Why didn’t my bone broth gel?
This is one of the most common questions asked in my Bone Broth Basics Group so I thought I would give you a few tips here on how to get a good bone broth gel.
What do we mean by ‘gel’?
Bone broth creates a jelly consistency when it cools down, so you can scoop it out with a spoon. It gels up like this because of the gelatin it contains. Gelatin is basically a cooked form of collagen. Simmering your bones in water to make broth extracts collagen from the bones and cooks it into gelatine. So when the broth is cold, it will hopefully go into a nice jelly. Reheating makes it liquid again.
Why is gelatine good for us?
Cyndi O’Meara, nutritionist from Changing Habits says… ‘Gelatin is incredibly healing for the digestive tract as broth works towards normalizing digestion and makes foods cooked in broth easier to digest. It helps to helps to heal, seal and soothe the gut lining and in doing so can be very helpful for reducing intestinal inflammation, reversing leaky gut syndrome and other digestive problems. Other benefits of drinking gelatinous rich broth include strengthening hair and nails, reducing, preventing and healing cellulite and wrinkles.’
7 ways to get a good gel on your bone broth
♥ Add more bones with cartilage and connective tissue like chicken feet, wings, necks, knuckles, oxtail, skin, joints, trotters and even heads! You are ideally looking for half joint type bones and half meat type bones.
♥ Add more bones compared to water. You need lots of bones and water to just cover.
♥ Get your timing right. Cooking too long makes the collagen break down and too short doesn’t allow enough to be extracted. 8-12 hours is enough to extract the goodness and get a good gel.
♥ Don’t cook too fast or too hot. The collagen will break down if the broth is boiled vigorously. A gentle simmer is perfect.
♥ Use apple cider vinegar to help release the collagen. Pre-soak the bones with water and ACV for an hour or so before you apply heat.
♥ Use good quality, grass-fed animal bones.
♥ Let the broth rest in the fridge – it may take up to 8 hours to turn jelly like.
Is broth that doesn’t gel still okay to use?
Of course! It still has wonderful health benefits and will contain some gelatine, just not enough to make it go like jelly and set firmly. Use it and try again next time!
Do you get a nice gel with your bone broth? Do you have any tips to share?
Want to talk more broth? Join our Facebook group, Bone Broth Basics.
Want to learn how to make your own broth? Check out my book, Bone Broth Basics.