Making chicken stock has always sounded scary and a daunting task. What is so easy to find in cans, cartons, and in cube form, and so dang cheap, can’t be easy to make at home can it? I am here to tell you that it is not only easier than it sounds, but will give you TONS of future cooking options both by way of your boiled chicken, as well as the 2 or so quarts of stock you will have for future soups, sauces, and more.
It all starts with boiling a chicken…
Most stock recipes require hanging onto chicken bones in the freezer, roasting bones, and so on. And to tell you the truth, to have a rich, dark stock, that is definitely the way to do it. But for this recipe, and for good boys everywhere, I like this method. If you want to throw in old chicken parts, bones and carcasses, go for it! But I promise this recipe will give you not only a light and flavorful chicken stock, but a 3+ pound bird to shred for future recipes. I figure you will net about 2 quarts of homemade stock and about 8 cups of shredded chicken.
Simple, Everyday Chicken Stock
- 1, 3-4 lb chicken
- Handful each chopped carrots, celery, and onion
- 5-8 black peppercorns
- 3 bay leaves
- 1/3 head garlic, barely smashed with back of knife
- bouquet garni of thyme, rosemary, and italian flat leaf parsley
- two pinches of salt
- Bring all ingredients to a boil and let simmer for approximately 3 hours, skimming fat, foam, and weirdness off top several times along the way.
- After 3 hours, use your tongs and grab the chicken, it should literally fall right off your tongs. Grab the pieces that fell and place in a container to let cool. Strain stock into a big bowl and let cool completely on your counter. Toss the rest or better yet, compost. After stock cools, ladle into 2 cup bags or other containers. I like them in 2-cup measurements because they are pre-measured for future recipes. Keep at least one on hand for the week, and freeze the rest. Congrats! You now know how to make chicken stock!
- Not only do you have great homemade chicken stock, but you now have a whole chicken to shred (use two forks and simple pull a part from all bones) and store in 2 cup measurements (sandwich bags are good because they lie flat in the freezer saving space) for several go-to recipes to use over a 2-week period.