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How to Make Bone Broth to Heal Your Gut, Reverse Aging & Cure the Common Cold

Homemade bone broth is one of the most powerful superfoods on the planet: http://bit.ly/bonebrth

There’s a South American Proverb that says, “A good broth can raise the dead.”

But what is it about “soup” that makes it good for us when we’re sick?

Homemade bone broth is one of the most powerful superfoods on the planet. It’s made by simmering the bones of a (preferably pasture-raised) animal for 10 – 24 hours in a slow-cooker, or 24 – 48 hours for beef bones. This low, slow cooking draws out the collagen, marrow, and other healing elements from the bones, including amino acids, minerals, glycine, and gelatin—which helps heal the gut and reduce inflammation.

My wife and I pretty much always have a batch of bone broth simmering on the counter. I’ll drink a cup of it in the late morning with a bit of sea salt, or we’ll use it to make soups and stews. Broth can be a powerful weight-management tool, it keeps your joints lubricated, provides your bones with necessary nutrients, and makes your skin soft and elastic.

Broths are rich in nutrients that are difficult to source elsewhere—incredibly high in vital minerals like calcium, phosphorous, magnesium, and potassium.

You can use the bones (and legs from poultry, which are rich in restorative collagen) from pastured chicken, grass-fed cattle, fish, crustaceans, or anything else that was Recently Alive and Well (R.A.W.). Leftovers work well, too—take the picked-over carcass of a roasted fowl or the leftover bones from a roast or seafood meal. If you’re in a hurry, you can even throw in a whole fish.

Not only are bone broths packed with nutrition, they’re an excellent way to save money on your grocery bill because you’re skipping prepared soups and broth. Plus, you’re doing your part to use the whole animal and reduce waste.

Unlike real bone broth, processed soup from a can like Campbell’s or Hormel is packed with sodium, preservatives, corn starch, wheat, artificial flavors, MSG, sugar, and none of the things that make real homemade soup nourishing.

Traditionally, chicken broth is made from slowly simmering a whole chicken for hours along with vegetables and seasonings. Finally, the bones are removed, the chicken stripped off, and chopped vegetables are added.

Alyson, bless her heart, always whips me up bone broth soup when I’m under the weather. It takes less than 10 minutes to prepare, but it can cut the duration of your cold in half. It has plenty of bug-fighting goodness that will fix you right up in no time.


LocalHarvest.org is a free online resource for finding farms, farmers markets, CSAs and more near you. Just type your zip code into the field at the top of the page, and do a search to see what’s close by.

If you can’t find grass-fed, pasture-raised bones at your local farm or farmer’s market, here are a few of our favorite places to order them online:


Homemade bone broth is one of the most powerful superfoods on the planet: http://bit.ly/bonebrth

4.8 from 13 reviews
Bone Broth
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Homemade bone broth is one of the most powerful superfoods on the planet. Whip up this recipe for a broth to help heal your gut, reverse aging, and cure the common cold.
Serves: 8
  • Grass-fed beef bones, chicken carcass or any mixture of bones from wild or pasture-raised, healthy animals
  • Purified water
  • 1 tablespoon vinegar (apple cider or white)
  1. Place bones into a large crockpot. You only need a few bones to make broth, but the more you can fit in the crockpot the better.
  2. Fill with filtered water to cover all the bones completely (it’s okay if there are a few bones poking out of the water a little).
  3. Add a splash (about 1 tablespoon) of vinegar.
  4. Set your crockpot on low, and cook for at least 6 hours, preferably longer. Poultry bones can go as long as 24 hours, and beef bones can simmer for up to 48 hours.
  5. When the crockpot is cool enough to handle, pour the broth through a sieve into a storage container or use tongs to pick the bones out.
  6. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Use within 5 - 7 days or freeze for later.
After cooling in the refrigerator, you may get a thick layer of fat on top of your broth. See below for uses for this fat.


If you're using marrow bones in your broth, here's a little tip for getting to eat the marrow, too… http://bit.ly/bonebrth
If you’re using marrow bones in your broth, here’s a little tip for getting to eat the marrow, too…

Make sure any marrow bones are turned sideways in the crockpot, and are near the top so they’re easy to find. You don’t want the marrow to fall out into the broth when you pick them out.

