Homemade Chicken Stock

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If you roast a chicken and end up with a carcass, don’t you dare throw it away. Use it to make a rich-flavored chicken stock that you can use in turn to make soups or other recipes! This recipe has been featured in a how-to post on The Recipe Girl blog: How to Make a Rich and Flavorful Chicken Stock

Homemade Chicken Stock

Yield: 1 1/2 to 2 quarts chicken stock

Prep Time:30 min

Cook Time:4 hr


One 5-pound chicken carcass (or any size)
1 large onion, chopped in large chunks
1 large leek, trimmed & rinsed, chopped in large chunks
3 carrots, unpeeled, ends trimmed and halved
3 celery stalks, cut into 4-inch lengths
3 parsnips, unpeeled, ends trimmed and halved
handful of Italian flat-leaf parsley
a few sprigs of fresh thyme
a few sprigs of fresh dill
4 large cloves of garlic, sliced
1 tablespoon kosher salt
1 teaspoon whole black peppercorns


1. Place chicken in large stockpot. Add about 2 1/2 quarts of water (your chicken should be pretty much almost, if not completely, submerged). Add all veggies, herbs and seasoning. Bring to a boil. Reduce to a simmer; continue to simmer uncovered for 4 hours.

2. Strain entire contents of the pot through a fine sieve and discard solids. Pour liquid into a bowl, cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight.

3. The next day, use a spoon to remove the layer of fat that has solidified on the top of the bowl of stock. The stock itself may become jelly-like when it’s chilled. Once it comes to room temperature again (or is heated), it will turn back to a liquid state.


*The more chicken meat that is left on your carcass, the richer the chicken flavor will be in your stock.
*Homemade stock will keep just fine in the refrigerator for up to 5 days. Cover and freeze for up to 6 months.

Source: RecipeGirl.com

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  • Nettie wrote:

    Chicken stock is also a great way to use your vegetable clippings if you don’t compost–just save the ends of carrots, onions, and celery, as well as the skin if you peel them. You can also use veggies that have gone a little soft if they haven’t started molding at all. I just keep a container in my freezer and add veggies to it whenever I have them, and make stock every month or two with them.

    • Lori Lange wrote:

      Awesome- love that tip!

  • SALLY wrote:


    • Lori Lange wrote:

      The cooked vegetables lose their flavor during the long simmering process- because it all goes into the broth. It’s best to start fresh when you make soup w/ the stock.

  • Wendy wrote:

    Thank you so much for this! I just found a great farm to get wonderful whole chickens and didn’t want to waist one bit of it. This will get used often. Thank you for sharing!

  • Jenna Kain wrote:

    I am currently making this stock for the first time. Do I use it 1:1 in place of broth or should it be diluted when making soup?

    • Lori Lange wrote:

      Use it as you would use chicken broth. It will just give it a better flavor!

  • Brandon wrote:

    The main difference between stock and broth is the use of bones versus just flesh. Bones contain high amounts of collagen – a connective protein that becomes gelatin when heated. Chicken stock should have high enough levels of collagen to make the stock somewhat jelly-like when cooled. The gelatin adds a great mouthfeel but takes somewhat longer than broth to make.

    If the gelatin effect doesn’t happen for you, never fear – so long as the chicken stock tastes good it can be used to make soup or other chicken broth type products. If you really want or need true stock with a high collagen content, you can reduce the liquid by 1/3 to 1/2, increasing the concentration of collagen and creating a much richer stock.