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Should homemade bone broth taste like (commercial) beef broth?

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  • Should homemade bone broth taste like (commercial) beef broth?

    Just got done trying to make my first batch of bone broth. I put about 2.5 lbs of beef soup bones in a crock pot with 2 chopped carrots, 2 stalks of celery, a medium onion, and a few tablespoons of kosher salt. Filled the pot with water and let it simmer on low for about 10 hours.

    It smells pretty appetizing, but the color is very weak - nothing like beef stock I've made from bullion or base like "Better than Bullion." The flavor is also very bland.

    It's a pretty large crock pot, maybe 6 quarts - did I just not use enough flavoring agents and bones? Or is this just how bone broth is supposed to taste?
    __________________________________________________ _____________________________
    Eureka5280: M / 38 / 235lbs / Goal: 180lbs

    Diet: Currently experimenting with higher carb (Peat-esque) primal with emphasis on beef, dairy, seafood, sugar and a bit of starch on lifting days.

    Activities: Started Stronglifts 5x5 on 3/1/14. Adding sprints and hikes soon.
    End of Year Working Set Goals: Squats-250, Bench-200, DL-315

  • #2
    Let it simmer for at least 24hrs. The longer the better. Did you add a tablespoon of vinegar to help get the minerals out of the bones?
    Needing some accountability, so here's my stats:
    34yrs old, 5'5"
    CW: 163lbs (07/2014)
    GW: 135lbs or less
    Eating mainly paleo, but including a bit of white rice (don't call the Paleo Police!)

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    • #3
      Thanks! I did, yes. I didn't have any apple cider so I used a splash of red wine vinegar instead.

      It's already in the fridge for the night, so I suppose I will put it back on the crock pot when I head out for work in the morning.

      I'm not too worried about the taste tbh, as long as the mineral and collagen content is where it should be. I suppose I'll be able to tell if it's acceptable if it is gelled tomorrow am.
      __________________________________________________ _____________________________
      Eureka5280: M / 38 / 235lbs / Goal: 180lbs

      Diet: Currently experimenting with higher carb (Peat-esque) primal with emphasis on beef, dairy, seafood, sugar and a bit of starch on lifting days.

      Activities: Started Stronglifts 5x5 on 3/1/14. Adding sprints and hikes soon.
      End of Year Working Set Goals: Squats-250, Bench-200, DL-315

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      • #4
        I just use bones, water, salt and vinegar. I add veggies in the next stage of the broth if I'm turning into something else. For me 24 hours is the minimum and if I don't get a good broth by then I know to find better bones next time. Look for marrow bones and also make sure you got a bit of meat on the bones as well. Last few batches I made were like thick Jello without the red color.

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        • #5
          Roasting the bones first gives it richer color and flavor. I made the mistake of using too much water and that also makes it weaker.

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          • #6
            Was the water much above the level of the bones? If so, you had probably got way too much water and "drowned" the stock. Also, roasting the bones until they are brown and smelling cooked produces a darker, more savoury stock. Personally, I never add any veg of any sort to stock (I do that later when making either a veg soup or sauce or whatever). I usually have six to eight pepper corns and about 5 bay leaves in there with the bones - they make the broth smell MUCH nicer as it is cooking!

            If you've used the right amount (i.e. little enough) water, the stock will "gel"when it is cooled and refrigerated. Also, you can boil up the bones a second time to get a slightly weaker but still acceptable stock - which may not have gelling qualities.

            A good thing to do is to add a pigs trotter (roast it with the beef bones) or a calf's foot to the bones for your stock to make sure you have a really good "set" and loads of extra collagen etc.

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            • #7
              Yeah, I think I probably used way too much water. I'll try to double or triple the amount of bones next time. How much salt do you guys add for every pound of beef bones?
              __________________________________________________ _____________________________
              Eureka5280: M / 38 / 235lbs / Goal: 180lbs

              Diet: Currently experimenting with higher carb (Peat-esque) primal with emphasis on beef, dairy, seafood, sugar and a bit of starch on lifting days.

