Homemade chicken broth is an inexpensive and easy way to boost your family’s health during the cooler months. Rich in minerals, collagen and easily digested protein, bone broth can have a healing effect on your gut lining, supports your immune system and overall it promotes healing and repair.
I have made bone broths and stock in my slow cooker, stove top and thermomix. They all work well, however I prefer to use my slow cooker as it’s just too easy and safe to leave on for longer periods of time. I just bung in all the ingredients and leave it overnight. I then wake up to a lovely smelling and nourishing hot broth for breakfast and a weeks supply to use in my meals.
The best thing about chicken bone broth is that it can be made with the leftover roast chicken carcass from dinner, and is a great reason to cook a roast every week during winter!
MEAL PLANNING TIPS: Think a Sunday hot roast chicken for dinner and then use the leftover frame to make your bone broth overnight and it’s ready for you Monday morning! what a great way to kick start your week on a healthy note.
An alternative, is that you could also cook a whole chicken and save all the meat for the weeks lunches and also add it to home made chicken and vegetable soup.
1 x left over chicken carcass from a roasted chicken or ask your butcher for a couple of kilos of bony parts of the chicken such as the frame, wing tips and necks (choose the best quality you can afford, organic is best or opt for free range, free of added hormones)
2 T organic apple cider vinegar (with the ‘mother”)
1 Large onion
1 x garlic bulb or as much as you can spare (broken up and unpeeled)
2-3 celery stalks
1 T black peppercorns
Optional: A bunch of parsley, the celery tops or a woody herb such as thyme works well too ( I use whatever I have growing in the garden or none at all if I haven’t had a chance to get to the shops!)
- Place the left over roasted chicken carcass (make sure to have peeled off most of the meat) or chicken bones into the slow cooker.
- Place the rest of the vegetables and herbs on top and cover with filtered water, so that it just covers the chicken.
- Add the apple cider vinegar, and peppercorns.
- Cover with the lid and turn on to low. Leave it to cook over night, up to 12 hours. I like to turn it on at around 7pm, and it’s ready for 7am in the morning.
- In the morning, turn off the slow cooker and take off the lid and allow the broth to cool a bit before straining and ladling into containers. I like to drink a mug of hot broth when freshly made first thing in the morning, just add sea salt and black pepper to taste. You can also add other herbs and spices if you like, such as turmeric for it’s anti-inflammatory and warming benefits.
- Place the jars in the fridge, it will be good for around 4-5 days.
- Once cooled in the fridge, you can skim off any layer of fat that rises and use this to cook with. This can also be stored in the fridge for a couple of weeks.
TIP: I like to keep some in the fridge to drink ( just warm up gently on the stove) and also to add to my soups for the week. You can also use it whenever a recipe calls for stock such as in, risotto, Bolognese sauce, gravy or use it to sauté vegetables. I’ll also freeze a container or two per batch, so that I have a frozen supply on hand for when I haven’t had a chance to roast a chicken or cook a broth.