Allow the bone broth to cook like normal (per the recipe above), but check on the bones in about 4-5 hours. Use tongs to pull the marrow bones out of the water, salt, and eat the marrow straight from the bone. The longer you wait to check on them, the more likely the marrow may have melted away–but, we’ve been able to get the marrow after about 8 hours in the crockpot.

Return the bones to the crockpot to continue cooking to make broth.

Alternatively, you can make Roasted Bone Marrow (page 278 of The Wild Diet), and then use the leftover bones in your bone broth.


Homemade bone broth is one of the most powerful superfoods on the planet: http://bit.ly/bonebrth

After cooling your bone broth in the refrigerator overnight, you’ll usually get a thick layer of fat on top. If you’re using healthy bones from wild or pasture-raised animals, this fat is pure gold.

Scoop it into a separate storage container and store it in the refrigerator. Use it for stir-frying veggies, caramelizing onions, cooking eggs, or pan-frying burgers.


A few hours before serving, add your bone broth back into the crockpot along with a bunch of chopped veggies and spices.

Try adding 1 bunch chopped kale, 1 chopped onion, 4 minced garlic cloves, 3 chopped carrots, 3 chopped celery sticks, 1 cubed sweet potato, along with salt, pepper, onion powder, and a dash of cayenne. Chopped bacon can be a tasty add-in, and kelp is great for adding more nutrients.

Simmer on low until veggies have softened, about 3 hours.

Serve warm.

NOTE: If you can’t find grass-fed/pasture-raised bones from your local farmer, you can order them online from Slanker or US Wellness Meats.


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Homemade bone broth is one of the most powerful superfoods on the planet: http://bit.ly/bonebrth


Don’t have time to make bone broth at home? We like to keep backup broth in the cupboard just in case.

Kettle & Fire Bone Broth is made from 100% grass-fed, organically raised cattle and organic vegetables and spices… and it tastes great right out of the box.

And as a special hookup for Fat-Burning Man readers, you can try Kettle and Fire’s broth for 20% off! Bottoms up!

Click here to get 20% off your order of Kettle & Fire Bone Broth

Get 20% Off Grass-Fed Bone Broth


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Did you notice a difference in the way you felt after drinking Bone Broth for a while? Comment below to share your experience making and drinking homemade Bone Broth.



  • Katie says:

    Thank you for sharing this simple yet delicious recipe.. Bone broth has become a stable in my lifestyle after trying this to rid myself of a cold. It’s great to have on hand for many reasons. Thanks again, Fat Burning Man for introducing this wonderful concoction to my life! and many others!

  • Salima says:

    I used bone broth (along with liver and cod liver oil) to heal my teeth.

  • Len says:

    This is my daily lunch. I have RA and hope it will not only help to fix gut, but reduce pain and inflammation, so I could in turn reduce pain killers and other RA meds. Abel, can you cite any reference to potential benefits for RA? You mention it helps joints…

    By the way, in addition to drinking it, I use bone broth for braising lamb shanks and chicken in place of wine or water, or making a stew – it takes it to the next level. Also, blend it in Vitamix (soup mode) with broccoli, herbs, avocado, grass-fed butter for a quick tasty soup.

  • Sarah says:

    Any thoughts on making bone broth in a pressure cooker? Every time I search I see a lot of opinions supporting both sides pro and con.

    • P Rowley says:

      Pressure cooking temperatures are to high, it destroys the nutrients, rather coax out the goodness with slow cooking.

    • Judy says:

      I have made it in the pressure cooker. The instructions said to cook it for 30 minutes at high pressure and then let the pressure drop. Then you repeat two more times. This is for chicken and turkey. For beef, you cook it two hours on high pressure. The broth turned out delicious

      • Andrea says:

        I also made it the same way. Beef Bones in the pressure cooker for two hours, then 24 hours more in slow-cooker. Came out beautiful! Perfect gelatinous texture!

      • Paul says:

        I used to cook it in a slow cooker now I do it a pressure cooker. I’ve used the same bones three times and it is so gelatinous that I can’t pour it in a pan without scooping it out of the mason jar. I personally think the pressure gets more out of the bones. My beef or pork bones are almost soft by the end.

