To make your own bone broth, you'll need:
- Bones from fish, poultry, beef, lamb, or pork (raw or cooked, and they may still contain remnants of meat and skin)
- Apple cider vinegar, red or white wine vinegar, or lemon juice
- Stainless steel or porcelain pot (acidic vinegar or lemon juice may cause aluminum to leach into the broth)
- Vegetables (optional)
- Olive oil (optional)
- Salt and pepper, to taste
Cover the bones with water in a covered pot. Add 2 tablespoons of one of the following per quart of water: apple cider vinegar, red or white wine vinegar, or lemon juice. Gently stir and then let it sit on cool surface for 30 minutes. Then bring to a boil, reduce heat, and cover. Simmer covered, according to the type of bone used:
- Fish, 4–6 hours
- Poultry, 6–8 hours
- Other, 12–18 hours
Add water as necessary.
A slow cooker works well for making bone broth because the temperature is generally low enough that the lid will keep in the steam and it won’t require much attention. However, I’ve found that slow cookers generally take about one-third longer than on the stove.
Other Useful Tips
- If you want just the broth, strain the liquid through a colander and consume it immediately either by sipping as a tea or soup, or making it into a gravy.
- The broth can also be used as the liquid to cook rice, beans, or grains.
- If you want to add vegetables, strain the liquid first and then add the vegetables for the last 30 minutes. Feel free to add other items—such as salt, pepper, butter, or olive oil—to enhance the flavor.
- The broth can be stored in the refrigerator for about five days, or stored frozen for several months.
- Never cook or reheat the broth (or gelatin) in the microwave. There is some question as to the safety of doing so. Certain amino acids may convert into forms that can be toxic to the body when microwaved.