Pressure Cooker Chicken Stock

I love a good cooking hack, don’t you? Pressure cooker chicken stock is one of the best cooking hacks around. I used to make stock in a big stockpot on the stove. It would take 3-4 hours of simmering to get a decent stock. And then I was introduced to making stock in a pressure cooker. Apart from being a total timesaver, the flavour from a pressure cooker stock vs stovetop stock in my opinion is far better. I’ll never go back!

A bit of a backstory…

So if you’ve been following along you would know about my love for slow, cast iron cooking. Well, a couple of years ago I was in a hideously busy phase of my life when I was just looking for shortcuts. Any shortcuts really. A child, a business, life, trying to be everything to everyone… it was chaos. And that is when I found out how truly valuable a pressure cooker is. I see so many pressure cooker recipes online where you can cook a miraculous homemade dinner from scratch in 15 minutes (ok maybe I’m exaggerating a little!), and while that’s fine for some people, It’s not at all how I use my pressure cooker – the first time I cooked dinner in it was an absolute disaster (We ate at the pub that night!). At heart, I’m a slow cook, however, who doesn’t love a good cheat? While I don’t use my pressure cooker on a daily basis, having the ability to whip up a broth or soup from scratch on a Saturday morning after sport (without compromising on flavour) is a total gamechanger. On cold winter days when a quick soup is the only answer, but I’m limited on time, I can easily whip up a batch of my butternut squash chipotle soup in under 45 minutes in my pressure cooker. Plus homemade stock totally trumps store-bought every day of the week!

What is “pressure cooking”

Pressure cooking is the process of cooking food under high-pressure steam in a sealed vessel called a pressure cooker. By increasing the pressure, the liquid inside boils at a higher temperature, cooking food much faster than any other method.

You need this to make chicken stock

  • Extra virgin olive oil

  • Raw chicken carcasses. I use 4 for this recipe. My local supermarket sells them in packs with couple of carcasses in each pack. If you get an extra one, no need to throw it away, just add it to the recipe.

  • Vegetables – brown onions, celery, carrots. Roughly cut each vegetable into a couple of chunks. No need to be perfect! I usually just cut the onion into quarters and everything else into say 3-4 pieces.

  • Crushed garlic

  • Herbs and spices – parsley stalks, bay leaves, whole black peppercorns

  • Water

The details

  1. Preheat the oven to 240 degrees Celcius.

  2. In a roasting pan, lay the chicken carcasses in a single layer and drizzle with 1 tbsp olive oil. Roast in the oven for 30 minutes.

  3. While the chicken is roasting we’re going to prepare a mirepoix (the vegetable base) for the stock. In the pressure cooker, add the remaining olive oil and onion. Saute on low heat for 5 minutes. Add the celery and carrots. Continue to saute for another 10 minutes.

  4. Add the garlic to the mirepoix and cook gently for 30 seconds until fragrant.

  5. Add the chicken carcasses, herbs, peppercorns, and water.

  6. Pop the pressure cooker lid on and bring to full pressure on top of the stove. Once pressure is reached, maintain for 1 hour. Full pressure is reached when the pressure button has popped up is fully visible showing two lines.

  7. Depressurize the pressure cooker naturally. Once the pressure is released and the pressure button has lowered fully, it is now safe to open your pressure cooker.

  8. Line a colander with muslin or an old (clean) tea towel. Strain the stock through the muslin revealing a clear flavour-filled stock for use.

Tools you will need…

A pressure cooker. Mine is the Silit 6 liter. It’s really simple to use and easy to clean however I don’t think they are still available in Australia. Fagor pressure cookers are another good option. They are pretty much the same as the Silit except the interior/exterior is full stainless steel as opposed to Silit’s enamel coating.

Cook’s knife and a chopping board for chopping all the vegetables

Muslin and strainer. If you can’t get muslin, an old tea towel will also do the job.

Can I make this without a pressure cooker?

