Bone Marrow: Delicious, Nutritious and Underappreciated

If you’re truly interested in consuming the original Primal brain food, look no further than bone marrow: perhaps the first reliable source of large, fatty animal products our scrappy ancestors were able to procure. Yes, before we became spear-using cunning tacticians surrounding, stalking, and out-maneuvering large prehistoric ungulates, we feasted on the bones of fallen prey. Or, more accurately, we feasted on what lurked inside the bones (and the skulls, for that matter). Animal fat and protein improved the quality of our diet by making digestion less energy intensive. Bone marrow, especially, was highly caloric and nutrient dense, allowing early human ancestors to divert metabolic resources away from the costly digestion of roughage and toward bigger, costlier brains. This spurred the increase in hominid brain size that we still enjoy today.

That was around two million years ago, when Homo habilis used rudimentary stone tools to strip and smash bones. He was small and relatively diminutive – too small to take down big game – but he could hoist a big smashing stone overhead once the apex predators had gone. And he could probably fend off the hyenas, the vultures, and any other scavengers dead set on sucking the marrow. In fact, we may have learned about the delicious, nourishing paste by watching vultures drop femurs from the sky and pick out the marrow.

There’s clearly something special (nutritionally) about bone marrow. Animals go for the marrow, instinctively, for example. Wolves given access to full deer carcasses gravitated toward those bones with “high marrow yields,” taking care to “destroy the epiphyses” where the marrow was most plentiful. When I toss my dog a big smorgasbord of raw bones, organs, and muscle meat, he heads straight for the marrow before anything else, every single time. It goes marrow, liver, heart, muscle meat. It’s interesting to see what the high-powered, raw senses of a nearly obligate carnivore chooses when determining which animal product is best to eat.

As for the nutritional content, consider this data (PDF) on standard “African ruminant marrow”, courtesy of Loren Cordain. Three and a half ounces of the stuff contain 488 calories, 51 grams of fat (mostly monounsaturated, as I understand), and 7 grams of protein – extremely dense. I can understand why we were driven to come up with new methods of obtaining it. The way wild animals and traditional cultures prized it as much or more so than other fatty, rich cuts suggests that there’s more to marrow than just the fat.

As we all know, meat, especially fatty meat, contains more than just a lopsided macronutrient ratio. Meat, or any animal product, really, is the best, densest source of fat-soluble vitamins around. Liver, heart, brains, ribeye are all prize cuts for their taste, their nutrition, and the various bioavailable micronutrients that come loaded in every delicious bite. Plus, marrow isn’t just static stuff inside the bones. It fulfills a role. It fulfills many roles, actually. It’s made of osteoblasts (which form bone cells using minerals), adipocytes (fat cells), fibroblasts (which form connective tissue), and osteoclasts (which are responsible for bone resorption). I was unable to obtain detailed info regarding the mineral/vitamin content of bone marrow, but if it’s involved in bone and connective tissue formation/resorption, there are probably some choice components that make consumption particularly advantageous.

There’s another reason – a big reason, actually – why animals of all stripes are drawn toward bone marrow and why you should head down to the butcher for some bones: the taste. A subtle, creamy nuttiness, sometimes a bit sweet, always extremely rich, is not to be casually disregarded. The taste is incredible, either eaten straight up with a touch of sea salt or as part of a rich, hearty stew. Its high quality fuel imbued with vitamins and minerals, but it’s delicious fuel that’d be worth eating even if it were devoid of nutrition. Luckily for us, though (and counter to what we’re taught about nutrition), what appeals to our taste buds on a basic level usually also nourishes. Marrow may be a “sinful treat” for most, but it deserves to be a kitchen staple for Primal eaters.

Bones are cheap, and most people that buy them buy them for their dogs. You’ll even see marrow bones marked as “dog bones” in shops. Personally, I’m glad they’re an underappreciated food. If people think of them as dog food, they stay inexpensive. Dogs crave them, love them, but they can’t really spur demand and constrain supply. They alone can’t drive the prices up. So, for the time being, marrow bones, even the grass-fed stuff, remain highly affordable.

Look for broad bones with big thick tubes of marrow. The bones themselves are great fun for making stock afterwards, but you’re paying for the marrow, so make sure you pick some meaty ones. I’d skip Whole Foods. They charge about four bucks a pound for marrow bones, and they’re from conventional, grain-fed cows. If you’re buying grain-fed, you might as well buy them from a local grocer for a couple bucks or, better yet, from an Asian grocer for less than a dollar per pound. Grass-fed is best, of course, and the best way to get quality grass-fed bone marrow bones is from local or online farmers. Try Eat Wild if your farmers’ market meat guy doesn’t carry any. A few of the bone-in cuts will also have a nice shot of marrow, so keep that in mind.

The simplest, best way to prepare marrow is to roast the bones upright at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for 15 minutes. Fat will leak out the bottom, and you want to eat it all, so use a pan, or at least catch the drippings with molded foil. When the marrow begins to slightly bubble, it’s ready to be eaten. Thicker bones may need a bit more time in the oven, or you could do what I do and eat it slightly pink. Buy from a trustworthy, reputable source and you’ll be fine. Use a narrow spoon or fork to scrape out the marrow (you can even use a dedicated marrow spoon, if you can find one) and top with a bit of coarse sea salt. Serve with a small parsley, shallot, and lemon juice salad to cut through the creaminess of the marrow.

Getting every last bit of marrow out can be hard for beginners. The interior of the bone isn’t smooth, but rather rutted and uneven. If your spoon or fork isn’t fulfilling its duty to your satisfaction, use a combination of applied suction and probing tongue. The suction will loosen any stubborn bits, allowing the tongue to snap ‘em right up. Another option entirely is to forgo the cutlery and apply suction directly to the loaded bone. It’s a tricky move, because you’ve got to strike a balance between warm enough to slide out and hot enough to burn your mouth, but if you’re able to master the preemptive slurp, nothing compares to a mouthful of gelatinous marrow.

If you haven’t tried it yet, get out there and buy some marrow bones. Beef is standard, but any other large mammals will work. And the next time you do a big bone-in roast, whether it’s beef, veal, random African ruminant, or lamb leg, treasure the bone. Don’t dump it into the stock pot right away. Instead, lay it out lovingly on a flat, sturdy surface. Slice it lengthwise if you’ve got the means; otherwise, take a sledgehammer or a big rock and reduce the bone to pieces. Pick the shards clean and suck them dry. Then, and only then, may you toss them in the stockpot (although seeing as how those shards went spelunking in your mouth, you may want to limit the resultant soup’s ultimate audience).

Sucking on marrow bones seems to unlock latent primal (small “p”) urges in all of us, but that’s okay (as long as you avoid it as a first date meal). If you find yourself turning progressively more feral as the marrow disappears from the bone, don’t worry. Even vegetarians have been observed scrounging, slurping, and gnawing at the remains of a bone marrow meal. When it comes to getting the last delicious bits of bone marrow, total paleo reenactment is the only justifiable course of action.

Are you a fan of bone marrow? Never tried it? Share your thoughts in the comment board. Thanks, everyone!

Sifu Renka Flickr Photo (CC)

About the Author

Mark Sisson is the founder of Mark’s Daily Apple, godfather to the Primal food and lifestyle movement, and the New York Times bestselling author of The Keto Reset Diet. His latest book is Keto for Life, where he discusses how he combines the keto diet with a Primal lifestyle for optimal health and longevity. Mark is the author of numerous other books as well, including The Primal Blueprint, which was credited with turbocharging the growth of the primal/paleo movement back in 2009. After spending three decades researching and educating folks on why food is the key component to achieving and maintaining optimal wellness, Mark launched Primal Kitchen, a real-food company that creates Primal/paleo, keto, and Whole30-friendly kitchen staples.

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246 thoughts on “Bone Marrow: Delicious, Nutritious and Underappreciated”

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    1. I roasted big beef marrow bones and veggies for broth and so decided to be brave and try the marrow. It was white and grey and gelatinous….and greasy as all get out. I am not queasy in general but this was one ugly food…and not particularly tasty. I put it into my broth pot with everything else because I am sure it’s nutritious but appetizing? …nope.

  1. my 92 year old grandfather always sucks the marrow out of chicken bones after he’s done eating the meat. my chinese friends also make sure to eat all the cartilage. but my husband wins the prize- while getting ready to make soup from the neck bones of a pig, he plucked out the spinal cord and ate it without even cooking it. he said chinese cooks always do that. he got sick with something later- don’t know if it was related or not.

    1. I wouldn’t recommend eating anything from a pig raw. Pigs are very… parasitic.

      1. As I understand it, the high rate of parasite development in pigs is a direct result of traditional American farming practices, like the use of scrap feed (often containing pork scraps) and housing conditions, that favor the life-cycles of the parasites. Rare(r) pork is becoming more and more the norm at restaurants as higher quality cleanly raised pigs are more able to be sourced.

        1. Not true. Wild boars and pigs often contain so many worms and parasites that essentially their meat is uneatable for human consumption.

