I began making bone broth several years ago when I learned about it’s healing qualities for teeth, bones and the gut. I wanted an easy method that didn’t required me to stay in the kitchen tending a stock pot for 2-3 days. When I talk about bone broth I often hear that people don’t feel they have time to make it. I think it’s important for us to remember that in this modern time we have we have access to the most modern kitchens and tools ever which makes preparing the foods of our ancestors easier than it’s ever been.
I’m going to show you how you can make bone broth with very little time invested.
Enter…….The crock pot!
This is what I have been using to make bone broth for quite a while now. All you really need to make bone broth or as others call it “soup stock” are:
- Crock pot
- poultry or meat bones: feet, gizzards, legs, wings, entire chicken etc
- lemon juice or vinegar
- filtered or fluoride free water (you don’t want fluoride in your bone broth because it blocks absorption of minerals)
I generally take the left over bones from dinner and use those. Since buying organic birds or meat is very expensive but worth it, I save the bones, skins, etc that no one wants to eat and toss them into my crock pot.
Then I add in some chopped onions (or the scraps of an onion), a few pieces of celery or celery leaf, and a chopped up carrot. I’ve been known to toss in some juicer pulp instead of the carrots. Basically I use what we have on hand or what I have saved from a past meal I prepared.
Fill your crock pot with the spring water or if you have clean well water. I prefer to avoid tap water that has fluoride since that blocks the absorption of minerals to your bones. Once full, add in a few tablespoons of vinegar or lemon juice.
The purpose of that is to create some acidity to help the minerals leach out of the bones.
Now let it a sit for 30 minutes.
After that, turn the crock pot on high. Go about your normal routine for the next 6-12 hours. Then check on the broth and skim any scum that forms off the top. You can reduce the crock pot to low. Let it continue to simmer for another 24-48 hours.
Skimming any scum and add a bit more water if it has lost some liquid. We keep the lid all the time and this helps keep the liquid from boiling away or anything falling into your broth.
After 48 hours, I usually turn off the crock pot and let it sit until the liquid has cooled down enough that I can safely strain it.
You will need a large stock pot and a colander. Set your colander into the stock pot and start to slowly pour the broth mixture from the crock into the stock pot. The strainer will catch-all the bits you don’t want.
Once you have strained, you can remove any meat that may have come off the bones that you want to save for soups etc.
Now if you are super frugal and are into Nourishing Traditions and you can take the bones and break them apart to remove some of the marrow. The bones should be very soft and break in your hands at this point. The rich meaty marrow is very nutritious and hides well in soups or other dishes like meatballs or meatloaf. You won’t even know you’re eating it. I took me a while to get used to doing this but the family has not detected the hidden marrow in food!
After straining I take the stock pot of broth and put in the fridge over night. The following morning you can scrape off the fat that has congealed on the top. Do not remove the gelatin which is wiggly and clear, unlike the fat which is white. The gelatin is the magic, you want that to stay in the broth. It liquefies again anyway when you heat up the broth.
I use a canning funnel to pour the broth into glass jars with lids and store it in the fridge. I use it for making soups, boiling vegetables or pasta, etc., that week. It helps enhance and sneak in amazing nutrition into our diets and the kids don’t know! It can also be frozen in food storage bags, just be sure the broth is cold when you put in the bags to freeze it. It can also be canned for long term storage using a pressure canner in order to insure safety and prevent spoilage.
We have done this with our Thanksgiving turkey carcass after removing as much meat as we can. It makes wonderful turkey broth for soups or gravy. Save those chicken drums, roaster chicken bone….etc…..