How to make your own chicken stock

Most weeks we have a roast chicken, and ever since I had a bit of an insight into chicken farming, well it’s been certified organic chicken for us. The change in taste has been the biggest thing, and for me it’s been that when you open the chicken there is very little liquid in there, which means that we’re getting less of the bad stuff (chlorinated water etc) and more of the good stuff (chicken and just chicken). The cost can be prohibitive with a bird costing up to $25 compared to the $10 you would pay for other birds, so it’s safe to say that since we made the change we have been eating a whole lot LESS chicken. BUT, we’ve been able to get a few meals out of the one bird: a roast, some left over chicken for sandwiches or a pie and stock.

Stock you say? Surely you’d just buy that right? Sure, but if you’ve got a carcass, you’ve got stock. It’s dead easy to make and the taste will amaze you – you can use it in soups, risotto, pastas. PLUS you can feel all smug because, well, you made stock! At least if you are using an organic bird you know that the only thing leaching out of the bones is flavour and not chlorination or antibiotics.

Chicken Stock

Chicken carcass left over from a roast
2 carrots
Couple sticks of celery
Fresh parsley
Cold water to cover

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Place the chicken and all ingredients into a big saucepan and cover with cold water. Bring to the boil.


Once it’s come up to the boil, turn down and let it simmer for 3 hours.

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After 3 hours strain through a sieve (the smaller and better) and set aside to cool then place in an airtight container in the fridge. It will keep for a few days in the fridge, but if you freeze then in small bags measure out cup quantities and they will kept frozen for up to 3 months.

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Do you make your own stock ever?
How many meals can you get out of your roast chook?


  1. GourmetGirlfriend says

    i am so glad you are eating more mindfully.
    so good for so many reasons.
    i can get up to FOUR meals for our family out of one chook.
    I always use all of the chicken- the chicken is portioned and stock ALWAYS made.
    one chook for $25 bucks sound a LOT to most but if it can spread to make 4 meals for 7 people that is a bargain right?
    as you now I am ALL about buying food mindfully and as you mention it IS more expensive at the checkout- but my argument has always been that the ‘cheaper’ ones hide a much larger cost to our society that we don’t see.
    being able to have the knowledge to make this one chook go further is one of the ways we can reduce the overall cost.
    we may need to change the way we cook but it is sooooo worth it.
    good on you Beth for sharing the basics.

  2. Leanne Mackenzie says

    I did this last night and made an amazing chicken soup with the meat and stock…even my kids came back for seconds 🙂

  3. Ed makes all the stock here at home. I always thought only chefs can do this. But I might try this and see if I can once again impress him! The tortillas have already been a success. x

    • BabyMacBlogBeth says

      You absolutely can do this. Just go about your business in the kitchen all casual like and when he asks what you’re doing you can say JUST MAKING STOCK. That’s what! Guaranteed success!

  4. MadamBipolar says

    Your recipe is so much simpler than Donna Hay’s. Will try. xx

  5. Todd Perry says

    OK.. going to do this and make stock, since we just had free range roast chook for dinner.

  6. Jennifer Antoun says

    I always make my own stock using a free range chook. I just pop a raw carcass into a slow cooker with some veg, and whatever is lying around the kitchen and let it cook on low for up to 24 hours. So good.

  7. Thanks to you I no longer waste a chicken carcass! xx

  8. Now that there’s 4 of us in the household wanting feeding, I’ve been embracing chicken broth with gusto this winter. I’ve been making a batch every three weeks or so with a free range chook. One major difference is that I don’t roast it first, I whack it whole in a big pot with carrot, parsnip, leek, celery, bay leaf, peppercorns and some cloves. After some initial skimming, I let it simmer for about 1.5 hrs. I pick the meat off the bird and portion it into ziplock bags for the freezer. I strain the broth through muslin and put the broth in a bowl in the fridge to sit overnight before skimming the fat layer off (I love a clean broth). I rescue the carrot, parsnip and leek and blend with a bit of the broth to make veggie soup. So yeah, lots of meal options from one bird! I’ve especially been loving chicken noodle broth seasoned with Tabasco!
    My mum used to do it all the time when I was growing up, it’s so comforting!

    • BabyMacBlogBeth says

      Good on you! I will be sure to try one with a raw bird from the start too. And one thing we have in this house is Tabasco (Rob is quite addicted to the stuff) so I’ll be sure to give that a go too – thanks Josephine!

    • What a great idea to use the veggies as a pureed soup!!!

  9. Jodi Wilson says

    Beth, make sure you add a dash of organic apple cider vinegar to the pot – it helps draw all the nutrients out of the bones. It’s an essential ingredient and a great staple to have in the cupboard for those mornings when you need a good kick start x

    • BabyMacBlogBeth says

      I have some of that in my pantry – I’ll give it a go next time thanks Jodi! My Mum has been making me have a swig each day!

  10. Lisa Mckenzie says

    Great thinking Beth,It is great to make your own stock and also to think about what food you are putting in your body,bring back the old fashioned ways,where they didn’t waste anything!

  11. Home made stock is (oh god, did I really just type that!). We generally buy raw chicken carcasses from the butcher, make the stock, then strip the meat and make a pie and chicken and corn soup. I say we…my husband is the stock maker in this house. Bought stock just isn’t the same – and it’s soooooo salty! We will use a Massel stock cube if we have too, it’s the least salty option out there!

  12. I made some chicken stock the other day – so good for soups. I tend not to buy a whole chicken as its just me and I’ll be eating chicken for ages (unless i cut and portion it like GG says below) but I buy a couple of organic chicken legs and use them instead. I roast them, strip the roasted legs off meat and save for later and then use the roasted bones to make stock.

    • BabyMacBlogBeth says

      I do a roasted chicken bones gravy for Christmas using the same principles and it’s delicious!

  13. MotherDownUnder says

    We have been having organic roast chicken about once every two weeks. The first night we do roast chicken, then I shred the meat and we do chicken tacos, there is usually enough meat leftover for a few sandwiches for lunch and then chicken soup!
    And I roast the chicken in my slow cooker…and do the stock in there too…so I get at least three meals without ever really cooking! Winning!

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