Friday, December 2, 2016

How to make Bone meal [with no special tools]

This is an EASY recipe for making bone meal for the garden, a calcium supplement, or pet food. Many blogs tote the mistruth that you must have a bone grinder. This same idea discouraged me for many years after originally thinking about making bone meal. But now that I have been making my own for a few months, I will share my approachable method to making bone meal. While it can be time consuming, most of it is passive, and if you are trying to waste nothing, this is perfect for you.

What you will need:
Bakeable dish with lid[ IF this container is too small you ALSO need a pot that holds about a gallon.]
Chicken carcass/bones [turkey bones work too, but take longer]
Blender [I have a very incompetent Ninja prep "Blender" that does this fine]
Cheese cloth, tea towel, or washcloth
Flour sifter or something similar
Baking pan [if you don't have one, use whatever dish you do have that can be baked in and has                                 reasonable surface area.]

  1. Make stock by simply placing bones/carcass in large pot and add plenty of water. 
  2. Allow this to either simmer on low or bake on 200F degrees for a few hours until the desired richness is achieved. reserve liquid for whatever recipes you wish. 
  3. If you are making bone meal for pet food, don't add onions or garlic as this may hurt your pets 
  4. Next put bones into bakeable dish with lid and add fresh water to cover all the bones. 
  5. Allow this to bake covered on 200-250F for many hours in the oven, If you can't finish in one day, let cool and place in fridge. Usually this takes 10-16 hours of oven time to make the bones soft enough to blend. [a good way to see if these will blend is to squish the end of a larger bone with your fingers, then ensure the splintery center shatters when you apply firm pressure] a crock pot would work for this as well.
  6. Strain the bones through cheese close, and use this liquid to make rice or whatever you please.
  7. Allow bones to dry on baking pan in the oven set to 200F
  8. Sift the bone meal through a flour sifter [this is more important for pet food and calcium supplement] the fine powder is your finished product [the sharp larger bits can be added to a future batch or into the garden.]

Energy saving tips:
  • Dehydrate fruit/veg/meat or slow cook ribs/meaty stew while this sits in the oven.
  • If you don't a very large apartment or house, forgo turning on the heat while you have the oven on.
  • Keep the bone meal in the oven while you bake a casserole or pizza, to take advantage of the high temperatures.