In the habit of buying chicken broth in a can or box? The next time you need to restock, purchase a whole chicken instead. You’ll get several tasty meals from your bird; and when it’s gone, you can use the bones to make broth.
Just follow these simple steps to make chicken broth in the crockpot, and it won’t take more than 15 minutes of hands-on time.
How to Make Chicken Broth in the Crockpot
Spices: peppercorns, salt, bay leaves, etc.
What You Do:
Break the chicken carcass up into smaller pieces. Be sure to break some of the bones, too. This will add to the flavor of your broth. If you didn’t eat the skin, include it as well.
Chop up some veggies for your broth. I used two celery stalks, a carrot and a medium-sized onion. You’ll be straining the vegetables out later, so it’s okay to include the carrot ends and celery leaves.
Place the chicken bones, veggies and any spices that you’d like to include (salt, peppercorns, thyme, etc.) in the crockpot. I typically add six or seven peppercorns and a couple bay leaves. I leave my broth salt-free.
Add enough water to cover everything.
Cover, and cook on low for 8-10 hours. Your broth is ready when it has a nice golden color and a rich flavor.
Strain the bones, skin and veggies from your broth. I used to use a cheesecloth-lined colander for this purpose, but I’ve since switched to a paint strainer bag. They’re made of mesh; are loads easier to clean; and last a lot longer. You can find them at the hardware store for a couple bucks. If you don’t have either, just use a slotted spoon to strain your broth.
Allow your chicken broth to cool. Then, place it in the fridge overnight. This will give the fat a chance to separate from the broth.
Use a strainer or spoon to remove the fat that’s formed on the surface. If you prefer, you can skip the fridge time, and just strain your broth with a fat separator. This is definitely the way to go, if you want to use your broth right away.
Transfer your finished chicken broth to freezer-safe containers; label it; then, freeze it until you need it.
I got two and a half quarts of broth out of my bird. That’s at least $5 retail, and I’m here to tell you, this stuff is loads better than anything you could get at the store.
- Whole chickens often get marked down because they don’t sell as well as chicken breasts. Watch for deals. Then, fill your freezer with delicious, homemade broth
- You can also make broth with uncooked bones. Buy chickens to divide into their parts – breasts, thighs, etc. Then, toss the bones in the crockpot for broth
- If you don’t have time to make broth now, just freezer your chicken bones until you do
- When freezing in jars, always use freezer jars. Regular canning jars aren’t thick enough for the freezer, and will often crack
- Chicken Carcass
- Spices: peppercorns, salt, bay leaves, etc.
Break the chicken carcass up into smaller pieces.
Coarsely chop some veggies. Two celery stalks, a carrot and a medium-sized onion is about right for a batch of chicken broth. The veggies ends and leaves can go in, too.
Place the chicken, veggies and spices in a crockpot. Cover completely with water.
Put the lid on, and cook on high for 8-10 hours, or until it develops a gorgeous golden color and lots of flavor.
Strain the broth; then allow it to cool a bit; and refrigerate it overnight.
Strain the fat off the top; then use your broth; or freeze it.