Instant Pot Bone Broth is one of the simplest things you can make. No Joke. Simple. Easier than boiling water. Seriously. Easy.
You dump a few ingredients in, set the Instant Pot & walk away... 2-3 hours later you have the richest, most delicious bone broth. See... simple.
This glorious bone broth can be used as the base for soup, casserole dishes, gravies & sauces, or as a warm drink to soothe what ails you.
Check out the full post to find out the secret ingredient that will take your bone broth from good to glorious...
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What is the difference between Stock & Bone Broth?
Simply put... nothing. The terms stock and bone broth can be used interchangeably as long as the stock is made with bones. A vegetable stock while very delicious in its own right would not be called a bone broth because... well, veggies don't have bones.
I read many articles while researching this post and found that there are many varying opinions on stock vs. bone both vs. broth and honestly, who cares as long as it tastes great in your recipe!
Everyone is oohing and aahing over bone broth these days, but it's not a new thing. It's not a secret recipe; it's pretty much what we all do when making a homemade chicken, turkey, ham or beef stock. We boil the bones, scraps, ligaments and aromatics over a very long time so it releases its nutrients, collagen, and flavors; that is what we call stock or as it's more commonly referred to now, bone broth.
This process used to take hours upon hours until it dragged into days... then the pressure cooker came back into our lives!
From 2 days to 2 hours... thank you Instant Pot!
For as long as I can remember, I've made stock almost every single time I've cooked a whole chicken or turkey or ham, and it's taken me a full 2 days to make the stock.
You might wonder why I didn't include beef in all those stocks I have made... well, I'm kind of afraid, truth be told! It all goes back to the time I used marrow bones and ended up with the grossest, fattiest, most tasteless stock EVER. So, if you plan on making beef stock, use meaty soup bones, not marrow bones! When in doubt, ask your butcher. I'll have to try my hand at beef stock again soon and let you know how it turns out. But I digress.
Where was I? Oh yeah, when I was a kid I had to walk to school in 3 feet of snow... oops, wrong story. That's right, I was telling you my sad tale of how it took me two days to make my stock because I would boil/simmer the pot ON THE STOVE for at least 4-6 hours. Then strain and cool it over night so I could skim the fat before making the soup or whatever recipe I was making that called for the stock. TWO FULL days until I could appreciate the fruits of my labor. I still did it and, if you don't have a pressure cooker, I still recommend taking the time to make your own stock, but oh boy is it a lot easier now!
Enter the Instant Pot. GAME CHANGER! What used to take at least 6 hours of watchful simmering, now takes just 2 hours of hands off cooking!
The magic happens in the pressure cooker. By design, the pressure cooker does not release the vapor or steam, which then raises the atmospheric pressure, which in turn raises the boiling point of water resulting in food cooking faster. Yeah, I know... who cares? The bottom line is: food cooks much faster!
There are many pressure cookers on the market today, but I have only owned this one. I use my pressure cooker all the time to make everything from yogurt to chili to this wonderful Instant Pot Bone Broth. Thank you Instant Pot!
The SECRET ingredient might just surprise you!
I always get so excited when I learn something new and this was no exception! I often wondered why sometimes my bone broth or stock would be gelatinous when cooled and full of rich flavor and sometimes it stayed very liquid and just didn't have that oomph of flavor.
I knew it had something to do with the collagen being released, but didn't really think about how to help that along until I started doing some research. Don't you just love the internet! Ask and it shall be answered. The SECRET has been discovered and I'm happy to share it with you.
Add an acid! Yep, simple. Add just a wee bit to the water and magic happens. I like to use cider vinegar in my poultry bone broths, but I'd bet red wine would be great in that beef stock I'm going to make and tell you all about. One day. Soon. I promise.
Here are a couple of other tips for making wonderful stocks
Don't throw away your veggie scraps
Seriously, they are wonderful to add to bone broth/stock. Celery ends, carrot ends or peels, onion ends or peels... put them in a plastic baggy and throw them in the freezer until you are ready to make your stock.
Same goes for fresh herbs that are on their last leg. Parsley and thyme are two of my favorites for making a mouthwatering pot of stock.
Rotisserie Chickens... freeze the carcass!