        2. Actually the opposite. Farmed pigs aren’t parasitic or as parasitic (probably fed dewormers and the such)wild normal ones are. Pigs aren’t kosher for a reason and I think it’s because it was found it’s not safe to eat raw.

  2. I’ve tried it and scraped it out and put it in soup I made. Problem is, the grass fed beef joint where I got them charges out the wazoo for them. 6 marrow bones (small ones at that, about and inch and a half long and that much in diameter was over 6 bucks! I can get a whole pound of ground beef for that.
    On the other hand… They also sell “pet food” which according to the ingredients is “Raw beef and organ meat trim – including liver, heart, kidney and tongue. All things most like a dog or cats natural diet”. Sounds like something I’D like!

  3. I found using wooden chopsticks to be a good method for getting bone marrow out.

    I’ve actually been making stock and marrow at the same time. In a slow cooker I put the bones with water about half way up. Once the marrow is done, I take the bones out, eat the marrow and then return the bones to the stock to simmer longer. Makes for a good mid-day snack while you’re waiting for soup later.

    1. Thanks for the tip on the chopsticks-they were a HUGE help with my 2 year old trying them for our first time! I will have to try your method of slow cooking them to get both the benefits. I roasted them per Mark, then put the empty bones in the slow cooker but didn’t feel it was very brothy.

      1. I find my broth so much tastier when I add a pastured chicken carcass, 2 carrots, 2 celery sticks, 1 onion, and 1 tbs of apple cider vinegar (to help extract the nutrients from the bones). I usually add about three grass-fed beef bones to that and cover it with water in the slow cooker for 20+ hours. The marrow slides right out of the bones when it’s all done. I’m not a big fan of eating the marrow straight up so I mix it with ground beef for extra nutritious burgers or make a sweet treat with it: marrow from one bone, 1 cup coconut milk, pinch of cinnamon, squeeze of honey, and wisked over low heat. I threw in a little coconut flour to thicken and some blueberries and even though they were hot when they exploded in my mouth, it was a delicious dessert! I might try to make a custard with the marrow next…

    2. My dogs love marrow bones, but the vet told to be careful do the high fat content. I know they also make delicious stock for so ups. A big concern, however, what about the fat and cholesterol issue? Weight Watchers would never recommend this?

      1. Are you on Weight Watchers? My doctor likes that I am eating it as it is healthy for other problems I have but I could not figure out the points plus value.

        1. Weightwatchers is ridiculous. Go with the Ketogenic diet. Healthy fats like bone marrow are excellent on the Keto diet. The basic Keto diet is 5% carbs, 20% protein, 70% healthy fats. That diet along with intermittent fasting (not eating for 16 or more hours per day is the healthy way to go.

    3. Thanks… i’ve been using the even to roast the bones for the marrow “harvest” and then crock pot to make the broth. for me, your method makes most sense.

  4. I just finished eating the last bit of lamb I had made with the marrows. It seems more of an American cultural phenomenon where organs, marrow etc. are looked upon as ‘weird’ and ‘yuck’. Sometimes my spleen pops out of my left eye when I go on a date and the girl goes: “I don’t eat anything with bones in it”.
    One way to make a nice ‘marrow only’ broth is to boil the bones in salt, chillies, pepper, ginger, garlic, cinnamon sticks, cloves and cardamom. Gotta love spices!

    1. Sounds very much like the broth I make for my Vietnamese PHO soup.

  5. Sounds like something I will definietly have to try- seems like a good alternative for this poor college student!

  6. I’ve never tried bone marrow, but I’m sold after reading this.

    A sledgehammer on the bones sounds very primal indeed! I’m tempted to grab my hammer right now and head for the mountains in search of prey.

    1. Try paleolithic flake technology and brush up on your flint napping skills. It’s the best and most traditional way to open up dem bones.

  7. Luckily for us, the farmer we get our grass fed 1/4 cow from gives the bones and offal for free…As no one else who gets part of that cow wants them usually, we get all of the bones, the liver, the heart and the tongue.

    When I order, I also go for Shank steaks, as you get that nice marrow bone in the center…YUMMY!!!

    Lucky us!!!

      1. Notice how healthy they (and their mother) look and not overweight like most!

        1. Those are Tom Naughton’s daughters — Tom wrote, directed, and produced “Fat Head” — a movie y’all should be familiar with!

          Those girls encourage me to consider trying marrow — the mere thought of which freaks me out! But .. I’m gonna be brave and actually try it. (eek.)

        2. Just think of it as butter.

          More than one cooking show host has referred to bone marrow as “the butter of the Gods”.

          After roasting some marrow bones:

          Make some italian or french bread toast rounds and spread the morrow on.

          Pulse some parsely and shallot or scallions in a food processor and sprinkle on top with a little sea salt.

          Ohhhh so goood!

    1. Ask for the tendon as well. It comes from the back legs and is used in many asian dishes. I am not fond of the texture so I just use the broth. I put the tendon in water and cook it at least 24 hours in the crock pot, then package and freeze the broth. It does amazing things for joints and has richness, but virtually no flavor. I get these free or for a small packaging fee for the same reason. Kidney is also very good. Soak it overnight in buttermilk, then cut of the fibrous parts to get about 3/4 inch chunks. Cook briefly on high heat, remove from pan, use the juices to make a sauce, add them back in and serve. Any sauce which is good with snails is good with kidney. I also put chopped organ meats in my mincemeat. This way I sneak the nutrition in for those who are squeamish. Ask for the suet, it is the kidney fat, and renders into really amazing cooking fat/

    2. I miss those days when organs, bones etc. were given away or dirt cheap. Thanks in part to websites like this one, the word is out and consumer demand has gone up for the off bits. I remember buying grassfed liver, marrow bones, spleen, tongue etc. for $3 a pound back in 2008 from Slankers and US Wellness meats and they were almost always in stock. Now they are almost always out of stock of that stuff and the organs are as high as $12 a pound. Crazy.

  8. “As for the nutritional content, consider this data (PDF) on standard “African ruminant marrow”, courtesy of Loren Cordain. Three and a half ounces of the stuff contain 488 calories, 51 grams of fat (mostly monounsaturated, as I understand), and 7 grams of protein – extremely dense.”

    Bless you Mark! A few months ago I searched high and low for this information and failed. Bone marrow is like ambrosia.

    1. I haven’t thought about eating marrow for years. But when I was a kid, I also used to crack the chicken bones and suck out the marrow. I don’t think anyone else in my family did that. I probably read about marrow somewhere, but I think it was mostly instinctive!

      Meanwhile, I made what was going to be a delicious gelatinous ham stock from my Easter leftovers–full of melted connective tissue and lots of yummy fat. But at some point I recently acquired a resident rodent, and my cat is no huntress. Guess what drowned itself in my ham stock! The rat, not the cat. Boohoohoo. I’m pretty primal but I’m not primal enough to eat rat! And yes, I shrieked a girly shriek. So down the drain it went.

  9. “if you’re able to master the preemptive slurp, nothing compares to a mouthful of gelatinous marrow.”

    this made me LOL. good work.

    I oftern eat whole chicken bones. If the bones are cooked enough that the outter bone is crunchy enough to eat, has the marrow has lost most of the nutrition?

    1. One of the traits distinguishing fat-soluble vitamins from water-soluble is that FS vitamins stand up much better to heat exposure. So you’re still getting plenty of those, plus the minerals, which are not affected by cooking.

      With water-solubles it’s a bit more tricky. The good news is you can get at least some of your Bs from raw muscle meats and raw fish, and of course vitamin C’s readily obtained through fruits and leaves. (If you can find raw milk, it’s available there too.)

      1. Can you tell me how much b12 is in the beef marrow and does it deminish its value during the cooking process as I think b12 is water soluable. my friend has b12 deficiency and i am researching foods that she can eat.
        Thank you

  10. I grew up eating bone marrow, because my father did. He came over to Canada from Poland, where he and his parents escaped from the Nazi death camps – having very little money and needing to start life over, they were very poor for a few years. Bone marrow and fish oil were his “vitamins” in those days.
    Bone marrow is very well known in most of Europe to be extremely healthy, but it seems the last generation has forgotten (and in America, did anyone ever really know?). It’s truly delicious stuff, I loved it more than candy or pasta as a child!

    1. Hey, another Slav! 🙂
      My Serbian parents’ favourite childhood treat was bone marrow spread on some bread and sprinkled with paprika…. I always thought it was gross and refused to try it. Now I wish I had!

    2. We now have death camps here in America as well… they are referred to as FEMA camps… Hitlary Clinton calls them FUN camps.
      Back to the marrow… i’m about to indulge in sum elk bone 🙂

  11. I have never tried bone marrow, but after reading this I must give it a try very very soon.

    It sounds very delicious and I love the fact that it is very nutritious. Always love to try something different!

    Officially being primal is so awesome. Eating no grains (except for 300 calories of irish steel cut oats a week) opens up opportunities to eat so many different kinds of foods. It’s awesome. Had I not be interested in Primal food then I would not be up for trying bone marrow!

