Chicken Broth

I use so much chicken broth in my kitchen, that I usually make 3 huge pots at a time. I then pour it into plastic quart sized take out containers and store them in the freezer. If I had more pots, I would make even more:) It really is one of the best foundations for my “flavor factory”.         

 Yield: 6 quarts


1 chicken, skinned and breast removed

1 large onion, quartered, with the skin

3 garlic cloves, smashed

2 dry bay leaves

3-5 black peppercorns

Place all the ingredients into a large stockpot, at least 8 quarts. IMG_7071 (550x367)Fill it to the top with water. (By the way, it’s important to use good filtered water. If your tap water tastes funny, so will your broth:).

Season with salt to taste. Don’t salt it too much though; if you’ll be using this broth for a sauce that needs to reduce, it will be too salty.

Bring to a boil, reduce the heat to low and simmer for about an hour.

Skim off the foam from the top of the chicken broth.

Line a strainer with paper towels or a coffee filter and strain. IMG_7087 (550x367)The paper towel will trap all the food particles and fat, leaving you with a beautiful, clear broth.

Yuck! I don’t want to eat that!IMG_7094 (550x367)Reserve the chicken meat and use in chicken salad or meat filled crepes.

You can also save chicken parts, freeze them and then use them to make chicken broth when you have the equivalent of one chicken, about 3-4 lbs.

Skinning the chicken also cuts down dramatically on the fat and foam that rises to the surface. I often take off the breast meat and use it in another recipe and use the rest of the chicken for the broth, since chicken breast dries out so quickly.

It’s so convenient to have chicken broth on hand all the time. Every time I reach into the depth of my freezer it seems to magically appear.

One day I reached in expectantly only to come up with nothing. The chicken broth was all gone! How could that be? I had just made some, hadn’t I? (I’m always surprised, even though I use it almost every day.) I didn’t have time to replenish my stores, and I was in a hurry to make dinner, so I came up with a quick solution on the fly.

1 frozen or thawed chicken breast

1 small onion, cut in half (with the peel)

1 garlic clove, smashed

1 dry bay leaf

2-4 pepper corns


Combine all the ingredients in a small pot, fill it all the way to the top with water. Bring to a boil, skim off the foam, reduce to a simmer and cook for 20-30 min, depending on how big the chicken breast is, just until the chicken is no longer pink.

What a wonderful discovery. No need to unthaw the chicken. You will be amazed by how soft the chicken breast will be.

You can also add parsley, thyme, carrots, celery, leeks, etc. to the broth. However, I keep it simple. Besides, it’s nice to keep the flavor clean so you can add other flavors later, since you will use the broth in so many varieties of dishes. Sometimes, you don’t want the taste of celery in your marsala sauce.Chicken Broth (550x367)


Chicken Broth
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Recipe type: Soups
Yield: 6 quarts
  • 1 chicken, skinned and breast removed
  • 1 large onion, quartered, with the skin
  • 3 garlic cloves, smashed
  • 2 dry bay leaves
  • 3-5 black peppercorns
  • salt
  1. Place all the ingredients into a large stockpot, at least 8 quarts.
  2. Fill it to the top with good filtered water.
  3. Season with salt to taste.
  4. Bring to a boil, reduce the heat to low and simmer for about an hour.
  5. Skim off the foam from the top of the chicken broth.
  6. Line a strainer with paper towels or a coffee filter and strain the broth.


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  1. Lana says

    Made this the other day and it turned out awesome!! Thank You Olga! Also where do you get those plastic containers?? I cant find them anywhere!

    • says

      Those are quart size take-out contatiners. I buy them in a restaurant supply store. If you don’t have one in your area, you can buy them online. They are very inexpensive.

  2. VIKTORIYA says


    • says

      Pepper corn is dry whole black peppers, most often used in recipes ground up as ground black pepper. It’s used in almost every recipe, salt and pepper. Whole black pepper corns as great in broths, pickling recipes, etc. You can buy it in every store. If you don’t like using it, you can omit it, of course. I always add it to broths.

