Homemade month is moving along and next on the list is chicken stock. I think this may be one of the easiest things you can do in your kitchen because it requires nothing but a crockpot and a chicken. The picture is from a frozen chicken in the crockpot with veggie scraps from trimming them at other meals. I believe I have onion tops, shallot tops, carrot ends, celery ends, etc. I start a bag that goes in the freezer and accumulate scraps for the moment when I want to make a stock. This is exactly what I did: I put a frozen chicken in the crockpot with a little salt and cracked peppercorns and obviously veggie trimmings. Cover for 10 hours (if thawed, 8 hours), and set crockpot on low. Around 6 hours or so all the juices will begin to accumulate at the bottom of the crockpot. After your 10 hours are up, remove the meat off the bone and put the carcass back into the crockpot. Fill the crockpot with filtered water and let simmer for another 4 hours. Strain your stock into containers! That’s it. I didn’t measure exactly but I want to say that it produced 10-12 cups of stock for me. Typically, the ones you buy in the store come in 4 cup cartons. So, that means I made the equivalent of 3 cartons of chicken stock with leftover bones from cooking a chicken. I was already cooking the chicken and using the meat for tacos. Therefore, it’s hard to estimate a cost savings when you are simply using leftover parts! The cartons I buy of organic chicken stock at the store at $3-$4 bucks. The entire chicken cost me $12 through Honored Praire. For $12 bucks, I got about 3 lbs of meat and 3 cartons of chicken stock. Not too shabby. I put the stock that I will use that week in the fridge and the rest in the freezer. I use the stock for everything from soups to simmering veggies. It is packed full of minerals and healthy collagen for the joints.
Here’s my opinion on the whole homemade chicken stock ordeal: (1-5 with 5 being the best)
Ease: 5 (you put a chicken in pot and leave it for heaven’s sake!)
Price: 5 (I would have spent the same amount of money for 3-4 cartons of chicken stock at the store without the meat!)
Worth the touble: 5 (I am set now for weeks)
Taste: 5 (Way better tasting and way more nutritious than its processed counterparts!)