              Activities: Started Stronglifts 5x5 on 3/1/14. Adding sprints and hikes soon.
              End of Year Working Set Goals: Squats-250, Bench-200, DL-315

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              • #8
                i use a 12-qt stockpot, stuff it with bones, like 7-8 pounds worth. add some carrots, garlic, ginger, bay and peppercorns. cover with water. i don't have a crockpot, so leave this going on the stove at least 24 hours. remove all the stuff, then reduce what's left. portion and freeze. i don't add salt til i am heating it to eat it. i prefer to make HUGE batches rather than trying to do it all the time.

                with beef, goat or lamb, i usually add some beef tendon or marrow bones for gelatin.

                with chicken or duck i usually add chicken feet or duck heads.

                am too lazy to roast the bones.

                your home-made should taste a billionity times better than store-bought.

                As I ate the oysters with their strong taste of the sea and their faint metallic taste that the cold white wine washed away, leaving only the sea taste and the succulent texture, and as I drank their cold liquid from each shell and washed it down with the crisp taste of the wine, I lost the empty feeling and began to be happy and to make plans.

                Ernest Hemingway

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                • #9
                  When I make broth it never looks or tastes like the commercial stuff.
                  Female, 5'3", 50, Max squat: 202.5lbs. Max deadlift: 225 x 3.

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                  • #10
                    I let mine go for 48-72 hrs continuously in a slow cooker. Turns out great. Like jell-o when it is cooled. No veggies, just bones and vinegar and water. It does not taste like commerical. I don't like it as a soup, so I use it in sauces and stuff.
                    5'6" Female, 29 Years Old, 260/195/120

                    "Discipline is choosing between what you want NOW, and what you want MOST!"

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                    • #11
                      Question:

                      At work I can only reheat my broth in a microwave .
                      Does this completely waste all the hard work of doing the broth in the 1st place ?
                      Or am I still getting some benefits?

                      Any advise?


                      From London England UK

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                      • #12
                        For 4-legged creatures, I use a pressure cooker. That it turns gelatinous in the fridge is what I look for. For fish bones, I just use a pot on top of the stove. Neither tastes like commercial because I don't salt it until I eat it as soup or use it in a recipe. I also use a couple of tablespoons of ACV in both to leach out the minerals from the bones per primal guidelines.

                        The broth from beef/bison/goat comes out a bit darker than the one from fish bones/shrimp heads, but not as dark as anything I ever bought from a grocery store.
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                        • #13
                          +1 on the pressure cooker. Works like a charm for some extra gelatinous bone broth in only a few hours.

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                          • #14
                            Granted, I haven't tried commercial broth in a long time so I may be remembering wrong, but I've made a couple batches of chicken bone broth recently that have tasted like commercial. But I tend to add a lot of salt to my food, so that's probably why.
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                            • #15
                              Thanks everybody for your comments, very helpful!


                              Originally posted by Ryancarter1986 View Post
                              Question:

                              At work I can only reheat my broth in a microwave .
                              Does this completely waste all the hard work of doing the broth in the 1st place ?
                              Or am I still getting some benefits?

                              Any advise?


                              From London England UK
                              Ryan I'm pretty sure microwaving your broth should have zero effect on the nutritional quality - after all, most of the negative effects of microwaving have to do with breaking down vitamins and enzymes that are sensitive to heat. (There shouldn't be any of those in broth since making it requires hours and hours of simmering.)
                              __________________________________________________ _____________________________
                              Eureka5280: M / 38 / 235lbs / Goal: 180lbs

                              Diet: Currently experimenting with higher carb (Peat-esque) primal with emphasis on beef, dairy, seafood, sugar and a bit of starch on lifting days.

                              Activities: Started Stronglifts 5x5 on 3/1/14. Adding sprints and hikes soon.
                              End of Year Working Set Goals: Squats-250, Bench-200, DL-315

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