    Fortunately I am 🙂

      1. I used to eat cereal 6 days a week for breakfast. I did this for several years but stopped about 6 months ago.

        Around two times a week the cereal was oatmeal.

        I always had old fashioned quaker oats. Then, I discovered irish steel cut oats. I love them do death – way better then old fashioned.

        Irish oatmeal is the only grain I eat and I only eat 300 calories a week. Not bad for someone who ate tons of grains just a few months ago.

        And, oatmeal in moderation promotes clear skin because of the selenium content (I think thats it).

        I make it healthy and add berries, hemp seeds, almonds, etc. One serving has around 24 carbs I believe – not too bad.

        Plus, I do not have many idea for breakfast right now. Do you want to help me out? I eat chocolate coconut pancakes on sunday, an omelette 3 days a week, oatmeal twice a week, and a green smoothie with one avocado the other day.

        Any ideas that do not include eggs would be great! Anyone??????????

        1. Try fruit and cottage cheese maybe.

          I also like stir fried veggies and bacon.

        2. You might try this link Todd:

          This morning I had my first ‘primal’ smoothie I made with 1/4 c. full-fat greek yogurt, 1/4 c. coconut milk about 1/2 c. unsweetened almond milk, 1 scoop of whey powder, 1/2 c. frozen blueberries and 1/4 of a frozen banana (for the thickness but I want to ditch the banana so I’m gonna mess with that) and some ground flax seeds.

          I was an oatmeal-o-phile until about three weeks ago and I can’t say I’ve even thought about an oatmeal breakfast since.

        3. Reply to Milton:

          I don’t eat dairy. Especially during right now during my primal based diet experiment with absolutely no dairy.

          But, down the road when I can afford grass fed, raw cottage cheese, I shall try some.

          Bacon with steamed veggies sounds good. Thanks!

        4. The cookbook Nourishing Traditions has recipes for reducing the phytic acid content of oats, which contain a lot, if you’re that attached to them. Believe me, I understand; I feel the same way about rice. (I’m Cajun. What can I say?)

        5. I haven’t made many coverts to this, but I have sauteed chicken livers (sometimes with chicken hearts, if I can get them) for breakfast. Sometimes I add some spinach. It really good sauteed in coconut ghee, with some salt and pepper.

          Chicken livers are pretty cheap, too.

        6. Thanks a lot for the ideas guys. I really do appreciate it.

          I am not completely attached to oatmeal. But, I just bought a large tin of it. So I have 18 servings to eat up. I can make it last. I’ll have my second serving of the week on Saturday and then I will go with 1 serving a week allowing it to last about 17 more weeks.

          I LOVE smoothies to death. So easy and you can make them very healthy.

          Mark (or anyone else)

          Is there a limit as to how many smoothies/shakes you should eat? If not, I would go for 2-3 a day, literally.


          Thanks for the link. It gives me loads of ideas!

          I found this – I must try this immediately 🙂

          I am going to make this smoothie tomorrow… what do you guys think???

          -1 california avocado
          -2 Tbs coconut oil
          -1/2 cup frozen blueberries
          -1 scoop whey protein powder

          FitDay says 622 cals, 50g fat, 27g protein, 21 g carbs (11 is fiber).

          Not too bad, yea?

        7. Hey Todd, there is a free cookbook at; It has a lot of great breakfast ideas. My wife is in a similar situation, she ate a lot of grains until recently. Now we bake banana bread, muffins, biscotti, etc. for her breakfasts. They’re all primal!

        8. Brasil nuts have the highest selenium content; 1 a day will give you all the selenium you need!
          I eat berries with a cup of cream for breakfast or sausages and pork sides (like bacon but without the additives) fried in butter with some fresh veggies 🙂 No need to stick to traditional breakfast foods.

        9. I often eat yogurt with some different fruits for breakfast every morning. I read that you don’t eat dairy. That’s too bad, because I don’t know much that would be more “primal” then throwing some milk in a calf or goat stomach, letting it “turn” and slurping it down with fresh fruits!!! mmm tasty! Not sure what to say about the marrow that hasn’t already been said… Yum!!!!!

        10. Please be careful especially if eating Brazil nuts, as I have read that too much selenium can give you some very bad effects. The right amount is a good thing, but don’t overdo it. 🙂

  12. I am a big fan of the marrow, but I have hard time finding it. Any suggestion?

    Dont say “go and ask at butcheries”… I can’t find any in my area… 92660

  13. I eat a lot of it when I was a kid. My mom would boil the bones in a stew where the marrow would become so soft, it just fell out (then the dog got the bone.)

    Sometimes she would leave the marrow in the stew, but other times, I would slap it on some white bread (of death) with some butter and salt. Good times! Good times!

  14. I believe another reason our ancestors may have gone for marrow, is that even after the meat has rotted of the bones, the marrow is protected inside the bone for some time.

    I grew up eating marrow bones, another great “bone dish” is stew and soups from oxtails. With some of the bigger sections it is possible to slurp out the marrow.

  15. Just this weekend I decided to try marrow for the first time. It was actually a lot tastier than I expected. I scraped a good chunk of the Easter ham’s marrow out and dug in. Thankfully my 7 year old joined in; the kid will eat anything I put in front of him.

  16. I always use bones. I make all my own stock and especially when I hit the veal vendor at the market, I buy 20# of bones for making demi-glace. There is a great Michale Simon restaurant nearby that serves marrow on the menu and let me tell you, roasted bones are incredible.

    Great one Mark!

  17. That sounds delicious! Americans are so weird. Why have I never tried this stuff before?!

  18. Another bone marrow and demi-glace lover here.
    Beef shin meat is great too – slices of leg with large marrow bones in the center. Braise the shin meat, simmer for a few hours, removing the marrow before it melts into the pot, and saving the bones for bone stock of course. mmmmm

  19. I’ve been thinking of trying devilled marrow bones for a while, adding butter, paprika, and a dash of cayenne to the roasting bones.
    Your article has inspired me to buy some bones tonight.

  20. I’m another of those lucky b#ggers who get’s bones and ox liver free from my ‘meat dealer’ (it’s free to customers who usually feed it to their dogs) but when I tried marrow a while ago I was really underwhelmed. It’s just a tasteless jelly as far as I can tell. In the UK I grew up eating ‘bread and dripping’, dripping being what you call beef tallow in the US, but without the bread it’s just not a goer. Maybe I’ll try cold marrow and see if I like that any better.

    1. Darren, where do you get your marrow from in the UK? Is it just a local butcher? I’ve been searching online and I can’t find any online butchers who sell bone marrow here in the UK.

    2. Bone marrow will not taste good from factory animals, in fact the organs, the bone marrow and the tongue are good ways to taste the quality of the meat.

      Try bone marrow from pasture raised farm animals, 100% grass fed cattle, etc…, the taste is amazing.

      I myself used to eat bone marrow as a child, than I moved to U.S. where the bone marrow tasted as you sad a “tasteless jelly” or worse.

      The bone marrow is a primal diet for humans thus natural, but the animal it comes from must also be raised eating its natural diet.

  21. OK, wow, first time I’ve seen marrow recommended since living in England (although I’m not gonna lie, kind of grossed me out!). I imagine the “low fat” killed a lot of marrow consumption.

    1. We were already way too enamored with what Weston Price called “the displacing foods of modern commerce” here in the States, even before the low-fat craze. Actually, that’s been a problem in England as well. But at least you guys held on to your organ meats a while longer. Some ethnic groups in the States did as well, but a lot of folks just dropped ’em, trying to be “modern” and all that.

  22. Marrow bones are a staple in my house, there are always a dozen or more in my fridge. My husband and kids don’t like the looks of the marrow in the bones, so I prepare it in soups or stews for the family. For myself, I will bake a couple of bones in the oven and place them on a layer of eggplant and mushroom, spiced to taste. The veges bake in the escaping marrow oil and what stays in the bone is my main meal.

  23. A little too primal for me. I’ll leave the bone picking to the rest of ya.

  24. After I got out of hospital a couple of years ago, my herbalist strongly recommended a bone marrow soup to help recover.

  25. I love this post! I have not tried bone marrow yet, but now I’m inspired! Sluuuuurp!

  26. Bone marrow rocks… have been eating it all my life, mostly in soups. Will have to try cooking them in the oven.

  27. I. Love. Marrow. I also learned to eat it from my dad and older generation of the family, brought from Eastern Europe.

    Just today, in fact, I enjoyed a sidewalk cafe lunch with a lamb shank. I sucked every bit of marrow I could get at for dessert, to the utter amusement and disapproval of my table mates. To access it in the long, narrow bone, I used a trick I learned by watching this Anthony Bourdain video: — with my straw!

