Homemade chicken stock: it’s so easy you guys. Like, sooooooo easy. It is so easy to pick that can or carton up off the grocery store shelf, and trust me, I do it all the time. But there is just something so special and comforting about making it yourself. Packed with whole roasting chickens, an array of vegetables and a large handful of herbs, this homemade chicken stock has your house smelling just heavenly and is the perfect way to pack that freezer full of an essential pantry staple.
Happy Friday, guys! I hope everyone has fun-filled plans planned for the weekend! Zach turns the big 3-0 on Sunday. I know, he’s so old. Unfortunately, I am only 6 months behind him, so I only have about that much time to make fun of him.
His one and only request was to head into the mountains for the week, ski our butts off, drink beer and eat delicious food…so, that’s exactly what we are going to do. I have to admit. I’m pretty excited also, but I did tell him that my one and only request when I turn 30 is to spend it basking in the sunshine on some remote island, book in one hand, beer in the other. But we have 6 months before that extravaganza. ;)
Don’t worry though, I have all kinds of fun and exciting recipes planned to publish while I’m gone, and I can’t wait for you guys to check them out.
First things first, this homemade chicken stock. I couldn’t think of a better way to kick off the weekend! I know, soooooo spontaneous. My weekends are so exciting. At least I think so.
You start with whole roasting chickens. Well, at least for my stock you start with whole roasting chickens. I love using them in stock. I think they extract the most flavor and really make the stock shine. Bones, carcasses, thighs, breasts, and wings may definitely be substituted. Just know that it will alter the taste just a tad.
A medley of fresh vegetables and fresh herbs are thrown on top. Season with salt and peppercorns and then cover completely with water. Bring to a boil, lower to a simmer and then simmer the heck out of it for about 5 hours.
This is just an added bonus with making your own stock.
I like to go throw a two step straining process with this stock. First, strain through a regular old colander into a large bowl.
SIDE NOTE: DO NOT FORGET THE BOWL. I am ashamed to admit that I have forgotten the bowl, and I have done this multiple times.
After you strain throw a regular colander, fit a mesh strainer with cheese cloth and then strain again. AGAIN, INTO ANOTHER LARGE BOWL. I think this provides the best method for straining chicken stock. Tried and true.
A quick note about seasoning: I like to use as little salt as possible. You will still need SOME salt, but I like to keep it to the bare minimum and salt when I use the stock in another recipe. It’s just my personal preference. Even when I buy chicken stock, I always buy the low sodium version. It is completely up to you on whether or not to season more or less. Adjust to your wants and tastes.
The recipe for this insanely easy chicken stock is below. Have a great weekend guys! I’ll talk to you all on Super Bowl Sunday! xo
- 2 5- pound whole chickens
- 3 yellow onions skins left on, quartered
- 3 large carrots cut in half
- 2 large parsnips cut in half
- 2 stalks of celery leaves left on, cut into thirds
- 1/2 fennel bulb
- 1 head of garlic skins left on, cut in half
- 10 sprigs of parsley
- 10 sprigs of thyme
- 10 sprigs of rosemary
- 5 sprigs of dill
- 2 bay leaves
- 2 tablespoons whole black peppercorns
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 5 quarts of filtered water
- In a very large soup pot (I used a 10 quart stock pot), add the chickens. On top add the onions, carrots, parsnips, celery, fennel, garlic, parsley, thyme, rosemary, dill, bay leaves, peppercorns and salt. Cover with water so that everything is just submerged. You may need more or less than 5 quarts of water.
- Place the pot on the stove and bring to a boil. Lower the heat so that the stock simmers and simmer for 5-6 hours, skimming the fat that accumulates at the top periodically.
- Remove from heat and let stand for about an hour, or until it's comfortable to handle. Pour the stock through a colander into a large bowl. Then, with a cheesecloth fitted over a mesh strainer, strain the chicken stock again, into another large bowl.
- Set aside to cool completely, then portion out into freezer safe containers. You can refrigerate the chicken stock for about a week or freeze it for up to three months.