In a non-stop world, it can be tricky to eat healthy all the time. Sometimes you catch yourself reaching for a convenient snack that you know isn’t good for you. What’s the alternative, you wonder hungrily.
The last few years have seen an explosion of people singing the praises of good, old-fashioned bone broth. From celebrity nutritionists to regular folks, everyone is stocking up.
You’ve probably seen “bone broth” this and that popping up everywhere and wondered what it’s all about. Or maybe you’ve read a few articles and you’re just not sure if you have time to try it out.
Are you someone that loves to drink coffee and energy drinks between meals to help boost your energy and keep hunger away until the next meal? You know that it’s not the healthiest option, but you’re not sure what else to do.
What if you could instead have a warm, delicious pick-me-up that doesn’t harm your health? If you haven’t tried it yet, it’s time to give bone broth a whirl!
How is bone broth different from regular broth?
Bone broth is essentially superpowered, old-fashioned stock with many benefits. It’s simmered for 12 to 72 hours to release lots of amino acids and other essential nutrients. The regular grocery store chicken broth is more-or-less meat flavored water. Maybe tasty, but not even close to the nutrient profile of real bone broth.
Your great-grandma probably used to make bone broth regularly. This age-old food is finally making a comeback!
What’s in bone broth?
Well, for starters, collagen. If you’re not familiar with collagen, it’s that amazing protein that builds up your joint tissue, lines your stomach (say goodbye to leaky gut!), and makes your skin soft and supple.
Bone broth also has a long list of other essential amino acids and minerals, including:
- Hyaluronic acid
What are the benefits of bone broth?
Great question. Really, what isn’t a benefit of both broth! Many bone broth experts call it “liquid gold” because it really is that awesome. Here are a few ways it can transform your health.
- Supports weight loss: Cutting back on unhealthy foods can feel restrictive and leave you hungry. Drinking bone broth throughout the day is delicious, satisfying, and warming. It’s so chock-full of nutrition that you’ll feel satiated (without all the calories). The fat will almost melt right off!
- Heals your gut: The collagen in bone broth is anti-inflammatory, and inflammation is one of the key issues with gut problems. Collagen is also very soothing to an irritated gut, helping it calm down enough to heal.
- Supports joint health: Besides being anti-inflammatory, collagen is one of the main components in your joints. By drinking lots of bone broth, you’re super-loading all the amino acids and minerals that your joints desperately need to heal. Goodbye aches and pains!
- Improves sleep: The anti-inflammatory properties in bone broth soothes your entire body, allowing you to feel relaxed and calm. Once you hit the pillow at night, you’ll notice that your mind is ready for rest. This will improve your sleep drastically!
- Improves your immune system: All those amino acids and minerals support stronger immune function. Plus, inflammation weakens your immune system, which is exactly what bone broth reverses. You’ll need bone broth to get you through this flu season!
How do I make bone broth?
We’re glad you’re ready to get started on making and drinking this incredible superfood. It’s one of the simplest things to cook. Just make sure that you get high-quality bones so that you’re not ingesting synthetic hormones or antibiotics (yuck).
You have a few options for finding bones:
- Buy meat with the bones still in. Cook your meat and then use the bones to make broth.
- Check the frozen section of your local health food store, food co-op, or health-focused grocery store. Sometimes you’ll find bags of frozen bones at a very reasonable price.
- Become friends with your local grass-fed farmer or butcher and pick up bones to throw in the pot and the freezer.
Ready for the recipe? You’ll be relieved to know just how simple it really is to make your own fresh bone broth right at home!
Delicious Homemade Bone Broth
- 2 (or more) pounds of bones – chicken, beef, or fish
- 1 onion
- 4 stalks of celery
- 2 carrots
- 2 TBSP apple cider vinegar
- Fresh herbs, garlic, salt, and pepper
- Several cups of filtered water
- Roast the bones in the oven at 400 degrees F for about 30 minutes (optional, but improves flavor).
- Place the bones, apple cider vinegar, and water in your stock pot and allow it all to soak for 20-30 minutes. The vinegar helps to start the process of breaking down the bones to access the incredible nutrients inside.
- Chop the vegetables. Add veggies, herbs, salt, and pepper to the pot. Turn on high for 5-10 (or so) minutes to bring to a boil.
- Once the pot is boiling, turn it on low, cover with a lid, and simmer for up to 72 hours. Simmer for at least 4 hours, but a minimum of 12 hours is better. A crockpot can be great for this stage if you prefer.
- After it’s finished cooking, let it cool. Then scoop off the scummy foam and other “impurities” that rise to the surface.
- Strain out all solid ingredients and safely dispose of them. Store liquid in a glass container in the fridge for up to 5 days. Or freeze it in serving size containers for a longer shelf life and no-hassle use.
Now, what do I do with it?
You have several options when it comes to bone broth. As soon as it’s cool enough, you can just pour yourself a glass and sip away! You can even replace your morning coffee or tea with it. Or sip on it in the afternoon or evening while watching your favorite show or reading a book. Talk about relaxing!
You can also use bone broth as a base for ultra nutritious soups. Try replacing the water called for in dishes such as stir fry and for cooking whole grains like brown rice or quinoa. Use your delicious bone broth throughout the week, or toss it in the freezer for later. It’s a good idea to always have some on hand for when a cold or flu might strike, as it will help to boost your immune system.
Where do I start?
With something that takes several hours to cook (like bone broth), you definitely need to plan ahead. Think about your schedule and pick your most flexible day to make it. Plan to make it each week on that day, if possible.
Make it fun by trying various recipes that taste a little different. You can get wildly different flavors by changing out the kind of bones, herbs, veggies, and hours cooked. Mix it up! You can get your friends in on the healthy fun with great conversations by hosting a bone broth tasting party.
Choose to commit to drinking bone broth at least once per day for several weeks to see how you feel. Once you start seeing and feeling the benefits that bone broth provides, you won’t want to go back.
Happy bone broth sipping!