Gone are the days of needing to leave a big pot on the stovetop overnight to simmer down knuckle bones into broth or stock for stews and soups. Nowadays there is a variety of bone broth products available which have helpfully done all of the hard and time consuming work for us!One the leading premium brands of bone broth is Kettle & Fire, and, in this review, I take an in depth look at their products. I also briefly consider just why bone broth is for many a key part of a healthy diet and just why a great bone broth has become a popular part of the daily diet once more.
Ease of ordering 5/5
Product choice 4/5
Product sustainability 5/5
Budget friendliness 4/5
Should You Be Using Bone Broth?
Used traditionally to add depth of flavor to many dishes, bone broth has become a ‘must-have’ food, not only because of its high protein content but because it is a source of key minerals and other nutrients found in bones. Bone broth is made by cracking open bones and simmering them slowly for a long time to allow the nutrients from the bones to dissolve into the liquid broth. Adding an acid such as apple cider vinegar helps release the nutrients easier than just simmering the bones in water.
Just some nutrients in bone broth are phosphorous, calcium, iron, vitamin k, zinc, manganese and collagen. The collagen is a source of amino acids – the building blocks of proteins – that the body needs to obtain from the diet. Collagen may be more familiar to you in its cooked form – gelatin – which can break back down into collagen once in the body. This collagen may then be useful in helping protect the joints both from too much stress and maybe even damage from osteoarthritis.
Because bone broth contains a lot of protein it can help up feel fuller for longer which could be useful for weight management. As well helping make proteins, some amino acids have other roles in the body. One amine acid, glycine, may help with sleep problems and as bone broth is a good source of this, eating bone broth at dinner time may help increase levels of glycine in the body. Glutamine is another amino acid found in bone broth and this may be useful to those who have digestive disorders such as inflammatory bowel disease.
Most commercially made bone broths also contain additional ingredients such as vegetables, herbs and spices which can also offer nutritional value to the broth. The extra flavor also means that many bone broths can be drunk from a cup as a meal after heating, without needing to add any other ingredients.
It is worth mentioning though, as with many foods, much more understanding is needed as to the proven benefits of bone broth to the body.
How Do You Use Bone Broth in Cooking?
You can use bone broth in any recipe which needs a broth or stock base and you can also get creative with how you use it. Here are just a few of the many ways of adding bone broth to your regular cooking.
Bone broth makes a fantastic base for traditional stews and casseroles. It also works well in many light soups and even Asian and fusion soups. Or, you can use heartier ingredients to make a more filling meal. Not only can you use bone broth as a marinade base for a range of meats (and even some fish dishes) you can also use it for braising with. A good bone broth will really enhance the flavor of your roast chicken, short ribs, pulled pork and more. And remember, once you have finished cooking, you can use the remaining liquid for gravy. If you want to make a pot pie for a big family supper, then you can also use bone broth as your liquid stock.
As well as meats, you can add bone broth to vegetables such as mashed potato or mashed root vegetables, or even kick up your scrambled eggs a notch. As most bone broths from Kettle & Fire are also Paleo, you can also use it as a base for Paleo friendly dips and more.
Try bone broth as a base for pasta sauce, or if you fancy Mexican for dinner, why not use it in your chili or enchiladas or even taco soup? You can also cook your rice in bone broth, whether for serving as rice or if you want to make risotto or another Mediterranean rice dish.
Bone broth is not just exclusive to rice. You can use it in place of water to cook savory oatmeal, orzo, quinoa, lentils, or indeed any other type of grain. Either replace the water quantity with bone broth or just replace some of the water with broth. Next time you cook beans you may also want to try soaking and even cooking them in bone broth for extra flavor and nutrition.
If you are a little braver, you may also want to try adding some to a smoothie for an instant liquid boost.
For simplicity, you can also enjoy Kettle & Fire bone broths from a cup or bowl after heating on the stovetop for five minutes or in the microwave for one minute.
How Do You Buy Kettle and Fire Bone Broths?
