IMAG1851Meat stock is vital to healing the damaged gut, sealing the microbiome for foundation rebuilding. Cooking bone broth, instead of meat stock, will prolong your healing time if have advanced pathogenic gut damage.

{This post contains affiliate links which pay for this site}.

According to GAPS founder, Dr. Natasha Campbell-McBride chicken meat stock is one of the most gentle options for a sensitive system. She says, “Chicken stock is particularly gentle on the stomach and is very good to start with. The gelatinous soft tissues around the bones and the bone marrow provide some of the best healing remedies for the gut lining and the immune system; your patient needs to consume them with every meal,” (page 145)

If the digestive system is greatly damaged the client needs the cleanest source of chicken. The best choice is a chicken raised on grass, bugs and worms, free ranging in an open yard. If that option is not available sourcing an organic chicken, which has “access to the outdoors” and has been fed organic feed is the next best option. Organic chickens are usually fed organic grains, even though chickens are omnivore foragers. Using Organic Chicken from Costco is a good source.

If you’re eating a chicken that has eaten antibiotics, you’re eating antibiotics. Eating a chicken that says, “contains up to 17% of a solution of water, less than 2% solution of…” is injected with water so that the chicken weighs more allowing for more profit by the pound. The less than 2% solution is often potato starch, maltodextrin (which is usually derived from GMO corn), autolyzed yeast extract, torula yeast, caramelized sugar, citric acid, cream of tartar, expeller pressed canola oil, flavors, food starch, rice flour, sugar or yeast extract -all of which feed pathogens in the gut. Chickens that contain these ingredients should not be used.


Cutting the chicken up is not vital to healing but assists in adding more nutrient healing enzymes to the tract. Sometimes, while on GAPS, a mom needs to choose what she does in the kitchen due to time. If this is the case cutting the chicken is not mandatory for healing, however, it is highly beneficial. Cut the chicken at the joints with a sharp knife or kitchen scissors like these. This can be done easily by pulling the leg or wing out and breaking it back, showing you the joint.


Do this for each leg and each wing, at each joint. Opening the joints allow better accessibility to the vital nutrition contained in the joints and connective tissues. Meat stock made from chicken is high in the amino acids proline and glycine, bioten, collagen, elastin, glucosamine and gelatin. These are the elements that feed the enterocytes, the building blocks of the gut lining.

IMAG1840Cutting the bones half way through the leg opens access to the marrow. Cut the bird down the breast bone and back bone. This step is not vital but it opens up the availability to further nutrition. Place the chicken pieces in a stainless steel pot, like this one, placing them tight around each other like a puzzle to fit the pot. If possible have all the chicken pieces cover one layer so the stock is not diluted with too much water. Cover the chicken with filtered water one finger width above the meat. If you have chicken feet and/or heads, adding them to the stock will greatly increase the healing aspects. This is a hard fact to swallow and grosses many people out – don’t worry about it, just do what you can.IMAG1842Add 1 tablespoon of mineral salt, like this one, 2-3 bay leaves, crushed peppercorns and 2 teaspoons of apple cider vinegar, with the mother. Allow the pot to rest for 20-30 minutes. Turn the heat on high and bring to a rolling boil. Just before the boil scoop off the foam that has risen to the top. Scooping the foam scoobage will give you a noticeably better tasting stock, some say this is the bones cleaning themselves. By the time you finish skimming the pot should be at a rolling boil. 

Cover and turn the heat down to a low simmer, with slight bubble activity for 1.5-2 hours. If you do not cover the pot the stock will evaporate and you will lose a great portion of your stock. After cooking, remove the chicken, bay leaves and scoop out the peppercorns (which are difficult to digest).  Allow the chicken to cool for a few minutes, then remove the skin and add it back to the stock pot. With a stick blender mix the skin into the stock until fully combined. This aspect will add valuable nutrition to the stock, it will also make the stock taste more like a cream soup. “We need all of the natural fats in natural foods, and saturated and monounsaturated fats need to be the largest part of our fat intake,” Dr. Natasha Campbell-McBride says (page 259).

