Homemade Chicken Stock

It has been a long time since I posted any kind of recipe, and if you have recently had a roasted chicken dinner, like the one above, this one is for you!  Homemade chicken stock!  I have seen so many recipes out there that just say boil the chicken neck and some bones for an hour before making soup; well I’m here to tell you, you are missing out if that’s all you’re doing.  I feel like a grandma making my own stock, but this recipe is SO good.  Trust me a good homemade stock will rock your world! (Or at least your cooking.)  Seriously, it is a sad, sad day for me when I have to buy stock from the store.  It is nowhere near as flavorful and inspiring as my homemade stock.  Fortunately, this recipe will have all your stock needs met for quiet some time!

Here’s what you’ll need:

The carcase of a roasted chicken, plus the neck (giblets optional).  If you want to save some of the crispy skin or bones from the wings or legs from your roasted chicken dinner those can be thrown into the pot as well, but they aren’t necessary.  I usually stuff my chicken dinners with onion, a lemon or orange, and celery or herbs; all of this goes into the pot with the carcase.

Note: this also works well with leftover turkey.

In addition, you’ll need carrots, onion, celery, and herbs.  Do NOT add salt!

I like to use my large pasta pot with its fitted colander.  It makes your life a whole heck of a lot easier at the end of the boiling process!

Add the carcase and neck to the pot and fill with as much water as possible.  Boil for an hour and a half. (I did not take any pictures of this cause who wants to see a boiling carcase?!)  Do NOT stir at any point throughout this process!

After the first hour and a half, roughly chop the carrots, celery, and onion and toss them into the pot.  You can add a lemon here as well if you want for a hint of citrus in the finished stock.

Next cut a piece of cheese cloth (double layered) or use a tea ball, and fill it with slightly cracked whole peppercorns, rosemary, thyme, and sage.  Here I have also added mixed Italian herbs, garlic powder, and onion powder.  The intensity of dried herbs work best for a stock.

Use some string and tie into a satchel.  Drop the herb satchel into the pot and tie the other end to your pots handle for easy retrieval if you aren’t using the colander in the pot method.  Boil for another hour and a half.  Do not add more water, you want the flavors to concentrate.

After all three hours have passed, turn off the heat and let cool slightly.  When the handles are cool enough to hold remove the inside colander and put that in your sink to cool off the pile of bones.  If you weren’t using a colander, use tongs and a slotted spoon to remove everything you can.  It is best to do this near a thrash day if possible.  I toss the boiled remains into a double layer of shopping bags, and tie that up before throwing away.  Anyways, you should end up with a lovely pot of liquid like this and a house that smells fantastic.

Now you want to cool this down rapidly before bacteria starts to form.  I stick the whole pot directly into ice water.

Keep an eye on the ice, replacing them when melted.  This takes about 1/2 an hour or so to cool down.  Now it’s time to strain this again.  Pour the cooled stock into another large bowl through a colander lined with a double layer of cheese cloth.  This will remove any tiny bits that might be left.  You’ll end up with a beautiful golden liquid.

Cover this with plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight.  In the morning, any fat will have congealed on top.

Place this by the sink and skim off as much of the fat as possible.  Now you can ladle your finished stock into jars for freezing!  I always fill at least one Tupperware container to go into the fridge for more immediate use.

Take care to not fill your jars to the top, leave room for expansion.  It is a very sad day when after all that work, this happens to you. 😦

Sigh, I can’t tell you how disappointing that day was.  Anyways, now that you have fabulously, delicious stock check out my Chicken Soup for the Cold Soul recipe.  Stock makes a great base for some many meals, it can also be added to just about any meat dish to keep it moist.  In my kitchen it is a must have.  Enjoy!

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2 thoughts on “Homemade Chicken Stock

  1. That looks and smells delicious from here! So sorry about the broken jars, that is a sad, sad day when you worked so hard on something to have to throw it away when you really need it. Maybe you should be a cookbook author! Your pictures and recipes are wonderful.

    • Thanks Mom! Writing a cookbook would be fun, but does anyone really read them anymore?! With all the yummy food blogs out there I rarely pick one up myself.

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