Make your own chicken broth

With so many new products hitting the grocery shelf, are you feeling unsure about buying chicken broth? Be sure to know what you are buying – better yet make your own as a cost saving and healthy solution!

Food producers continue to experiment with creating new flavors and ingredients to enhance chicken broth. For many cooks, chicken broth is a very common kitchen staple necessary for soups, stews, sauces and more. With so many choices on the grocery store shelf consumers are beginning to think more about price, nutritional content and natural ingredients than ever before. Michigan State University Extension encourages consumers to review the nutrition facts, especially the amount of sodium in chicken broth, and for significant cost savings to make your own chicken broth at home.

For those not feeling adventurous enough to prepare and freeze your own chicken broth, be sure to read the ingredients. Look for salt, which may be listed as sodium chloride or other sodium based ingredients. Check the nutrition facts for the amount of sodium listed in milligrams (mg) per serving. You will find a wide range of sodium content in both liquid and concentrated chicken broth. Some products list “700 mg” or greater per serving. A low sodium product contains only “140 mg” per serving. Realize salt is a flavor enhancer, but a chicken broth that tastes too salty can result in a less than desirable meal.

One sure way to have control of the ingredients in your chicken stock, including salt, is to make your own. You can add rich flavor to your chicken stock by adding vegetables and herbs. If you have been looking for a way to use leftover chicken bones or the whole chicken carcass, then simmering your own chicken broth is a perfect solution. Toss in leftover vegetables such as celery, carrots, parsnips, onions and leftover herbs to create a delicious stock. Iowa State University Extension Spend Smart Eat Smart website has easy to follow instructions to make your own chicken broth. Be sure to follow the best practices listed there for safely storing your homemade stock in the refrigerator or freezer.

Whether you are an experienced cook or not, making homemade chicken stock is a great money saving tip. Consider simmering up a batch soon and whenever chicken broth is needed, you are ready to add your own homemade goodness and can be satisfied knowing exactly what ingredients were used.

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