Making broth or stock with leftover bones and carcasses is so easy and can be made from any bones. Use it in any recipe that calls for broth or stock, or simply use it as a soup base. Broth is also a healthy source of nutrients, amino acids, and minerals.
Technically, broth is made with meat, while stock is made from bones and contains more collagen, which produces a slightly richer flavor and texture than broth. However, in most recipes, broth and stock are interchangeable. When I make stock, there is usually plenty of little pieces of meat still on the bones or on the bottom of the pan to add additional flavor.
It takes a bit of time to make broth or stock, so if you don’t have time to make stock right away, just throw the leftover bones in a bag in the freezer and save for when you have more time.
Making your own is also a money saver, if you use a lot of broth or stock. A quart container of a local store brand of broth is $1.48. By using the bones that were going to be discarded anyway, homemade broth is super cheap! I didn’t figure an exact amount, but a rough guess would be only about 20 to 25¢ a quart.
Last week, Hubby roasted a large turkey breast. We had a nice dinner that evening, and then we had turkey sandwiches a couple of times. After removing most of the remaining meat to put in the freezer for another meal, I was left with the carcass with a little attached meat. With that and a few vegetables, I made 6 quarts and 1 pint of broth. I didn’t figure an exact amount, but a rough guess would be only about 20 to 25¢ a quart.
Note: Some of my batches of stock gel better than other batches when refrigerated. Some don’t gel at all. Getting a solid gel is a sign of a perfect broth. Don’t worry if it doesn’t happen, as the broth/stock will still be delicious. Gelatin will break down if the heat is too high or if the broth is simmered for too long.
Easy Instant Pot Broth/Stock
- Leftover cooked bones/carcass of either turkey, chicken, beef or pork.
- 1 or 2 large carrots, sliced or chopped
- 1 medium onion, chopped
- 2 or 3 stalks of celery, chopped (including leaves)
- 1 tablespoon minced garlic (or mashed clove)
- 2 tablespoon apple cider vinegar (the vinegar is needed to help draw out the minerals from the bones)
- Water – enough to cover the bones
- Fill the pot half full of bones.
- Add the veggies, garlic and apple cider vinegar.
- Add enough water to cover the bones without going over the Maximum line on the inner pot.
- Soak the bones for 30-60 minutes before starting the Instant Pot.
- Put the lid on the Instant Pot and close the vent valve.
- Use the “Soup” button and adjust the time to 120 minutes using the manual button. (Follow your manufacturer instructions. With the machine I was using, I used the “Soup” button to program 45 minutes cycles three times, with no pressure release between each cycle.)
- If you are new to Instant Pots (or a similar brand), the pot will take approximately 20 minutes to reach pressure before the actual time starts.
- When the pressure cycle is complete, let the pressure release naturally.
- When the pressure is fully released, remove the cover and let cool for an hour or so. Pour the broth through a strainer into a large pan or bowl.
- Once the strained broth/stock cools, package it for freezing. I freeze the broth in plastic freezer containers (or yogurt, cottage cheese or sour cram containers). My containers are about 2 cups or 4 cups each.
Sometimes when broth or stock is refrigerated, the fat will rise to the top and solidify. Lift it off and put it in a freezer bag to later use to make gravy, in place of lard or shortening.
Broth or stock will keep in the fridge for 3 to 4 days. It will keep in the freezer for up to one year.
Slow Cooker Broth/Stock
Place bones in a 6 or 7 quart slow cooker. Add the carrots, onion, celery, garlic and apple cider vinegar. Add 4 to 5 quarts of water. Cover and let sit for 30 to 60 minutes to let the vinegar help draw out the minerals from the bones. Cook 12 to 20 hours on LOW setting (or on HIGH 6 to 8 hours)
Let cool for an hour or so. Pour the broth through a strainer into a large pan or bowl.
Once the strained broth/stock cools, package it for freezing. I freeze it in plastic freezer containers (or yogurt, cottage cheese or sour cram containers). My containers are about 2 cups or 4 cups each.