"Go To" Chicken Stock (BoneĀ Broth)

March  5, 2010
3 Ratings
  • Serves 3-4 quarts
Author Notes

I love homemade chicken stock (bone broth) because it's an essential ingredient in great soups and sauces. I also love it because it's incredibly good for you. Because it is made from bones, stock contains natural gelatin (which is great for the digestive system) and lots of minerals, as well. Adding an acid (the apple cider vinegar I've used here) helps to draw the calcium out of the bones and into the the broth is quite good for your bones. The recipe below is my "go to" chicken stock, the one I make when I accumulate 2-3 chicken carcasses from roasting chickens (I keep each carcass in a bag in the freezer, so when I have a few, I go ahead and make stock). Feel free to add additional vegetable scraps, too- sometimes I throw in chopped broccoli stalks, green onion tops, and the like that will otherwise end up in the compost. Adding parsley at the end makes the broth even more mineral-rich, a trick I learned from Sally Fallon, author of the wonderful book Nourishing Traditions. You can also use this recipe to make turkey stock: just increase the amounts of everything due to the larger size of the turkey carcass and know that you'll end up with 10-15 quarts of stock so make sure you have enough room to store it. —WinnieAb

What You'll Need
  • 2-3 chicken carcasses
  • 1 large onion, peeled and chopped
  • 2-3 large carrots, scrubbed clean and chopped
  • 3 stalks celery with leafy tops, chopped
  • 6 garlic cloves, peeled and cut in half
  • 1 tablespoon whole black peppercorns
  • Water to cover (about 15-20 cups)
  • 1/2 cup apple cider vinegar (helps to draw the minerals out of the bones and into the stock)
  • 1 bunch parsley, rinsed
  • Sea salt to taste
  1. Put all your ingredients (except for the parsley) into a large stock pot and bring to a boil.
  2. Skim off all of the the foam that has risen to the top.
  3. Reduce heat to simmer and continue to periodically skim off the foam, if necessary.
  4. Simmer for at least two hours or as long as overnight (I usually simmer mine for about 8 hours). The longer you simmer it, the more flavorful it will be, but keep in mind that it will reduce and you will end up with less.
  5. Ten minutes before it has finished cooking, add the parsley (you can leave it in the bundle, rubber band and all).
  6. When it has finished cooking, allow to cool a bit and then sample your broth. Add sea salt to taste.
  7. Strain the broth and refrigerate for a few hours. Any fat in the broth will congeal at the top and can be easily strained off, if you like.
  8. Your stock is now ready for use or you can package it up and put it in the the freezer (I store mine in quart sized plastic containers).
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  • Roger Dube
    Roger Dube
  • monkeymom
  • nannydeb
  • WinnieAb
I grew up in a restaurant family (my parents owned the now closed Quilted Giraffe in NYC) and I've always loved to cook. My interest in the connection between food and health led me to pursue a graduate degree in naturopathic medicine. I don't practice medicine anymore; I have a blog called Healthy Green Kitchen that I started in May of 2009 and I wrote a book called One Simple Change that will be published in January, 2014. I live in upstate New York with my family and many pets.

8 Reviews

Roger D. June 18, 2013
For those who are short of freezer space, canning is a GREAT way to store stock. Pressure canners are required for this. I am constantly making and canning different stocks. They are so much better than store-bought. Can them in pint jars so you have better control on how much is used.
esperago February 14, 2013
Simple, simple. Thanks for posting this recipe. My only suggestion would be to avoid cooking the rubber band as, when heated, carcinogens would be released.
justplainbeth January 15, 2012
If I used a 6-7 pound chicken to start with, is that the same as 2 chickens, assuming that your "standard chicken" is about 3 pounds?
WinnieAb January 15, 2012
Sounds about right to me...
justplainbeth January 16, 2012
Awesome....I have a pot of it simmering on the stove now with the carcass from last nights diner. Thanks for the great recipe and quick reply!
monkeymom March 5, 2010
I like the tip about the vinegar! I will try it.
nannydeb March 5, 2010
I save turkey carcasses and ham bones, but I don't know why I don't collect chicken carcasses in the freezer? I cook chicken much more often. Thanks for that revelation!
WinnieAb March 5, 2010
You are very welcome!