Totally. Try a stockpot if you don’t have a pressure cooker. Even your trusty cast-iron French oven. As long as it’s big enough to hold 6-7 liters, it will work. If not, just half the recipe and make a smaller batch. You’ll just need to increase the cooking time on top of the stove to about 3 hours.

How to store homemade chicken stock

For easy use, my preference is reusable zip lock pouches suitable for freezing. I have ample freezer space and It’s easy to pop them in the freezer and just defrost them when it’s needed. You can also bottle the stock using the preserving water bath method. I’ve tried this a few times when I’ve further reduced the stock into a jus for sauces, but it’s not something I do very often as it’s so time-consuming and for everyday cooking, it’s just not necessary. Homemade pressure cooker chicken stock will last in the fridge for up to 5 days and in the freezer for 3-5 months.

Notes

I have roasted the chicken carcasses prior to adding to the stock mainly because I love the depth of flavour it adds. While you can definitely add them raw to create a more clear broth, I much prefer a brown chicken stock. If I was cooking a broth for say a noodle soup, I probably wouldn’t brown the bones first as a clear stock would be the look I was after.

Next time you roast a chicken, keep the carcass, freeze and use instead of the raw carcasses in the recipe. It’s a great way to keep costs down and repurpose something that you are disposing of anyway.

Can’t get your hands on a chicken carcass? Try Chicken drumsticks or Maryland. Both are full of the brown meat of the chicken, which gives the best flavour.

A few more good chook recipes…

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a jar of homemade chicken stock made in a pressure cooker. There is a bunch of parsley, some garlic and peppercorns on the bench around the jar

Pressure Cooker Chicken Stock

  • Author: Emma Lee
  • Prep Time: 30 minutes
  • Cook Time: 1 hour 15 minutes
  • Total Time: 1 hour 45 minutes
  • Yield: 3 litres 1x
  • Category: Larder
  • Method: Pressure Cooking

Description

Pressure cooker chicken stock is one of the best cooking hacks around. It’s quick, easy to make, and gives you the most intense flavoured broth.


Ingredients

Scale
  • 1 + 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 4raw chicken carcasses
  • 2 brown onions, chopped roughly into chunks
  • 4 celery stalks, chopped roughly
  • 3 carrots, chopped roughly
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 10 parsley stalks
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 6 black peppercorns
  • 3.5L water

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 240 degrees celcius.
  2. In a roasting pan, lay the chicken carcasses in a single layer and drizzle with 1 tbsp olive oil. Roast in the oven for 30 minutes.
  3. While the chicken is roasting we’re going to prepare a mirepoix (the vegetable base) for the stock. In the pressure cooker, add the remaining olive oil and onion. Saute on low heat for 5 minutes. Add the celery and carrots. Continute to saute for another 10 minutes.
  4. Add the garlic to the mirepoix and cook gently for 30 seconds until fragrant.
  5. Add the chicken carcasses, herbs, peppercorn and water.
  6. Pop the presure cooker lid on and bring to full pressure on top of the stove. Once pressure is reached, maintain for 1 hour. Full pressure is reached when the pressure button has popped up is fully visible showing two lines.
  7. Depressurize the pressure cooker naturally. Once the pressure is released and the pressure button has lowered fully, it is now safe to open your pressure cooker. 
  8. Line a colander with muslin or an old (clean) tea towel. Strain  the stock through the muslin revealing a clear flavoursome stock for use.

Notes

  • I have roasted the chicken carcasses prior to adding to the stock mainly because I love the depth of flavour it adds. While you can definitely add them raw to create a more clear broth, I much prefer a brown chicken stock. If I was cooking a broth for say a noodle soup, I probably wouldn’t brown the bones first as a clear stock would be the look I was after.
  • Next time you roast a chicken, keep the carcass, freeze and use instead of the raw carcasses in the recipe. It’s a great way to keep costs down and repurpose something that you are disposing of anyway
  • Can’t get your hands on a chicken carcass? Try Chicken drumsticks or Maryland. Both are full of the brown meat of the chicken, which gives the best flavour

Keywords: Chicken, stock, pressure cooking

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