- chicken parts, cooked, uncooked or both
- fruits and veggies
- 1 T kosher salt (optional)
- Fill largest stock pot you have half way with chicken, veggies, and fruit.
- Fill pot with water, leaving about 2 inches at the top.
- Boil for about 30 minutes, then set to medium low until everything is soft and mushy.
- Let cool.
- Strain through a colander, then through a fine mesh sieve.
- For reduced fat stock, let cool until the stock forms a layer of fat on the top. Skim fat off. Otherwise, store in 2 cup containers and freeze for later use.
Rather than a set recipe, this stock is only a framework to use to get a lot of value out of a little bit of money. For less than $4, you can purchase a 4 lb chicken which is large enough to feed 4 people at least twice, plus have the ingredients for 15-20 cups of stock. Each cup of chicken stock costs only a few pennies, where purchasing quality stock would cost about 50 cents per cup!
To have the ingredients for this stock on hand at any time, begin to make a habit of bagging and freezing fruit and vegetable cuts that you would normally throw out when preparing other meals. Veggies that are getting soft or beginning to wilt are also great to use. While preparing whole chickens or bone-in chicken pieces, bag and freeze the innards, necks, and bones as well.
When choosing what vegetables to incorporate into your stock, think of the flavors you enjoy paired with chicken. I primarily use root vegetables (except potatoes) and citrus fruits. The fruits and veggies you use will only slightly lend their flavors to the stock, so you can experiment with anything.
This recipe can also be used for any other stock by substituting the appropriate protein, or no protein at all for vegetable stock.