Have you had disasters making chicken bone broth? Maybe one batch had a wonderful flavor and gelled well but the next batch and the next and the next had a nasty taste and refused to gel.
All of us on the autoimmune protocol need an easy method for making fabulous foolproof chicken broth even if we don’t own an Instant Pot. This is that method …. ahem.
This broth tastes amazing! I get up in the morning and look forward to having a cup!
This hasn’t always been the case. Bone broth from our local butcher shop is likely very nourishing but …. oh my ….. the taste is gruesome. In the past I made bone broth that was not tasty …. think appalling …. think disgusting.
Developing a foolproof method for bone broth has been a godsend.
There are several keys to successful chicken bone broth:
- roast the chicken bones first
- add only filtered water, garlic cloves, apple cider vinegar and salt
- lightly simmer for 24 hours
- concentrate the broth
Roast the chicken first:
Obtain 12-20 chicken backs and necks from your friendly butcher. Roast at 325 degrees F for 45 minutes. Remove from the oven and add the roasted chicken plus juices and any extra bones you have in the freezer to a large pot. Roasting enhances the flavor significantly.
Yes, you can re-use bones to make your fabulous foolproof chicken broth! I find, though, that if you don’t add enough new bones to the mix your broth will not taste scrumptious and will refuse to gel. Re-use bones once or twice but as soon as you can snap them in half discard them.
Beef bones work well but beware of lamb if you are not a fan because it will impart a strong flavor to the broth.
Add only filtered water, garlic cloves, apple cider vinegar and salt:
Add enough bones so that your pot is about 2/3 full and then barely cover the bones with filtered water. This might mean adding the carcasses from two roasting chickens or maybe 12-20 roasted chicken necks and backs along with some bones from your freezer.
I used to add carrots, celery and onions to the broth ingredients and let everything simmer for 24 hours. This usually resulted in a somewhat bitter tasting broth.
But the mess! When you dumped the contents of the pot into a strainer you had bits of meat and bone with mushy veggies clinging to them. Yuck! This process is much easier.
Now I only add 6-8 very large unpeeled cloves of garlic and prick each one with a knife to release flavor.
Add apple cider vinegar to the bones and water since its low pH promotes the release of calcium and minerals from the bones.
I don’t know if it is necessary to add salt but I find that if you do, the broth instantly tastes amazing once you have strained it. If the broth is not salted you are not tasting it at its best. Be sure not to add too much salt, though, since the broth will reduce somewhat.
Lightly simmer your fabulous foolproof chicken broth:
Ensure that the pot of roasted bones with garlic, apple cider vinegar and salt is set to a very low simmer. This means a bubble now and then …. not a constant bubbling. A rapid simmer seems to toughen the meat and change the taste of the broth.
Most importantly concentrate the broth:
If your bone broth tastes bland and doesn’t gel you are likely leaving the lid firmly planted on the pot for the whole 24 hours. In order to have wonderful flavor and a broth that gels you need to concentrate the broth as it simmers so …. keep the lid propped, or remove it entirely, and allow some evaporation to occur.
The broth needs to simmer very slowly …. just a little bubble once in a while and you are good to go. The goal is to have the broth reduce by about a quarter.
You can put the lid on the pot and bring the contents to a simmer then leave the lid ajar or off for 6-8 hours while the broth simmers very very gently. Once the broth has reduced by a quarter you can put the lid back on and ensure that it is not simmering too vigorously.
Is my broth worthless if it doesn’t gel?
Say it … my broth is good for me even if it doesn’t gel … say it again …. my broth is good for me even if it doesn’t gel.
Your broth may have a bit too much water in it and then it won’t gel or you may have used almost all reused bones. This is not to say that it isn’t any good. There is much nutritive value plus minerals and vitamins in the broth that you made, gelled or not. Don’t beat yourself up … read all about gel in broth at The Broth Whisperer.
Food to Heal Ourselves
Yields 6-8 cups
Easy and successful broth every time.
30 minPrep Time
24 hrCook Time
24 hr, 30 Total Time
12-20 chicken backs and necks (plus assorted re-cycled bones)
6-8 large cloves garlic unpeeled
1/3 cup apple cider vinegar
1 teaspoon salt
filtered water to just cover the bones.
Preheat oven to 325 degrees F.
Roast the chicken backs and necks for 45 minutes.
Add the roasted chicken backs and necks, juices from the roasting pan and any additional bones to a large pot so that the bones fill at least 2/3 of the pot.
Prick the garlic cloves with a knife and add to the pot.
Add the apple cider vinegar.
Add no more than one level teaspoon salt.
Fill the pot with filtered water to the point that the bones are just covered.
Very, very lightly simmer the broth for 24 hours, propping or removing the lid for 6-8 hours to concentrate the broth so that it reduces by about a quarter.
Strain the broth and bones through a large strainer with a small mesh.
When cool remove the meat from the bones and freeze for later use.
Freeze the broth in serving sizes that work for you ... one cup servings work well.
1. No need to add vegetables to the bones since this can result in a bitter tasting broth.
2. roasting the bones and concentrating the broth are both critical steps.