Boiling chickens is something I like to do a few times a year. What I love most about boiling chicken is that it saves you time and money. When I boil chickens it gets me enough chicken and broth to last me most of the year. I don’t use chicken a whole lot when I cook so I can stretch it. Another good thing is when you do chicken this way it is precooked so it saves you time when you are using it to cook later.
First thing you will want to do is rinse you chickens and take out all the innards. I usually throw them away but you could us them to help flavor your broth or fry them up… whatever you’re in to. Then you will want to soak your chicken overnight in water with salt. This helps your chicken not be so bloody. I will usually do three chickens at a time I have a big stock pot I will soak two in and a smaller one I will soak one in. I usually soak them in the same pot I cook them in.
After they have soaked you’ll wanna rinse them off real good and put them back in the pot. Fill your pot with water till your chickens are covered at least an inch. Your chickens will probably float and that’s ok as long and when you push them down they are fully submerged. Then you want to add your veggies and spices. I usually prep my veggies before hand so that all I have to do is dump them all in.
Cover your pot and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to a gentle boil and cook till meat is falling of the bone. It usually takes a few hours depending on how big your chickens are or how many you are doing.
After your chicken is all cooked it is ready to come out of the pot. I will usually get a few pyrex casserole dishes out and that is where I put my chicken to cool. You can put it in the fridge to speed up the process. To get the chicken out of the pot I like to use a strainer because I can get a good amount of chicken out without taking too much broth out.
Once you have all your chicken out of the pot turn your stove on low. Next you will want to separate your chicken from the bone and all the other stuff you don’t want to eat. Put all that stuff you don’t want to eat back in the pot and let cook on low for up to 4 hours. I usually don’t let mine cook too long. About the time it takes me to get all the chicken in bags and cleaned up then I usually move on to the broth. The longer your broth cooks the more flavorful it will be.
At this point you can put your chicken in the fridge or you can shred it now. I usually shred it immediately and by hand and burn my fingerprints off… not really but it’s hot. I like to shred the chicken by hand because when I have shredded with meat claws I miss bones sometimes. Chicken has a lot of little bitty bones.
I like to shred my chicken into a measuring cup and freeze my chicken into 2 cup portions. I usually put them in a sandwich size ziplock bags then all the little bags in a bigger freezer bag.
When you are done cooking your broth you will want to strain everything out of it. I use the same strainer I use to get the chicken out of the pot and put it over a stock pot and pour your broth through.
After I have it all strained into another pot I strain it again into a measuring cup to make it easier to pour into containers to freeze.
- 3 whole chickens
- 2 medium onions (chopped)
- 1 pound of carrots (chopped)
- 1 celery heart (chopped)
- 5 or 6 cloves of garlic (chopped) or 4 tablespoons minced garlic
- 2 tablespoons parsley
- 2 tablespoons thyme
- 2 tablespoons black pepper
- 4 bay leaves
- Remove innards from chicken and rinse.
- Soak chicken over night in salt water.
- Rinse and place chickens in large stock pot.
- Fill with water covering chicken at least 1 inch.
- Add onions, carrots, celery, garlic and spices.
- Cover pot and bring to a boil.
- Reduce heat to a gentle boil and cook until meat is falling off the bone.
- Remove chicken and let cool before shredding.
- Put everything back in the broth and cook on low for up to 4 hours.
- Strain broth and put in freezer containers.
- Shred chicken and put in bags in the freezer.
All done!! I will usually do this on a Sunday and a lot of times I will make a soup with the third chicken and just freeze the other two. It helps if you have two people for the shredding and broth part, otherwise its a lot. Feel free to message me with any questions you may have. Thanks for stopping by the blog today! 🙂