We got some chickens and ducks this last spring. We got 12 chickens and 4 ducks. Now only 5 chickens remain and our freezer is full. So, I decided to cook one of the chickens in the slow cooker. I put a smidgen of butter on the bottom of the crockpot, then I cut up an onion (store bought supplemented with home grown) and some garlic (homegrown). Then I seasoned the chicken with homegrown herbs and salt. Cooked it on low for 4 hours because it was a small bird. I didn't want to make a whole blog for slow cooker chicken. I may in the future, but this blog is for something else. This blog is for chicken stock/chicken bone broth.
Chicken carcass, fat, skin, any leftover chicken bits and drippings
2 Tbsp Apple Cider Vinegar (leaches all the delicious and nutritious stuff out of the bones)
...Honestly, you can use whatever you want, but I don't recommend potatoes, leafy greens, dark green veggies etc... they get pretty bitter. I personally am not terribly fond of carrots, so I only use a few, and then I overdo it on the mushrooms, because I love them.
Combine all ingredients in a slow cooker or stock pot.
Add water until your stock pot or crock pot is almost full.
Simmer for 1-2 days
Taste after 24 hours, if you want it stronger, cook it longer.
When the stock is done, strain it into a container. Some people are concerned with the clarity of their stock. I am not one of those people. If you are one of those people... good luck.
Go easy on the seasonings the first time, your stock may taste a little bland, but you can always add seasonings to it when you use it. It's really hard to recover from over seasoning something. You're looking for a good chicken flavor.
Parsley is a great addition to chicken broth based dishes when you go to use your broth. I used to think it was useless, but it really amps up the flavor.
You can use the carcass and veggies a second time for a weaker batch of stock to use instead of water for rice etc.
This is very important: don't let it cook too long without stirring... the floating bits can burn, and then your stock is almost unusable. Trust me on this. I lost 5 gallons of stock one day because of it.
This is my favorite part of stock: I take all of my onion and garlic papers and cut ends and freeze them. If an onion is a little squishy and I don't want to cook with it, I put it in the freezer. When I go to make a batch of this delicious bone broth, I use all the papers and ends and everything that I had collected in the freezer. The papers add to the color and quality of the broth. Here's an example: TC will buy a bunch of carrots and then let them sit in the fridge. I don't care for carrots, but they're good to add in stock. So, when they start to lose their crispness and aren't as good for eating, I freeze them and use them for stock. Nothing goes to waste!