The slow cooker is the perfect vessel for making chicken stock because it cooks low and slow, allowing the flavors to meld together gently. The stock doesn’t need to be tended to at all. You can usually buy chicken bones from your local butcher, but if you cannot find any, you can use chicken thighs and wings.
Note: A good method for cooling stock quickly is to place the stockpot in a sink filled with ice and cold water. Stir the stock intermittently as it cools.
- 1 large yellow onion, halved
- 3 quarts water, cold or at room temperature
- 1 rib celery, cut into 1-inch pieces
- 5 Pounds raw chicken bones, including carcass, necks, and feet (no fat or skin, but bits of meat are OK), rinsed in cold water
- 3 cloves garlic
- 2 bay leaves
- 5 black peppercorns
- 2 sprigs fresh parsley
- 1 carrot, cut into 1-inch pieces
Add all the ingredients to a 6-quart slow cooker.
Cook on high for 6 hours or low for 10 hours.
Skim the surface of the stock, and then strain the stock through a large fine-mesh sieve into a large stockpot or container (discard the bones and vegetables). Allow the stock to cool thoroughly (see Note). Then cover and refrigerate it overnight.
Use a spoon to remove any congealed fat from the surface of the chilled stock, and discard it. Store the stock in the refrigerator for up to 1 week, or freeze it in 2- or 4-cup containers, or in ice-cube trays for use in individual dishes, for up to 1 month.