Bone broth is still all the rage! A savoury drink in a mug? Yes please, give me all that collagen goodness. You might have come across bone broth while looking for flu remedies, reading through health/wellness blogs or seen it as an ingredient in soup recipes. Perhaps you’re late to the party and know nothing about bone broth. Well my friends, it is indeed incredibly awesome, delicious and healthy. It is also ridiculously easy to make and with all the health benefits it’s silly not to!
Bone broth is usually made in a slow cooker or pressure cooker (as in my recipe below). Beef or chicken bones along with some vegetables and water get cooked until all the goodness from all these things are now in a drinkable form. You may be saying “isn’t that just called soup?”, well yes. Except bone broth is cooked for hours and hours and hours or at extremely high pressure.
What is in the stuff that is so good?
This process specifically extracts from the bones essential nutrients like calcium, magnesium and phosphorous that our bodies can readily absorb. It is one of the most bioavailable forms of these nutrients. Other powerfully healing compounds such as collagen, chondroitin, proline, glycine and glutamine are extracted that would otherwise not be if cooked over a shorter period of time (1).
These healing compounds go directly to sites where our body needs healing. It is particularly healing for the gut. People experiencing leaky gut (a syndrome that is characterised by increased intestinal permeability resulting in an array of digestive issues) get great benefits. Bone broth works to heal the gut lining and restore balance.
Do you think you or your child might have a leaky gut? Below are common symptoms taken from Dr Kara Fitzgerald’s site.
“The first type is someone with obvious gastrointestinal distress, who experiences one or more of these symptoms:
- gas, bloating, stomach pain
- intestinal permeability
- constipation, diarrhea
- food allergies and intolerances, like gluten and dairy
- candida overgrowth, SIBO, dysbiosis
- gut inflammation like Crohn’s disease or inflammatory bowel disorder
The second type is someone with stealthier problems that don’t seem related to gut heath, such as:
- depression, anxiety, mood fluctuations
- achy joints, arthritis
- eczema, acne, psoriasis, other skin problems
- asthma, environmental allergies, bronchial problems
- brain fog, migraine headaches
- sensitivity to odors and fragrances
- adrenal dysfunction, night sweats, hormonal imbalances
- compromised immune system, frequent infections
- autoimmune disorders like Rheumatoid Arthritis or Hashimoto’s thyroiditis
The overall health of the gut depends on three things: digestion and absorption of nutrients, elimination of waste including toxins and bugs, and the ongoing maintenance of good gut function.”
So as you might tell, looking after your gut is key! And you can start by incorporating bone broth into your diet. Let’s get to the recipe.
For this recipe I put onion, carrot, spring onion, parsley, coriander, a cinnamon stick, star anise, apple cider vinegar and beef bones in my pressure cooker. Meat bones that have a lot of cartilage and sinew are best because that is where a lot of the collagen comes from. Apple cider vinegar is used to extract the minerals from the bones. You can put whatever veggies and fresh herbs you have on hand as it’s more for added flavour than anything else. I used a pressure cooker for this broth, which does the same thing as a slow cooker but in a fraction of the time (find out more here). Scroll to the bottom for the full recipe.
Step 1: Put all ingredients into the pot. Step 2: Fill 2/3 of the pot with water. Step 3: Cook. Step 4: Strain and discard bones and veggies.
bone broth also has the following really awesome benefits:
- Boosts immune system
- Improves joint health
- Improves sleep!
Look, I’m not saying that bone broth is a magical cure for everything (it can do wonders though), BUT I do know that in conjunction with a healthy diet, bone broth will provide a boost of essential nutrients and help your body heal. If you hate the idea of drinking bone broth straight then you can use it in stews, soups or to replace water when cooking rice or quinoa. I usually make a whole lot of bone broth for the week and keep a tub in the fridge (it lasts up to a week) and put the remainder in tubs in the freezer to readily add to a pot to defrost for a meal or a drink!
If you want further support in the form of a meal plan sample, healthy recipes and other information, check out my Eat to Thrive Guide!
Have you tried bone broth? What are your thoughts?
- 1 tsp coconut oil
- 800 g beef bones
- 1 carrot chopped
- 1 onion chopped
- 2 sprigs spring onion
- handful of parsley
- handful of coriander
- 2 star anise
- 1 cinnamon stick
- 1-2 bay leaves
- 1 Tbs apple cider vinegar
- salt and pepper
- Place all the ingredients in a pressure cooker/slow cooker
- Fill the cooker with 2/3 water
- Cover and cook for 40 minutes (pressure cooker) or 10-12 hours on low (slow cooker)
- Strain and discard the solids, keep liquid in the fridge (up to a week) or the freezer (indefinitely)