How many of us grab a rotisserie chicken from the grocery store, have it for dinner and a few lunches and throw it away? Don't Do It! Freeze it! Just 2 rotisserie chicken carcasses will make the BEST bone broth EVER.
In fact, that is what I used the first time I made bone broth in the Instant Pot. I used two very well-picked rotisserie chickens; bones, skin, and very little meat. Threw them in the pressure cooker with a couple of carrots, a few stalks of celery, and maybe an onion. Added water, salt, peppercorns, cider vinegar. Cooked on high pressure for 2 hours. Oh my was that good! And simple. See. Easier than boiling water.
I did make a stock using just one chicken carcass and it can be done, but be sure to decrease the amount of water or you will end up with a very bland stock.
6 Quart pressure cooker verses 8 Quart pressure cooker
This recipe is based on using my 8 Quart pressure cooker, but I know a lot of you have the 6 Quart model. That's perfectly fine, just make a few adjustments and all will be good.
Keep in mind that you can still use 4-5 pounds of bones in the 6 Quart pressure cooker, but since you will need to add less water your bone broth will be more concentrated. What you don't want to do is skimp on the bones and end up with a flavorless broth.
The minimum amount of bones/scraps/cartilage I would use in a 6 quart pressure cooker is 3 lbs and the maximum amount of water would be about 12 cups.
You can also safely take the vinegar or what ever acid you choose to use down to 1 Tbsp, but I don't think using 2 would hurt anything either.
Keeping the veggies the same is fine, but I would decrease the salt and peppercorns by 25%. So, for a 6 quart pressure cooker using 3 lbs of bones and 12 cups of water I would use ¾ tsp sea salt and ¾ tsp peppercorns. Remember, you can always adjust the seasoning after cooking.
How I made my Turkey Bone Broth
With turkey bones. The end. HAHAHA... but seriously, of course with turkey bones. But, how you cooked your turkey can change how you make your broth, so stay with me here, I haven't totally lost my mind. Okay, yes I have... that's a whole 'nother post for a whole 'nother blog.
I roasted my turkey with aromatics in the cavity. I had carrots, celery, onion, thyme, oranges stuffed into the cavity of the 20 lb bird before roasting it for Thanksgiving. So, once I removed all the meat that I could from the bones, I cut the bird in half and used one half for the bone broth and froze the other half for my next batch. Because I already had all the veggies that cooked in the cavity, I didn't add any extra. I even threw in the orange and my bone broth was delicious.
So... if you have all those glorious veggies in your bird already... use them. It's all good. No need to get fresh ones.
I seriously have to laugh at the Olan Mills quality of this photo! Not to knock Olan Mills, but doesn't this remind you of those horrible family portraits with the hideously fake backgrounds? Totally my fault. It's actually a pretty background, just not in this picture. What can I say? I was in a hurry to get this glorious recipe to you before you throw your turkey bones out!
What to do with your bone broth
You can use turkey or chicken broth interchangeably in recipes. So, if you are making turkey bone broth like I did, just use it when your recipe calls for chicken stock or chicken bone broth.
It will keep in the refrigerator for at least 3 days, but if you don't plan on using it right away, it freezes beautifully. You can either freeze it in freezer baggies or if you tend to use smaller quantities, you can freeze it in large ice cube trays like this one.
Of course, the first thing that comes to mind after making a batch of turkey or chicken bone broth is turkey/chicken noodle soup. Your homemade bone broth really gets to shine with this simple soup that's bursting with flavor. YUMMY!
Instant Pot Bone Broth
- Place all ingredients, except the water in the insert to an 8 quart pressure cooker. Please see post for modified recipe if using a 6 quart pressure cooker.
- Add water until it comes just below the max fill line. This took 18 cups of water for my 8 quart pressure cooker
- Set pressure cooker to high pressure for 120 minutes. Turn on.
- When 120 minutes has passed, allow pressure cooker to natural release. This can take 30 minutes to an hour.
- Strain through a regular strainer, then repeat through a fine sieve strainer to remove even more particles.
- You can use your bone broth immediately or let it set up in the refrigerator over night if you wish to skim any fat that rises to the top.
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