Ever heard of bone broth? Well, either way let’s talk some serious bone broth. What is it? How do you make it? What are the benefits? and how do you use it? I’m covering all of that right here, right now.
WHAT IS BONE BROTH?
Bone broth is a “en vogue” superfood right now in the health food world. In other countries, namely South America, it is an ancient remedy and known to be a”great healer”, and it’s now making it’s way into the foodie scene all over the world. Bone Broth is known for its tons of healing properties, but we will get to that later. It’s similar to your everyday beef and chicken stock that you use for cooking; however, bone broth is to be cooked for a much longer period of time (no less than 8 hours, and some people even go for as long as 48 hours). Cooking the bones for this extended period of time causes the bones to break down, which allows them to release vitamins and minerals that your body may benefit from when sipping on it.
WHAT ARE THE HEALTH BENEFITS OF DRINKING BONE BROTH?
Experts and nutritionalists around the world are singing the praises of bone broth and it’s benefits. It’s become such a “thing” that bone broth is one of the three pillars of the LA Laker’s official team diet. Crazy, huh? There are even bone broth shops popping up in larger cities, and I am itching for one to open in Dallas because, as a bone-broth devotee, I would certainly be a regular. So what is so magical about bone broth? Here are a few of the benefits:
- Heal and seal your gut. The gelatin in the bone broth (found in the knuckles, feet, and other joints) helps seal up holes in intestines. This helps decrease symptoms and sometimes even cure chronic diarrhea, constipation, and even some types of food intolerances.
- Look younger. Bone broth is a rich source of collagen which can make your skin, hair, and nails look radiant and promote growth.
- Stronger bones. The phosphorus, magnesium, and calcium in the bones seeps out into the broth leaving you with the essential building blocks for healthy bones.
- Immune support. Mark Sisson, author of The Primal Blueprint, says that bone marrow can help strengthen your immune system. A Harvard study even showed that some people with auto-immune disorders experienced a relief of symptoms when drinking bone broth, with some achieving a complete remission.
- Sleep better, and feel better. The glycine in bone broth has been shown in several studies to help people sleep better and improve memory.
- Protect your joints. The chondroitin sulfate in bone broth has been shown to help prevent osteoarthritis.
How do you Make Bone Broth?
Once you get the bones, making a basic broth is simple: Cram them all into a crockpot or stockpot with whatever vegetables and herbs you have laying around, add water to the top, and boil on low for a long period of time…and when I say “long” I mean no less than 8 hours, 12 is great, and if you’re really going for the gold– some people even go 24-48 hours! It will smell wonderful and you’ll end up with a nutritious and cheap drink or soup base.
So, Bones… how do you get them and what kind of bones do you use? There are few different ways. First off, as you eat meat or chicken with bones (think drumsticks, chicken thighs, etc) toss the bones in a ziplock bag and into the freezer. Once you have a large ziplock bag full, you can get to work on your bone broth. Or, leftover whole carcasses like a whole roasted chicken, your leftover thanksgiving turkey, or even the rotisserie chicken carcass serve as great bases for bone broth. Since bone broth is becoming more popular, I’ve noticed that health food stores like Whole Foods carry leftover large bones from their butcher in the freezer section and, from what I have read, asian food markets are a wonderful place to buy them. According to research, the best way to make bone broth is with the boniest bones you can find, like beef knuckles, chicken necks, oxtails, and, of course, tiny, creepy feet. Either way, bones are bones, so no matter which bones you choose in your broth, you’ll still get lots of nourishment and minerals from it. So don’t go tossing bones after dinner any longer, put them to good use! But bigger is better if you really want to get the most of your bone broth sipping.
Below, I have provided a generic recipe for bone broth using a leftover rotisserie chicken carcass but, like I said, you can use any bones or veggies you want. You can also buy premade bone broth now a days, I really love Bonafide Provisions, which can be found in the freezer section at most Whole Foods or ordered online. I’ve also provided a recipe for how I heat up and season my Bonafide Provisions bone broth below.
HOW TO USE BONE BROTH?
After you strain out all of the bones and veggies from cooking the bone broth, you wind up with the most fantastic flavored broth. You can use bone broth as a base for soups but I especially love just sipping on it as an afternoon relaxation drink, and mainly at night before bedtime. I find the warm, delicious broth to be so soothing (think of like a savory hot tea). I pour mine in a big mug, add a little squeeze of lemon juice, and sip away. I do 1-2 cups per day, depending on my mood.
- 1/2 bag Bonafide Provisions Bone Broth (I prefer the beef or chicken)
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- 1 tsp. ghee
- little dash of cayenne pepper
- little dash of turmeric powder
- salt and pepper, to taste
- Squeeze of 1/4 lemon
- Heat a small saucepan over med-high heat. Add the ghee and let melt. Add the minced garlic and saute for 30 seconds - 1 minute, being careful not to burn.
- Pour in the bone broth, and add seasonings. Bring to a simmer.
- Add the squeeze of lemon, stir, then pour into a mug. Sip away and enjoy!
- 1 rotisserie chicken carcass, a Roasted chicken Carcass or Turkey Carcass (You can also use a large bag full of drumsticks, chicken thighs, or any kind of bones really!!)
- 2 carrots
- 2 stalks of celery
- 1 onion
- 1 head of garlic
- 1 tbsp. apple cider vinegar
- 1 tbsp. peppercorns
- 1 bay leaf
- 1 large handful fresh herbs (parsley, thyme, rosemary all work)
- filtered water
- kosher salt, to taste
- Place carcass (or whatever type of bones you are using) in a stockpot or large pot. Cut the onion and half and toss it in there, throw in the carrots and celery ( you can half them if they don't fit) and the head of garlic. There is no need for chopping with this recipe, its just flavoring the broth, you're straining it later.
- Fill with water until it just covers the carcass and the veggies. Add apple cider vinegar, bayleaf, fresh herbs, peppercorns, and kosher salt to taste.
- Bring water to a boil, reduce heat until it is simmering, cover and cook for 8-12 hours.
- Strain the broth and let cool before storing. If there is excess fat that collects at the top, skim off that fat.
- You can store in the fridge for 1 week, or in the freezer for up to 3 months. Happy sipping!
- *For crockpot* Place all ingredients in a crockpot and cook on low for 10-12 hours.
- *For instant pot* Place all ingredients in and fill with water 2/3 full. Hit manual mode and cook on high pressure for 3 hours.