How-To Monday: Canning Turkey Stock {from Thanksgiving leftovers!}

Your big Thanksgiving meal is done and over- but what to do with that big ole’ turkey carcass? In the rising movement of self-sufficiency and cutting down on waste {or better yet- eliminating waste!}, it’s time to give a second thought to throwing out the “scraps”, get back to the basics which the earlier generations took upon themselves with grace, and put the remains to good and healthful use. 
So let’s make some turkey stock!
Stock is created using mostly bones, whereas broth is made using mostly meat. Bone stock is brimming with nutritional benefits {just check out the facts HERE!}. Not only is it good for you and the resulting product costs next to nothing per jar, but you are doing your part in cutting down on waste {nearly a lost art to the majority of society}.
What You Will Need:
-turkey carcass, stripped of any usable meat
-carrots (3), celery (3), onions (2), garlic (1/2 bulb)
-fresh parsley (1/2 bunch) 
-handful fresh thyme, marjoram, and sage (or a couple shakes dried of each)
-2-3 Tbs sea salt
-black peppercorns (2-3 tsp)
-2 Tbs apple cider vinegar
-prepared jars, lids, and bands
-pressure canner
Step 1:
 In a heavy stock pot, place your turkey bones, skin, cartilage, neck, giblets, or any other scraps you did not use. Break larger pieces apart if necessary. Next, add your vegetables. You can use vegetable scraps or leftovers too! Don’t worry about peeling the onions or garlic or onions, they can be chopped as is and placed in the pot {the skins provide extra flavor}. Next come your herbs. Use fresh if you have them, dried if not. I don’t think that you should make a special trip and spend extra money to get fresh; I’m a firm believer in use what you have! Add a liberal amount of salt {or less if you prefer low sodium} and peppercorns. The apple cider helps to draw the calcium out of the bones.
Step 2:
Add enough water to cover the contents of the pot. Bring to a boil and quickly reduce heat and simmer on low for a minimum of 3 hours {and up to 6 hours or more}. 
Step 3:
Place a large colander over a clean, empty pot. If it is not a fine mesh colander, line it with several layers of cheesecloth. Slowly pour the contents of your stock into the colander, allowing the liquid to strain through while the solids are trapped. Allow everything to sit for a few minutes to give all of the stock a chance to strain through. Refrigerate stock overnight.
 The strained contents, prior to cooling.
Step 4:
Once the stock has been allowed to chill, the fat will rise to the top. Skim this off with a spoon and place your pot of stock back on the stove. Bring to a steady boil before ladling liquid into hot, prepared jars leaving 1″ headspace. Wipe rims clean and place lids and bands. Process accordingly in a pressure canner:
Beautiful, delicious, ready-to-use homemade turkey stock! 
Additional Notes:
-Instead of throwing away vegetable scraps {carrot greens and ends, celery ends, onion and garlic skins, etc.}, save them in a gallon freezer bag in the freezer. When you are ready to make stock, you can put these scraps to good use!

-You can use the bone and vegetable scraps from this stock for soup or stew!
-Save the skimmed fat in a freezer container. I like to store any grease or fats to make suet for the birds or my chickens. You can layer in raisins, cracked corn, unsalted peanuts, etc. with each addition of fat/grease to the container. Pop out when ready to use!

-The stock can be frozen too. Simply ladle stock into freezer containers and allow to fully cool first before covering. 

Shared On:
Homestead Barn Hop #138
Natural Living Monday
The Homesteaders Hop #20
Clever Chicks Blog Hop #63
The Creative Home & Garden Hop #19

About yellowbirchhobbyfarm

Hi! I'm Erin, a 19th-century homesteader at heart. Here at Yellow Birch Hobby Farm we practice self-sustainable living by way of organic gardening, canning & preserving, raising a variety of livestock, hunting, foraging, and cooking from scratch. And here at our blog, we share it all with you! So glad you've found us.

6 comments on “How-To Monday: Canning Turkey Stock {from Thanksgiving leftovers!}

  1. I have canned beef broth but not poultry broth yet. I was just thinking the other day how nice it would be to have some jars canned (rather than frozen like I normally do) because I had a friend who was sick and I would have liked to have been able to very quickly make some soup to take to her. Good instructions!

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