  28. LLLLOOOVVEE TTTHHIIISSS! Anything affordable is right up my alley. The recession is no excuse to not eat primal after this post! Can’t wait to try this, my hubby will freak! 🙂

  29. We purchased some organic marrow bones that we boiled to make a broth and were thinking of then consuming the marrow…but we all found it a bit too…strong. Although I really like the concept, and WANT to like it, I personally felt almost sick from tasting it.
    I guess to each his/her own.
    we ended up using the wicked broth for soup but felt bad for wasting the bones/marrow 🙁

    (ps: it wasnt that cheap actually 🙁 )

    1. I also find it too strong and almost sickening. I’m not that squeamish either.

    2. Organic is a meaningless term, since even CAFO meat can be labeled as organic.Try bone marrow from 100% grass fed free range cattle.
      As I’ve stated before, the bone marrow gives away the true quality of the meat you just bought. Bones and the narrow inside them are the foundations of all vertebrates. A good healthy animal will have a strong healthy foundation. When people are not eating a proper diet such as lots of sugars, the body starts tearing material from its own bones (self-cannibalising) to get the materials it needs to be able to make use of the sugars.
      If the bone marrow taste is off or yucky, it is because the animal was raised eating unnatural diet, fed drugs, hormones, etc… and the bone marrow will taste like a sick animal.

  30. i just had some bone marrow today!

    i loooove the stuff, i buy from 3 farmers that have it available, and im pretty sure not many other people request them, which means i get loads of bones a week 🙂

    1. Thanks… i’ve been using the even to roast the bones for the marrow “harvest” and then crock pot to make the broth. for me, your method makes most sense.

  31. Found a wonderful cookbook featuring the recipes of Chef Georges Perrier of Le bec fin in Philadelphia. He uses Bone Marrow in many dishes that doesn’t even feature beef. His instruction on preparing marrow and removing it from the bone is remarkable.

  32. I’ve had bone marrow in France. It’s a delicacy there and highly prized. It was delicious! Great flavor and big chunks of kosher salt on top.

    1. When you think about it, French people still really go for the traditional stuff, the animal foods that have historically been so good for human beings. Then we call it a “paradox” when so many fewer of them suffer heart attacks than we do over here. Nah, I don’t think it’s any great secret. I wouldn’t be surprised if the ones suffering heart attacks over there are the ones who decided they didn’t have time to cook traditionally anymore. No wonder they didn’t want McDonald’s there. 😛

  33. marrow is curiously underrated in the paleo community, seeing that its so… paleo.

    i eat most of my marrow raw, then simmer the bones for the glycine and cartilage etc for 24 hrs.

    raw marrow is like durian to me; ambrosia…

  34. i love bone marrow… deifnitely have had it, its cheap so of coursei have! cook it the same way too, quick calorie dense food!

    if you do beef shank and further slow cook the meat around the bone…melt-in-your-mouth goodness i swear

  35. yeah love the marrow
    I even do the really primal thing and break some bones up with my teeth (if needed of course) to get marrow bounty within 🙂

  36. I get marrow bones for $.25/lb from a local butcher.

    Really tasty stuff.

    1. I’m not convinced you get prion diseases from eating animals. That certainly doesn’t explain scrapie or chronic wasting disease–sheep don’t eat sheep, and deer don’t eat deer.

      I’ve heard it postulated that mad cow may actually be caused by a combination of mineral imbalance or deficiency (specifically of copper, I think) plus exposure to certain classes of pesticides which are used for tick control. The latter in particular is something cattle have in common with deer and sheep; even wild deer sometimes experience their territories being sprayed by humans in an attempt to control Lyme disease.

      Anyway, even if it were true that we could get mad cow from eating beef, the contagious tissues are those of the central nervous system. If you’re worried, eat marrow from the leg bones and stay away from spinal tissue or beef brains.

  37. PBers in Vancouver can get buffalo bones at $2/lb from Hills Foods. They pack a lot of marrow in them!

    My friend from Pakistan says they commonly ate the marrow, and gave me the advice that when breaking open a bone with an axe to first create a small weakness on one side of the bone, then flip it around and give it one big chop. Otherwise the bone is likely to splinter in many pieces if the initial weak point isn’t created.

  38. Oh, wow, this makes me hungry! I love bone marrow! When I was a kid, my Mom thought I was so weird for eating chicken and beef marrow. I knew I was on to something! It’s so tasty.

  39. Is this not one of the ways that Jacob-Crutchfields’s disease is spread? Through blood (marrow) and brain products? Am I wrong?

  40. Did not see previous posts about mad cow, but if you are going to eat ANY of this stuff, make sure it is organic, and not from a diseased cow…and I would NEVER eat chicken marrow…nasty little birds. The meat is okay, just not the marrow…other animals that are fed ground-up chicken parts do get ill from being fed their offall.

  41. In London, famed head-to-tail eatery St Johns Restaurant’s top dish running is the roasted bone dish. Fell in love with it 12 years ago when resident in London and still relish it to this day.

    Osso Bucco (veal shanks) anywhere is also heavenly and the marrow IS the dessert!

  42. At the risk of opening a can of worms… I love marrow and while I don’t buy 100% grass fed, it seems important to encourage people to buy humanely raised animal parts. If anyone hasn’t seen Food, Inc. , you should watch it and know where your average meat product comes from. It’s not pretty, sanitary, humane, or anything Grok could have imagined. A cow raised on a pile of it’s own manure and fed antibiotics to stay alive in that condition may have some not so nutritious byproducts of that process. I am not a bleeding heart, just think the industrial food processing is a far cry from normal or healthy. Best to all. Enjoy the marrow – I do.

  43. I am a big fan of marrow. I usually roast it like you mentioned but I also cut the bones into inch long pieces and then put them into a soup. Either way its yummy. But it can be very very very rich so you want to have it with some refreshing like a salad. It also always gives me a bit of a high afterwards. Nothing weird just I get full of energy. I always think its because Im getting a big whack of nutrients.

    1. Sounds perfect for perking me back up after I hit the gym! I’m just trying to transition into a healthy lifestyle after really getting off track. This sounds like the way to go 🙂

    2. Hi Dan, interesting what you describe about the high after bone marrow. Did this come immediately after the first time? How much do you eat for this effect? And most of all, did you notice any other health effects, good or bad?

  44. I love love LOVE bone marrow. Regularly get pork bones and make soup with watercress… and I will be the only hacking the bones into pieces getting the marrow out.

  45. Great post Mark! My mother always sucked the marrow out of bones after a roast dinner. Once she got a bit carried away and actually chipped one of her front teeth. lol. I can now get bones from grass-fed sheep and cows, so I think I might just do that 🙂

  46. My mother loves marrow so much it could almost be jokingly referred to as an obsession. I suppose I ought to try it, too, next time. 😛

  47. I have been wanting to make osso buco for some time. Anyone have a favorite recipe?

  48. I would love to try this, it sounds so tasty! I have difficulty getting any meat on the bone into my kitchen at all, because my fiance won’t eat anything on the bone! How ridiculous is that! The girl will eat all manner of meats especially on the bone, but the ‘man’ get’s all sissy and grossed out by the sight of a chicken drumstick! Feh, I feel the need to smack him round the face with a big ol’ fish…

    1. haha. I think that’s because a lot of men do not cook so they are easily grossed out.
      (i have not heard many people use “feh”. it sounds lovely & quaint)

    2. It’s not ON the bone, it’s IN the bone, you’ll be fine… right?

  49. FINALLY…I can’t believe this post is finally here. I can’t count using the grains of sand on a beach the number of times I’ve been remanded by my mum for trying to tackle the marrow after a lamb dinner being told it’s unhealthy, bad for you, and disgusting and yet feeling this emptiness inside like something really good has been taken away from me, good enough only for the family dog no more! I’m off to the farmers market on saturday to get me some marrow bones! Thank you Mark!!

  50. What bones are the best? My Beef order won’t be ready until June, but i would like to know what bone’s i should request when the butcher calls and as how my cow is to be prepared. Also, do you just store the unused bones in the freezer i take it?


  51. Gosh, I love you guys. I felt like a freak most of my life for drewling every time there was a bone marrow in sight. My boyfriend was completely grossed out when he caught me in the act one day:) Before going primal I was just staying away from that stuff thinking I wasn’t doing myself any good ingesting this fatty, creamy, yummy goodness.
    Chuck O, pretty much any bone that’s round in form will have a bone marrow in it. Go for the legs and feet and you can’t go wrong. Or just ask them for all the marrow bones you can get and they’ll know what to do.

  52. My father’s story about Bone Marrow Soup that saved his brother’s life and leg:

    When my father (born 1915) was a kid, his brother had a bad bicycle accident and broke his leg. It was set wrong and there were lots of problems including spending months in traction in a children’s hospital in another city. He became very weak and sick. His family brought him home because the hospital wasn’t helping. At home their mother made him bone marrow soup. That was about all he could eat. My father fed it to him because he was so weak that he couldn’t even feed himself. He got better, stronger and the bone healed. He always walked with a limp because of the damage done, but the bone healed strong. It was the bone marrow soup that saved his life and healed his bone.

  53. I’m a first-generation American raised by famous old Russian Ballet dancers who HAD to be fit strong and healthy thru revolutions and wars and famines as well as fat times. Got raised holistic before it was called that and using herbs and food as my medicine with sauna and massage to rehab and stay Well LONG before we even had the phrase “Wellness Lifestyle.”
    I’ve sucked bones all my life to great taste and benefit.
    We used to FIGHT over the marrow bones from soup and spread it on GOOD bread. My butcher tells me most of my neighbors buy the marrow bones for their DOGS–Thanks for telling people how good for PEOPLE it is too Mark!

