Learn how to make the best BONE BROTH you’ll ever taste! This beef and chicken broth is technically ‘stock’ because it has meat and bones. This is the Italian ‘white broth’ (fond blanc) traditionally served with tortellini in Italy! However, it’s the perfect ingredient for many classic dishes. Keep reading to learn how to make it, or jump to the recipe card. We even have a VIDEO RECIPE if you prefer to learn that way:)
Broth or Stock?
Technically, this is a stock recipe. In cooking terminology…
- Stock is typically made from meat bones, flesh and vegetables. For this reason, it is denser.
- Broth is typically made from only flesh and/or vegetables. For this reason, it tends to be thinner in consistency.
As this recipe contains the bones of beef and chicken, the flesh of meat and chicken and vegetables— it is more accurately a stock. However, many people unfamiliar with these differences tend to use the terms interchangeably. And in some cooking traditions, they are actually considered interchangeable.
In fact, the term bone broth is a popular term for this recipe these days. It is rich, flavorful and highly nutritious!
In Italy, homemade tortellini is often served with this classic bone broth! This is especially true during Christmas time.
Watch the Video Recipe!
Watch the video recipe for this classic tortellini broth recipe:
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How to Make Homemade Bone Broth
Once you’ve tried homemade broth (homemade stock), you’ll wonder how you ever settled for store-bought broth. It is sooo rich and tasty, not to mention highly nutritious! Here are the basic steps to making the best broth you’ll ever taste:
Choose a Stock Pot
Of course, you need to choose a stock pot that can hold the amount of stock you want to make. Our recipe below makes 2 gallons (8 liters) of finished bone broth! Of course, you can make less. The rule of thumb?
- Choose a pot that can hold 2x the amount of finished broth you plan to make.
For our 8 liters of finished broth, we used a 21 liter stock pot. A 16 liter would have been large enough.
Use Good Water
Good tasting water is the first ingredient needed for making a delicious stock or broth.
- Use filtered water or bottled water
We want to taste the delicious ingredients we are adding to the water—not chlorine or sulfur.
Add the Bone Broth Ingredients
Check the recipe card below for the ingredient quantities. Here are the basic ingredients for a classic bone broth:
The Meats and Bones:
- beef ribs: beef flank with bones (biancostato)
- beef joints (such as knees and shins)
- a small whole chicken, cut in half (bones and all!)
- herb bouquet of: parsley stems, thyme and bay leaf
- cloves: which are stuck into the onion halves!
- fine salt
Simmer the Bone Broth for Many Hours!
Add the ingredients for the broth to cold water. Bring the water to a boil, then reduce to a simmer.
Stock needs to simmer for at least 3 hours… but that is the absolutely bare minimum! To maximize the flavor and nutrition from your ingredients, it would be insane to only simmer the stock such a short time.
- It is better to simmer the stock for 8-16 hours
We simmer our broth for about 15 hours.
Skim off the Foam that Forms
During the first few hours, a massive amount of foam will begin to form on the surface of the stock.
Use a slotted spoon or strainer to skim this foam off of the cooking stock. Discard that foam. You’ll need to watch the stock and do this several times in the first few hours of cooking.
As you continue to simmer the stock, foam and fat will still rise to the surface, but less quickly.
Remove the Broth Ingredients
After you’ve finished simmering the stock, remove the flesh, bones and vegetables with a slotted spoon.
Don’t discard the meat! There are many delicious dishes that can be made with the cooked beef and chicken 🙂
Cool the Bone Broth
Cool the pot of stock/ broth. Once cooled, more fat will likely rise to the surface. Remove that fat with a slotted spoon and discard it.
Filter the Broth with Cheesecloth
For the best quality bone broth, you’ll want to pass the stock through two layers of cheesecloth. This will remove any final pieces of flesh or bone and render the stock clear and ready for use!
Serving pasta with this broth? Be sure to boil the pasta in the broth, as Italians do! This will give your pasta (such as tortellini) the maximum flavor. Salt to taste at that time.
Want to Make Homemade Tortellini?
Check out our recipe for making a classic Homemade Tortellini Pasta Recipe!
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Best Bone Broth Recipe: Beef and Chicken Stock
- 1 Large Stock Pot 16 liters or bigger
- 1 strainer or slotted spoon
- 2 cheesecloth layers
Meat and Bones
- 4.4 lb beef ribs
- 2.2 lb beef brisket
- 2.2 lb beef joints knees, shin, etc
- 1 whole chicken cut in half (bones included)
Vegetables and Herbs
- 3 whole onions halved
- 4 ribs celery cut into large pieces
- 5 large carrots cut into large pieces
- 1 handful parsley stems wrapped with food-safe twine
- 1 sprig thyme wrapped with food-safe twine
- 4 whole cloves wrapped with food-safe twine
- 1 bay leaf wrapped with food-safe twine
- 2 leeks optional
- 3 tbsp fine salt
- 3 gallons water filtered or bottled (good quality)
Prepare the Ingredients
- Cut the chicken in half. Cut the onions in half. Cut the carrots and celery (and leek if using) into large pieces. Wrap the herbs (parsley, bay leaf, thyme) with food-safe twine. Secure the other side of the twine to the stock pot handle. Stick the stems of the cloves into the onions.
Add the Ingredients
- Add the water to the stock pot. Add all of the ingredients for the broth into the [cold] water. Add the salt.4.4 lb beef ribs, 2.2 lb beef brisket, 2.2 lb beef joints, 1 whole chicken, 3 whole onions, 4 ribs celery, 5 large carrots, 1 handful parsley stems, 1 sprig thyme, 4 whole cloves, 1 bay leaf, 2 leeks, 3 tbsp fine salt, 3 gallons water
Boil, then Simmer
- Bring the water to a boil, then reduce to a simmer. Simmer the broth uncovered for at least 3 hours. It is best to simmer the broth 8-16 hours.
Skim the Foam and Fat
- During the first few hours, foam and fat will rise to the surface of the stock/broth. Skim this foam off with a slotted spoon or strainer. Discard it. Continue to skim as needed.
Remove the Ingredients
- When the stock is finished, remove all ingredients (meat, bones, vegetables, herbs) with a slotted spoon or strainer.
Cool the Stock
- Cool the stock. If more fat rises to the surface after the broth is cool, remove and discard it.
Filter the Stock
- Pass the broth through two layers of cheesecloth to filter the broth. Now the broth is ready to use or freeze into portions!