She further says, “Do not take fat out of the stock, it is important for your GAPS patient to consume the fat together with the stock.” (page 178)

Once the skin is blended back in, you can ladle your hot stock into mason jars, the size of your choice, and immediately put on the lids. As the jars cool, they will pop down, sealing themselves slightly. This type of sealing will not make your stock shelf stable but will allow it to remain in the refrigerator a bit longer. The length of time your stock is good in the refrigerator depends on the person and the depth of gut damage. The most severe cases need to be consuming the freshest meat stock possible. These people generally say they have problems with histamine foods. If this is the case, only keep in the refrigerator food for two days, the rest should be stored in the freezer or made new. 

Meat stock will naturally feed the amines in the tract, including the amine histidine, which releases histamine. If you are having histamine issues, McBride says it is important to consume many small cups of stock throughout the day, much like you would drink a glass of tea. If histamine issues are a problem, do not reheat the soup for a very long time as it cooks out the healing enzymes that calm the mast cells that cause the histamine issue. Meat stock should not be reheated for more than 30 minutes.

The average healing gut will tolerate stock that has been kept in the refrigerator a week. Someone with light gut damage can handle stock that has been in the freezer for two weeks. Stock in freezer safe mason jars, filled 3/4 full, with a loose lid, freezes well. The breakage potential of mason jars in the freezer is high for many people. For this reason, it is wise to allow your jars to cool in the refrigerator, then transfer it to another container that is freezer safe. Freezing in ziptop bags is OK as BPAs  (bisphenol a) have been reported to leach in acid conditions as well as conditions where heat is present. Cooled stock has not been tested in any published reports showing the content of either and the potential BPA content.

Once you have your stock in jars, it is easy to pull a jar out of the refrigerator, add your desired meat and vegetables and enjoy!

Remove the meat from the carcass while the carcass is still warm. Some people add all the chicken meat back into the stock pot for chicken soup, others save half of it and use it for other dishes so the soup is not so chicken heavy. 

For GAPS stage 1 or 2 add chopped carrots (if tolerated) onion, garlic and peas, or any other Stage 1 or 2 approved vegetable. Cook for 25 minutes until the vegetables are soft. Add in the chicken meat and enjoy! Chicken stock is the most used base for soups. The possibilities for soup options are endless.



*If you learned something from this post share it so others can do the same. To support the efforts of this blog shop the affiliate links above like this one. You pay the same shopping through Amazon while the author receives a small referral fee from Amazon. This offsets the costs of this site.

*Nourishing Plot is written by Becky Plotner, ND, traditional naturopath, GAPS who sees clients in Rossville, Georgia. Since her son was delivered from the effects of autism (Asperger’s syndrome), ADHD, bipolar disorder/manic depression, hypoglycemia and dyslexia through food she continued her education specializing in Leaky Gut and parasitology through Duke University, finishing with distinction. This is not a news article published by a paper trying to make money. This blog is put out by a mom who sees first hand the effects of nourishing food vs food-ish items. No company pays her for writing these blogs, she considers this a form of missionary work. It is her desire to scream it from the rooftops so that others don’t suffer from the damaging effect of today’s “food”.




Tagged with:

13 Responses to Chicken Meat Stock- A Step By Step GAPS Lesson

  1. Jen says:

    This is so helpful. Thank you so much for writing this. I can easily get Costco organic chickens. And found some bone-in turkey legs and thighs, to make a different tasting broth sometimes. Just need to work on finding meaty beef bones. Can you write a meaty beef bone step by step?

  2. Janet R. Perry, MA, ACN says:

    Beef Collagen Hydrolysate will increase the glycine content of your soups and can even be put in a cold drink without gel formation due to the hydrolysis of the original gelatin form. Most available products are from grass fed South American beef, hence very clean. Request a certificate of assay or COA for confirmation of the cleanliness of the product. My preference is Great Lakes Gelatin ( I use 9 Tbsp per day, after slowly increasing, and green superfood powders along with 100 B cfu probiotics to heal my leaky gut and over come insulin resistance. So far it is working very well, no more sugar cravings, have lost 20 lbs since February and am much calmer due to the GABA like effects of Glycine. It is also a major contributor to LIver Detox Pathways I and II. 25% of Glutathione is glycine.

