Its pretty funny to me that bone broth has become the new “trendy” thing to drink: bone broth shops popping up in LA and NYC, a “Bone Broth Diet” (awesome book), and gobs of articles, blog posts to boot! Don’t get me wrong, this is a far more helpful “fad” than most of the others, its just that using the bones to make broth for nourishing and healing has been around for centuries, used in virtually every culture in the word!
The benefits of drinking and using homemade broth as the base for soups and stews are too numerous to count, but include:
- Supporting digestive health, which can support from healing from leaky gut and food intolerances
- Healing after surgery
- Keeping bones, hair and skin healthy and strong (including reducing the appearance of cellulite and
- Supporting the immune system (where the idea for chicken soup when you’re sick came from)
- Joint health and alleviating symptoms of arthritis
Making broth is not difficult, but since its become so popular, you cant just collect free leftover bones from the butcher counter like you could before it was trendy.
How to make bone broth at home:
The basics of what you’ll need to make bone broth at home are:
- Beef, chicken, lamb or pork bones (or a combo)
- Assorted veggies like onion, garlic, carrots, celery
- Fresh herbs like parsley stems, thyme, rosemary, bay leaves (optional)
- A large pot, like:
- Apple cider vinegar
- Good water
- Mesh wire strainer
Where to get organic/grass fed bones:
- Online at US Wellness Meats (they have some pre-made broth options, too)
- At your local health food store
- At your local butcher (though these are not likely to be organic/grass-fed…call first and check)
My favorite way to make bone broth is to roast a whole chicken with veggies, eat the meat, throw all the bones and veggies into a pot with water, 2 tablespoons vinegar and salt and simmer for 24-48 hours. Here’s a video on exactly how to prep the chicken:
If you want to start with beef bones, here’s a video for that (its an old one…my first cooking video EVER!). Also in this video is a deeper explanation of the benefits of eating bone broth:
Here’s a complete bone broth recipe from my cookbook, Paleogasm:
Beef Bone Broth
- 4 pounds of beef marrow, knuckle bones
- 3 pounds meaty rib or neck bones
- 4 or more quarts cold water
- 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
- 3 onions, coarsely chopped
- 3 carrots coarsely chopped
- 3 stalks celery, coarsely chopped
- 1 head garlic
- Bay leaves, rosemary spring, and thyme, optional but quite nice
- Celtic sea salt or Redmond’s Real Salt, once broth is finished
- A squeeze of lemon juice, optional
Place all of your bones that have extra meat on them on a large cookie sheet (with sides) or roasting pan and brown in the oven at 400 degrees until well-browned (45-60 minutes). I like to roast my onions, carrot, and celery for added flavor, too.
Meanwhile, throw all of your non-meaty marrow bones into a stockpot, add the water, vinegar and vegetables (unless you’re roasting). Let sit while the other bones are browning. Add the browned bones to the pot, deglaze your roasting pan with hot water and get up all of the brown bits, pour this liquid into the pot. Add additional water if needed to cover the bones.
Bring to a boil and remove the scum/foam that rises to the top. Reduce heat, cover and simmer for at least 12 hours and as long as 72 hours. The longer you cook the stock, the more rich and flavorful it will be.
After you simmer for 12-72 hours, strain the stock into a large bowl, then ladle into glass containers. Allow to cool, then refrigerate. I would not recommend freezing in glass as they often break when they expand. Better to freeze in BPA-free plastic or silicone once totally cooled. Lately I’ve been freezing individual portions in these large silicone baking cups or this baking loaf and defrosting individually so I can sip on a cup in the morning.
Stays fresh in fridge about a week.
Other options for getting the benefits of bone broth without preparing it at home:
- Buy prepared bone broth. Please note: the stock you find at the supermarket will not suffice if you want to get the health benefits of drinking bone broth. Here’s a couple options:
- Our friends at Pete’s Paleo have an awesome Gut Healing Kit that includes bone broth, soup packets and gelatin gummies. Check that out here.
- I recently learned about a real grass-fed bone broth thats made with organic veggies and cooked over 24 hours thats supposed to be delicious made by Kettle & Fire. Our friends at Thrive Market are offering a free full sized box (retails for $27). Click here to get yours free.
- Take a collagen and/or a gelatin supplement. You wont get the full spectrum of benefits that you get from the broth, but still a good option. I love and use the Vital Proteins brand in my morning coffee, smoothies and green juice. I’ve also been known to add it to my already gelatinous soups because I’m rebellious like that 😉
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