My Foray Into Food Storage

A regular gal learning about Food Storage, Home Cooking, Canning, Gardening, and more!

Making Something From Nothing. Or, To Be More Accurate, From Another Person’s Trash. 


When you think of trash, what comes to mind?  It’s not something most people seek out and for good reason.  Yet, there is one form of “trash” which is actually a treasure!

What trash you ask?  This kind:

Lovely, isn’t it?  Can you tell what it is?   It is the typically discarded parts of veggies like carrots (ends and peels)’ onions, orange peppers, etc. I often include celery, but I don’t have any yet.

Well, I pull my trusty discard bag out of my freezer whenever I prep vegetables and save whatever I think will make a good broth. Then, I stick it bag into the freeze until I have enough to make this:



Homemade Chicken Stock

For years, I wanted to make broth, but I didn’t, because I rarely buy bone-in chicken.  Then, I made an amazing discovery.  You can used cooked bones to make broth!  Your broth will be a bit darker in color, but the bones from a roasted chicken or turkey give a lovely flavor.

YAY!   Now I save the chicken carcass whenever I buy a roasted chicken from Costco.  I put it in a bag and save it in my freezer along with my “garbage” bag of veggies.  (I saved my turkey carcass last year and used it to make broth as well.)  When I have a few chickens, I stick them in a big stock pot or two with my veggies. I let them stew for at least 24 hours to get out all of the chicken and veggie goodness and into my broth.  Then I skim any yuckies off the top of the broth and refrigerate it to make it easier to skim the fat. At this point, the broth is ready to season and use. I prefer to wait to add salt until I’ve cooked my broth, but you can add salt earlier in the process.


Here are a couple of pictures of my broth in process.


(This is one of my pots with chicken bones and veggie trimmings.) 

(This is my broth after it cooked for several hours.) 

Of course, I made an insane amount of broth at this point, at least 6 gallons. Unless I’m cooking for a crowd, I will never going to use all this broth before it goes bad.  This is where my handy dandy pressure canner comes into play. I can my broth, so I don’t have to pay for it at the store.  Canning it is not completely free, because I need to pay for the seals, but even with the cost of energy and water I’m using, I’m paying less than 20 cents for a quart of broth. That’s a smokin’ deal!

To can the broth, I simply wash and rinse my jars in not soapy water, then fill them with the hot broth (which I reheated after refrigerating and skimming the fat) and add salt. Then, I wipe the rims with a wet paper towel and place the seals (warmed in a pot of warm water) on the jars. Finally, I screw on the rings until fingertip tight.

The jars go into my canner along with the vinegar and water listed in my canner instructions. I put on the lid and turn on the heat. The water in canner needs to come to a boil and vent for 10 minutes before putting on the weight and allowing the canner to come to full pressure (10 pounds at sea level, but it is 11 pounds where I live). Once it’s at the correct pressure, the jars are processed to 20-25 minutes (20 for pints and 25 for quarts). When the timer goes off, I turn the heat off and let the canner depressurize on its own as it cools. Once it has depressurize done, I remove the jars to a cooling rack where I let them sit for 24 hours before moving them.
And this is the result!  This is not all the broth I canned. I ended up with 21 quarts and 9 pints. Not too shabby!


How do you make the most of the things you buy?


Author: Laurie Nguyen

I am a happily married, stay at home mom with four sons, ages 24, 22, 18, and 14. I'm not a professional blogger, and I'm certainly not a foodie or a chef. But I like food, so I think I'm qualified to write about my own life experience with food. Want to be a little more prepared for the unexpected? Check out my Food Storage Blog, Have a question about Food Storage? Email me:

6 thoughts on “Making Something From Nothing. Or, To Be More Accurate, From Another Person’s Trash. 

  1. We’ve been making chicken, beef and seafood stock for years. Here’s one little tip. One time, try using good raw veggies, rather than leftover trimmings. It will make a world of difference. You wouldn’t think it, but it does. One more thing. Use a Sharpie and date your jars.


  2. My happiest day was when I learned how to make my own stock! I saved 2 dollars a box on chicken stock! And the nilgai stock….! Yum! I save all my onion bits and skins, garlic skins, carrot, and celery bits in the freezer. When the bag is full, I make stock! I usually have more onion and garlic than anything else, but it’s always very tasty! Toss in the bones and some bay leaves and peppercorns. Bingo!


  3. My husband laughs at me for saving and freezing chicken and turkey carcasses (cooked) for broth. But he surely does love to eat the soup later! 🙂


  4. We do the frozen chicken bones trick, but I never thought about veggie ends too. Thanks for the tip!


  5. Great post! I boil all of our chicken and save the juices from every meat I cook to make broth. I even par boil chicken breasts and throw in a couple bouillon cubes when using it for gravy, soup or stock. I feed all of my veggie ends to my chickens and goats so pretty much never have waste. Tina


  6. I made bone broth this weekend – we had too many roosters and ate one, then I reused the carcass for the broth.


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