Basic Chicken Stock
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: about 6 quarts
  • 3 to 4 pounds chicken backs
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon sunflower or olive oil
  • ~6 quarts/liters water
  1. Using the cleaver, hack the backs into 2-inch pieces. Heat the sunflower oil in the bottom of the stock pot, and arrange part of the chicken pieces around it. Sauté until the the pieces are just browned, about 4 to 5 minutes. Remove the chicken from the pot and set aside to drain. Repeat with the rest of the chicken until it's finished. Sauté the onion until soft, about 4 to 5 minutes.
  2. Arrange the cooked chicken pieces in the bottom of the stock pot and pour in the water. Cover with the lid and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium low and continue cooking at a simmer for 1 hour. Skim any foam or other bits off the top every 10 to 15 minutes as it cooks.
  3. Remove the chicken pieces and set aside to cool. Strain any remaining large pieces with a slotted spoon or strainer, then pour the stock through a large strainer, sieve, or chinois. Allow the stock to cool, then transfer to plastic freezer jars. Will store in the freezer for several months.
  4. Pull the meat from the cooked chicken pieces and save for chicken salad, tacos, or soup.
More Information

large cleaver
8 to 10 quart heavy stock pot with lid
strainer, sieve, or chinois
large bowl or pot
plastic freezer jars in various sizes (1 cup, 2 cups, quart)

Recipe Notes:

Though you can skim off the fat from the stock, I recommend leaving it for storage and allow it to rise to the top of the jar, then skimming before using in a recipe.
Recipe by Andrea Meyers at