  3. Angie says

    What an awesome idea!
    This way, you can almost always have chicken broth on hand. Very smart!
    I want to try it, but I’m not quite sure how to use it.
    When you want to use some for a recipe, do you use the frozen broth and just scoop some out with a spoon or ice cream scoop??
    I don’t know how much I would need for a recipe, if I would need to thaw it first, etc.
    Please let me know! Thank you :)

    • says

      Hi Angie,
      You would have to thaw it first. I usually keep a quart of chicken broth in the refrigerator and every time I need more, I thaw another container.

  4. Saskatoon, Canada says

    I don’t discard the skin before cooking. I skim the fat after it rises to the top of the broth overnight and use it in bread and buns.

    • says

      I usually make a lot of broth at the same time, 3 huge pots, it would take many hours for the broth to cool off and then I wouldn’t have enough room in the refrigerator to store it all. When I make a small batch, I store it in the refrigerator, and skim off the fat later. I rarely ever use chicken fat, though. Good use of it, Good for you.

  5. Oksana says

    I have some questions for you Olga! How long does the broth last in the freezer? Also, if I needed the broth to make soup, would I add it in frozen and then defrost it in the pot or bring it to room temperature in the fridge prior to cooking? Lastly, if this recipe makes 6 quarts of broth, when you triple this recipe, do you get 18 quart size containers of broth?

    • says

      I use my broth A LOT, so it lasts me for a few months only. You can safely leave it in there for at least 3 months.
      I usually defrost it on the counter or in the refrigerator. I always have a container of Chicken Broth in the refrigerator and as soon as I see that it’s starting to run low, I take out another container from the freezer.
      Sometimes, I forget though. A quick way to defrost it, hold the closed container under hot running water just enough so it will come out of the container. Dump it out into a small pot and cook it until the chicken broth defrosts.
      One of my pots is a little smaller than the other 2 large ones that I have, so I have a little bit less that 18 quarts, but it’s very close to it:). Like I said, I use chicken broth A LOT.

  6. Oksana says

    You always answer so thoroughly! I appreciate it!! :) I just ordered the 32 ounce containers so I will start making my first Chicken Broth next week! Also, do you use a whole chicken per pot? If so, any ideas what to do with the left over chicken?

  7. Vera says

    Hi Olga, I never made chicken broth before. But, since I had bunch of chicken bone from thighs left over with a little meat, I decided to use them to make the broth instead of trashing them. I haven’t tasted it yet because it’s still hot. But can you pretty much use any bones from the chicken to make the broth? Or it’s better to use the whole chicken? Thanks!

  8. Alina says

    Hi Olga! I want to make chicken broth. What containers could I use for it?
    And what will I do with the meat leftover? I have to use the meat right away or use the cooked meat the next and I’m not sure what chicken to use to make the broth…

    • says

      The chicken will be completely cooked through at this point, so that is why I only cook broth for an hour to an hour and a half. I also like to use the cooked chicken in other recipes, so that is another reason why I don’t like to cook it too long. The longer you cook it, the more flavorful your broth will be, but the chicken will be dry and flavorless. You can cook it much longer than that, since the flavors of the broth will only get more concentrated. It’s a personal preference of mine, Tatyana.

      • Tatyana says

        Oh I see. I cook mine for 12 hours in order to get most of the nutrient out, but I usually just use bones and feet so I don’t feel bad throwing them out lol. But I do agree that overcooking the broth if you’re using a whole chicken is not good.
        Thank you for the reply!

    • says

      Yes, you can use chicken breast, Dina. Did you read the complete recipe? I have a chicken breast option written also.
      If you use chicken breast, the broth will not be as flavorful, you will need to cook it for much less time and use more meat than if you use dark meat and bones.
      Also, the cooked meat will be tough and rubbery, so I wouldn’t recommend using it in any other recipes.

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