Free & Casein Free
Boiling A Chicken Carcass
Or, Homemade Chicken Broth
- 1 well picked chicken carcass or a collection
of leftover chicken bones, skin, backs, necks, gizzards or a leftover
- Salt, Broth Powder or Bouillon Cubes, optional
- Lots of Water
- A Big Pot
The entire process of boiling a chicken carcass is straight
forward. If you're going to be in the kitchen anyway, like on
baking day or when you're cleaning the kitchen up after dinner, then
it's a small matter to boil and strain the chicken before going to
bed. Another option is to do it in the morning and then by
dinner the fat will be hard enough to remove and you can use the
broth and meat for a hearty soup for supper. Think over your
daily schedule and make a little time to boil some leftover chicken
bones. You'll be amazed at the results and never again be
tempted by those little hermetically sealed boxes of natural or
organic chicken broth that cost a small fortune and seldom taste as
good as they promise. On the frugal front, your broth will be
free, which makes those boxes of broth seem even more
expensive by comparison.
- Arrange the bones and any other chicken
debris in a large pot. Add water to cover. Boil for 1
hour if the bones are from a cooked chicken. Boil for 2 hours
if the bones are from a raw chicken.
- Place a large mixing bowl in your sink.
Arrange your colander inside the bowl. Pour the hot broth and
bones into the colander The broth will run through the holes
while the bones and debris will lodge in the colander Lift the
colander from the bowl and allow the juices to drip out. Place
the colander on a plate.
- Pour the broth (now bone-free) back into the
pot. Put the pot back on the stove. Boil the stock down
until it is about 1-quart or 4 cups. This is called reducing
the stock. A little more or less than a quart really doesn't matter
that much. The reducing will go fastest if you boil the stock
at high or medium-high heat. The kitchen will get humid so you
may want to open up a window or turn on a fan.
- While the stock is reducing you need to look
over the bones and debris. Pick out all of the usable pieces of
meat. Depending on how well the chicken was picked over at
dinner there may be more meat than you expected. Place all the
little pieces of meat into a plastic bag or small bowl. Cover
and chill until needed. It is excellent in soups.
- When the stock has reduced to your preference
remove it from the heat. Add salt or bouillon cubes to
taste. Usually 1/2 teaspoon of salt or 2 bouillon cubes will be
plenty. You don't want to get it too salty. You don't
even have to salt it if you don't want to. Some people prefer
it salted, but some don't.
- Allow the stock to cool slightly and pour it
into a wide-mouthed canning jar or any other container with a large
opening. Chill overnight.
- In the morning you will see a nice cake of
fat sitting on the top of the broth. Carefully remove the
fat. It can be saved and used in frying and cooking. Chicken
fat is high in omega-6 linoleic fatty acids.
- Another option is to freeze the broth in
1/2-cup or 1-cup portions. It can be used anywhere you would
normally use canned chicken broth or prepared chicken bouillon.
Another option is to use it along with the chicken you saved
yesterday to make a soup. Several soups on this site are made
from a boiled chicken carcass. It's a frugal way to get 1 more
meal out of that expensive chicken. Plus, since it's homemade
you know it's good for you.