        • Nancy says:

          I learned that when you cook at high temperatures you kill the nutrients. When I studied with the Gerson Institute (alternative program for cancer treatment) they strongly recommend maintaining the integrity of the nutrients by not using these pressure cookers.

  • Todd says:

    Does it help w/flavor by roasting the bones first or does it affect the nutrients? I have always my own broths by roasting bones with veggies (carrots, onions, leaks, and celery). I then blend the veggies and then the broth for soups.

    • Alyson says:

      Many people say that roasting the bones first doesn’t hurt the nutrients. And it can definitely add some yummy flavor to the broth. Your broths sound delicious.

  • Linda says:

    Can you just keep the bone broth constantly simmering in the crock pot instead of putting it in the fridge and can you use a raw whole chicken.

    • Derek says:

      I boil the bones in a slow cooker outside the house (Cooking bone broth smells out the whole house). Once it has cooled I lift off the bone fat and store that separately. I then get the small cheap sandwich bags that you buy for children’s lunches. I fill each bag with enough bone broth for 1 cup (If it is cooked right it should be like a thick jelly) and freeze them. When I need a cup I simply take one frozen bag out of the freezer, remove the frozen broth from the bag and bring it to the temperature for drinking in the microwave.

  • Pilar says:

    Ok silly question do you just go the meat department in your local store and ask for bones to cook for a broth?

  • Sarah says:

    ugh …… meant to day Dave from Bulletproof advises Alderspring Ranch

  • Sarah says:

    oh for pete’s sake …. meant to SAY ….. I’m going to stop talking now 🙂

  • Yoli says:

    Hello, I haven been making my beef bone broth for about 36 hours now and this morning I woke up to check it and the water was half gone. I added more water to cover the bones. Am I doing this right? Please help.

    Thanks so much.

  • April says:

    I am overweight and all this is new to me. Is bone broth really safe? It sounds like you could get some kind of toxins from the bones. Its a little scary. I want to be healthy, and am trying to follow all this.

  • Teresa Corrie says:

    How long can bone broth be stored in the freezer? Does freezing ruin the health benefits?

  • Macheco says:

    Why is the salt and pepper added at the end? Doesn’t make more sense to season at the beginning to let the flavors marry?

  • Jill says:

    If you add the salt first, when the water evaporates, the salt stays, and the broth can become too salty

  • Joann says:

    I won’t do beef bones but would like to do chicken bone broth made with backs and maybe feet because of the collagen. I can get organic and non GMO from a local farmer. My hesitation Is in handling raw meat and bones. Im a vegetarian so haven’t had to deal with that. I haven’t been able to find out in recipes. Do I wash or not wash? Is there a difference in handling beef from chicken? I’ve read the USDA says not to wash to eliminate bacteria from splashing all over. I don’t want to have to be using bleach to disinfect everything.

  • Gennie says:

    I live in Singapore and food are imported here. What if we cannot authenticate the food source? There are suppliers who claim the meat to be grass-fed, but they may not be. Will that defeat the purpose of going on Wild Diet?

  • Son Nguyen says:

    I see a lot of people on here asking where they can get bones. There is a company that actually makes it really easy! I’ve been using their kits to make my broth for my cleanses and detoxes and they taste great! Plus my house smells friggin amazing every time I brew a kit. You can get a kit here at http://www.biybb.com. all I had to do was add water and cook. The kit provided everything and all the bones are either grass-fed beef or free-range chicken. And you’re right fatburningman! That top layer of “fat/oil” really is pure gold!!! I save all of mine for cooking everything! Hope this helps you guys looking for bones! Cheers!

  • Courtney says:

    Could you tell me specifically how many bones or how many ounces of bones should be used to result in a broth that will provide maximum health benefits?

  • Terry says:

    I just made my first batch of beef broth, simmering it in crock pot for 3 days. It gelled perfectly and I skimmed off the fat and saved it in freezer. How many cups of the gelled broth do you use for making a large pot of veg beef soup? My batch gave me 56 oz of gel.

  • Michele Fleckenstein says:

    Can you use venison?

  • Lesly says:

    What is the purpose of the vinegar? I’m allergic to sulfites so I will need to omit it. I just want to make sure I do not need to add a substitute ingredient if it performs some type of function vs adding flavor. Thanks!