  54. I’ve recently ordered some grass fed meats from a supplier in TX:

    They sell marrow bones at ~ 1$ – 1.4$/lb. You will need to add S&H to that so you’ll be better off ordering other stuff as well. But the marrow bones were a great value.

  55. not just mammal bones… most fish bones are chewable, and I have yet to meet the chicken bone I couldnt chew and swallow.

  56. For your marrow recipe can the bones be cooked from frozen or should they be defrosted first?

  57. i found this article immensely enlightening.

    in the past year i experienced an intense and overlong period of malnutrition.

    when presented with food again, strange cravings ensued
    the top most of which was boned meat
    and much to my embarrassment, the soft stuff lurking in them. including the bones of pot roasts and hams, when prepared

    i now can see through this article that it was simply a primal body response to the most nutritious part of the animal.

  58. I like to pressure cook the bones…then get the marrow out and use the stock and the marrow in stew or soup. I like the way the gelatin in the marrow sets up and thickens the stew or soup.

  59. Hey does anyone know if marrow is acid-causing in the degistive system? I’m on a very strict diet for candidiasis (so bad it started causing MS symtoms!!) and I’ve been advised to eat meat only twice a week 🙁 because it causes an acidic condition, making my problems worse. Anybody know if it’s the same for saturated animal fats?? ….I’m still eating lard, which I refuse to give up!!!

  60. For anyone in the UK, I’ve found a great Butcher’s up in Scotland who pride themselves in their grass fed beef, free range pork, and game. They also sell marrow bones £1/kg. They deliver all over the UK. Website is:

  61. I read Cure Tooth Decay:Heal and Prevent Cavities with Nutrition. The author was driven to find answers when his toddler daughter’s teeth started to rot away. He implemented what he learned from the work of Weston Price. Bone marrow was a daily meal for his daughter in order to restore her health.

  62. My Mom is from Germany, one of my favorite “Mom” dishes is bone marrow dumplings.

    Just look to regions of the world that have been through a few famines in past history, there’ll be plenty of these recipes.

  63. The Meat is so Toxic these days I would be super wary of your source of animal flesh…
    Since I practice compassion for all living beings and I myself would never kill an animal, I also do not pay people to do it for me.
    That being said, I do love your website. ~ The book The World Peace Diet has alot to say about animals which could help you find the highest sources of bone marrow possible.~
    peace to you!~

    1. Tammy, what is it exactly that you eat then? It’s obviously not meat, but it couldn’t be vegetarian either since that also requires paying someone to kill living beings. You don’t think farmers just let insect and mammalian “pests” consume their crops do you? I suppose you could grow all your own food and pick the pests off by hand, but that doesn’t seem very practical.

      While I agree it is important to be as compassionate as possible towards animals, I do not think it’s realistic to think that people can survive without animals dying and being killed. Whether you consume the animals directly or they die in the production of the food you eat, they are still being killed. Personally, I cannot understand the implication that one form of killing is compassionate and the other is not.

  64. Bone marrow can also be used, and eaten, raw. Mikael has a great recipe that I encourage everyone to try at

    To pop the raw marrow out of the bones, just let the bones soak for one hour in cold water and then push with your thumb. One you have those little medals of bone marrow, they’re great in your vegetables too — I always have some in sauteed cabbage or in baked chards.

  65. Sally Fallon wrote a great article on the merits of broth, bone marrow exaction in the process being one of the main factors for the nutrition. She argues that more ‘soup’ kitchens could ‘cure’ world hunger due to the inexpensive way to feed such pure nutrition to those without.

  66. I was in Sydney on vacation and I had a chance to try bone marrow at Aria Restaurant. Probably one of the best dinners I’ve ever had. The marrow tasted fatty but it also tasted good at the same time.

    I should try it again at home.

  67. Inspired by this post, I went off to the grocery store to try bone marrow for the first time. They didn’t have any, so I decided to try something else I’ve been meaning to incorporate into my diet… beef liver! I can see why your dog prefers it over muscle meat. It is delicious and the texture is creamy and much easier to chew.

    However, I noticed one problem that I also had when I stopped cutting all the fat off meat and eating it instead… I have a psychological block due to years of living in a culture where “fat, organs, and marrow are gross!” Judging by my girlfriend’s refusal to be in the room when I ate my meal, I am far from alone.

    Does anyone else find that one of the hardest parts of transitioning to paleo-type diets is that they come up against these internal barriers even though they find the foods delicious? Does anyone have any ideas how to overcome this?

    I find it kinda hilarious that the very foods we have an innate tendency to want to eat (based on documented hunter-gatherers) are the same ones that we have been indoctrinated into thinking are disgusting.

    1. eat the foods a little at a time. i find they are acquired tastes. liver other organs and such. Marrow is pretty ‘normal’ tasting though.

  68. So where is a good place to look for bone with marrow? I live in the city and only have access to Whole Foods and the like. Will the butcher counter in my super market have them? Are they advertised at the counter or should I just ask?

  69. omigosh. WONDERFUL!

    About halfway through messin with the bones I thought of a grapefruit spoon – it was very useful!

    I will do this again. My Wegmans keeps marrowbones with the frozen turkeys.

  70. I went to the Mercat de la Boqueria ( today in Barcelona and purchased two bones with deeply imbedded marrow, some ground beef, and chicharron. On my walk back to my hostel, I could not stop thinking about the marrow. So what did I do? I stopped at a park bench and took the raw marrow out with my hands. Tasted like the best batch of fresh, creamy, homemade butter, but it was delicious MARROW!

  71. You Must Be Kidding
    All that Primal stuff and nutrition about Bone Marrow … Not only is it UNHEALTHY IT IS ridiculas to suggest that just because an other amimal goes for it that it is good for humans.
    All you have done here is quote other websites from searches…a no brainer..the truth is that this stuff at the end of the day is all fat and not the good fat and is unhealthy, not as is suggested. Yea it tastes creamy cause it is animal fat PERIOD.

    1. Oh, and where are your citations for those “facts,” sir?
      It isn’t a suggestion that another animal goes for it… It is the truth that human beings have been “going for it” for millenia.
      Unless nature screwed up, I’d venture to say you’re wrong.

      1. Unkidding, if it were wrong, I would have clogged arteries, heart disease and menstrual cramps and hang nails since saturated fat gets blamed for everything. I can attest that these things do NOT happen with saturated fat because I have been eating this way for years…I have been consuming even more saturated fats over the past 3 years.I have regular check-ups and it is amazing….my health gets better with each passing year.

        Yes, it tastes creamy because it’s supposed to be EATEN…Period.

    2. Bone marrow is NOT unhealthy – it is transplanted medically into other human beings for survival…

      The younger an animal the less fat is in the marrow – younger animals are almost entirely red marrow – ie non-fat…
      From Wikipedia: There are two types of bone marrow: red marrow (consisting mainly of hematopoietic (stem cells) ) tissue and yellow marrow (consisting mainly of fat cells). Red blood cells, platelets and most white blood cells arise in red marrow. Both types of bone marrow contain numerous blood vessels and capillaries.
      At birth, all bone marrow is red. With age, more and more of it is converted to the yellow type. About half of adult bone marrow is red.[1] Red marrow is found mainly in the flat bones, such as the hip bone, breast bone, skull, ribs, vertebrae and shoulder blades, and in the cancellous (“spongy”) material at the epiphyseal ends of the long bones such as the femur and humerus. Yellow marrow is found in the hollow interior of the middle portion of long bones.
      In cases of severe blood loss, the body can convert yellow marrow back to red marrow to increase blood cell production.

      About the stem cells in the red marrow: Bone marrow contains three types of stem cells:[2]
      Hematopoietic stem cells give rise to the three classes of blood cells that are found in the circulation: white blood cells (leukocytes), red blood cells (erythrocytes), and platelets (thrombocytes).
      Mesenchymal stem cells are found arrayed around the central sinus in the bone marrow. They have the capability to differentiate into osteoblasts, chondrocytes, myocytes, and many other types of cells. They also function as “gatekeeper” cells of the bone marrow.
      Endothelial stem cells.

