Real Chicken Stock


Real chicken stock is made over a period of 3 to 4 hours to develop the flavor, so here it goes. You can buy chicken bones from your local butcher (mine charges a mere 49 cents a pound) or you can buy whole chickens and cut them up yourself, freeze the edible parts, and use the carcasses for the stock.

Prep Time:
15 mins
Cook Time:
4 hrs
Total Time:
4 hrs 15 mins
2 1/2 quarts


  • 8 pounds chicken bones

  • cold water, to cover

  • 1 cup sliced celery (1-inch pieces)

  • 1 cup sliced carrot (1/2-inch pieces)

  • 1 (8 ounce) onion, quartered

  • 6 parsley stems

  • 2 sprigs fresh thyme

  • 1 bay leaf

  • 10 whole black peppercorns

  • 1 clove garlic (Optional)

  • cheesecloth

  • kitchen twine

  • salt to taste


  1. Place the chicken bones in the bottom of a large stock pot and fill with enough cold water to cover the bones by about 2 inches. Bring the water to a gentle simmer over medium-low heat. The bubbles should just barely break the surface. After the stock has simmered for about 30 minutes, skim off any foam that forms on the surface or the edges of the pot and discard. Continue simmering another 90 minutes.

  2. Add the celery, carrots, and onion to the stock pot. As the stock simmers, continue to skim off any foam. After 1 hour and 15 more minutes, wrap the parsley stems, thyme, bay leaf, peppercorns, and garlic in a small piece of cheesecloth and tie into a tidy package with kitchen twine. Add the seasoning bundle to the stock. Simmer for 45 more minutes (4 total hours simmering time); remove the seasoning bundle. Strain the stock through a fine mesh strainer lined with cheesecloth. Season to taste with salt.

Cook's Note

I've found that a great way to save chicken stock is to buy some plain old ice cube trays that you use especially for stock. Each ice cube turns out to be approximately 1 to 1 1/2 ounces. Freeze the stock into ice cubes and store in a plastic zipper bag in freezer. This way when a recipe calls for 6 ounces of stock, you just pull 6 ice cubes out of the freezer.

Editor's Note

Chill the stock and remove the solid fat that forms on the top, if desired.

Nutrition Facts (per serving)

24 Calories
0g Fat
5g Carbs
1g Protein
Nutrition Facts
Servings Per Recipe 10
Calories 24
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 0g 0%
Sodium 38mg 2%
Total Carbohydrate 5g 2%
Dietary Fiber 2g 6%
Total Sugars 2g
Protein 1g
Vitamin C 19mg 96%
Calcium 48mg 4%
Iron 1mg 7%
Potassium 190mg 4%

* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.

** Nutrient information is not available for all ingredients. Amount is based on available nutrient data.

(-) Information is not currently available for this nutrient. If you are following a medically restrictive diet, please consult your doctor or registered dietitian before preparing this recipe for personal consumption.