Stock is a nutritious way to make the absolute most of vegetable scraps and chicken bones/carcasses. Not only does it maximize the use you get from these foods, but it eliminates the need to purchase stock, which is usually packaged in cartons that are really difficult to recycle. It’s ridiculously easy, and great to make in large batches for freezing and using later!
Start accumulating the cleaned, unusable vegetable and herb scraps in a container in your freezer.
Good stock vegetables: carrots, celery, garlic, onions
Avoid: kale, cauliflower, broccoli, cabbage (and other brassicas) and starchy vegetables (potatoes, sweet potatoes, squashes – rinds are okay,).
Save the bones and carcass (without the meat) from cooked chicken meals. These can also be saved in the freezer until you’re ready to make a full batch of stock.
It’s easiest to save up your vegetables/herbs and chicken bones until you have about 2 chickens-worth of bones, and approximately 8-10 cups of veggie scraps. How much you can put in one batch is based on the size of your largest pot, or slow cooker.
Simply add the bones and vegetables to a large pot (or slow cooker), add water to cover all ingredients by about 2”, and salt, pepper, and herbs to taste. Cook on low for 10 hours, skimming off any fat that accumulates on the surface. Strain the finished stock, discarding any chicken parts and composting any big vegetable pieces. Once your stock cools, store it in jars to refrigerate or freeze!
Use your stock in soups, sauces, rice dishes, pasta dishes, and so much more!