Recipes > Chicken Broth

Chicken Broth


This basic recipe creates a flavorful liquid and cooked chicken which can be applied to many dishes; a 2 for 1 deal.
  • Serves: Makes 4L (16 cups)
  • Active Time: 20 mins
  • Total Time: 1 hr 30 mins
  • Views: 51,401
  • Success Rating: 99% (?)
    0% - I fed it to the dog


Step 1: Making the Broth

Making the Broth
  • 1 whole chicken
  • 2 stalks celery
  • 1 medium onion
  • 2 small carrots
  • 1 leek
  • 1 tbsp kosher salt


To make the broth, rinse the chicken and place into a large pot. Cover with cold water and bring to a simmer over medium heat, while you prepare the vegetables (mirepoix).

Roughly chop the celery, onions, carrots and the white and light green part of the leek.

Skim the broth before adding the mirepoix and salt to the pot. Bring everything back to a gentle simmer and let cook for about 30 to 45 minutes, skimming the surface as needed. Just be sure to not let the broth come to a boil.

Step 2: Checking the Broth

Checking the Broth
  • 2 sprigs fresh thyme
  • 1 small bunch parsley
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 tsp black peppercorns


Once the broth has cooked for about 30-45 minutes, check the water level, adding more cold water to cover, if needed. Then add the bouquet garni, which consists of the thyme, parsley, bay leaf and peppercorns. If the chicken floats out of the broth, gently turn it over. Let simmer for another 20 to 30 minutes.

Step 3: Finishing the Broth

Finishing the Broth


Once the broth has simmered for about an hour or so, remove the chicken and place it onto a plate. Let it cool slightly while you strain the broth. When the chicken is cool enough to handle, remove the meat and take off the skin and any fat.

This fully cooked chicken can be use in many other dishes such as salads, quesadillas and pot pies. Left behind is a healthy and flavorful broth that can also be used in many other dishes.


