Thanksgiving is one of those blessed events when we can throw our cares to the wind and eat all the carbs and all the pie. However! If we can pack some extra nutrition into all those classic Thanksgiving dishes, why not? Earlier this week, I shared some simple and healthy Thanksgiving sides, and now I've got another to add to the lineup: Bone Broth Mashed Potatoes.
What Is Bone Broth?
Back in the old days, everyone made soup with soup bones. It was the secret ingredient to my grandmother's famous vegetable soup.
By definition, broth is a thin, lightly flavored liquid made from meat or poultry simmered in water. Very few bones, if any, are used. Stock is made primarily with bones and just a small amount of meat. When we say bone broth, we really mean stock.
The best flavored stock comes from bones that have been roasted. This could be a poultry carcass, like a Thanksgiving turkey, or it could be made from beef bones that are dry roasted in the oven first with the intent of using them for stock.
Roasting bones deepens their flavor. The bones are then cooked in water at a low temperature for a very long time to allow as many nutrients as possible to leach into the stock.
Bone broth is easier than you might think: use whatever meat or poultry you'll be serving, bones included, add some veggies you have at hand, and let the whole thing simmer for a few hours. In fact, you can grab our tried and true recipe below. But why would you make it, you ask?
Why Bone Broth?
Bone broth is rich in nutrients, including calcium, magnesium, and phosphorus. These are all important for a healthy diet, especially during the cold months when our bodies could use a boost. And if you've ever noticed how cold bone broth sets up like jelly, that's because of its high collagen content.
Collagen is essential not just in keeping skin look youthful and elastic, but also in supporting the tendons and ligaments, lowering blood pressure and blood sugar, and even reducing osteoarthritis pain. Collagen might also aid with thinning hair and brittle nails.
Most of us need extra collagen to keep our connective tissues healthy [source], and while taking it as a supplement is an easy, sure way to get your fix, including bone broth in your regular diet might be an even healthier alternative. Essential amino acids arginine, glycine, and proline, and other nutrients leach out of the bones as the stock cooks. We need those amino acids to help the body synthesize hemoglobin, support digestion, and promote skin and connective tissue health.
Bone Broth Mashed Potatoes
Our friends at Bonafide Provisions came up with this recipe and it was just too good not to share. It has the gut-healing benefits of bone broth, lots of healthy fats (butter! avocado oil! coconut cream!), and, most importantly: plenty of garlic.
Garlic has been traditionally used as a cure-all natural remedy, due to its antiseptic, antibacterial and antifungal properties. Incorporating garlic into your diet (especially during the cold and flu season) could give your immune system a boost and keep infections at bay.
If your Thanksgiving mashed potatoes could use an upgrade, this is it. Flavorful and delicious, healthy and satisfying, perfect as a side dish or on its own.
Bone Broth Mashed Potatoes
- Potato masher
- 2 pounds yukon gold potatoes washed and peeled
- 2 teaspoons sea salt
- 1 tablespoon grassfed butter or ghee
- ½ large yellow onion diced
- 3 tablespoons chicken bone broth
- 1 tablespoon avocado oil
- 8 garlic cloves minced
- ¼ cup coconut cream
- 3 tablespoons grassfed butter or ghee
- sea salt and black pepper to taste
- chopped chives for garnish
- Place potatoes in a large saucepan or pot and cover with 1” water over their tops. Bring to a light boil over medium-high heat and add 2 teaspoons of sea salt. Cover and cook potatoes for 25 minutes until very fork tender. Drain and set aside to slightly cool and transfer to a large mixing bowl.
- In a large pan over high heat, melt 1 tablespoon of butter. Add in diced onion and lower the heat to medium-low. Cook for 4-5 minutes until soft. Add in bone broth and continue cooking for 4-5 minutes until the liquid begins to thicken up a bit. Stir frequently. When ready, transfer the onions to the bowl of potatoes.
- Add oil to pan and sauté garlic cloves on low heat for 3 minutes, stirring frequently. Transfer to the mixing bowl.
- Mash your potatoes using a potato masher.
- Add in coconut cream, butter, garlic, salt, and black pepper and stir to combine. Taste and adjust seasonings as needed.
Basic Chicken Bone Broth
- Slow cooker
- 1 roasted chicken, preferably organic and free-range
- 1 large onion, halved
- A few celery stalks
- 2 carrots, scrubbed well
- A handful of parsley
- Optional: bay leaves, garlic, rosemary, and thyme
- Remove the meat from the chicken and save for another use.
- Place the chicken carcass into the slow cooker along with the veggies and herbs. Cover with enough water so that everything is submerged, and cook on HIGH for 2–3 hours, then turn to LOW for another 8–12 hours. If using the stove, place everything in a big stockpot and cover with water. Bring to a boil, then lower heat and cook at a simmer for 8–10 hours, adding more water if needed.
- After the long cooking period, remove the large pieces of bone and the veggies with a slotted spoon. Strain the broth through a fine mesh sieve into a large bowl. Let the broth cool a bit before transferring to airtight containers or jars. Alternatively, the entire bowl can be chilled and transferred later to containers. To remove the layer of fat, chill and scrape off with a slotted spoon.
- Broth will keep for about 1 week in the fridge or several months in the freezer.
Photos by Ana Maria Stanciu76