So you’ve cooked a whole chicken in your Instant Pot or roasted a Tuscan-style chicken in the oven, and you saved the carcass like you were told to do…now all that’s left is to turn that leftover mess into some amazing chicken stock. Once you see how easy it is, you may just never buy it from the store again!
I’ve made mine with one or two chicken carcasses, and with a basic cooking time of two hours – but if you have the time, you can let it pressure cook for up to four hours, and really draw out all the yummy goodness from the chicken bones.
Cook’s note: If you want to make a really rich stock, there are two steps that should take place before you chuck everything in the Instant Pot: blanching the bones to get them clean and then roasting them in the oven to brown them. You can toss those blanched bones on a baking sheet with the veg that you will cook them with and pop it all in a 450º oven until they are toasty brown.
I did NOT blanch and roast my chicken bones for this recipe because I was looking for a flavorful but lighter stock — and because I am inherently lazy, hence the Instant Pot versus simmering the stock on the stove top for hours.
This is the only chicken stock that has ever passed approval of my very picky 11-year-old who is NOT a soup eater, thus making it the perfect thing to make when she is sick and I need to get something nourishing into her.
There are so many uses for fresh, homemade chicken stock! What will you use yours for?
Thinking about my poorly girl, I thought back to my college and newly-graduated days when I was on my own, and comfort could be found in a package of Cup-o-Soup. Now, of course, my heart stutters at the thought of all that sodium, so I grabbed a jar of broth that hadn’t cooled, poured it into a saucepan and added 3 ounces of Fideo pasta. It’s a cut spaghetti noodle reminiscent of those found in Cup-o-Soup, making it easy to spoon or sip straight from a mug!
- 1-2 chicken carcasses
- 1/2 onion, peeled and quartered
- 2 celery stalks (with leafy tops, if avail), quartered
- 2 bay leaves
- 2 tbsp apple cider vinegar
- pinch of peppercorns or coarsely ground pepper
- *Optional: 1 carrot quartered - see comment in instructions
- *Reserved, strained broth from pot if you've just cooked the chicken
- Water (preferably filtered) to fill Instant Pot to 4L line
- To make extra rich stock, see bottom.
- Place carcass into Instant Pot. (You may include skin if desired).
- To the pot, add: half an onion, quartered;
- two celery stalks (with leafy tops, if available), quartered;
- two bay leaves, two tablespoons of apple cider vinegar (I prefer Braggs) and a pinch of peppercorns or very coarsely ground pepper.
- *Resist the urge to add salt because this is better left to season when used in a recipe.
- However - since I planned on this largely being a sipping stock for my kiddo, I may have added a pinch of freshly ground pink Himalayan salt. Also resist adding carrots unless you want a sweeter stock.
- If you have just cooked the chicken in your Instant Pot (IP), add the reserved and strained cooking liquids back to the IP.
- Fill the pot up to the 4L line (or 1-inch below the "max" line if you have a larger pot.)
- Replace the lid, locking it set vent to "sealing". Using either the Soup setting or the Manual setting, set the timer for 120 minutes. (You may cook longer if so desired.)
- When the timer goes off, allow the pot to natural release. Do not quick release!
- Open the pot and carefully strain the solids from the broth. I pour mine through a fine mesh metal colander twice, leaving it to cool in a shallow bowl with a pour spout. When mostly-cooled, pour into containers (I fill four glass wide-mouth quart glass mason jars.)
- The stock will keep in the refrigerator for three days or it can be frozen.
- *Cook's note: If you want to make a really rich stock, there are two steps that should take place before cooking in the Instant Pot: blanching the bones in a stock pot of fresh water to get them clean, and then roasting them in the oven to brown them. You can toss those blanched bones on a baking sheet with the veg and garlic cloves that you will cook them with and pop it all in a 450º oven until they are toasty brown. When roasted, add to pot with bay leaves and apple cider vinegar and follow rest of directions as written