How to Make Homemade Beef Stock

beef stock prep
Diana Rattray
  • 4 hrs 25 mins
  • Prep: 25 mins,
  • Cook: 4 hrs
  • Yield: About 2 quarts or 8 servings
Ratings (26)

A homemade beef stock is easy to make with roasted beef bones and trimmings, along with vegetables, water, and herbs. Hands-on preparation time is under 30 minutes, and then the stock is simmered to perfection for several hours. 

You'll need a roasting pan and a stock pot large enough to accommodate the bones and vegetables, and a fine mesh strainer with cheesecloth for straining the final stock. 

Homemade beef stock or broth is a good reason to keep the meat trimmings from roasts and steaks. Keep a food storage bag in the freezer for meat scraps and one for vegetable trimmings. 

See Also: Homemade Vegetable Broth

What You'll Need

  • 5 to 6 pounds beefy bones and trimmings*
  • 2 medium onions (peeled, quartered)
  • 2 large carrots (cut into 2-inch pieces)
  • 2 ribs celery (with leaves, cut into 2-inch pieces)
  • 2 tablespoons​ extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste
  • 3 1/2 quarts water
  • 1 large bay leaf (or 2 small bay leaves)
  • 3 to 4 sprigs parsley
  • 1/2 teaspoon black peppercorns
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried thyme (or a sprig or two of fresh thyme)

How to Make It

  1. *Use a variety of beef bones, such as neck bones, shanks, ribs, etc, along with some beef. Trim larger pieces of beef  from bones and cut into 1-inch pieces.  
  2. Heat the oven to 400 F.
  3. Put the bones and beef pieces in a large roasting pan with the onions, carrots, and celery. Toss with the olive oil.
  4. Roast for 45 minutes, turning a few times so the beef browns evenly.
  5. Remove the beef and vegetables to a stockpot and set aside.
  1. Pour off any excess grease and place the roasting pan over medium heat. Add the 1 tablespoon of tomato paste and cook, stirring, for 2 minutes. Add 2 cups of water and bring to a simmer. 
  2. Add the tomato paste mixture to the stockpot, along with the remaining 3 quarts of water. If the water doesn't quite cover the bones, add a little more water.
  3. Add the bay leaf, parsley sprigs, peppercorns, and thyme.
  4. Put the stockpot over medium high heat and bring to a boil. Skim off any foamy scum from the top and then reduce heat to the lowest setting and simmer for 3 to 4 hours. The stock should be flavorful and reduced slightly. If you want a richer, more concentrated flavor, cook longer to reduce more. 
  5. Strain through cheesecloth lined strainer into a large bowl. Cover and refrigerate until chilled.
  6. Remove the solid fat from the surface and ladle into 1, 2 or 4-cup freezer containers or jars* leaving about an inch of headspace. Refrigerate and use within 4 days or freeze for up to 3 months.
  7. Makes about 2 quarts of beef stock.

*The stock will expand as it freezes, so if using glass jars it's especially important to leave plenty of headspace. Use a wide mouth jar and leave about 1 inch for headspace. To be safe, leave the tops resting on the jars until the stock is frozen, then screw them on, but not too tight.