  • Hi Abel!
    Just binge watched My Diet is better than yours and saw how powerful the Wild Diet can be. I’m an athlete and train from around March-October. I’m curious how often you think I should consume bone broth? Is it best right after a workout? And if I have many races in one day, how often should I consume it on a daily basis to be making sure I’m refueling my body in the right way? Thanks for all your information, and your very educational website! I’ve been listening to your podcast since Shawn Stevenson had you on the first time, and have been loving it ever since. Thanks for all you do!

  • Josh says:

    My local health food store has lots of good grass fed beef, free range chicken but the only bones it has are pork bones. I am planning to ask the butcher for beef bones, but will pork bones work? I picked up some Pacific brand organic (chicken and turkey) bone broth, that will hopefully work in a pinch. Thanks! Love the Wild Diet. I started this week and have already lost almost 11 lbs!

  • Mark Johnson says:

    Is it alright to do bone broth in pressure cooker

  • I was wondering I’ve been trying to read a lot on bone broth. I had chronic pain for years knee damaged years back and a neck injury a dr. I went to years recently closed his practice and I haven’t found another dr. He gave me pain mess for years. I would like to see if this would help with my health and stop using pain Medes. Do you think this will help? Thanks for,any comments.

  • Traci says:

    We frequently make bone broth and love it! This is such a great reminder of all the health benefits! One question though, we will also sometimes put some Great Lakes Gelatin in our coffee (the collagen hydrolysate). Would there be any reason not to do this? Thank you!

  • Tami says:

    Is it ok to leave the marrow in the broth?

  • Zsana says:

    To me is funny to see how bone broth is the next new thing in the health world, while in Europe I grew up with it. I think every nation has its own version. Our flavoring is made with caraway seeds, cloves, whole peppercorns and bay leaves, than we add kohlrabi, carrots, parsnips, potatoes, parsley, but you can also add cabbage, whatever veggies you have on hand, than we finish it up with some pasta of course… As far as the bone marrow goes, we spread it on toasted bread with butter and garlic! It is delicious, one of our staple soup.

  • Abbey says:

    How many times a day do you eat the bone broth

  • Ivette says:

    my cholesterol recently went up…could it be due to eating beef bone broth daily?

  • I have lupus and my nutritionist turned me onto bone broth instead of the plain organic broth in a box I was using as a base for most everything…. The added protein is very helpful for me, makes me feel great. Now I’ve read this and am definitely going to make my own. I was a vegetarian for 26 years but did go back to eating meat (beef and chicken and turkey, can’t handle the idea of pork or lamb) but am a stickler for 100% grass fed and humanely raised and slaughtered. And yes I call the ranchers to ask details about how the animals live and die, and the good ones are quite open and willing to talk about it. Anyway my question is about the marrow, I always heard it was so nutritious, so why would you scoop the marrow out of the bones instead of leaving it in as part of the broth? Thanks!

  • Sandra suelzle says:

    Is it possible to can bone broth in quart jars so you can have when you need time?

    • Rhonda says:

      Meats have to be pressure canned. Or you will risk botulism among other things. Most meat products,meat broth soup are canned for 90 min after a 10 min venting at the beginning (this helps to even the pressure in the canner). I usually will run the canner just before bed time or a time I’m going out of the house for awhile, and allow the canner to cool down on its own. I haven’t had much luck with not breaking jars if I help the canner along in releaseing it’s pressure.

  • Sandra says:

    Does it freeze well?

    • Abel James says:

      Yes it does! Freezing will help it keep fresh for months – we usually freeze 1-2 servings at a time and simply reheat when we’re ready for a hot cup of broth.

      • Alyson says:

        It’s a good idea to leave the lid off the jar and a couple inches of space at the top for the first night in the freezer, since the broth will expand as it freezes. I forgot to do that a few times… it’s not pretty. 🙂

  • Aimee says:

    Can I still make bone broth from the bones that I cook with in my chicken soup?? I have a package of organic chicken thighs with bones cooking on low in my crockpot along with celery, carrots and onions, garlic, ginger, water, salt and raw apple cider vinegar. When it is all finished cooking, can I still use the few bones to make a bone broth??? Usually I would get a whole chicken and use the bones from that to make the bone broth, but I was just curious if a few bones would do the job too. Thank you !!!

