What is the best bone broth and how do you choose?
Check out an in-depth comparison of the various bone broths on the market. These include perishable and shelf-stable bone broths, along with so-called bone broth protein powders.
Whether you’re already into bone broth or are just starting your journey, you’ve probably asked yourself “What is the best bone broth for me and how do I choose?”
One of the immediate aspects some people look at is the cost, which can be a dangerous way to shop for high-quality products. That because the adage tends to hold true that you certainly get what you pay for. Buy cheap bone broth and you’re likely to be in for a chintzy, not-so-wholesome experience.
Besides, there’s really no way to put a price tag on optimum health, which is what high-quality bone broth has the power to provide.
That said, we’re going to look at bone broth from the standpoint of food as medicine, not a cost perspective. Keep reading to find out:
- The health benefits of bone broth
- Why bone broth needs to be a staple in your daily diet
- Should you make bone broth or buy it?
- If you buy it, which variety is best for you?
We’re here to help you answer these questions, and probably a few more along the way!
What Is Bone Broth?
There is a reason why your mom or grandma always cooked up a pot of chicken soup when you were feeling ill. Bone broth has been used and prescribed for centuries by physicians and grandmothers alike to help heal you from the inside out. By slowly simmering the bones, meat, tendons, ligaments, and feet of an animal, you are able to transfer their nourishing benefits into an easily digestible liquid of gelatin, essential amino acids, and minerals.
Fans of bone broth say it:
- Supports the immune system
- Promotes healthy digestion by healing and sealing the gut
- Strengthens bones, skin, nails, and hair
- Reduces inflammation and joint pain
- Boosts energy levels
- Promotes better sleep
Bone broth is rich, satisfying, nutrient-dense and has the ability to fill your belly without adding many calories. Bone broth increases absorption of nutrients while also creating the perfect environment for your gut flora.
Can I just make bone broth myself?
Absolutely you can, but do you really want to? It’s a very time and labor intensive food to cook. First you have to find responsibly raised bones, like cut-up beef femurs, knuckle bones, chicken feet, chicken backs and other parts. Your next step is to roast those bones. This will not only help to break down the bones while simmering, but it makes your bone broth have more depth of flavor.
Then you have to simmer your bones, meat, veggies and herbs for at least 24 hours on low heat, never allowing it to boil. After all that, you need to filter out all the solids and fat. Finally, you have to let it cool and develop its flavor overnight. If you’re lucky, you’ll have a bunch of cold broth that is the consistency of Jell-O. If not, well, it’s not as excellent as it could be.
If making your own bone broth sounds like a hassle, that’s because it is. But the good news is we’re here to help when you don’t want to devote all that time and energy.
What are the different types of commercially made bone broths?
Perishable Bone Broth
Osso Good lives by the motto that “Real food shouldn’t last real long.” Bone broth is a food known for its gelatin content. And gelatin is fragile. That’s why bone broth recipes always call for slowly simmering the bones over low heat for a long time. It takes good, old-fashioned TIME to draw out the minerals from the bone. Heating the broth too high will destroy the gelatin.
Once the bone broth is strained and cooled, it has a limited shelf life. It can last for about one week in the refrigerator or six to 12 months in the freezer. If made the right way, perishable bone broth is thick and gelatinous with a Jell-O like consistency when cold. Although it requires refrigeration and consumption within a week, you’ll notice the benefits of bone broth best with a perishable version.
Shelf-Stable Bone Broth
Shelf-stable bone broths have a long shelf life, along with the ability to store them in room temperature, outside of the refrigerator. When you shake them, you’ll notice a watery texture, not the thick and gelatinous texture that’s characteristic of a perishable bone broth when cold.
As already mentioned, gelatin is fragile. In order to make a shelf-stable bone broth, it must be heated to a very high temperature. This high temperature, even for a few seconds, often destroys the fragile gelatin in a process called protein denaturation, leaving behind a liquid similar to the texture of water.
What you gain in portability and shelf life you will lose in health benefit and superfood status. For the record, when a protein is denatured, its shape is changed, making it less effective and less absorbable by the body.
