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Mmmm homemade bone broth. Despite its somewhat unappealing name, it’s incredibly flavorful, good for your gut, and it feels like a warm hug.
I mean, really...who couldn’t use a hug?
Homemade Bone Broth vs Store Bought
There’s a reason why whenever you were sick growing up, you ate chicken noodle soup to soothe yourself. Chicken and noodles aside, it was really because of the bone broth (also called stock).
When venturing down the soup aisle at the store, you’ll pass by cartons of a variety of broths - chicken, beef, and vegetable. These work in a pinch, but if you have the time and the resources, I definitely recommend making your own at home.
When you make bone broth at home instead of buying store-bought, you’ll reap more of its gut-healing benefits due to the higher quality of ingredients.
Once you get a taste of homemade bone broth and realize how dang easy and quick it is to make, especially in an Instant Pot, it'll be hard to go back to the store-bought variety.
Instant Pot vs Slow Cooker vs Stovetop
Instant pot method
The Instant Pot method is my absolute favorite tool for making homemade bone broth. The main reason is how little time it takes. You can make bone broth in just two hours in an Instant Pot.
Which is insane.
Especially because it’ll taste like it’s been simmering away for a whole day. Another perk is that this method is entirely hands-off once the ingredients are in. Plus, you don’t need to be home. If it finishes once the two hours are up, it’ll stay warm until you get home.
Slow cooker method
If you don’t have an instant pot, a slow cooker will also work and is similar to simmering in the Instant Pot, it just won’t be nearly as fast, but it's also hands-off and yields similarly flavorful results.
Making bone broth on the stovetop can be a time-consuming endeavor. Although it doesn’t take much effort on your part, it should be done on a day when you’re home since you’ll have to leave the stove on. Granted it’s at a very low temperature, but it'll still have to be on for several hours (anywhere from 8-12).
- instant pot or slow cooker
- roasting pan
- fine mesh strainer
- liquid measuring cup or a large bowl with a pour spout
- mason jars or another type of glass jar with a tightly sealed lid
Switch it up
You’re welcome to use other vegetables, this is just what I typically use. If using onion, make sure to rinse off the skin before quartering.
Get more bang for your buck
You can get 2-3 uses out of whatever bones you use, so if not using them right away, store them in the freezer until ready to use again. Discard them after the third batch.
If your broth is gelatinous, don’t worry, it’s a good thing! This is where those good gut health benefits are. Once the broth is heated, it’ll go back to its liquid state.
Seasoning the broth
Not sure how much salt to add? Start with one tablespoon in the beginning and then once it’s cooked and strained, you can taste it and adjust accordingly.
roasting the bones
Roasting the bones is completely optional, this just helps to give the broth more depth in flavor and deepens the color. You can avoid this step if you're using the bones from a roasted chicken, etc.
always add acidity
Acid is needed to make homemade bone broth because it helps to draw the nutrients out of the bones. So choosing a quality acid such as raw and unfiltered apple cider vinegar or lemon juice is important.
How to Use Homemade Bone Broth
In the colder months or anytime I’m feeling less than 100%, I like to down homemade bone broth like it’s my job. It’s basically gold, in liquid form. Not only is it rich in nutrients, but it also has an incredible umami flavor.
It's great for cooking as well. Here are a few ways you can use it:
How to Make Bone Broth in an Instant Pot (With Slow Cooker Option)
- 2-3 lbs chicken, turkey, or beef bones organic preferably
- 1 onion, skin on and quartered
- 2-3 stalks celery, chopped into 3-4 pieces
- 2 large carrots, chopped into 3-4 pieces
- 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar raw and unfiltered
- 2 cloves garlic, smashed skin can be left on
- salt, to taste see notes
- 3-4 whole black peppercorns
- 1 bay leaf
- filtered or tap water
Roasting the Bones (optional)
- Preheat your oven to 400°F and arrange 2-3 pounds of chicken, turkey, or beef bones, cartilage, skin, etc. in a single layer on a sheet pan.
- Once the oven comes to temperature, roast the bones for 30 minutes or until golden brown.
Instant Pot Method
- Add your vegetables, bones, and seasoning to the pot of your instant pot. Then add water to the max line inside the pot. Close the lid, and make sure the nozzle on top is turned to sealing.
- With the machine plugged in, hit the manual (or pressure cook on some machines) button, and hold down until it reads 120. Now it'll start to work its magic.
- Once the timer beeps and the 2 hours are up, you can either do the quick release by moving the nozzle on top to venting (and stepping away while the hot steam releases) or you can let it naturally release by letting the pressure come down on its own. (leaving it for about 15-20 minutes).
- When the pressure valve drops, carefully open the lid.
- Strain the liquid from the bones and vegetables. (I like to do this using a fine-mesh sieve.) Discard the vegetables since all the flavor and nutrients have been infused into the broth. See the notes below regarding the bones.
- Once the broth is nearly cool, store in glass jars with a tightly sealed lid in the fridge for up to 5 days or several months in the freezer.
Slow Cooker Method
- Add all the vegetables, bones, and seasonings followed by the water.
- Make sure that the water is about an inch above the bones and vegetables. Put the lid on tightly, and cook on low for about 6 - 8 hours.
- Follow the same directions above for straining the liquid from the bones.