    3. Again from wikipedia – you can look it up for their sources:

      Bone marrow as a food

      Many cultures utilize bone marrow as a food. The Vietnamese prize beef bone as the soup base for their national staple ph?; Alaskan Natives eat the bone marrow of caribou and moose; Indians use slow-cooked marrow as the core ingredient of the Indian dish Nalli Nihari; Mexicans use beef bone marrow from leg bones, called tuetano, which is cooked and served as filling for tacos or tostadas; it is also considered to be the highlight of the Italian dish ossobuco (braised veal shanks); beef marrowbones are often included in the French pot-au-feu broth, the cooked marrow being traditionally eaten on toasted bread with sprinkled coarse sea salt. Though once used in various preparations, including pemmican, bone marrow has fallen out of favor as a food in the United States, though bone marrow is used in many gourmet restaurants and is popular among foodies. In the Philippines, the soup “Bulalo” is made primarily of beef stock and marrow bones, seasoned with vegetables and boiled meat. In Hungary tibia is a main ingredient of beef soup; the bone is chopped into short (10-15cm) pieces and the ends are covered with salt to prevent the marrow from leaving the bone while cooking. Upon serving the soup the marrow is usually spread on toast.
      Diners in the 18th century used a marrow scoop (or marrow spoon), often of silver and with a long thin bowl, as a table implement for removing marrow from a bone.
      Some anthropologists believe that early humans were scavengers rather than hunters. Marrow would then have been a major protein source for tool-using hominids, who were able to crack open the bones of carcasses left by top predators such as lions.[6]

      Get that: A MAJOR PROTEIN SOURCE!!!

    4. Fat is good for you ANIMAL fat is good for you . Wake up sheeple. Im sure you think the fat from vegetable oils and junk food is what is good for you ? right?

      Like i said WAKE UP

      Fat is good for you ANIMAL fat is good for you . Wake up sheeple. Im sure you think the fat from vegetable oils and processed food is what is good for you ? right?

      Like i said WAKE UP

  72. As a kid, I’ve always eaten bone marrow because my parents did as well. When I moved to the US, it was harder to find and it became a guilty pleasure for me. So glad marrow is finally getting it’s recognition and happy the prices have stayed low.

  73. Roasted beef marrow might be my single favorite thing to eat. Glad to see it get such eloquent and impassioned treatment here.

    I prefer to have a butcher saw my shank bones lengthwise. I sprinkle the cut surface with kosher salt and maybe light spices, and oven roast it on high. A couple of advantages to this configuration: 1) more surface area will get browned this way, and 2) you have unobstructed access to every crevice, so the fibrous plugs at the ends of the bone will thwart your scavenging no longer.

    Sorry to necropost but some issues transcend the months, and marrow is one of them.

  74. Great site! I love raw marrow! It’s the best with a little salt like you said! Keep up the great website!!

  75. Thanks for this post! I just made my first marrow bones. Had a bit of marrow on toast and then put the bones and leftover marrow to simmer for about 18 hours. There’s still a huge chunk of marrow left – can I still eat it or use it for anything or is it pretty much best to toss it out since I just simmered it for 18 hours?

  76. Do appreciate the timely discussion of underappreciated sources of nutrition.

  77. You really have to sample some good bone marrow soup done in a slow cooker.

    The broth is very rich and tasty… it’s a meal in itself.

  78. I LOVE marrow! I started my toddler on it too. I put it in a pressure cooker with a bag of dried chickpeas, garlic, onions red & yellow peppers, some water a a bit of salt. The flavor was amazing! she loved it immediately. I even had some of her food!

  79. In India, we love our chicken and mutton bones. Best way to enjoy them is to steam in a pressure cooker, and serve with warm, fluffy rice.

  80. When I was a little girl, I could never eat any type of meat without sucking the marrow out of the bones at the end of the meal. I was so young I didn’t even know what I was doing, or what it was, all I knew was there was tasty stuff inside there. I guess we have more animal instinct than we’re aware of 🙂

  81. This past week I roasted beef marrow bones. I wanted to eat the marrow but the bones were thick and the marrowful middles were so thin and small. I could barely scrape anything out. I got them from Fresh Direct, from a local farm called Hardwick Beef. Grass fed. The bones were almost empty in the narrow middles where I expected to see more marrow. I did make stock with the bones and I saved all of the fat from the pan (there was a ton) but I don’t know what to do with it. Is it like tallow? Can I use it to make fries or a savory pie crust? Thanks in advance to anyone who can help.

  82. I just bought 5 pounds of my local farmers market, grass fed beef marrow bones ($25!!) to help my Ukrainian mother recover from surgery. She eats marrow and chicken knuckles (cartilage), liver etc. all the time. Am making the slowwwww cook beef barley soup (bones, salt, veggies at low heat to barely turning over, cooked for at least 12 hours). Pulled a bone out for Mom and thought I’d better try it myself since I never have. Pulled the marrow out. Didn’t realize it to be “all gelatinous fat” I must say, it did not look too appealing, the fat rendering out…but wow…!!!! The flavor really is divine and it literally melts in your mouth. The rest of my clan refused to try. Little do they know but I will be making a bone marrow roux and adding it back to the soup.

  83. I made chicken stock without first taking the marrow out of the bones. Now, they’re crumbling too easily to be able to get the marrow out without bone bits. This may sound weird, but could I mash all that up with some meat and maybe fry it up as patties? Is there any worthwhile nutritional value to be had from the marrow now that its been simmered for two days or from the bones themselves?

  84. I love marrow bones. Absolutely love them and eat them every week on the Sabbath in a Jewish dish called Cholent. As a nutritionist, I have been trying to find out the nutritional content of beef marrow bones for years and this is the first time I came across anything specific, so thank you! Any idea how many marrow bones would equal 3 1/2 oz. OR how many calories, etc. per peice? Would really appreciate that info — thanks!! 🙂

    1. Rebecca, as you are a nutritionist, I wonder if you noticed any health effects from eating marrow, in yourself or your clients? Unfortunately, all the 200++ comments here only say “wooow so tasty”, but nobody reports their experiences…

  85. I love marrow! I used to be a vegetarian, but i recently gave it up. A little while ago i remembered cracking open the bones and eating the marrow as a kid, so I tried it again and it’s really good. I generally only eat marrow from small chicken bones, but I’ll have to try a bigger marrow bone sometime.

  86. very god stuff and filling—and the dogs love the bones when i am finished —is greasy —

  87. I always pick up bones at the butchers which are from organic, local beef. Amazing! Spread the marrow on toast. It’s like butter, but 10000x better!

  88. just had for first time, in a beef shank simmered with white win for a few hours. dipped some roasted sweet potato wedges in it like french fries and it tasted like delicious dutch french fries and mayo. just 100x healthier. stoked

  89. Here’s a question: does beef bone marrow contain tyramines the way muscle meat does? I had to give up meat because aged proteins get me sick-i’m guessing tyramines. would the same apply to marrow? all beef is intentionally aged (unlike chicken which i’m still able to eat). I too ate it as a kid-and loved it. ditto chicken livers which weren’t a treat like marrow but we ate all the time. people who didn’t grow up with it seem to find its texture weird. my mother ate brains and sheeps head.

  90. I love bone marrow, im mexican american and we call it “tuetano” . We make soup with veggies and beef. We smear the “tuetano” on a tortilla with salt, limon, and some salsita, mmmm delicious. I actually just ate this right now.

  91. Years ago I had a trapline for beaver. They were flooding pastures and needed to be thinned out. I always had a Dutch oven in my pickup. One day I decided to try roasting a haunch of young beaver. I made biscuits, then found I had no butter.
    I opened the leg bones of the haunch and drizzled hot marrow over biscuits.
    Lord amighty that was good ! 40 yrs ago and I can still taste that sweet beaver meat and biscuits with marrow.

  92. I’m actually chewing a big marrow bone I got from the butcher yesterday. roasted it with herbs and garlic cloves mmmmm

  93. Anyone know if can be unhealthy to eat some bone marrow every day?

  94. My son always raves on about the taste of marrow when he chews up his bones. As I am of caribbean heritage it is not strange to enjoy the taste of this treat. I am glad to learn that it is of high nutritional value…although my true spirit told me so without thinking. Mmm if only some of you could taste my cooking and then enjoy the marrow of oxtail, chicken bone marrow afterwards…l 🙂

  95. Natural paleo food vs. prepared nasty packaged food some people buy and serve to their children, has MEDICINAL properties.
    See what Dr. Terry Wahls, M.D. says about it.

    “Anyone suffering from a ‘leaky gut’ will likely benefit greatly from having bone broth several times a day as part of a healing regimen.”

    Now, I cook all (beef, chicken, turkey and shrimp and other bony creatures) bones for days and remove some broth for day’s dinner and I am sure I will fix my low calcium problem that I’ve had for years! Why did not I think about it before? My grandfather in Poland ate all his marrow but I forgot!
    Thanks people to remind me!
    Let us go to the basics!

  96. one of the most-loved filipino comfort foods is bulalo — basically just stewed beef and bone marrow with lots of fried garlic, pepper and vegetables. it’s sort of a guilty pleasure because of its perceived fatty content but after reading this, my trips to our local restaurant will definitely be more frequent! i just had bulalo 30mins. ago (which led me to search online to settle the nagging dispute) after months of avoiding it. guess i was missing out

  97. Any body knows of a commercial (farm or other) source for: hare liver, lamb and goat brain, in New jersey area?
    Tried the specialty store, halal (knowing they have goat meat). I can find calf brain in my Shoprite, but nothing else, not to mention, duck and goose liver. I don’t think even Wegman’s carries it.

    1. Try the Dey Farm in Cranbury, NJ.

      If you go up Route 130 and make a turn onto Dey Road, the farm is less than a mile or so to your right.

