Crafting Exquisite Homemade Chicken Stock and Beyond

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This kitchen essential, stored with care, awaits the opportunity to elevate your culinary creations at a moment’s notice.

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Crafting Exquisite Homemade Chicken Stock and Beyond

Decoding Chicken Stock vs. Chicken Broth

Delve into the nuances of homemade chicken stock, distinguished by its robust flavor derived from simmering chicken bones. While chicken broth relies on meat, both can be used interchangeably, though stock imparts a bolder taste. Store-bought alternatives pale in comparison to the complexity found in a homemade batch.

Creating Homemade Chicken Stock

Unlock the secrets of crafting your own chicken stock using leftover roasted chicken bones, rotisserie chicken bones and skin, or a whole chicken. Let’s embark on a journey to create this culinary essential.

Crafting Exquisite Homemade Chicken Stock and Beyond

Stovetop Elegance: Slow-Simmered Perfection

For aficionados of the classics, the stovetop method is ideal. In a large stockpot, place the chicken bones (and skin if desired). The cloudy appearance won’t compromise the exceptional flavor. After four hours of low simmering, strain the broth, discarding vegetables, and store in airtight containers for up to a week in the refrigerator or three months in the freezer.

Slow Cooker Simplicity: Effortless Elegance

Opt for convenience with a slow cooker. Combine chicken, onion, celery, carrots, salt, peppercorn, and optional garlic. Cook on high for an hour, then switch to low for 8-10 hours for an intensified flavor profile. After straining, pour the stock into jars for storage.

Crafting Exquisite Homemade Chicken Stock and Beyond

Instant Pot Innovation: Quick and Flavorful

For those pressed for time, the Instant Pot offers a speedy alternative. Place the chicken in the pot with water, cook for 25 minutes on high pressure, and let the pressure release naturally. After cooling, store the stock in airtight containers.

Storing Homemade Stock: Options Galore

Just as there are various ways to craft chicken stock, storage methods abound. Consider refrigeration in an airtight container for up to 10 days. Opt for the freezer, allowing the stock to cool before storing in plastic bags or freezer-safe containers for up to four months. Pressure canning is also an option for those equipped with the necessary tools.

Crafting Exquisite Homemade Chicken Stock and Beyond

Vegetable Variations for Flavorful Options

Don’t be limited by traditional vegetable choices. Experiment with potato or sweet potato skins, asparagus or green bean ends, pea pods, or corn cobs for a unique twist. Steer clear of strong-flavored vegetables like cabbage, broccoli, or hot peppers.

Expanding Horizons: Crafting Turkey Stock

Adapt the chicken stock recipe for turkey by using a larger carcass. Add the neck and giblets for an extra flavor boost. The process remains similar, offering a delectable solution to maximize the use of your turkey leftovers.


  • 1 whole chicken, meat mostly removed
  • 1 large red onion, quartered
  • 2 ribs celery cut into large pieces
  • 3 medium carrots, cut into large pieces
  • 1 tablespoon Kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon peppercorn (or ground pepper)
  • 12 cups water (adjust as needed)
  • 2 cloves garlic, peeled (optional)


Stovetop Instructions

  1. Place chicken in a large stockpot. Add onion, celery, carrots, salt, pepper, garlic (optional), and cover with water (about 12 cups).
  2. Cook on a low simmer, covered, for 4 hours. Add more water if needed.
  3. Remove chicken, strain the broth into jars through a fine-mesh strainer, discarding the vegetables.
  4. Store the stock in an airtight container for up to a week in the refrigerator or in your freezer for up to 3 months.

Crockpot Instructions

  1. Place the chicken into the slow cooker.
  2. Add onion, celery, carrots, salt, and peppercorn.
  3. Pour water into the slow cooker until ingredients are covered. Cook on high for one hour.
  4. Change to low and simmer for 8-10 hours.
  5. After simmering, remove bones, and strain the stock into jars through a small, fine-mesh strainer.

Instant Pot Instructions

  1. Place chicken into the pot (no vegetables), add water to cover the chicken, lock the lid, and cook on high pressure for about 25 minutes.
  2. After natural pressure release, remove the chicken and let the stock cool before pouring into airtight containers.

Crafting Exquisite Homemade Chicken Stock and Beyond

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