Raise-the-Dead Chicken Broth

All-Natural Chicken Broth Recipe

by Natural Healing Expert, Leah E. McCullough

Makes about 5 Quarts

This is the best-tasting all-natural chicken broth recipe I have ever had.  I have never actually tried to raise a dead person with it, but it is so yummy and nourishing I’m confident it would work!

I make broth about once a week and I make it on a day when I will be around to monitor it, like on the weekend.  I start this early in the day, usually using the carcass from the chicken from the previous night.  After it is finished I often go on to make chicken soup with some of the broth, so when I prepare the veggies for this recipe, I go ahead and prepare the veggies for the soup.  (If I am going to peel one carrot, it’s just a moment more to peel two.)  However, I have made this broth without any vegetables before, just bones, vinegar, water and salt and it comes out alright too.


1 organic and/or pasture-raised chicken carcass including all soft tissues such as skin and gristle

1 set of cleaned chicken feet (optional)

5 quarts of filtered water

1 T Apple Cider Vinegar (like Bragg’s) or dry white wine

2 carrots, peeled and coarsely chopped

1 celery stalk, coarsely chopped

1 onion, coarsely chopped

1 freezer bag of veggie scraps (optional)

Egg shells from organic and/or pasture raised chickens, rinsed (optional)

2 T unrefined sea salt (like Himalayan or Celtic Sea Salt)

5 black peppercorns

1 bunch of parsley, rinsed well


(Optional Step)  On a cutting board, take the large bones of the chicken, such as leg and thigh, and with a meat hammer, break in half.  This will release the nutrients inside the bone marrow.

If the chicken carcass is raw, then there is usually a lot of meat on the back that can be cooked and taken off during the process of making broth.  This meat is usually the perfect amount for a pot of chicken soup!

If your carcass is frozen, that is fine and you can begin as normal.  In a large stock pot, preferably stainless steel, place chicken carcass, chicken feet (optional), egg shells (optional), water and vinegar (or wine), and veggies together and let sit for 30 minutes.  This will give the vinegar time to release the nutrients from the carcass.  (I use an eight quart stock pot for the recipe or a twenty quart stock pot if I triple the recipe.  See “A Note about Equipment.”)

Add the salt and peppercorns and bring to an almost boil, a simmer.

Skim the foam off the top.  (I do this with a large, long-handled stainless spoon and put into a bowl nearby.  I skim several times over the next 30 minutes or so.)  Be careful not to pick up the veggies or peppercorns, or just rinse them off and return them to the pot.  Also be careful not to let the pot come to a rolling boil as this will dissipate the foam and could dry out any meat that you are cooking.

At this point if you are using a raw carcass check the back to see if it is cooked through.  If it looks like it is, remove it and set it aside to cool.  After it has cooled pick the meat off and return the skin and bones to the pot.  Save the meat for soups or stews.  Between the neck and back of a large chicken, I can get almost a cup of meat.

If you are using a whole chicken, watch carefully for the meat to cook through in about 1 ½ hours of simmer time.  Don’t let the water get to a boil, it will dry the meat out.  Also, the breast meat will cook faster, so you might want to remove the bird, let cool, take off the breasts and wings, then return to let the legs and thighs cook some more.  Remove the meat and add the soft tissues and bones back to the pot and continue to cook the broth.

For the last 10 minutes of cooking add the bunch of parsley.

You can cook the broth anywhere from a minimum of 3 hours to a maximum of 3 days.  My family prefers the 3-hour broth the best.

Note on veggie scraps:  When preparing veggies for your meals save the scraps in a gallon freezer bag to be kept in the freezer.  Broccoli stalks, ends of zucchini, etc. and even fruit scraps such as apple cores can be used.  They add a nice flavor to the broth and use up a great resource.  You can also keep a freezer bag of chicken scraps going too and add those in at the beginning.  I keep a bag in my freezer labeled “Bits for Broth.”

Storing the Broth

This method for storing the broth took me a while to figure out.  I think it uses the least amount of extra dishes and is the least-messy way I have found to do this.  After the broth is finished cooking, let it cool slightly in the pot for easier handling.

I put the broth up in 1 or 2 quart, wide-mouth glass canning jars.  Sometimes I also store only about 2 cups of broth in a jar, and mark it as such.  I use either a quart jar or a pint jar for this.  Most non-soup recipes that use stock call for 1 cup, and I double most recipes that I like and are familiar with.  (Get the wide mouth jars and these plastic lids will fit on the pint, 1 quart and 2 quart jars.  They seal better than the metal lids and are easy to pop into the dishwasher.  The plastic doesn’t come into contact with the food.)


I like to mark my jars with a piece of freezer tape on the lid where I have written the contents with a Sharpie marker.  Some also put the date.  If you mark directly onto the lid or the side of the jar it is permanent.  Itis difficult to identify anything that is frozen.

Place a 4 or 8 cup glass measuring bowl with a pouring spout in the sink with an 8 inch stainless steel mesh strainer balanced on top.  I pour the liquid from the stock pot into the strainer until either the bowl or strainer is full.

Optional step:  Pick through the solids, taking out any soft tissues, such as fat, skin, meat, etc.  These soft tissues go into the food processor to be whizzed into “pâté.”  Place equal

amounts of the “pâté” into the broth jars after all of it has been poured.  These soft tissues are an excellent source of gelatin which is important for gut healing.

Remove the solids from the strainer and dispose.  Take your jar and set it into the sink and then pour the broth from the measuring bowl spout into the jar(s).  If you are planning on freezing the broth, only fill the jar up to about where it starts to curve in (at about the 3 cups mark on a 1 quart jar) to leave head room for expansion.

Place lids on the jars and let them cool on the counter for a while before placing them in the refrigerator.  Let the jars stay in the refrigerator at least overnight before placing them in the freezer.  This will help the jar from cracking.  A jar of broth will keep for about a week in the refrigerator.

After the jars of broth have cooled, some people skim the fat off the top.  I do not.  Fat equals flavor and satiety.  It is only important if you are making something that needs to be very clear or if you eat a diet that has a lot of processed foods.

To thaw a frozen jar quickly:  Fill up the sink with cold water and place the jar inside for 20-40 minutes (do not submerge).  The middle will still be frozen but it will be thawed enough to pour out and the frozen part will thaw quickly in a hot pot.

What’s the difference between broth and stock?

The easiest definition I have heard is that stock is made with specific ingredients so that it is consistently the same every time and broth is more free-form, using whatever you have in the kitchen.  Therefore, I primarily make broth.

Quick Broth

There is a broth to make if you are too sick to make broth from scratch.  It was inspired by Nourishing Traditions recipe, Quick Stock.  Drink this in a mug several times a day.

One 8 oz. package liquid chicken broth (I use Pacific Natural Foods Organic Free Range Chicken Broth, found in the natural section at the grocery store.)

1 teaspoon gelatin (I use Bernard Jensen’s 100% Bovine Gelatin)

½ teaspoon Himalayan or Celtic Sea Salt

1 teaspoon organic, grass-fed butter (I use Kerry Gold Unsalted) or coconut oil

Place all ingredients in a saucepan and bring to a simmer.  This yields one cup.  You may need to add more salt.