  • Chris says:

    Can you reuse the bones multiple times? If so how many until they are “done” and need to be replaced? How about Possibly cutting them into smaller pieces to expose more surface area to extract nutrients? Thank you for the suggestion on Bastrop Cattle Company! They are a great ranch to work with.

  • Rebekah says:

    Question…i just bought pork neck bones, not sure if they are grass fed. Would they be ok to make bone broth with?

  • Trisha says:

    I left two pints of chicken bone broth in the fridge for ten days when I went in a trip. I should probably toss? I didn’t sterilize jars because I planned to take them! Duh!n any advise?

  • Nancy says:

    I have night blood pressure and cholesterol is this ok got
    To do

  • Jessica says:

    In one of your cookbooks you have an amazing recipe for a whole chicken cooked on a bed of onion slices. The broth that is produced is phenomenal. Some nights I’ll just drink that. Could I use that as a starter? Once we’ve carved the chicken put the bones back in add some more water and vinegar and cook longer?

  • Nicole says:

    I live on a military base in Japan and am very limited. I am making my first batch of beef bone broth. I am uncertain if it is grass-fed, pasteurized, etc. Will it hurt me to drink the broth if the bones are not from grass-fed cows?

  • Kamal says:

    I would like to see the video of preparing this soup

  • Veronica says:

    Thank u all for all the info..gana definitely try it!! ?

  • Racy says:

    Why can’t you leave the meat in? Say you boil a chicken, device or not, just leave it in like soup.

  • Racy says:

    Debone not device

  • Kat Negrete says:

    Thank you for answering so many questions on this thread! It was all super helpful! Brewing up my first batch now! ????

  • KB says:

    Can you cook the broth on the stove top rather than a crock pot or pressure cooker?

  • Lola says:

    I have a high cholesterol.im in no fat diet.is this bone broth is good for me ?

  • Julie says:

    I’ve got the beef bones in the crock pot on low. Your recipe says to get the marrow out of the bones after a few hours. Ok, but now what do I do with it? It’s kind of a gelatinous pile of goo – not very appetizing.

    Of course, I saw the part about roasting the bones first and getting the marrow out after they had already been in the crock pot a while,. Looks like roasting would make the marrow a bit tastier.

    • Alyson says:

      Roasting is usually a bit tastier. But if we’re short on time, we just toss the bones right in the crockpot and scoop the marrow out after a few hours (after it’s cooked through). You can just scoop the marrow onto little plates, sprinkle with sea salt, and eat with tiny forks.

  • Karen says:

    I eat vegan. I have read that burdock root can be substituted for bones. I have juiced fresh burdock root before. Would juiced burdock root offer the same benefits? What about dried burdock root tea?

  • Kim says:

    I made bone broth soup for the first time. After cooling it down the top layer is pure white not what you said pure gold. Why is this and should I even eat this or use this to make other meals?


    • Alyson says:

      Hey Kim, by “pure gold” we mean that it’s valuable! Jars of pasture-raised rendered fat can be costly. The actual color of the fat on top is usually white, off-white, or yellowish. It sounds like you have some good fat there!

  • Dawn says:

    I make my bone broth with chicken leg bones and feet… gels beautifully… i also add garlic cloves, bay leaves, bundle of fresh thyme, a thumb of fresh ginger for flavor…

  • peggi says:

    You never answered about cholesterol. I have high cholesterol, too, and would really appreciate an answer.

  • Nancy c says:

    Does anyone know how many calories the gel part (after the fat is removed) of the broth has?
    My mom always made bone broth for us when we were growing up and made me eat the marrow because i walked pigeon toed. I hated the marrow but it has been decades and I’m willing to try it again for the health benefits, and I’m hoping my tastes have changed and that i might like it now.
    I lost a lot of weight (33% of my weight to now be 124 ponds) by counting calories, and have kept it off for over 10 years, so it is important to me to know the calories so i can work bone broth into my diet.

