Homemade chicken broth couldn’t be simpler. It’s incredibly healthy, easy to make, frugal and full of home-grown goodness! What could be better?!
It is the best beginner homesteader recipe.
Plus, canning it is very quick and easy!
How to Make chicken broth
Because we eat grass-fed heritage chickens, their meat can be a little tough unless we cook it in a slow cooker. About once a week I’ll cook a whole chicken in the slow cooker, pick the meat off, leave the bones in, and add vegetable scraps and herbs and fill it up with water.
I keep a large ziploc bag in my freezer whose sole purpose is to keep cooking throw-aways for use in my broth recipe.
End bits of carrots, celery, onions, un-used garlic cloves, mushroom tips, just about everything.
Put it all in the crockpot, cover with water, and let it cook on low for 24-48 hours.
This pulls all the nutrients and goodies out from the leftover foods, so you are sure you’re getting every last bit of goodness before throwing it away.
Once I strain out the bones and solid bits, I’ll put the crockpot in the fridge for an hour or two.
This helps chill the fat, which makes a white sheet on top of the broth. I usually remove this with a spoon, but that’s completely optional!
How to can broth
Once that’s done, I’ll boil my canning jars and lids in a large pot of water to sterilize them, and bring my chicken broth to a boil in another pot.
After the jars have been simmering for a bit, I remove them carefully (I’m clumsy and routinely stick my fingers in the boiling water) and set them on a kitchen towel, making sure not to touch anything to the insides of the jars or the lids.
I’ll then pour my broth into the canning jars, wipe the rims, and fasten the lids and rings. Pressure can these following the directions on your pressure canner:
- pints – process for 20 minutes,
- quarts – process for 25 minutes
After that, I’ll remove them and leave them on the counter until I hear that beautiful *ping!* sound.
If you’re more of a visual learner, or are still unsure about pressure canning, check out my friend Melissa’s awesome course on Canning with Confidence!
Feel free to experiment! Use pig bones or cow bones too. Talk to your local butcher about buying just the bones. You can also make this recipe with the bones alone, if you haven’t stockpiled veggie throw-away’s.
Or use only vegetable scraps if you don’t have any good bones!
For more canning recipes check out my posts below: