Today I’m showing you how to make chicken stock the quick and easy way. My Chicken Stock Recipe uses a pressure cooker for a savory, slow-cooked chicken stock flavor in just 2 hours! No more babysitting a simmering pot all day long!
A Quick & Easy Chicken Stock Recipe
The average homemade chicken stock recipe takes hours of simmering on the stove to reach its full-bodied flavor potential. While it tastes amazing, it’s just plain time consuming. Today I’m sharing how to make chicken stock, the quick and easy way!
We’re taking a few notes from my Instant Pot pulled pork and making Instant Pot chicken stock. This method shaves off hours from the total time and still yields an incredibly hearty and flavorful broth. You’ll never make it the old way again!
Why make Instant Pot chicken stock?
- It’s effortless and rewarding; all you have to do is set your ingredients in your pressure cooker and let it do its thing. You don’t even have to peel or dice your veggies!
- Tastes like it’s been cooking for hours! Use it in any recipe that calls for chicken stock or chicken broth, like my soup recipes, garlic butter shrimp or risotto.
- Great way to reduce waste! I’ll usually toss a leftover chicken carcass (from making chicken tortilla soup or white chicken chili, perhaps!) in a bag in the freezer for future stock. I do the same thing with vegetable scraps like onion peels or chopped onion, celery leaves, carrot peels and end pieces, etc.
- Versatile. Great for sipping when you’re sick or using in any recipe that calls for chicken stock or chicken broth (I use it in place of the chicken broth in my potato soup and chicken pot pie).
In the past year, we’ve transitioned to making almost everything that we eat at home from scratch. From sourdough bread, to homemade bbq sauce, to this homemade broth, everything tastes better when it’s homemade.
What You Need
Technically, you can make chicken stock with just chicken and water, so everything else is really a bonus (a bonus that adds flavor, nonetheless!). Here’s what I use:
- Chicken. I pick my chicken carcass before using it to make stock, but it is not 100% clean. I am happy to get some flavor from the meat as well. You can use also a raw chicken carcass/bones instead.
- Herbs. I use thyme, bay leaves, and parsley, but you can really use whatever you have on hand or prefer.
- Lemon juice. A squeeze of fresh lemon juice lightens and freshens the chicken stock to keep it from being too rich.
- Peppercorns. I like using whole peppercorns for easy removal. You could use ground pepper (preferably freshly ground), but it can make your chicken stock a bit cloudy.
- Salt. Many cooks suggest you leave salt out of your chicken stock to have a greater amount of control over your final dish. I can understand that, since I prefer to use unsalted butter in my baking recipes. However, I feel the salt helps develop the flavor of the stock and elect to include it. You can certainly leave it out if you prefer though!
SAM’S TIP: While I wrote my chicken stock recipe to include a lot of specifics, there’s really so much wiggle room here. Use whatever herbs and spices you enjoy or have on hand, and I can guarantee you’ll still end up with a flavorful stock!
Remember, this is just an overview of the ingredients I used and why. For the full recipe please scroll down to the bottom of the post!
How to Make Chicken Stock
- Add all ingredients to a pressure cooker, select the manual setting, high pressure, and seal the vent.
- Let the pressure release naturally after 45 minutes.
- Remove the large pieces of chicken bones and vegetables, then strain the stock.
- Let the stock cool before portioning into containers and storing.
SAM’S TIP: While my chicken stock recipe isn’t supposed to be perfectly clear, I do typically like to skim off the fat. To do this, I place my stock in a large container in the fridge overnight. The next morning, I’ll skim the fat off before pouring it into containers or into silicone molds for freezing.
Frequently Asked Questions
Some people have very strong opinions on using stock vs. broth and precisely how to make each (which is funny considering it’s usually such an imprecise recipe!). Technically, broth is made from bones and stock is made from meat and vegetables. Stock tends to be a bit richer and more flavorful, but there are still plenty of chicken broths that have amazing flavor.
Generally though, the two are used for the exact same purposes and are often talked about interchangeably. I will use whatever I have on hand for, say, my chicken chowder or chicken pot pie soup!
Some people stress over making their stock incredibly clear, but really, it’s just an aesthetic preference. Personally, I am content with “impurities” in my stock that don’t make it perfectly clear (but do add to the flavor). If you are worried about your stock being very clear, you can follow my homemade chicken stock recipe as written and then pour your stock through a cheesecloth before portioning it into containers.
Technically you could, but I don’t make my beef stock this way. While I do make it in a pressure cooker, I use different ingredients to help enhance the beef flavor and roast the bones and veggies on their own first. If you’d be interested in seeing that recipe too, let me know in the comments!
One important thing to note: while I am sharing exact measurements today, I am not so precise in real life. A large handful of parsley, a smallish bunch of thyme, a sprinkling of peppercorns, a squeeze of lemon juice…that is how I typically make my stock! Feel free to do the same 😊
Instant Pot Chicken Stock Recipe
- 1 chicken carcass I use a picked-over rotisserie or roaster chicken or 3 lbs chicken wings
- 1 medium yellow onion cut in half (leave peel on)
- 2 carrots cut into thirds
- 2 celery stalks with leaves cut into thirds
- 5 garlic cloves halved (peels intact)
- ¼ cup parsley leaves and stems (small bunch of parsley)
- 5 sprigs fresh thyme
- 1 bay leaf
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon whole peppercorns
- 2 Tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
- 8-10 cups (1.9-2.3 L) water
- Add all ingredients to your pressure cooker, being sure to not fill water above the “MAX FILL” line on the pressure cooker.1 chicken carcass, 1 medium yellow onion, 2 carrots, 2 celery stalks with leaves, 5 garlic cloves, ¼ cup parsley, 5 sprigs fresh thyme, 1 bay leaf, 1 teaspoon salt, 1 teaspoon whole peppercorns, 2 Tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice, 8-10 cups (1.9-2.3 L) water
- Select manual setting, high pressure, and turn vent to “sealing”. Set time for 45 minutes.
- Once 45 minutes has passed, allow pressure to release naturally.
- Discard chicken remains and large vegetable pieces. Strain stock through a fine mesh strainer, removing and discarding all solid pieces/scraps that remain.
- Allow to cool before portioning into airtight containers and refrigerating. After overnight refrigeration you may easily skim the fat cap off the surface of the stock before using.
StoringStore in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days. Homemade chicken stock may also be frozen. I like to refrigerate the stock in a large airtight container overnight, skim the fat off the next day, and then portion it into these silicone molds that I will then freeze it in. Once frozen, stock will keep for several months.
Nutritional information is based on third-party calculations and should be considered an estimate only. Actual nutritional content will vary based upon brands used, measuring methods, cooking method, portion sizes, and more.