    • Nancy c says:

      I think I’m going to answer my own question here.
      I did some research and the gel that is left in the water after removing bones, fat, meat, and inedible stuff is basically pure collagen which is pure protein.
      So if you start by knowing the weight of raw bones you put in (assuming no other veggies or whatever has been added) and then after cooking you weigh your total product and subtract the cooked bones, fat (which, of course, is reserved for other purposes), meat, and inedibles, you will come up with the amount of collagen in your broth.
      If you subtract the collagen from the broth you will have the amount of water after evaporation.
      Doing this I was able to determine that my finished pot of broth (gel without all the other stuff) was 1483g or 3.27 pounds had a total of 161 g (5.68 oz) of collagen. If my research was correct and collagen is pretty much pure protein, that would be 161g of protein. Protein has 4 calories per gram so the whole pot was 644 calories. One 8 oz cup ended up being 98 calories.
      I’m not sure how much this will vary from pot to pot.
      I know a lot of paleo people don’t count calories but that is how I lost so much weight and I’m just transitioning into Paleo at this point so I’m still calorie conscious and thought maybe others may be as well.

  • Roxana says:

    Hi, I was wondering if I can use bones from ribs that we have eaten? They were smoked and tasted awesome. Same with chicken bones? Do they have to be raw to make bone broth?

    • Alyson says:

      They don’t need to be raw! We have a zip-top bag we keep in the freezer, and when we have chicken legs for dinner the leftover bones go in the bag. Once we have enough saved up, we use them to make broth.

      It’s best to use bones from healthy, pasture-raised animals.

  • Heidi says:

    Help. Can we cook this to long? I went for like 6 days in a crock pot. Is this still usable or does the broth go bad after a while. What’s the cut of for time with this in a crock pot in warm?? Thank you

    • Alyson says:

      Typically, beef bones can go as long as 48 hours slow cooking in the crockpot. I tried cooking a batch as long as 72 hours once, but it starts to get a weird flavor when it’s cooked too long. I think I ended up giving that batch to the dog. 🙂

      As for the “keep warm” setting, cooked food can grow bacteria if it’s left at close to room temperature for too long. I’d love to hear others opinions, but I wouldn’t let it go for longer than 6 hours on the “keep warm” setting.

  • What is the nutritional value for a cup of beef bone broth? Could I drink 2 cups for a meal replacement or would that be too much? Can you drink too much? Hah.

  • Peter Basson says:

    I have turned to Bone Broth in Desperation after i got bitten by a spider (Australia has some of the most venomous creatures on the Planet),and my immune system went haywire! I Developed Grover’s Disease, which causes unbelievabley itchy lesions that cover your back and chest and you cannot sleep or even get comfortable in any position.
    See https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lXTJXtWm19Y
    I decide to try and rectify this by producing and consuming Bone Broth, and have started my first batch in my new Crock pot, I have been a vegetarian for 50 years and it was a hard thing to do as the smell is an anathema to me!
    So hopefully within another 48 hours my immune system is going to be on the mend and according to Abel James – I will be on the way to losing 20 kg and new Vitality!

  • Leslie says:

    My crock pot has a low setting of 8-10 hours. After this time, do you just turn it back on to simmer longer (say, 24_48 hours for beef bones)? My second question is, how do you cool the broth to prevent bacterial growth? Please respond asap…can’t wait to try this recipe! Thank you!

  • Lori says:

    Hi Abel,
    You mentioned you fill your crockpot with bones. I purchased two beef soup bones and am wondering, do I still fill the crockpot full of water? Thanks!, Lori

  • MaryAlice says:

    My husband and I are both hunters and we process the meat ourselves. I haven’t considered this until now but can I use wild game bones for bone broth. They are all natural and they eat their traditional diet in the forest. We hunt both deer and elk. Any thoughts?

  • Vicki Allred says:

    How much bone broth is recommended for to see results for joint pain? I have reactive arthritis for 2 months now and looking for relief.

  • Cindy Rotermund says:

    I get a fully pastured cow every year from a local farmer, I get as many bones as i can fit in my freezer after the meat is in. I make bone broth at least once a month and freeze it. I also make bone broth from the thanksgiving turkey, same farmer raises pastured turkey and chickens. If you search you can probably find a local, organic, famer and buy fom him/her, it’s much cheeper to get the bulk meat, the problem for most is freezer space, but buying this way you pay for the price of the freezer in one year.

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