Homemade Chicken Bone Broth is a flavorful base for soups, stews, and sauces. Along with its fantastic flavor, bone broth is a nutritional powerhouse that can help boost your immune system and improve gut health. Once you try this, you’ll never eat store-bought again!
Easy Homemade Chicken Bone Broth Recipe
Bone broth is one of the most nutritionally-packed foods you can consume. Rich in vital nutrients like protein, collagen, and amino acids, you can experience real health benefits and fantastic flavor.
You may wonder if this homemade chicken bone broth is similar to something you can get at the grocery store. I can assure you it is not!
Most store-bought stocks are thin, colorless, and taste more like water than anything else. While most are bland, they can sometimes taste bitter or even weirdly sweet. Most of the time, your recipes would taste better if you just used water!
Some stocks also include fillers, natural flavoring (which isn’t natural, by the way…), and preservatives. Making your bone broth at home lets you control everything that goes into it. Not only will it taste much better, it’ll be far more nutritious.
While homemade chicken bone broth takes a while to make, it’s 100% worth it. And if you have a slow cooker, most of the cooking time is hands-off, leaving you plenty of time to do other things.
What is Bone Broth?
Bone broth is a stock made from animal bones – in this case, chicken. You can also prepare bone broth from beef or pork as well, but I really enjoy the flavor of chicken broth over the others. I also love the convenience of repurposing leftover chicken bones!
Bone broth is an excellent base for soups, stews, sauces, and gravies. A lot of people (including me!) even drink it on its own for the health benefits.
Health Benefits of Bone Broth
You may wonder if bone broth is good for you… The collective answer to that question is a resounding yes! Bone broth is a nutritional powerhouse with vitamins and minerals like iron, calcium, and magnesium, along with protein and collagen. Research shows that drinking bone broth can help promote gut health, support your immune system, and improve your hair, skin, and nails.
But beyond all that, bone broth also tastes terrific. I always enjoy drinking a hot mug of my homemade chicken bone broth if I’m feeling rundown.
What You’ll Need
- Chicken Bones: Any chicken bones work for this recipe such as roasted chicken bones, chicken wings, and drumsticks.
- White Vinegar
- Water: I recommend using filtered water for the healthiest bone broth
How to Make Homemade Chicken Bone Broth
Prepare the Chicken Bones
- Preheat the Oven. Preheat the oven to 400°F.
- Rinse the Chicken Bones. Place the chicken bones in a colander and rinse thoroughly under cool water. Pat the bones dry with paper towels.
- Roast the Chicken Bones. Arrange the chicken bones in a single layer on a rimmed baking sheet. Roast the bones until they are golden brown. This should take about 30 minutes.
- Cover the Bones with Water and Vinegar. Take the chicken bones out of the oven and place them in a large stock pot. Pour water and vinegar over the hot bones and let them sit for 30 minutes.
- Cook the Bones in a Crockpot. Transfer the chicken bones, water, and vinegar to a crockpot and cook at the lowest setting possible. Check the pot occasionally, skimming off any foam that collects on the surface. Add additional water as needed to keep the bones covered. Cover, and keep the broth at a low simmer for 24 hours.
- Stovetop Variation. If you don’t have a crockpot that can boil water, you can cook the bones on the stove. Bring the covered chicken bones to a boil over high heat. Reduce the heat to a rapid simmer and continue to cook for 1 hour. Skim off any foam that forms.
After 24 Hours
- Add the Onions and Carrots. Add the onions and carrots and cook for another 12 to 24 hours, adding more filtered water as needed to keep everything covered. The bone broth is done with it is a rich golden brown and the bones are falling apart at the joints.
- Strain the Broth. When the bone broth is finished cooking, strain and cool it as quickly as possible. Set a colander over a large pot and line it with cheesecloth. Carefully pour the bone broth into it, taking time to let the broth fully drain before adding more. Discard the spent bits of bone and vegetables when you’re done.
- Cool. Prepare an ice bath by either filling a sink or basin with cold water and ice. Set the pot of broth inside the ice bath. Stir the broth regularly until it cools to about 50°F. This shouldn’t take more than 15 or 20 minutes.
- Transfer and Store. Transfer the bone broth to airtight containers or jars. Mason jars are excellent storage containers for broth. Refrigerate or freeze as you like.
How to Use Chicken Bone Broth
I like to freeze pint-sized mason jars with bone broth so I can sip on a warm mug whenever I feel sick or run down. But this chicken bone broth is also an incredible addition to soups and stews. You can sub in bone broth for any mention of chicken stock. Here are a few of my favorite recipes for using my bone broth.
Chicken bone broth will store well in the fridge for up to 5 days. Any longer than that, you’ll want to freeze it. I like to store the bone broth in mason jars, but any air-tight container will be fine.
Can You Freeze Chicken Bone Broth?
Yes! Chicken bone broth freezes wonderfully. If you’re using mason jars to store your bone broth, only fill them up about 80%. This will leave enough room for the broth to expand without cracking the glass. You can also use freezer-safe bags or ice cube trays to store stock. Really, the way you keep it is based on how you use it. Most importantly, you’ll have a ready supply of homemade chicken bone broth when you need it!
Homemade Chicken Bone Broth
- Slow Cooker Optional
- 3 lbs chicken bones and pieces such as roast chicken bones, chicken back bones, and chicken wings
- 2 tbsp white vinegar
- 1 large onion peeled and halved
- 1 large carrot peeled and chopped
- 3 quarts filtered water
Prepare the Chicken Bones
- Preheat the oven to 400°F and rinse the bones. Arrange a rack in the middle of the oven and heat to 400°F. Place the bones in a colander, rinse under cool water, and pat dry with paper towels.
- Roast the bones for 30 minutes. Arrange the bones in a single layer on a rimmed baking sheet. Roast until golden-brown, about 30 minutes.
- Cover the bones with water and vinegar and let sit for 30 minutes. In a large stockpot place water, vinegar and hot boans. Let sit for 30 minutes.
- If you can boil water in a crockpot, place water, vinegar and bones in the crockpot. If using a crockpot, transfer water, vinegar and bones to the crockpot and cook at the lowest setting possible.
- Stove-top variation. If your crockpot can not boil water, place water, vinegar and bones in a stock pot and bring the water to a rapid simmer over high heat for 1 hour. Skim any foam that forms.
- Check the pot occasionally, skimming off any foam that collects on the surface and adding additional water as needed to keep the ingredients covered. Cover and keep the broth at a low simmer for 24 hours.
After 24 Hours
- Add the onions and carrots and cook for another 12 to 24 hours, adding more filtered water as needed to keep the bones covered. The broth is done when it is a rich golden-brown and the bones are falling apart at the joints.
- Strain the bone broth. When the broth is finished, strain and cool the bone broth as quickly as possible. Set a strainer over a large pot or even a stand mixer bowl and line it with cheesecloth if desired. Carefully strain the bone broth into it. Discard the spent bits of bone and vegetables.
- Cool the bone broth and store it. Prepare an ice bath by either filling a sink or basin with cold water and ice and set the pot of broth inside the ice bath. Stir regularly until the broth is cooled to about 50°F, about 15 minutes. Transfer the broth to airtight containers or jars. Refrigerate or freeze.