Bone broth provides an abundance of vitamins and minerals. Plus ‘wiggly jiggly’ bone broth is a great source of collagen. You can learn about the benefits of bone broth in our recent article on White Oak Pastures' blog. But, not all bone broths are equal. The items you use to make your bone broth (from the source of the bones to the other ‘off-cuts’ added) will make a difference in the nutrient composition and amount of ‘jiggle’ that results.
Below you’ll find our favorite recipe for creating the ultimate, great-tasting, nutrient-dense, “wiggly jiggly” bone broth.
This chicken bone broth recipe makes use of the whole animal -- letting nothing to go to waste and obtaining as many nutrients as possible. Necessary components: stewing hens, chicken feet, & chicken heads.
Pasture-Raised Stewing Hen
2 lb. Birds $14.99
What is a stewing hen? A stewing hen is a retired egg layer, who live, on average, 2 years, which is significantly longer than meat birds. Stewing hens are a vital part of the life cycle of a farm. They spend several years eating grass and bugs, running around, helping to replenish the soil as they move around cow dung as a natural fertilizer. When a hen’s egg-laying ability slows down, reaches ‘menopause’, she is no longer a productive member of the flock. Butchering and selling these laying hens allows the farm to continue to provide nourishment in the form of quality pastured meat.
Unlike meat chickens that are raised for meat and fattened relatively quickly, stewing hens who live for 2-3 years have the opportunity to develop very strong bones, and strong, lean muscles. These bones are incredibly mineral-rich. However, when it comes to meat, egg-laying hens are not quite as tender as hens raised for meat. That’s because they’re older and their muscles have done a lot more work -- the taste is a little gamier and tougher relative to the chicken meat you are likely used to.
While stewing hens may not be the best for roasting, they work really well for nutrient-dense broth and are a wonderful way to honor the life of the animal by using the whole body.
The feet and heads are the most gelatinous portions of the animal. Simmering both will ensure there is ample gelatin in the resulting broth.
Pasture-Raised Chicken Feet
2.5 lb. Pack $17.99
Additionally, the brain and the eyeballs within the chicken head result in a wonderful, rich flavor sans any additional seasoning.
Pasture-Raised Chicken Heads
2.5 lb. Pack $9.99
Full Chicken Bone Broth Recipe, that gets extra wiggly jiggly.
- 9 cups water
- 8 heads
- 8 feet
- 1 stewing hen
- 1 tsp salt
If desired, add your favorite seasonings, such as thyme, basil, and rosemary at the start.
- Place all ingredients in a 5 quart crock pot, cover, and cook on low for 24-30 hours
- Add 1 cup of water ½ way through the cooking process if the water reduces.
- Once the time is up, pull any items you’d like to keep from the broth using tongs, including the chicken heads and feet, then pour the broth through a colander to separate the broth and the bones.
- To store, pour the broth into glass mason jars, tightly secure the lid, and store in the fridge upside down. Storing the broth upside down will cause the tallow to form at the top of the jar, with easy access to the broth at the bottom.
When consuming, salt to taste and heat if desired. You can eat the broth cold in the “wiggly jiggly” form, but note, as you heat the broth, it will become liquid, which is just as delicious! Enjoy!
PS: The leftover chicken meat of a stewing hen will be a little more tough than what you are used to. We like to use this chicken to make Chicken Salad, subscribe to the White Oak Pastures Newsletter for that recipe and more coming soon.
PPS. don’t throw the leftover chicken feet out! For a crispy snack full of calcium, try this:
- After you pull from the broth, roast the softened chicken feet in the oven at 400 degrees Fahrenheit for roughly 15-20 minutes, until crispy. Yes, you can eat the whole foot! Enjoy!
Let us know if you try it, and share your White Oak Pastures creations on Instagram by tagging @whiteoakpastures, @strong.sistas & using the hashtag #whiteoakpastures so we can see! Hope you enjoy!
Ashley & Sarah Armstrong are The Strong Sistas, two girls passionate about regenerative agriculture, sharing the carnivore way of life, & all things health & fitness.
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