Bone broth can improve your gut health, protect your joints and bones, and even keep your skin in good condition. That’s why more and more people are trying to incorporate it into their diet. Making bone broth at home can be a great way to make the most of your leftovers if you have plenty of time on your hands. But, for something so simple, it can be tricky to get just right.
At Boosh, we’re on a mission to make healthy eating a bit simpler. Our bone broths contain nothing but good honest ingredients and plenty of flavour, perfect for when you need a pick me up. We select high collagen bones like the patella, knuckle, femur, and feet from organically reared animals and then get cooking.
In this article, our bone broth connoisseurs take you through the whole process.
What You Need to Make Bone Broth
You’re not going to get very far without some bones! Of course, the best way to source these is by collecting and using your own leftovers. If you cook a roast dinner, keep the carcass and make a broth. This way, you’re using every part of the animal and saving yourself some money.
The best bone broths have a variety of bones though, so you might want to supplement your leftovers. Grocery stores and local butchers often sell ‘soup bones’ full of marrow which is a great place to start. Other options include meat delivery box schemes. In either scenario, trying to source bones with plenty of connective tissue and meat still attached can all add to the nutrient profile and flavour of your finished broth.
And something that is good for you doesn’t have to be bad for the planet. So, try to choose bones from local, ethically reared animals.
Vegetables and Herbs
This is totally optional, but spicing up your broth with a few additional flavours can make it even more delicious and versatile. You could add carrots and other vegetables to enhance the nutrient profile, or even garlic, black pepper, and other herbs and spices. Be wary of adding herbs before the last hour of cooking though, as they can overpower the subtle broth flavour otherwise.
Sort of optional but sort of not. Acid breaks down the collagen in the bones, making them more abundant in the finished broth. A good broth will have plenty of collagen; Boosh broths, for example, have 6.7g – that’s 70% more than other broths on the market! So, what we’re saying here is that while acid is not essential, and you can make a very nice broth without, it means extra nutrients, and isn’t that the whole point? Try apple cider vinegar or lemon juice. Or save yourself the hassle and just try Boosh.
How to Make Bone Broth
Roast for Flavour
If you’re using cooked leftovers, there’s no need to roast them before making your broth. However, raw bones from the grocery store, butcher, or meat box, will benefit from a bit of browning in a hot oven for that extra depth of flavour. And raw bones without much meat on them can develop a metallic or slightly sour taste – something that’s prevented by roasting. 30-60 minutes should do the trick – just keep watching and get them out when the bones are looking well-browned. You can also pre-roast the vegetables you want to add at the same time, but make sure these don’t burn. Think caramelisation, not char.
Add to Pot
Once you’ve roasted your bones or collected a variety of leftovers, add them to a large stock pot. Top this up with filtered water to a couple of inches above the bones. Finally, throw in a couple of tablespoons of your acid of choice. Then, you’re ready to go.
Bring to Boil then Simmer
It’s time to turn up the heat. Get your broth boiling then reduce it to a low simmer, occasionally skimming off any foam or fat. Put a lid on to stop too much water from evaporating during the cooking time, and then leave it to do its thing, checking in to top up water levels if necessary. As the broth nears completion, you could start allowing it to reduce depending on how intense you want the flavour to be.
For more details, see below.
It’s important to chill the broth down quickly to prevent bacterial growth. To do so, you might want to split the broth up into smaller portions with a larger surface area to volume ratio, use an ice bath, or add ice cubes straight into the liquid.
Strain and Store
When the broth is done, strain it through a fine mesh sieve to remove all solids. Bone broth will keep for around 5 days in the fridge because a layer of fat will form on top, keeping the air out. If you’ve made more than you think you’ll get through, it’s a good idea to freeze it in a variety of portion sizes for different uses. Pour into ice cube trays, freezer bags, Tupperware – whatever you have to hand. It will keep well frozen for around 6 months, ready for you to get out whenever you need a health and flavour boost.
How Long to Cook Bone Broth For?
Bone broth is generally cooked for anywhere between 12-24 hours. Depending on the bones in question, cooking time will vary. For example, chicken bones will take a lot less than beef. A good method is to cook your broth for 12 hours, and then start checking regularly. You can usually tell when it’s done because it will be deeply savoury and rich mahogany in colour. The bones will also start to crumble when all the nutrients and proteins have been extracted, so if this is happening, you know you’re there.
Here at Boosh, our broths are cooked low and slow for 16 hours, ensuring we extract the maximum nutrients from the bones. We’ve spent a lot of time learning about the ins and outs of bone broth, and our research tells us that there’s no additional benefit to cooking for longer.
How to Use Bone Broth
This tasty health elixir has so many uses, it would be impossible to list them all. Basically, if you want an extra hit of flavour in any dish, bone broth is your answer. Here are a few of our favourite ways to incorporate it into your diet:
- As a base for soups and stews
- In sauces and gravies
- Use as the cooking liquid for grains like rice and quinoa
- On its own as a relaxing hot drink
- Added to anything (dips, stuffing…the list goes on and on!)
For more inspiration, click here.
Bone Broth Delivered to Your Door
When it comes to quality bone broth, there are no shortcuts. A good broth needs to be slow simmered for a long time – something not many of us have in our busy lives! Luckily, Boosh broths are premium quality and available to buy ready to go, without the fuss. We make it easy for anyone to enjoy the benefits of bone broth, whatever their lifestyle, because health eating should be for everyone.
Check our range of exciting flavours or subscribe for regular Boosh delivered straight to your door.