  3. Maria Rodriguez says:

    Thank you Becky for sharing this detailed outline. Can you also add back into the stock actual meat and marrow from chicken blended in vitamix or similar or just the skins? What is the ratio of liquid stock to number of skins/pieces of meat to add back in blended form to stock. Also what kind of peas are ideal for a GAPs intro stage 1-2.

    • Becky Plotner says:

      I’m not sure how you will get more marrow out of the chicken bones but if you can get more out and blend it in, yes, as with the meat.The skins should have been on the chicken giving you the perfect ratio if there was not too much water added. I buy frozen organic peas.

  4. […] superior flavour and gut-healing properties. You can check out my favourite chicken broth recipe here. When making stock I use a 10l stainless steel stock pot, to which I add the feet from 3 packs of […]

  5. Hi Becky! Can you have only a single layer of chicken? Or can you fill the pot up with many layers of chicken? I’m trying to figure out how much chicken I need to use. Also, when you say water should be filled to be one finger above the chicken, do you mean a finger length or width? Thank you!

    • Becky Plotner says:

      Excellent question, you can do as many chickens as you like. In fact, that’s a wonderful way to save time laboring in the kitchen. Finger width, around an inch.

  6. Ken says:

    I ‘want’ to say “great article” but there are so many confusing typos that I don’t understand what you are saying on a few key points. I gave up readin at BPA plastic bags. It seems like you are saying not to use plastic bags but I can’t tell for sure. There were a few key points that were confusing earlier in the article as well. I hope you will make the time to edit, as it is almost a great writeup. Regards!

  7. Loriann Rivard says:

    Hi Becky, Yes, clearly I have histamine intolerance, and a very leaky gut problem going on. Therefore, I need to ask about freezing my stock questions. Since I have trouble with histamine, I cannot eat any foods left overnight in the refigerator. It increases histamine. So, do I put in mason jars with lids and let it cool in the refigerator (but not overnight), then put mason jars in freezer without putting my stock into another container? In otherwords, can I use the SAME mason jars for cooling the stock in the frig, then transfering the same mason jars to the freezer? This would be so helpful to me, thank you so much. btw….I am also using L-glutamine in-between meals to help with leaky gut.

    • Becky Plotner says:

      Yes, you can do that, however, when I had histamine issues, the jars often broke (even if they were freezer jars and filled 3/4 full with a loose lid). I found more success, due to breaking jars, by putting the stock in the refrigerator to cool, then transferred to a zip top bag and stored in the freezer. I would not do L-glutamine for leaky gut. It shows to last for a few months, then issues become worse there after. The best source is the glutamine/glutathione which is naturally in the properly made meat stock.

  8. Thank you so very much for the wonderful instructions. I have been struggling with leaky gut, Allergies, ADD, memory, Anxiety, Depression, PTSD, brain fog and I also struggle with reading comprehension so following directions is not easy. Expressing myself is also not easy. I am so frustrated as I did The Gaps 7 yrs and wondered why it didn’t work for me. I did feel a tiny little better but it was so restrictive and my family was not supportive nor understanding. It took a lot of work to follow instructions but they are different instruction in different sources. I went to conferences a few times 2011- 2014 and got wonderful support. I can’t afford to go anymore and lost that kind of support. Looked for a GAPs practitioner in my area but no one seems to be really practicing and I found only one. Are you available to see if you can help? I am seeing a naturopath but address PTSD with acupuncture and she seems to believe that the body will heal all of this with acupuncture and some support of Homeopathy & herbs. Your thoughts? Sandy

  9. Kata says:

    Dear Becky, many thanks for this blog and all the info…it is a great help for me and my family who are following the GAPS diet. There is one thing though, that I am a bit confused about, and it is about food allowed on stage 1 of the intro diet. In Natasha’s book Gut and psychology syndrome it says some vegetables like carrots are allowed on stage 1 and this is what you mention here on your blog too. However, our GAPS practitioner we work with now says that only food of animal origin is allowed on this stage. Could you please advise what you think about this. Many thanks in advance! Kata

What do you think?

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Probiotic Foods vs Commercial Probiotics

GAPS, Stage by Stage, With Recipes

Joyous Song, The Proverbs 31 Woman

The Fontainebleu Miami

Ocean Drive Guidebook

%d bloggers like this: