The new year always brings new food, nutrition and health trends. Sometimes they're cray-cray. Sometimes they're actually not. But we need to talk about bone broth. I know. Bone. Broth. So this trend has come up way too much for me not to address it with you all and give you the scoop. Bone broth was in the Saveur top 100 list and bone broth shops are popping up all over. Hello. It's definitely a thing now.
Bone broth is when roasted bones are simmered in water for a long period of time with the goal to extract the maximum amount of minerals, amino acids and collagen from the bones. In bone broth shops, it's basically order up like a to-go cup of coffee with some mix ins like tumeric available (Whole other trend story...seriously just watch for it).
So should you be having bone broth? Yeah! But it's not magic.
As far as benefits, bone broth is a great low calorie way to not only hydrate but have something warm and savory without over doing it with a comfort food. Think of it as a light miso soup or even hot water with lemon or ginger. It's something to do with your hands and to savor. It's a way to get a little more liquid in your life. That being said, it's unclear how much of the minerals and amino acids from the collagen and the bones themselves actually remains in the stock/bone broth. It may not even be significant depending on your process or the bones themselves! Some paleo blogs may make claims that the bone stock has 'significant healing nutrients' but there's no solid nutrition analysis numbers I can find at this point to prove or disprove that statement The closest thing you can take a look at is the USDA database for home made beef stock.
As for 'healing'? Kind of. In the same way that chicken soup is. And the minerals..aren't they helpful? Yeah, but we don't know how much are actually in the bone broth. And by the way, vegetables have minerals too....
So long story short, no this isn't the magic answer, but yes, it's an awesome snack especially in winter! And here's what you can actually do with that bone broth besides drinking it straight up: A cranberry bean stew with veggies over kale.
Home made stock or broth of ANY kind really elevates cooking veggies or beans. Serious game changer in the flavor department. I actually made both the broth and the stew in this dutch oven (below). Hideous right? But it's actually something the husband has obsessed over for many, many years. This is the same dutch oven his Mom ALWAYS made things in. And isn't half of comforting foods about tradition any way?
How to make bone broth
/// Ingredients ///
- 1.5 pounds beef bones
Roast bones on a sheet pan with walls at 400 degrees F (trust me or your oven is going to be a mess). Roast for between 30 mins and one hour depending on bones. should be fragrant and browned. Add the bones to a heavy stock pot and cover with water. Bring to a boil and simmer for several hours. Seriously. Several. Hours.
Remove bones strain through cheese cloth. Store in jar with lid. Or do the following recipe:
Cranberry Bean Stew
/// Ingredients ///
- cranberry beans: 1/2 C-3/4 C shelled
- 1 carrot
- .25 pounds lardons, cubed (or ask for thick sliced hickory smoked bacon)
- 1-2 celery stalks
- 2 cloves garlic
- 1/2 white onion
- 1.5 C bone broth
- parmesan cheese
Sauteé lardons and everything except beans and bone broth in the dutch oven. Add cranberry beans and stir and top with bone broth. Cover with lid and cook for about an hour. Stir occasionally. Most of the liquid will cook in once done and beans will be soft and creamy. Serve over greens and top with a little parmesan cheese.
Have you seen bone broth? What are your thoughts!
Dietitian Nutritionist. My husband Chris and I create food and beverage photos, videos, stopmotions and recipes. And they're really cool.