Friday, August 5, 2011

Overnight Crock Pot Chicken Stock

I always hear of chefs mentioning how it is best to use stock over broth and how easy it is to make. Anytime I need a broth or stock for a recipe, I always grab a box of whatever type I need (veggie, chicken, etc) at Trader Joes. I think it's broth, but it sure looks and tastes like a stock. It's one of those items I always have in my pantry, but something I've also wanted to make and keep stocked in my freezer for the fall when I make an abundance of homemade soup.  Perfect, right?

After making this weeks crock pot chicken, I did not want to let those bones go to waste. The pile of bones that is. 

left over bones. good thing I did not throw these bad boys away!
I dumped the bones back into the crock put, added water, celery, carrots, a bulb of garlic some fresh thyme, parsley and pepper. If you are a gizzards fan (which we know I am not), you can put these in here too. Here comes the best part.....the secret ingredient for this recipe - cider vinegar. This helps draw out the calcium from the bones. Pop the lid on and turn her on right before you go to bed and when you wake up your house will smell like Thanksgiving! Well, at least mine did. Just make sure to let this one go at least 8 hours on low. If you'd like a richer, darker stock, you can try for a few more hours.

This recipe is a GREAT way to use up those bones you would normally just toss into your trash can. I know I almost did. That and you can use stock for anything - soup, cooking rice or stir frying veggies. Well, maybe not dessert. That sounds kinda gross. What will you use your homemade chicken stock in?

the lineup

everyone into the pool! Also, no need to be fancy about cutting the veggies. Just give the onion a quarter chop and break the celery and carrot by hand. Oh, and do cut the bulb of garlic in half so the cloves can give off their flavor!

seasonings I forgot to include in the line up shot. oops. it was late and I was sleepy.

what I woke up to - rich an delicious stock! (excuse the mess floor and dress on the kitchen table - I should clean).

you'll need a big bowl and strainer to get out all the ingredients and just leave you with stock. I would recommend using a ladle to get the stock out. don't like and pour straight from the crock pot. you will spill!

another pass through a small strainer to get rid of any little bones and extra ickiness.

see - lots of ickiness (is this even a word?)

all strained and ready for the freezer. note - I picked up these cute containers at the dollar store. they are perfect for recipes just like this. you get all three for $1!

Overnight Crock Pot Chicken Stock
Bones from recently cooked chicken (remove all skin if you can)
12 cups water (my crock pot could probably hold 16, but I did not want it to overflow during the night).
4 celery stocks (broken in half)
2-3 carrots (broken in half)
1/4 cup fresh or died parsley
2 sprigs fresh time (you can use dried here too if you want - maybe 2 teaspoons)
2 bulbs garlic, but in half
2 large onions, skin removed and quartered
pepper, to taste (I used 1 tablespoon, but if you are not a pepper person, you can use as little as you like)
2 tablespoons cider vinegar

Place all ingredients in the crock pot and cover with water. Put lid on and set to low for at least 8 hours.

Super easy, right? Depending on the chicken you buy, your stock may have more or less fat on the top. After your stock has been placed into containers and cooled, put them in the fridge for at least 12 hours. If there is any fat, it will float to the top and harden. You can scoop it off and then freeze your stock for later, or use it. If you don't freeze it, I'd say to use it within five days. Enjoy!


  1. A fantastic idea! I hate babysitting a pot of stock when I make it--sitting there stirring and skimming all afternoon. Next time the crock pot for sure! I wonder if this would also work with beef bones?

  2. Of course it would work with beef bones. I would keep the carrot and celery, but add bay leaves and parsley instead of the thyme. Don't forget peppercorns too! This is a great idea - never really thought to make beef stock (since I never really have the bones on hand). This would be insanely good for homemade french onion soup. DROOLING!