There is no comparison between homemade chicken stock and what you can buy at the store. I do keep chicken base on hand for emergencies but I keep my freezer well stocked, especially in the fall and winter when I make more soups. The instant pot makes chicken stock a breeze and I found that I can reuse the bones an extra time. The trick is mixing the first and second batch together. Below in the picture you can see the first batch on the left, and the second on the right. The first batch is incredibly rich and flavorful, while the second is weaker – all though still very flavorful- is more similar to the canned chicken broth in the store.
By mixing them together I find it perfect balance for soups, sauces, or just drinking plain when you’re sick.
I freeze it in quart and pint containers since I use both those amounts.
Oh, and no instant pot? Just simmer on the stove for about 8-12 hours, until desired stock is achieved.
While most recipes will have you add vegetable scraps I found that I like making it without, all though you could if you want. I used to add peppercorns and bay leaf but since I use the bones a second time (and didn’t want to fish out little peppercorns) they become more bitter after 2 batches. Besides the fact that I season the broth when we go to use it.
One other trick. I buy one or two rotisserie chickens pretty much every time I go to Costco.
I shred the meat and package in freezer bags. Then I use the bones to make a ton of stock. If I don’t have time within a couple of days I just freeze the bones until I do. I even throw the skin in with them.
That precooked chicken comes in handy often for nights I need to make a quick dinner.
And if your family is anything like mine you’ve all ready had a couple of colds or flus go through the house this fall. Being able to throw some of that cooked chicken and broth in a pot to simmer is perfect for getting everyone feeling better again.
INSTANT POT CHICKEN STOCK
Makes approx. 4 1/2 quarts (18 cups)
Bones from 1 chicken
16 cups water, divided
6 T vinegar (white or apple cider), divided
Place the bones, 8 cups of water, and 3 T vinegar in the instant pot.
Set for high pressure, 60 minutes.
When done, I use the quick pressure release and strain bones from stock.
Place bones back into pot and add another 8 cups water and 3 T vinegar.
Cook again on high pressure for 60 minutes, but allow to come down in pressure naturally this time to give it a little more cook time.
Strain bones and combine the 2 batches of stock. Cool, then pour into freezer containers and freeze.
Keeps in fridge for 5-7 days, or freeze for up to 1 year.