DIY: Your Step-by-Step Guide to Making Bone Broth at Home

I love that word is finally starting to get out about bone broth — and for good reason. It’s so good for us. It is not only a super health food that can help heal your gut, it also can help joints, improve digestion, strengthen your immune system… and did I mention that it may also combat wrinkles, cellulite, and weight gain? Bone broth anyone?

Not too long ago, people would ask me with a slight smirk, “What is bone broth and why in the world would you drink it?” You would have thought I had admitted to being a vampire or something. Fortunately, now that many people have learned the benefits of bone broth, the questions have gone from “why?” to “how?” so I wanted to break it down for you, step-by-step. 

I am going to show you how to make chicken bone broth (rather than cow bone broth) since we eat chicken for dinner about once a week and it is a lot easier to find organic chicken or chicken bones. I typically use a whole chicken, but you can use parts of the chicken with decent size bones and joints, like legs or thighs.  

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Ingredients
  • 2 pounds (or more) organic chicken bones
  • 1 onion
  • 2 carrots
  • 2 stalks of celery
  • 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
  • Optional: 1 bunch of parsley, 1 tablespoon or more of sea salt, 1 teaspoon peppercorns, additional herbs or spices to taste. I also add 2 cloves of garlic for the last 30 minutes of cooking.
The simplest way I have found to make bone broth is by using a slow cooker. Start by placing your whole chicken into the cooker along with any veggies or spices you like (see ingredients list above for what we use). It is not necessary to add liquids at this point as you’ll get them naturally from cooking. We love to dip our chicken pieces into the juices once it’s cooked!

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Cook your chicken on high for about four hours or on low for about six hours. If you cook it on high, the chicken will fall off the bone and be more like shredded chicken. If you cook on low, you’ll have full pieces to pull, so decide which you prefer before choosing what temperature to use.

Once it’s finished cooking, tear off the meat and set aside. Next, break the bones apart (so that you can get the nutrients from the bones and joints) and add about one tablespoon of apple cider vinegar and enough extra water to just barely cover the bones. Cover and cook on low for eight to 12 hours. The longer you cook it, the better it is for you and the stronger the flavor. 

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The easiest way to transfer the broth is to use a large bowl and a strainer. Mesh strainers are best, but I didn’t have mine when I took this picture. If you used a non-mesh colander like I did, you may want to strain it before you drink the broth or cook with it. 

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Place the colander over the bowl and pour in the chicken broth and leftover bones/meat. Dispose of the bones. You have bone broth!

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Next, you can either save it in big glass jars and put it in the refrigerator for about a week or you can freeze it for about six months. If you are going to freeze it, be sure you don’t fill the jars to the top or the glass could break.

 When freezing broth, I like to use silicone muffin cup holders. They are great for for individual size portions. 

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If you would rather buy your bone broth, Pacific has a good one that you can get at Whole Foods, when you can find it. Vitacost.com, one of my favorite online food retailers, has it too. It’s not as nutritious as homemade, but it’s not too bad either. It’s actually made with organic chicken, spices, and apple cider vinegar. And it contains nine grams of proteins per serving, which means it was cooked low and slow enough to get protein from the bones.

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There are a few other places where you can buy it, if making your own isn’t your thing:
I hope this gives you some way to make, get or buy some good bone broth and make it a new habit for you!
Lastly, many of you have already purchased my book on Amazon. From the bottom of my heart, I want to give you a big huge THANK YOU! And don’t forget you have a chance to win a copy right here on WellATL, but the deadline is coming up, so hurry! 

Landria Voigt, C.H.H.C., is the Nutritional Consultant and Public Speaker at Dr. Taz’s Atlanta Center for Holistic & Integrative Medicine office. She is a graduate of The University of Georgia and the Institute of Integrative Nutrition. She is author of the the book Super Paleo Snacks as well as the popular family and nutritional blog Stir It Up! where she shares her healthy recipes aimed at pleasing even the most finicky of palates, as well as forward-thinking ideas about nutrition. 

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'DIY: Your Step-by-Step Guide to Making Bone Broth at Home' have 1 comment

  1. February 19, 2015 @ 3:50 pm Soup's On! Warm Up With This Healthy, Paleo Roasted Tomato Basil Bisque - WellATL

    […] 1/2 cup bone broth (store bought or make your own) or chicken […]

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