In case you haven’t heard, bone broth is making a big comeback right now. And that’s a good thing.
Canned soups, boxed broths (even the organic ones) and god forbid, bouillon cubes, cannot compare to the real thing both in nutritional value and taste.
Of course, because so many of us have grown up with Campbell’s and Progresso, we’re all trying to re-discover how to make bone broth the way our grandparents (or great grandparents) did.
So off to Google we go!
And Google can be a very confusing place.
For something as simple as simmering some bones in water, there sure are an incredible range of opinions and techniques.
But there’s one really big idea to keep in mind at all times. This is probably the most important idea I can share when you’re learning how to make bone broth. Burn this idea into your memory and always refer to it if you come across some conflicting information.
Here it is:
When you simmer bones in water, good things happen.
So many people get their panties all up in a bunch (especially men) if you don’t do it this way or that way.
You say bone stock, I say bone broth. He says to simmer for 4 hours, she says to simmer for 24 hours. This person says your broth didn’t gel for this reason, that person says another reason. And so on and so forth.
I don’t care if you can only simmer your broth for one hour.
I don’t care if you call it a stock, a broth or a witches brew.
I don’t care if you can’t pronounce “mirepoix” or “bouquet garni” or even know what they are.
I don’t care if you didn’t skim your broth or if you didn’t roast the bones first.
And I don’t care if it doesn’t gel even if you simmered it for 10,000 hours.
Just put what you got in a pot, simmer it for as long as you can… and good things happen!
It will be infinitely better than anything you can buy in a store.
Don’t get me wrong. I’m all for using a good variety of bones and animal parts to get more nutrients, flavor and gelatin. As a Nutritional Therapist, I teach everyone how to do this, especially those with digestive issues.
But sometimes, you just got to use what you got, throw it in a pot and simmer away.
About once every 2-3 months I’ll make a bone broth from bones that I’ve saved from different cuts of meat. I’ll save them in my freezer until I have enough to fill up a standard sized stock pot that will get me about 4 quarts of broth.
The bones I save have no meat on them, they’re not very gelatinous and they’re always a mix of different animal bones – chicken, beef, pork and lamb.
I’ll also throw in veggie scraps that I’ve saved as well – ends of carrots and onions, herb stems, kale stalks, beet greens, etc. And I’ll usually chop up a few fresh ones as well.
I’ll also save some eggshells for a little mineral boost.
It’s a rather ugly-looking mess of scraps:
I’ll usually only simmer it for an hour or two and then use it for a soup I’m making that day.
This broth doesn’t gel, it’s not too nutrient rich and it’s rather flat tasting. Trained chefs would scoff at it.
Doesn’t matter. Add a little salt and pepper and it tastes delicious.
1. Put all ingredients in a stock pot and cover with water
2. Simmer gently for as long as you can
3. Strain and then add whatever spices, seasonings and herbs you want, to taste.
This recipe won’t win you any culinary awards but it will help you to bring a simple, traditional food back into your life on a more regular basis. As I’ve learned with my clients, the more complicated I make things, the less likely they’ll succeed.
I’m not a chef and I’m not interested in making anyone else a chef. I’m interested in making you a cook.
Craig Fear is the creator of Fearless Eating and the author of three books, The 30-Day Heartburn Solution, Fearless Broths and Soups and The Thai Soup Secret. After years helping clients with digestive issues, Craig decided to pursue writing full-time. He intends to write many more books on broths and soups from around the world! Click here to learn more about Craig.