What’s the difference between chicken broth and chicken stock?
I actually didn’t know this before setting out to write this post! So, I googled. Stock is usually made with just the bones of the animal (sometimes roasted in advance to enhance the flavor). Homemade chicken broth is made using both the meat and bones and usually takes less time- 3 hours as opposed to 8 hours! It’s also usually thinner. Both are very healthy and delicious!
Benefits of Homemade Chicken Broth:
Bone Broth has come into fashion recently in the nutritional world as being an all around powerhouse. We all know chicken soup is good for us when we are fighting a cold, but there’s a myriad of benefits. Bone broth can boost immunity, improve gut function, maintain healthy skin and joints, and detoxify our body. It contains over 19 amino acids. Every part of our body benefits from these, from our gut to our brain, muscles and ligaments.
Different Ways to Make Chicken Broth:
You can make chicken stock out of leftover chicken bones from a previous meal. Or, you can boil the chicken with the bones in, cooking the chicken at the same time as making the stock. I prefer this method because you’ll end up getting perfectly cooked chicken so that’ll be the method reflected below.
What do you need to make chicken broth?
You need good quality chicken, either whole or cut into pieces. The bones of said chicken, a bunch of fresh herbs. Some aromatics like bay leaves, cinnamon sticks, peppercorn and star anise if you have that on hand. You basically need a mixture of fresh herbs, aromatics, and root vegetables. We like to throw in carrots, celery, and parsnips, but this heavily depends on what you have available! Onions and garlic are a must.
Storing Chicken Broth:
Homemade chicken stock can be stored for 3-4 days in an airtight jar in the fridge, or up to 6 months in the freezer. I love having chicken stock in the freezer in airtight freezer bags.. You don’t even need to thaw it before cooking. Just dump it in the sauce pan and it’ll melt quickly over a low heat.
Using Chicken Broth:
Once you make homemade chicken stock, and smell how fragrant and delicious it is, you’ll have no problems drinking it just as it is. Otherwise, this is amazing to have in the freezer and use for homemade soups and stews, to cook up grains like rice, freekeh, quinoa, or bulgur with lots of extra flavor and nutritions, as the base for sauces, etc. There’s a lot of ways to use this up so don’t hesitate to make big batches then portion and freeze as discussed above.
Homemade Chicken Broth
- 1 chicken, whole or cut into pieces We had the butcher remove the skin
- 2 large carrots, thickly sliced
- 2 onions cut into wedges
- 1 bunch fresh herbs of your choice, I like parsley or coriander
- 1 head garlic, roughly chopped
- 2 large celery, roughly chopped
- 1 parsnip roughly chopped (optional)
- 2 bay leaves
- 3 star anise
- 2 cinnamon sticks
- 10 whole black peppercorns
- 4 pieces whole cardamom
- Place all the ingredients in a large pot, then add enough water to just cover everything.
- Bring to a boil over medium heat, then reduce to a simmer.
- Skim off the foam that accumulates on top and discard. You may have to do this several times during the cooking process. Simmer for 3-4 hours.
- Once stock is ready and chicken is cooked, Strain the chicken stock to separate chicken from the broth.
- Remove all the aromatics and vegetables and discard. Set chicken aside to cool until you can handle it, then shred the chicken meat off the bones. You can use this immediately, refrigerate for 3-4 days, or freeze for 4-6 months.
- Let the broth cool slightly then store in refrigerator for 8 hours or overnight. After chilling, skim the fat off the surface, and your broth is ready to be used, or refrigerated in a tightly stored container for 3-4 days, or frozen for 6 months.