Chicken bone broth is one of the first lines of defense when it comes to total health and wellness on the homestead. It’s so incredibly easy to make bone broth, and chicken bone broth is one of my favorites. You can create other bone broths as well, like beef, lamb, or venison—but chicken is one of the most versatile that you’ll create. We use chicken bone broth in soups, stews, and even just to drink as a meal replacement, especially in the winter months. If your body needs a little extra joint help, adding bone broth to your daily diet is essential to help rebuild collagen in your body.
It’s even better when you know where the chicken came from that you’re using for the bone broth. We raise our own birds, make our own homemade chicken feed, and raise our chickens on pasture. It makes all the difference!
In this blog post and video, I’m going to walk you through the easy steps of how to make chicken bone broth, and how to pressure can it as well. We’ll also talk about the benefits and why it’s so important to learn this skill on your homestead.
The Benefits of Bone Broth
There are so many different benefits of bone broth, not only for your body and health, but for your homestead as well. Let’s walk through some of those benefits.
- High in minerals and electrolytes
- Can help improve joint health
- Boosts the immune system
- Help soothe and heal the digestive tract
- Helps restore and strengthen the gut lining
- Is full of beneficial collagen that helps maintain healthy skin, joints, cellulite
- Aids the metabolism
- Packed full of amino acids
- Increases bone strength
- A great way to put culled birds to good use
The benefits to bone broth are endless, as you can see. There are so many subcategories to the main categories, that it proves just how much of a powerhouse this liquid is on your homestead.
Making Bone Broth From Your Chickens
Whenever I need to make a new batch of bone broth, I normally like to make it from my own chickens. If you have chickens that need to be culled because they are old or you have too many roosters, they tend to make the best bone broth. However, you can also use the chickens that you raise for meat, or a chicken from the store. Never let a chicken carcass go to waste! Always save those bones and feet to make this liquid gold. You can pressure can it and store it for later use.
How to Clean Chicken Feet
In a large pot of hot water, bring the water right under a boil and add the pre-washed chicken feet to the water. Stirring constantly, allow the feet to set in the water for about 3-5 minutes. Do not allow the water to come to a complete boil. After 3-5 mins of blanching, remove from heat and allow to cool until you’re able to handle them. You can run them under cold water if you’d like. Once they have cooled off enough to touch, start peeling the skin and scales off of the chicken feet. Scrub the feet thoroughly after all of the skin and scales have been removed, then store in the fridge or freezer until ready to use.
Putting Your Broth Together
Now that you’ve gotten your carcass and chicken feet prepared, you’ll need to consider veggies and herbs to put into your bone broth. Here are the herbs and veggies I choose.
- Bay Leaves
Now it’s time to put your bone broth together!
- In a large stock pot or in your slow cooker, add the chicken carcass (picked clean), rough cut veggies, and at least 2 handfuls of various herbs. Cover the carcass, veggies, and herbs completely with water, place the lid on the pot, and cook on low heat for 24-48 hours.
- After the desired time of cooking, strain out all of the carcass, veggies, and herbs. The liquid you have left is your bone broth.
- Store your bone broth in canning jars in the fridge for up to 48 hours until you’re ready to use or pressure can.
Pressure Canning Your Bone Broth
Pressure canning your bone broth is the easiest (and cheapest) way to preserve your harvest. Please note that your elevation and location will play a major role in how you can your bone broth, so check your pressure canning manual first.
- Fill your canning jars with your bone broth, leaving a 1-inch head space. Cap finger tip tightness.
- Place your cans into your prepare pressure canner (typically filled with 3 quarts water and the canning rack). Place cans on the canning rack and close the lid.
- On your stove top or camp stove, bring your canner to a boil and allow a steady and fast stream of steam to escape from the vent for 10 minutes.
- After 10 minutes of venting, place your pressure gauge on the vent and bring the canner to pressure (at my elevation I can it at 11 lbs of pressure). Once your canner is to pressure, can for 20 minutes for pints and 25 minutes for quarts.
- After the processing time, allow your canner to release naturally. Place your cans on a towel on the counter until completely cooled, then transfer to the pantry.
And that’s it! That’s how easy it is to make your own bone broth and can it!
Use your harvest for all kinds of meals, or save it for winter time when bone broth is the best comfort food in the world!
Watch the Video Here!
Amy K. Fewell is an author, family herbalist, entrepreneur, homesteader, and homemaker. Living in the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains, her and her family live a natural homesteading lifestyle where they promote self-sufficiency and liberty. Amy is the founder of the Homesteaders of America organization and annual events. You can discover more on this website and at homesteadersofamerica.com