Make your own nourishing bone broth

It's cheap and easy to make, and packed full of protein and nutrients.

Although bone broths are popular right now, they’ve always been a foundation of traditional cooking across the globe. Regardless of your heritage, your grandmother probably had her own recipe and claims about the ailments it healed. A South American proverb even claims that “a good broth can raise the dead”.

Turns out your grandmother was probably right about the benefits of bone broth. It’s rich in protein and minerals such as calcium, magnesium and phosphorus. They’re high in gelatin, which supports skin and digestive health. Chicken broth has even been found to relieve the side effects of colds and flu.

What is bone broth?

Bone broth is built on the basic foundation of water, meat, bones, vegetables and seasoning.

The bones are typically roasted first for enhanced flavour. They are then covered with water and left to simmer for at least 24 hours. This is to release as many nutrients and as much flavour as possible. When the bones are finally removed from the broth, they should be softened to the point where they will crumble when lightly pressed.

How to use bone broth

Bone broth is incredibly versatile. It can be used for a range of soups and stews. It can also be used to enhance the flavour of braised and roasted meats and vegetables. If you want, you could drink it plain with salt and pepper and crushed garlic.

How to store it

Bone broth can be stored in the fridge for roughly a week. Alternatively, it can be frozen and kept for up to six months.

If you have a dehydrator, you can use it to create homemade broth powder with a long shelf life.

How to begin

The beauty of bone broths is that they give you such bang for your buck. They’re easy to make and the ingredients are cheap, but the benefits are big. All you need are:

Utensils

  • Quality stock pot or slow cooker
  • Broth strainer (either a fine mesh sieve or a re-useable coffee filter, although using both will give the best result)

Ingredients

  • Whole chicken, or chicken frame
  • One tbsp black peppercorns
  • Vegetable scraps
  • Filtered water

Method

  1. Place the ingredients in a slow cooker or stock pot and cover with filtered water.
  2. Let the broth simmer for roughly 24 hours. The longer you allow the broth to slowly simmer, the more nutrients and flavour your broth will contain.
  3. Before using, use a fine mesh sieve or reuseable coffee filter to strain the broth.
  4. You can leave the broth simmering for up to a week, using it as you need and replacing with more filtered water.

There you have it. An incredibly easy bone broth that is both delicious and nutritious.

Don’t stop at this recipe; there are plenty of variations. Many Asian recipes rely on fish bones, while European broths tend to be made from beef bones. You can also mix it up by experimenting with using different spices and herbs to add flavour.