Faux Bone Broth — Protein Powders that are marketed as actual bone broth
“Bone Broth” Collagen Powders
Most collagen powders that use “bone broth” in their titles do so as a marketing term. You definitely won’t find the same benefits that come from traditional recipes that slow simmer the broth for more than 24 hours.
You’ll instead find cheap collagen powder, derived from only the hides of animals. Cows tend to be the animals of choice here, and their hides are used for form collagen, which is then powdered, put in a tub and labeled “bone broth.”
Collagen does have its own benefits, mainly related to skin, nails, and hair. It is also incredibly versatile, with the ability to be added to smoothies and coffee. If you’re looking for nail and hair strength, then this is a good option for you.
Just keep in mind that you’re not getting real bone broth. You’re getting a collagen-based protein powder. It typically won’t contain all the macronutrients found in traditional bone broth. It’s also lacking the long simmer of high quality bones and organic veggies, along with the devotion of time and care.
While there are many differences between the different versions of bone broth, we summed it up neatly for you.
Perishable bone broth has a short shelf life, while the shelf-stable and powdered forms have long shelf lives.
Perishable bone broth has the benefit of a long simmer over low heat for a long time. This long simmer results in high-quality bone broth that is thick and gelatinous with a Jell-O-like consistency.
Shelf stable bone broths use ultra-high temperature processing (UHT). This denatures the fragile gelatin, making it less absorbable by the body.
Powdered bone broth, or collagen powder, is made from only the hide of animals. While it may strengthen your hair and nails, you won’t enjoy a similar benefit in your gut.
Why Choose Osso Good
There is one huge component of bone broth we have not even discussed yet: the flavor. The traditional bone broth recipe of a long, slow simmer produces amazing flavor, as does the inclusion of high-quality ingredients. We use organic or better ingredients, with vegetables that can range from onions to carrots, spices that can range from peppercorn to thyme, and only the very best bones, ever. The type of bones you get depend on the type of broth you’re buying. We use organic chicken and organic turkey bones, Berkshire pork bones, and grass-fed and finished beef bones.
When we say Osso Good is ridiculously good and sippable, we mean it. But don’t take it from us. Take it from all these Osso Good fans:
I ordered the 7-day cleanse and OMG it’s SO delicious! I started yesterday with the Revive the Gut and Chicken. The chicken was FABULOUS! – Rivka
As an endurance athlete, I’m constantly pushing my body to the limits. Good nutrition plays a crucial role in my ability to train happily, healthily, and consistently. Without question, discovering Osso Good Bone Broth has made a significant and positive impact on my running. -Larisa Dennis, professional endurance runner
If you haven’t had luck making homemade bone broth, like myself, Osso Good is for you! Used the chicken broth for chicken soup and it turned out great! We love the product and the friends I share it with fall in love with it too! – Danielle
Just finished the last of my Osso Good, its delicious and I really think you have an amazing product here! I work with food coaching clients who are always looking for places to buy broth, so I’ll definitely be sending them your way! – Kristen Boehmer, founder and creator of Living Loving Paleo
I have 2 autoimmune conditions, one of which is Crohn’s disease. Last year, I dedicated myself to making my own bone broth since I discovered that bone broth was helpful for intestinal issues. I was skeptical that a company could make a bone broth that tasted anything like homemade. Once I tried your bone broth, I was convinced that your company was the only one worthy of my business. I thank you for a product that I can trust, an essential ingredient on the path of healing what ails me. – CJ
What’s the Osso Good difference?
The best bone broth comes from the best ingredients. Beef that is not only pasture-raised, but grassfed with raising practices that go beyond organic. Pasture-raised and organic chickens and organic veggies and herbs! All that and our broths are also gluten free, antibiotic free, hormone free, and as always, free of mysterious “natural flavors”. We are also one of the few major bone broth companies that actually make our own bone broth in small, controlled batches to ensure the quality is always consistent and the taste is always amazing. We take a lot of pride in tasting each and every batch that is made. If you’ve never had our bone broth, you can taste the difference at www.ossogoodbones.com.