Alright, y’all. I have been promising you this recipe for a while now, and finally remembered to take pictures while making it! Bone broth is AMAZING. And crock pot bone broth is even better, because it’s easier. The old saying that chicken soup can heal you when you’re sick is more than just a saying. But they’re not referring to Campbell’s, guys. As much as they’d like you to believe it, monosodium glutamate (MSG), modified food starch, and most of those other ingredients are NOT supposed to be in normal foods. They’re talking about great-grandma’s homemade soup with the bone broth she made and canned. I’m telling you, they knew what they were doing back then when it came to cooking (and shocker- it DIDN’T include MSG!) 😉
Broth, when done right, is chock-full of amazing minerals that the body can absorb easily, like calcium, phosphorus, magnesium, silicon, sulfur, and more. It also contains broken down material from cartilage and tendons–stuff like chondroitin sulphates and glucosamine. Thankfully, it doesn’t take much to make sure it’s done right. You really just need to make sure you use bones from organic, pastured, grass fed chickens. This is super important, because as we all know, what you eat is all throughout your body. So if a chicken is fed GMO grains and pesticide-laden foods, then that is what you’ll get out of the bones.
Crock Pot Bone Broth
So the first thing I do is save extra bones from whatever I’ve been cooking (you can freeze them to keep them fresh), along with extra celery, carrots, onion skins, etc. I put everything in the crock pot along with a few chicken feet. They’re kind of freakish, aren’t they? Here in Nashville, we can go to the local farmer’s market and get chicken bones, chicken feet, and beef bones to use for bone broth. Hopefully you can find something like that near you! Once everything is in the crock pot, I fill it with water.
I add a few seasonings at this point, like salt & pepper, paprika, bay leaves, thyme, and garlic powder. Honestly, throw whatever in there. 😉 Also, put in a tsp to a tbsp of apple cider vinegar to help get the marrow out of the bones. Then set it to low, and hunker down. This needs to cook for 24 hours!
It doesn’t look too pretty once it really gets cooking, but it smells amazing!
Once it’s been at least 24 hours, I strain the liquid out into mason jars. I haven’t started canning any yet, but I put them in the freezer. I jar it while it’s still piping hot, and then I put the lid on tight and put it in the refrigerator to cool down overnight. Then I transfer it to the freezer.
Once it’s cooled, you may see that some or all of it has a gel kind of look to it. This is perfectly fine, it’s just the gelatin from the bones and ligaments. Once it’s heated up, it liquifies again so you don’t need to worry about making jell-o soups! 😉
At this point, I mash up the bones and everything that’s left in the crock pot, and then I add the apple cider vinegar again and fill it with water. You can reuse the same bones and veggies 3 times for chicken. Some people also roast the bones before making broth (especially beef bones) to improve the flavor, but I have never done this with chicken bones. I usually only make the broth after making a whole chicken in the crock pot, so I’ve never needed to try the roasting yet.
- Bones of one whole chicken (organic if possible)
- Salt & pepper
- Leftover vegetable scraps (celery, onion skins, etc.) for flavor
- 1 tbsp organic apple cider vinegar
- Water to fill crockpot
- Place everything in the crockpot
- Season as necessary
- Fill crockpot with water
- Set on low and cook for 24 hours
- Strain into mason jars, leaving 1 inch of headspace
- Cool in the refrigerator overnight, then freeze (or can it instead)
I’m so excited to have all of this awesome broth on hand, because it’s amazing for healing leaky gut (aka the cause of autoimmune diseases!). I’ve been drinking it in mugs and making soups galore. It can be used in so many things, I hope that you enjoy it too!