      Reasonable prices too! I got a 85 pound pig for a pig roast last year for $170.

      It’s a live market. They have animals (guinea hens, rabbits, capons, chickens, goats, sheep, pigs etc.) that they slaughter onsite and clean and ress for you.

      There’s a guy who make really great pork tacos with the liver and tongue!

  98. I am glad I brought this bone and marrow at the farmers market last weekend because if I had not I may have never found your amazingly written and interesting blog post! I only wish I had the skill you have in writing, well done and I will follow you on Facebook, Twitter and everywhere else.

    Thanks so much for making my marrow bone meal even more exited that it was going to be!!


  99. Marrow spoons are nice for getting at the marrow. But they are pricey! I’ve seen them between $30 and $100.

    A disposable wooden chopstick like the kind you get at a takeout restaurant is good to use.

    But I prefer a lobster pick. The kind that has a long thin scoop on one end and a little fork on the other. It’s thinner than a marrow spoon, so you can get into even smaller bones!

    1. Forget the spoons, use a tooth pick or go primal all the way, turn the bone down and bang it on the plate, the marrow will fall off.

  100. Beef bone marrow is absolutely delicious. I have been eating it since I was a child. Father asked us kids if we would like to try it, sorry he ever did. I will make pot roast with a huge beef bone, mainly just for the marrow.Try it. You will love it.

    1. I eat beef bone marrow three times a week for dinner after my long runs. I make a soup with the bones, organic tomatoe pure, egg plants, garlic and onions. Afterwards I remove the bones and eat the marrow as the main dish and the soup on the side. Also when I am over stressed after a long working day I eat bone marrow and inmediately my brain feels fed and calm. I cured myself through strict primal eating and sport from and anxiety disorder I had and was able to drop the meds and move forward with my life and never looked back, so however thinks this is not the right lifestyle to follow they can come talk to me!

      1. Hi Helena, interesting what you write “inmediately my brain feels fed and calm”. May I ask, did you get any other effects that you would attribute likely or possibly to bone marrow? Thanks!

  101. I love bone marrow! Also like connective tissue, arteries/veins and spinal cord. My husband thinks I am weird. But I think scociety has lead us to believe those types of foods are uncivilized to consume. Such a shame too, they are delicious!

  102. Anyone eat the softened bones from their bone broth? After 2 or 3 days in the crock my grass fed beef bones are soft and very easy to chew. I’m wondering if there is any nutritional value left in them? I figure that my taste for them indicates my body approves so there must be something positive.

  103. Hello everyone, we are looking for any help suggestion : We have a 12 lb female pom. She is off & on very ill. She bleeds internally. Vets around here say no known cause or cure, for ITP. & just give prednisone & arent very knowledgeable. The longest span she has went this yr, without purpura is 70 days. In that time we gave her 300 mg papaya Leaf extract, & beet juice in her chicken & candidae meal. Now she is bleeding again. We just put her on prednisone again. My question is regarding bone marrow. There are many possibilities humans or dogs get ITP, vaccines,poisons,bone issues, nutrient deficiency, cancers,etc Does bone marrow help to develop blood platelets? Or does anyone have any expierience with foods that have helped family or friend with ITP. In the medical Drug world, the solution for humans is the same for dogs. Give them prednisone. But this is Not an acceptable lifelong choice, without Trying…………….Thank you for any suggestions

  104. In Mexico we eat “Caldo de res” that is a beef stew with lots of vegetables and of course bone marrow, I love to spread them in a tortilla with some salt… Just delicious.

  105. Bone marrow is the key ingredient in Risotto Milanese. My family and many guests love it.

  106. i LOVE roasted bone marrow on fresh artisanal bread… with some fresh parsley and capers-mmmm! i’d say i like it more than meat. it is so good for you, and so easy to make. i haven’t been sick in ages, even with all these flu strains going around now- i attribute my good health to bone marrow!

  107. Just cooked up marrow for the first time, my wife is trying out the GAPS diet. Thought I would look into to marrow and found this cool article. I plan on devouring some bone marrow myself after reading this article.

    I actually got to meet George Clooney when I was deployed to Turkey doing Northern watch before the Iraq war. The Ocean’s 11 crew came to visit us right before Christmas. George and Brad Pitt where pretty cool. They (leadership) weren’t going to let us have alcohol at the Clam Shell (Bar/hangout on base) but George and Brad thought that was B.S. and said bring it on. Ended up being a prett cool night. Not sure what there diet was but they were pretty cool.

  108. Veggie for 33 years and now i’m sucking the marrow out of bones. Still cant believe the transformation but thank god I found the paleo diet! Thanks for this Mark.

  109. The local butcher shop sells lovely bone broth that is like jello when cold 🙂 They also sell lovely pink marrow butter. I put a BIG spoon full in a hot mug of bone broth, and I tell you my body LOVES it. I was really skinny with no muscle mas, hair loss, even facial wasting (because my muscles AND fat were wasting…I have celiac disease and therefore found myself very malnourished & suffering from Leaky Gut) Bone broth and marrow butter have A) Put healthy weight back on to my body B) helped me start growing strong thick hair again and C) Put some chub back in my cheeks. Seriously, these two ancient foods are healing me, day by day 😀

  110. What can I say, Mark? You literally can’t help yourself, can you? All you do, day after day, week after week, is make me want to grow my claws, grab a few knives, and eat wild animals. Tempting me with shamanic like visions of bear skin, teeth necklace wearing tribes celebrating life and death cycles through fire dances. Ok, not literally. 😉

    What I am saying is that you get primal. You are primal. We are all primal. You empower the inner human in all of us. Thanks

  111. I make my own beef broth and always ensure plenty of bones with exposed marrow are simmered in there, it’s the difference between soul food and just another soup/stew. I just made this beef and barley soup for my babies yesterday (one is 2.5 years and one is 8 months)

    Start with a few pounds of sliced shins (meat on) – brown in olive oil, place in stockpot with a few bay leaves, black peppercorns, salt, and a whole nutmeg, and let simmer in the pot with one celery rib, one leek, one onion, a few garlics, a couple of carrots, and some wine if you want. While this is simmering, brown a chopped onion in the pan in which you browned the beef, and get all the brown goodness scraped off, then add to it 5 chopped carrots, one chopped leek, and 4 chopped celery ribs.

    After the broth has simmered for a few hours, strain it into another stockpot and discard all the solids except the meat/bones. Remove the meat from the bones (very easy to do at this stage) and break into bite size pieces and put back in the stock. Take the bones and push the cooked marrow through into the stock. Add the chopped and sauteed vegetables. Commence simmering.

    In a separate pot, add one cup pearled barley and simmer for 45 minutes or until tender. Discard the water and add it to the soup mixture.


    When this cools down, put it in the fridge overnight. The next day, any unmelted marrow will be floating on the top with solidified fats. I do scrape away these fats but you may choose to leave them – but they are not as nice as a rendered fat.

    The soup will basically become a large jello block when cool.

    for my 8 month old, I grind it down for him and he eats it up like mad. Just looooves this stuff.

    Another dish I make with lots of marrow is a wheat stew with either lamb or goat bones. But that’s another story 😉 (also my 8 month old eats it up).

  112. Just had a soup – bone marrow spread over home baked bread, with soup strained clear, followed by all the veggies and beef cooked in the soup, with horseradish sauce, with radishes just unearthed, grated and vinegar, salt and sugar added. Call it ‘the good life’.

  113. Marrow bones on toast is quite a popular dish here in South Africa, it can be found in quite a few restaurants, I have had them since I was young, going to do them as a starter tonight, I sometimes just boil them in a veg stock also great.

  114. My Whole Foods [Denver, Capitol Hill, Colorado] sells marrow bones [and meat] that are either 100% grass fed or grass fed and finished with grains, however, no antibiotics nor growth hormones. Bone marrow rocks! Thanks Mark… I love paleo and never look back at old “healthy” eating of too many veg and little meat. Feel great and no more constant snacking bread/cookies.

  115. My grandfather used to roast marrow bones, then blow the marrow out of the bones by blowing through them. He then spread the marrow on toast and put salt and pepper.

    Question: 3.5 oz = 99 grams, if this amount contains 51 grams of fat and 7 grams of protein, what constitutes the remaining 41 grams?

  116. I remember as a child often watching my father suck the marrow out of a roast bone. I thought it odd and unappealing, strange in fact. Then as a teenager, I was curious and tried it myself. I couldn’t believe the soft, smooth, velvety texture and the intense, rich flavor. I’d use a fork to scrap out the inside, sometimes a teaspoon. Other times I would use my pointer finger and run it all along the inside of the bone, scooping out any last morsel. Then put it against my mouth and running my tongue all along the inside, sucking out whatever was left.

    I don’t have it very often, but it’s certainly a treat when it’s available. I’ll make sure to check out my local Asian meat market for marrow bones. There is a large variety of meat products at great prices there!

