Taking Stock

And autumn roars on to us. Cool days, chilly nights, and a craving for rich comfort food. Soups, stews, curries, chili’s, and all sorts of bowl-ables are in demand.

The key to all of these is a flavor and nutrient rich liquid base, called by many names, stock, broth, bone broth and even pot liquor… Alas, these are NOT the same. They vary by content, thickening and by consistency..

At a base they all have some similar components

Bones – Beef and chicken bones are common, fish / shellfish shells are also options for a seafood stock

Meat – Roasted meats still attached to bones, usually chicken, but beef pork and veal are also used. Large chunks of meat high in connective tissue, shoulder cuts in animals, chicken feet in chicken broth are used to enhance the mouth feel

Mirepoix – Usually the traditional mix of onions, carrots, and celery, but others can be added such as green peppers, root vegetables, even cabbage cores. (These are usually strained out after the stock / broth is cooked)

Aromatics / Herbs – Using a bouquet garni will make retrieval of these easier, but if one is going to strain, not a necessity. A basic mix is parsley, bay, thyme, black peppercorns, sage.

From Wikipedia:

Many cooks and food writers use the terms broth and stock interchangeably. In 1974, James Beard wrote emphatically that stock, broth, and bouillon “are all the same thing”.

I PERSONALLY DISAGREE, with Mr. Beard. A meat based broth, has a different flavor profile and mouth feel from a bone based stock.

While many draw a distinction between stock and broth, the details of the distinction often differ. One possibility is that stocks are made primarily from animal bones, as opposed to meat, and therefore contain more gelatin, giving them a thicker texture. Another distinction that is sometimes made is that stock is cooked longer than broth and therefore has a more intense flavor. A third possible distinction is that stock is left unseasoned for use in other recipes, while broth is salted and otherwise seasoned and can be eaten alone.

In the United Kingdom, “broth” can refer to the liquid in a soup which includes solid pieces of meat, fish, or vegetables, whereas “stock” would refer to the purely liquid base. Traditionally, according to this definition, broth contained some form of meat or fish; however, nowadays it is acceptable to refer to a strictly vegetable soup as a broth.

Chicken Stock

A chicken slow simmered with vegetables and aromatics and water to create the basis for so many soups and stews
Prep Time 30 mins
Cook Time 3 hrs
Course Ingredient, Soup
Cuisine Global
Servings 3 quarts
Calories 978 kcal


  • Stock Pot
  • Large / Fine Sieve
  • Slotted Spoon


  • 4 lb Chicken parts one rotisserie chicken
  • 1 ea Yellow Onion Large, rough chopped
  • 2 ea Carrots Peeled, rough chopped
  • 2 ea Celery Ribs Washed, rough chopped
  • 4 cloves garlic cloves Peeled, smashed
  • 1 tbsp Poultry Seasoning Make your own
  • 1 tbsp Black PepperCorns crushed
  • 2 tbsp Butter Real butter
  • 2 ea Bay Leaves
  • 4 quarts Water Filtered is nice

Poultry Seasoning

  • 3 tsp sage finely ground
  • 1 tsp rosemary finely ground
  • 2 tsp thyme finely ground
  • 1 tsp Black Pepper finely ground


Poultry Seasoning

  • Mix all
  • Store in clean bottle, cover tightly


  • In a large stock pot over medium high heat
  • Foam out butter
  • Add onions, carrots, and celery saute until onions are translucent
  • add garlic and continue to saute until fragrant (~1-2 minutes)
  • add chicken parts, or broken down rotisserie chicken
  • continue to saute and turn chicken for an additional 3-5 minutes
  • Add water, bay leaves, peppercorns, poultry seasoning, and return to a fast simmer
  • Reduce heat to medium low (slow simmer)
  • Cover and simmer for 2-3 hours, skimming scum occasionally, usually done by end of first hour
  • When the chicken begin to fall off the bones, remove from heat and cool
  • Use a slotted spoon or ladle to remove large pieces of chicken / vegetables
  • Filter stock through a large sieve / cheesecloth to remove any additional solids


After filtering the stock one can return the stock to the pot and simmer for an additional one to two hours to concentrate the stock.
Note this is a stock, and the use of bones is a must for the richness of flavor and the mouth feel.  (Yes, a stock uses bones, a broth made from just meat is just that, a broth.)
(And NO, I do not do, boneless, skinless anything, all you are doing is paying someone  extra to throw away a large portion of the flavor and nutrients) 
Remember, I am all about the taste
For a umami / collagen mouth feel and taste one can add 1 lb of chicken feet to the initial simmer.  This will provide a generous amount of collagen, and produce a jello like stock then chilled.  One can also use chicken backs and wings to provide the collagen as well.
One can always use more alliums, (onions, garlic, leeks) than specified. Some chefs will forgo peeling the alliums to extract the color from the peels.


Sodium: 422mgCalcium: 138mgVitamin C: 9mgVitamin A: 1006IUSugar: 1gFiber: 2gPotassium: 838mgCholesterol: 329mgCalories: 978kcalSaturated Fat: 23gFat: 70gProtein: 78gCarbohydrates: 6gIron: 5mg
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

Instapot Beef Broth

Rich, beef flavor with a a glorious mouth feel
Prep Time 30 mins
Cook Time 3 hrs
Course Ingredient
Cuisine Global
Servings 3 quarts
Calories 912 kcal


  • InstaPot


  • 4 lb Beef soup bones Shanks or short ribs with plenty of meat attached
  • 3 Ea Carrots (large) scrubbed chunked to 2"
  • 3 Ea Celery Ribs scrubbed chunked to 2"
  • 2 Ea Yellow Onion Peeled, quartered
  • 3 ea bay leaves
  • 3-6 ea Garlic peeled
  • 10 ea black peppercorns cracked lightly
  • 4 sprigs Fresh Parsley
  • 4-6 sprigs Fresh Thyme
  • 1 tsp Marjoram dried
  • 1 tsp Oregano dried
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tbsp apple cider vinegar


  • Preheat oven to 450°
  • Toss beef bones, veggies, in oil and salt
  • Roast beef in single layer for 30 minutes
  • Add veggies and roast for an additional 30 minutes
  • Move beef and veggies to instapot
  • Add herbs, vinegar, add water to come just under max fill line
  • Lid up and lock
  • Set pressure to high and process for 90 minutes
  • Release pressure and remove lid
  • cool for 1 hour, strain into mason jars or soup containers


This will keep up to 4 days in the fridge or up to six months in the freezer.
for a thicker broth one can simmer to reduce
One can add a hearty red wine to bump up the flavor


Sodium: 779mgCalcium: 25mgVitamin C: 4mgVitamin A: 622IUSugar: 1gFiber: 1gPotassium: 44mgCalories: 912kcalSaturated Fat: 1gFat: 97gProtein: 8gCarbohydrates: 3gIron: 6mg
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

  Filed under: Autumn, Basics, General, Ingredient, Soup, Stew, Winter

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