  • Joel G
    Joel G
    When I take the chicken out, I let it cool just long enough for me to be able to strip the bird, then I put the carcass back in the pot and simmer all night. An hour and a half broth seems like it'd be rather thin.
  • Joe G
    Joe G
    Putting the carcass back into the broth is a good idea Joel. For other recipes where you might like to darken the broth, you could even roast the bones for 30 to 45 minutes to obtain some carmelization (brown color). Adding this back to your broth would yield a dark chicken broth. However, there is a point in stock/broth making where you can no longer extract any further flavor from bones and mirepoix. You can simmer it overnight but you will only be increasing the flavor through reduction (and not extraction). In other words, you could strain after a couple of hours, then reduce to increase the flavor and you'd obtain the exact same results from cooking it all together overnight. The only danger in cooking overnight is that the vegetables may break down to the point where they actually start to cloud your broth/stock. Hope this makes sense.
  • Tony M
    Tony M
    Best and safer to simmer in a dutch oven in a low oven if you're going to do this overnight. Do it in a 250 F oven, with a lid slightly ajar, to prevent evaporation, and create the gentlest simmer possible (if fat, it will barely poach). This should result in a cloudless, very flavourful stock.
  • O I
    O I
    If you think using a whole chicken would cost a bit too much, you can use just thighs and legs. It won't taste quite the same but it'll be near enough.
  • Dawn T
    Dawn T
    Remember though, that you often make broths when you are going to use the meat off the bone in the final dish that the broth was made for. So you are not going to throw away or discard the meat. You are right though, making broths with legs and thighs is a great idea.
  • Swati B
    Swati B
    Can a chicken broth and chicken stock be used interchangeably? Or does a stock give a better flavour due to longer simmering?
  • Joe G
    Joe G
    A broth is typically used when the whole meat used to make the broth, is re-incorporated back into the broth. See the Chicken Pot Pie recipe for an example. Both will have good flavor. Some will argue that the stock may have a bit stronger flavor given the longer cooking times.
  • Ante Z
    Ante Z
    I've been doing my stocks and few broths not. I'm just not getting that yummy, flavorable taste after cooking. It's usually tastes as a fat water due to the meat. Maybe I should ask my mum, since her chicken soup is too good :)
  • Dawn T
    Dawn T
    Sounds like perhaps you might be using too much water...but it's hard to say as I would need more detail. After it is cooked and cooled are you skimming the fat? Because it should not taste fatty. Also if you are looking to make a good chicken soup like your mothers then I suggest you watch the lesson on how to Make a Broth Soup as making a chicken soup and making a broth are slightly different (different ratios). You may also want to watch the lesson on How to Make Stock Bases Soups. Hope this helps - cheers!
  • Jennifer K
    Jennifer K
    I made a big batch of this, but it seems to have soured after less than two weeks in the fridge. How long should I have kept it there? Should I freeze it instead. Why does it sour?
  • Tony M Rouxbe Staff
    Tony M
    Two weeks is pushing it. After 4-5 days a stock (or soup/stew) should be brought to a simmer to extend its self-life. Moist preparations, even milk, will sour because of a fermentation that occurs, some good, some not so good. Fridges only slow down eventual spoilage, not eliminate it. Make sure to label and date your cooked and stored preparations so you can keep track of them - a must practice in the industry too often neglected by the home cook.
  • Katherine J
    Katherine J
    Loving this recipe, came out perfect and it was really tasty too
  • Tara L
    Tara L
    What about all the leftover mirepoix after the broth is done? Should you discard these vegetables or can they be used?
  • Dawn T
    Dawn T
    Just as in making stock, the vegetables/mirepoix should be discarded afterwards as all of their flavor has been extracted by the broth. Cheers!
  • Arianna A
    Arianna A
    I made broth for the first time and I froze it to use later. It's in a plastic baggy and contains 8 cups. Now I want to make pot pies and need to use 2 cups for the recipe. What is the best way to defrost this? Can I refreeze the remaining 6 cups? Also, now that it's frozen there's a layer on top. I'm assuming that is fat. Should that be discarded? Or incorporated back into broth?
  • Dawn T
    Dawn T
    All good questions Arianna. I would recommend that you partially defrost the broth in the refrigerator. Once you it defrosts enough to measure 2 cups, immediately refreeze the rest (which should still be quite frozen). Alternatively, you can defrost the whole thing and then just use the remaining broth for something else. Next time, I would try to portion the stock in smaller quantities, if you can. We do quite a few 2 and 4 cup measurements portions. As for the "layer" on top, I am assuming it is fat, but I am not 100% sure. Again, next time, be sure to skim that fat before you freeze the broth. Since you are making chicken pot pies, any fat will likely just be soaked up by the flour in the roux. If there is a lot of fat, then res you should try to remove it. Hope this helps. Cheers!
  • Brad
    How long do I blanch the chicken? What's the estimated time?
  • Dawn T
    Dawn T
    How long the chicken is cooked will depend on the size etc. You may it helpful to watch the lesson called "How to Make Broth". Here we cover all of this and much more. Cheers!
  • Terry F
    Terry F
    I have thawed chicken broth in the fridge for a week now and wonder if it's still okay to use? A general google inquiry yielded results that said it's good for a long time but I'm thinking this can't be right. What does Rouxbe say? Thanks.
  • Ken R Rouxbe Staff
    Ken R
    Depending on the amount of stock that you thawed, it may have taken a few days just to full bring the stock to the temperature of the refrigerator. With properly prepared and cooled stock, you can expect 5-7 days of storage. Proper (i.e. rapid) chilling is an important step in ensuring maximum shelf life. So, it's likely OK. ~Ken
  • Mika L
    Mika L
    The video is showing a fairly big chicken I think. I just bought one and it's only 3.5 lbs. Is that going to be too little chicken? I can't tell how much the recipe calls for. I would try to adapt this recipe but I also have a hard time telling the ratio, if it's 3 parts chicken to 1 part mirepoix, I forget if that is by weight or by volume. So if it's weight that means I need just over 1 lb of mirepoix to my 3.5 lb chicken?
  • Ken R Rouxbe Staff
    Ken R
    Once you start making stock a lot, you will use what you have an naturally adjust ratios. If you have a smaller chicken, just use a bit less mirepoix. Don't stress about being too exacting - just taste as you go and adjust seasoning. ~Ken
  • Danielle B
    Danielle B
    Why is this recipe different from the Chicken Broth Soup Base recipe? The main difference, from what I can tell, is returning the bones to the broth to extract more flavour. Why is this not a step in this recipe? Also, something I learned from my mother who is a soup master (she has made home made soup for lunch for thirthy years), adding a little vinegar to a chicken carcass helps obtain a more gelatinous broth.
  • Kirk B
    Kirk B
    Hi Danielle and thanks for your question. So this broth recipe suggests that you use a whole chicken which you can then use later in other recipes, etc. Chicken Stock, however, suggests that you use the Chicken carcass as opposed to the whole Chicken. Typically, for Soup, we start with such a Chicken Stock. The process is similar as we use aromatics, etc. however the cooking process for Stock takes longer as we are trying to extract collagen out of the carcass. I love the idea of adding vinegar to help extract; I haven't heard that technique in a long time - thanks so much! I hope this helps. Thanks so much for cooking with Rouxbe. Chef Kirk
  • Josh K
    Josh K
    I would like to freeze my broth in an outdoor freezer chest. Could anyone recommend a bag I could put it in? I was thinking about purchasing a vacuum pack machine with the heavier plastic, instead of storing it in zip lock bags. I plan to have single use bags of different broths on the ready for up to six months. Is this a better option than just buying broth in plastic boxes from the grocery store? Lastly, could I cheese cloth strain it to make it more clear? I figure this will be the foundation of my cooking then I can go from here. Thank you
  • Eric W Rouxbe Staff
    Eric W
    Josh, when you make your own broth or stock, you can control the quality so from that standpoint it's usually better than its store-bought equivalent. Vacuum packing would be effective, as would double bagging in zip-top bags. Another approach is to use plastic deli containers, which come in different sizes. Give it a try and see how you like it for your application. And, yes, you can strain your stock through multiple layers of cheesecloth for greater clarity.
  • Michelle D
    Michelle D
    Please could you comment on when you use a chicken broth and when you use a chicken stock for cooking?
  • Eric W Rouxbe Staff
    Eric W
    Gustav, I'll begin by saying that chicken broth and chicken stock are fundamentally the same things, just residing at different places on the chicken-based "flavorful liquid" spectrum. One common difference in handling is that "stock" is used as an ingredient in a preparation. Therefore, it is commonly simmered, strained, and stored for later use. Of course, it can be used immediately. "Broth," on the other hand, is often simmered, turned into a soup in the pot, and served immediately, for example. Of course, it can be stored for later use. From a professional perspective, "stock" is used as an ingredient in a preparation, and the term "broth" is used to market the finished preparation, commonly in menu descriptions. In a retail environment, the terms may be used interchangeably. Therefore, at the end of the day, you may use stock or broth, if it is strained, in any cooking application where a flavorful liquid (in this case, chicken-based) is desired.

Leave A Comment

Please login or join the Rouxbe community to leave a comment.