A few weeks ago mom and I were shopping and we needed chicken broth–we had used all of our frozen broth for Thanksgiving. I started reading labels and was amazed at what I was reading. So today we’re talking about clean eating: poultry broth.
I mostly shop at Kroger and these are the ingredients in many of the chicken broths they carry:
- Progresso: Chicken Broth, Salt, Sugar, Carrot Puree, Natural Flavor.
- Swanson: Chicken Stock, Contains Less Than 2% Of: Salt, Dehydrated Chicken Broth, Natural Flavoring, Dehydrated Onions, Yeast Extract, Chicken Fat, Carrots, Celery, Onions.
- Kroger: Chicken Stock, Contains Less Than 2% Of: Natural Flavorings, Sugar, Dehydrated Onions, Sea Salt, Yeast Extract, Chicken Fat, Carrots, Celery, Onions, Salt.
- Simple Truth (Kroger Organic Brand): Filtered Water, Organic Chicken Flavor, Sea Salt, Organic Onion Powder, Yeast Extract, Organic Cane Sugar, Natural Flavoring, Organic Garlic Powder, Organic Turmeric.
- College Inn: Chicken Broth, Contains Less Than 2% Of The Following: Salt, Corn Sugar, Monosodium Glutamate, Natural Flavors, Yeast Extract, Vegetable Stock (Concentrates of Onion, Celery Root and Carrot).
Progresso has the least ingredients, but it still has sugar–as all but one brand do. College Inn contains MSG. The organic brand doesn’t even have chicken broth in it!
My method for making broth is normally made from things that would be thrown out–bones, skin, fat, and gristle. Any time a turkey or chicken is roasted in this house I break up the bones as much as I can (I’ll even break the bones if I can) and add everything to a large stock pot. Then I simmer it for hours. I’ll add water as needed to keep the poultry parts covered.
This pot simmered for about 8 hours. Once it has simmered for a very long time, I pour everything through a fine mesh sieve. I don’t know of any real use for the leftover bits, so I toss those out. If you use backs and necks sometimes there’s enough meat to pick off as a treat for the dogs, but other than that…
This is the result. It’s a creamy, opaque broth. I also know all of the ingredients. If I had used backs and necks from butchering chickens it would be “chicken broth”. This broth however was from a roast turkey, so the ingredients are: turkey broth, salt, pepper, and thyme. The pepper and thyme were removed in the sieving process, but their flavor is still there.
Once you have this broth it can be frozen and you have two options. There’s a lot of fat in that broth–you can refrigerate it and the fat will solidify at the top and you can then remove it, then freeze. The other option is to leave the fat and freeze as is. My preference is to remove part of the fat.
This broth didn’t make it to the freezer though. It ended up as chicken noodle soup.
Now that I’m aware of the ingredients in the store-bought broth it’s my goal to not buy it any longer. I’ll start making sure the freezer is stocked and we have enough for the holidays. I think we’ll have more roast chickens on the menu now!