DIY Projects

Homemade Chicken Stock 101 for $1.01

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This is the first post in a new series for Effortless and Exquisite.  The ‘101 for $1.01‘ series will showcase Lifestyle Tips 101 for $1.01 or less!  Let’s get started…Chicken Stock is a great base for soups, pasta, rice, and casseroles.  Substituting chicken stock for water in recipes adds flavor and that little something extra.  However chicken stock, especially organic brands, is expensive.  Containers of regular chicken stock retail for around $3 while organic stocks range from $4-6.  What if you could effortlessly make chicken stock for $1.01 per gallon?  You can and you should!  Also note that homemade stock doesn’t have the MSG or other preservatives that store bought containers routinely contain – a definite health bonus too.

Homemade Chicken Stock

For Easter lunch, I roasted a chicken.  The chicken was mostly eaten during lunch leaving a carcass.  The next time you roast chicken, make chicken stock with the leftovers.  First combine 1-2 onions, one garlic head, and 3-4 carrots.  I used 1 and 1/2 onions which was about 50 cents, three carrots about 30 cents, and on sale garlic that was 20 cents per head.  The total ingredient cost is $1.  This is not an exact science.  Some people use celery or other vegetables to roast stock.  It is totally up to you how much and what you want to toss in the pot.

Ingredients for Chicken Stock

Begin by breaking the carcass into pieces.  I like to cut the bones in half so the marrow will leach into the stock.  It makes for a richer flavored stock.

Cut the carcass into pieces

 Next cut the carrots into chunks.

Add cut carrots

Remove the paper surrounding the garlic head.  It doesn’t need to be perfect.  Everything goes into the pot.

Remove garlic covering

Cut the head in half and throw both halves into the pot.  Don’t worry about the base or any paper left on the cloves.  Everything goes into the pot!

Cut garlic in half

I have a parsley plant that is overgrowing and decided to cut some and put it on top of the ingredients.  Herbs add extra flavor so add whatever you want to or you have available. I also add a pinch of salt.  Be careful not to make your stock too salty as you can always add salt later.

Parsley on top

 Cover pot with water.  I use at least 16 cups of water or more.

Cover ingredients with water

Bring pot to a boil.  I like to rapidly boil the pot for 30 minutes to an hour.  After that, turn down the heat to medium low and continue to gently boil for at least 3 hours.  It’s best to boil between 6 and 8 hours.  

Stock after boiling

There are many ways to strain stock once it is finished on the stove.  I put another pot in the sink with a colander on it.

Strain the stock in a colander

Pour the contents of the pot over the colander so the old vegetables and meat parts will separate from the stock below.

Discard boiled vegetables.

 Allow stock to cool in pot.  Pour into containers once it is cool.  Isn’t the color delicious?

Beautiful Homemade Chicken Stock

I like to freeze the stock and use it later.  I put mine into freezer containers or bags.  It is also great to pour into ice trays for small portions.  I usually do this but in my blogging photo taking, I forgot…Enjoy your stock!

Stock ready to freeze!

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Julie, The Effortless Girl, is from a small (teeny tiny) community in the Appalachian Mountains of western North Carolina. The Effortless Girl was born out of a desire to challenge herself to find accessible, unique lifestyle ideas with cost savings in mind. LEARN MORE >

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