The Difference Between Chicken Broth and Stock

If you're looking to make some homemade soup and you're at the grocery store, perusing the shelves for ingredients, you may ask yourself: what is the difference between chicken broth and chicken stock? Both are a good base for stew, soup, sauces, and more, but there's at least one major difference between homemade broth and homemade chicken stock.

What is Chicken Stock?

Chicken stock is made from simmering chicken bones as well as aromatics (mirepoix!) and seasonings such as black pepper, according to Spruce Eats. "You can make chicken stock by simmering a whole chicken carcass leftover from roasting a chicken," the outlet notes.

What is Chicken Broth?

Chicken broth, on the other hand, is made from meat, according to Taste of Home. However, you cannot make a broth recipe using precooked chicken meat.

Vegetable broth or vegetable stock can also be made from simmering veggies to make a flavorful liquid, but obviously, with chicken broth, simmering meat needs to be part of the process. Plus, when it comes to broth versus stock "the key difference is that a stock will be rich with gelatin, whereas a broth will not," Spruce Eats reports. The gelatin adds a rich mouthfeel you don't find in stock.


Chicken broth is pretty versatile, and Food Network recommends adding ingredients like "carrots, onions, leeks, celery, fennel, parsley, bay leaf, black peppercorns, or garlic" to make it even more flavorful. Tomato paste is sometimes added as well!

Other Differences Between Chicken Stock and Broth

When it comes to using animal bones to make stock, the ultimate goal is to extract the collagen, "a protein in connective tissues and cartilage," Spruce Eats says, and to break it down into the aforementioned gelatin. Gelatin-heavy stock makes for a rich flavor in things like soup recipes.

In broth, there's no collagen to extract. As a result, the amount of time it takes to simmer broth is much shorter than it takes to make stock.

"Stock is usually solid (like Jell-O) when it's refrigerated, while broth keeps a liquid form," Taste of Home adds.

While stock and broth can often be substituted for one another in recipes, there are reasons for cooks to use one over another. For instance, the stock is usually thicker and has more flavor, while the broth is thinner and good for home cooks who want other ingredients in a dish to stand out more than that one.

So, What is Bone Broth?

Bone broth is just a dish with a confusing name. Bone broth is actually a stock with added apple cider vinegar, water, and salt and pepper to taste. It's gained popularity in recent years as a health drink, according to Healthline.

Have you ever made a dish like chicken noodle soup with either chicken stock or chicken broth?