cover with water, boil and let it simmer for 4 hours. It has a richer chicken taste to me than when cooking with the veggies and I can always add the flavor I need when making soup. What do you think of clarifying the stock with egg whites? I did this and although the broth is clearer, it changed the taste a bit. Any input from chefs out there?
Hi! I never have a problem getting a gel, but the one thing I have had a complaint about is the color. For pork and beef broth, brown is fine, but I have gotten quite an earful from my father anytime he sees my chicken bone broth. Personally, I cannot take hearing another complaint about brown food which I have been trying to improve on. I will admit though it is always a brown or dark color. I have not been roasting my chicken carcass or bones. I usually pile the bones, leftover bits of meat and skin in the crockpot, pour over a ½ cup of apple cider vinegar, fill the pot with onion skins, carrot and celery peelings, season with a few springs of bay leaves, ginger, fresh rosemary, thyme, and parsley, and top it with water. I usually cook the mixture on low for 12-14 hours, since I was told that is an appropriate amount of time for it to develop flavor and be more nutritious. I know it is just an aesthetic flaw, but do you have any suggestions on what I can do to help make the chicken broth more golden but still nutritious? Do I need to try doing this on the stove? Do I need to add the veg and spices later? Any advice or suggestions are welcomed! Thanks so much!
Hi Amy, my guess is that it is the onion skins that are helping to turn your stock a dark color. You also might try one of the stove top approaches I’ve outlined in this article above. You do not need to cook chicken stock for 12 hours. 4 hours at a low simmer is fine. I do understand the reasoning behind adding vinegar (helps to leach the calcium out of the bones) but a half cup to me sounds excessive.
And apple cider vinegar is brown :)
If you’re using yellow onions, it’s definitey the skins making the broth brown. I’ve boiled onions skins in water for a natural hair colorant, so it definitely colors the broth. Try leaving out the skins or using white onions.