I am generally not a do-it-yourself-or-die kind of girl. Pre-cut veggies? Knock yourself out. I do not make my own yogurt. Given my druthers, I will buy pancetta that someone else has chopped.
But when possible, I do believe you should use homemade stock, simply for the work-to-pleasure ratio. Homemade stock is easy, delicious, and flexible. By freezing it in one cup portions, you never have the waste issue with opening a box of stock.
My method differs from others in one key way: I put all the veggies save the onion in at the end instead of cooking them with the chicken for hours, so as to maintain that cluck cluck flavor.
How to Make Chicken Stock Without a Recipe
1. Brown chicken in oil -- chopped up ax murderer-style to get marrow. If you are using a turkey or chicken carcass, just dump it in here. The leftover herbs will be great.