  117. i just finished a roast chicken dinner the way i always do, shards of bone left on the plate, no marrow to be seen. delish! definitely primal wjth all the gnawing and sucking. Watched my mother do it growing up. I generally need to be alone to really enjoy the experience:)

  118. my local butcher gave me some lovely bones full of marrow for free! I simply roasted them, scooped out the marrow using my lobster pick (ideal tool, I bought 3 silver ones off ebay for £8!) and spread the marrow on toast. The bones were then put in the slow cooker with root veg, black pepper and smoked cornish sea salt (dead cheap and lush!) and red wine and bubbled away for a few hours to make amazing stock. Not bad for free ehh?

  119. Lived in Alaska since 1950 and have the benefit of wild moose caribou marrow each year. Marrow bones are highly valued by some of here. Mom cut and saved the bones for storing along with the meat. Probably to the great benefit of her eight kids. Salmon hearts – sort of triangular shaped, are delicious fried like chicken livers – only I suspect much more healthy for you. Easy to save when processing salmon. Just some thoughts. Most throw away the fish heart.

  120. I do not know of a healthy foil. That foil seems like aluminum foil and if that is it’s not good. Aluminum foil leeches into food heavily with heat. If that is a healthy foil I do not know, please let us know what that is…

  121. I grilled up some beef shanks ($1.69/lb). About 1″ thick with 2″ dia. bones in em. The marrow is super delicious, and the meat is quite tasty as well. I think the bones really do flavor the meat nicely. Add a bit of the following to the meat and cook it right away (or marinate for even more yum): white vinegar, soy sauce, fresh black pepper, garlic powder and olive oil. Cook about 5-6min per side on high heat on grill (mine in gas). Done!

  122. I was born and raised in South Africa of Russian/Polish parents. Mom made the bestest chicken barley soup EVER with “maach” (marrow) bones. My 3 bros and I each got one marrow bone, spread the marrow on a slice of rye bread, sprinkled a little salt on, and salivated over it! (I’ve been In Manhattan over 30 years now and regularly make MY version of Mom’s chicken/barley soup – except for one person, nobody in my family likes marrow – so lucky the two of us!!! And, quite honestly, it’s rather orgasmic for me, haha!!) We pig (oh, it’s not pig… ) – then we beef out, lol!. Just ordered dem bones to put in a Slow Cooker Veal Stew dish I’m going to make – first time…will be sure to remove the marrow after 20 minutes, return the bones to the stew! Also, does anyone like eating the meat & sinew (is that what it is?) from the bone? I LOVE it!!! Still, to this day, I chew chicken bones and suck out the marrow – very sensual, so I’ve been told. 🙂

  123. Oh dear me, I just wrote a great looong post… and now it’s gone… boo hoo!
    Mark, can you retrieve it, please? Thanks ever so much.

  124. Just enjoyed a lovely beef marrow bone. Rich and mild marrow eaten straight out of the bone. Very satisfying!

  125. I am just starting eat more of these types of foods, organs and marrow. I currently have a bowl of soup made with beef bones right in front of me, can’t say I enjoy the flavour! But for the nutrition I’m going to eat it.

  126. I have several fractures and other relatively minor bone pain from accidents. My own human ribs were fractured badly and hurt for months. I am and gad been a partial vegetarian for over 20 years. Naturally and intuitively with my rib fracture I had to rest a lot and eat more regularly than I previously had. I was a very skinny girl who skipped meals, not necessarily out if a diet of any sort. After my ribs were fractures I had to eat very regularly. It’s been over two years and I still experience occasional pain from my ribs when I am in certain positions or if they have too much pressure. I also had been a smoker the first year of trying to heal my ribs. I have stopped smoking and have since learned, a little too late, that smoking slows healing of bones. That may be art of the problem but I am starting to suspect that my partial Vegetarianism played a part in my ribs not ever fully healing.I ate fish and poultry but not meat. Now, I eat tiny amounts of red meat on occasion but habits are hard to break and one just doesn’t go from being a partial vegetarian for 20 years to eating red meat daily. Anyway, my question is does anyone know if not eating red meat slows or impairs bone fractures and the like? And is there evidence that bone marrow actually improves human fractures and other human bone injuries from accidents?

  127. I made beef broth and consumed the marrow. The bones are soft enough to eat. Are the bones safe for human consumption and it there any nutritional value to the bones?

  128. Another way to use marrow is to roast the bones in the oven, then collect the marrow and fat and use it to cook greens. It will give a very rich flavor and will get slipped in to meals for family members who are less enthusiastic about marrow eating. Even a teaspoon or two has amazing flavor.

  129. Bone marrow simply taught me that when all the satiety signals are working, it’s NEVER the volume of food that makes you feel full. The richness of marrow is so filling, so fast, that I can eat just a few tablespoons for breakfast and feel satisfied and energized until the early afternoon. The folks eating carbs (and getting bariatric surgery, unfortunately) don’t understand the power of the right foods to produce satiety (and good health)!

  130. While not beef marrow, I strip all the meat from a chicken and put the bones in a blender with 2 cups of vinegar. They are small enough to not harm the blender. I will then slowly (about 10 minutes) bring the stuff to a boil. Once the whole thing is boiling, immediately strain the larger bone chunks and can it. It separates into three distinct layers, fats at the top, clear protein rich gelatin in between, and darker heaver proteins and mineral rich bottom.

    I will let it sit for a week or so. the vinegar completely dissolves all the little bone chunks, giving you access to the collagen inside the bones. It has the consistency of Jello. I use it when making gravy.

  131. The quickest and easiest way to get all the bone marrow out is to use a straw! Been to restaurants in China that serves only bone marrow soup and they all uses straws to get every bit out of the bones.

  132. QUESTION: how long do marrow bones last in the fridge (i bought mine 1 week ago from a local butcher – who yes, has them vacuum-wrapped in his freezer as “dog bones” ) ?

  133. I eat the marrow of the deer I hunt. I eat it raw, the same way people have for thousands of years. I split the bone with an axe, and peel out the marrow and wolf it down before my mutt gets a sniff of it!!

    It’s delicious. Tastes creamy and with an iron twang to it from the blood vessels. i just chew it for ages, sucking down the juice and i end up with a lump of pure white creamy marrow-fat, which i then wash down with water.

    Super nutritious, super clean, raw and unadulterated.

  134. I always thought bone marrow was the coarse,brownish hard part in the center of the bone.Can you eat that coarse part and is it by any means the same as the “soft gelatinous” part people are describing?

  135. Oh my goodness I thought it was weird that I love bone marrow. When I go into a supermarket I immediate gravitate to the section with bones. Embarrassed I only use the bones in soups then dig out the marrow, but you’ve allowed me to try it right from the oven on its own. Thank you.

  136. Thank you, people. All my life I’ve been a bone-sucking fiend, and all my life people have looked at me strangely because of it (well, and for other reasons, I’m sure, but, hey, we’re just talking marrow here, right? ?). I instinctively go for bones, almost in a state of frenzy. Crave them!!! Now I know that I’ve always been on the right track. Thank you for all the great info on purchasing and prepping.

  137. Thank you for sharing this. I do love bone marrow on soups. It tastes really good. But I’m quite busy now so I haven’t had the time to make my own broth. I’m drinking Au Bon Broth and it’s surprisingly good.

  138. love it. My mama always saved the soup bones filled with marow for me.
    She would sspread on corn tortilla with a ssprinle of salt YUM the BEST!!!!

  139. Great article on significance of Marrow.

    Noticed Mark S. mentioned marrow as, “mostly monounsaturated as I understand.”
    -here is link to WAPF article on ‘American Indian’ diet, with sources of fat list-table, and the fatty acids of wild game and animal fats, that includes Caribou bone marrow, which is about 57% MUFA.

    To me, all fat questions + confusion, can be simply understood, when marrow, its history, and its fatty acid ratio, cholesterol, calories, etc., is used as the basis for what man is biologically meant to consume, as a primary source of fat, and energy.
    Then the farther away we get from that ‘make-up’ of fat,
    the more problems ensue, in regard to our health.

    Personally, long-time ‘primal’ nutri-food amateur I am, I’m beginning to think monounsaturated fat, especially from animals, with its assoc. lipids, including cholesterol, in balance with Sat fat, is more crucial to health, then has been written about in public articles.
    The current ongoing research on MUFAs and fat cells I’ve been reading, (via PubMed+) is awesome. So many areas of health+disease affected.

  140. I love it! I stew shanks for soup and always wait for the marrow to be done so I can scoop it out and eat it. So delicious. But I always wondered if it was risky for Mad Cow Disease…

  141. Hi all, did anyone get any health effects from eating bone marrow? It is happy to know that there are 238 posters who find it tasty, tasty and really tasty…. and healthy… but if it is so good, then a few should have noticed some health effects! I will make a beginning:
    Yesterday 66g marrow, today 105g marrow (without weighing the bones):
    – a very nice cosy warm feeling in the belly for hours afterwards
    – improved sleep, not yet sure if it is the marrow
    – maybe a little less skin itching
    – all the last months I had a less good smell and bleeding when brushing teeth. exactly these two days: smell gone, bleeding stayed

  142. I know you can freeze uncooked marrow bones, but can you refreeze them once they have defrosted? My freezer door was left open.