You can sometimes find Kettle & Fire bone broths at selected stores, but the easiest way to buy the full range of products is online at kettleandfire.com either as one off orders through the company’s subscription service. The Kettle and Fire website is very easy to use as it allows you to search by dietary need (such as gluten free or Paleo), broth base and other ingredients it contains.
The bone broths come as 32 oz cartons, while the bone broth soups are available as 16 oz cartons. You can buy what flavors you want as one off or as a subscription or you can choose a ready selected one off bundle. As shipping is free when you buy six or more cartons it does cost less to buy more as is shelf stable for two years, you have plenty of time in which to use it up.
Currently, a one off purchase of six 32 oz cartons of Classic Beef Bone Broth is $47.94 while a six pack of 16 oz Broccoli Cheddar Bone Broth Soup is $50.94. You can save money on these by either buying more or joining the Subscribe and Save program.
As with any premium and organic products, Kettle and Fire bone broths do come at a price. For that reason, Kettle & Fire may not always be the right choice for your budget. If however, you can afford a treat now and then, go for it and invest in a carton. You may prefer to use it for cooking with rather than serving as is because this will allow you to thin it out with water so the deliciousness can stretch a little further.
Making Bone Broth Organically
Formed by two bothers in 2013, the concept of Kettle and Fire was to create an environmentally friendly product which is nutritious and made with high quality ingredients and to ensure this, the products are organic.
For beef broth, the marrow bones are sourced from New Zealand and Australia, where cattle are organic and certified as grass fed and finished. As the cattle are organic, they are not routinely given antibiotics or hormones to promote growth.
The farmers who supply Kettle & Fire must abide by animal welfare guidance and the cattle are also humanely slaughtered to USDA slaughtering requirements. The USDA also inspects and certifies facilities and products, along with Whole Foods Market which has inspected Kettle and Fire processes from farming to production.
As with cattle, the chicken bones used for chicken stock are also organic and free range, fed on a diet free from animal byproducts and antibiotics as well as non-GMO grains. The bone broths are also Non-GMO Project Verified.
The broths themselves do not contain any artificial colors, flavors or preservatives and are free from any added monosodium glutamate (MSG). All the broths are certified as being gluten free as well as free from dairy, soy and glyphosate residues. It is important to note that these broths are not actually low sodium although they may not contain any added salt. If you compare a Kettle & Fire bone broth with one of your regular bone broths, you will probably find that the Kettle & Fire is noticeably lower in sodium.
The bones for the broths are processed in the US where they are simmered in steel kettles for a minimum of 20 hours at 130°F with organic vegetables, herbs and/or spices. This long and slow simmer allows the amino acids, proteins, collagen and other nutrients to leach from the bones into the broth.
Many Kettle & Fire bone broths are suitable for Keto, Paleo and Whole30 diets. Do check before you buy though as some broths may not be suitable for these types diets (chili with beans is one example).
Although Kettle & Fire do not currently make any broths that are kosher or halal, they do helpfully offer some recipes on their website which can be used by those who need to source certified meat products and make broths to their dietary requirements.
How Is the Bone Broth Made Shelf Stable?
If you have ever made your own broth, you will know that to keep it for any length of time you must can or freeze it. To make the bone broth long life, Kettle & Fire use retorting, a specialized process in which the broth is packaged and sealed in an aseptic and air tight environment and then heated for sterility.
The company also uses Tetra Pak packaging, which is not only recyclable and sustainably sourced, but also keeps the bone broth under vacuum sealed conditions until opened. When the bone broth is processed in this way it makes it shelf stable for 2 plus years until opened. Once a carton of bone broth is opened it must then be refrigerated.
Kettle and Fire Bone Broths
Although beef or chicken bone broth is used as a base in almost all Kettle & Fire products, there are a variety of broth flavors available from the core chicken and beef bone broths to flavored bone broth soups such as butternut squash, tomato, and mushroom, along with favorites such as Thai chicken bone broth soup. In this next section I review just some of these bestselling Kettle and Fire bone broths along with a few other popular choices.
1. Kettle & Fire Classic Beef Bone Broth
Ideal for sipping as is or using in a variety of dishes, this is the traditional bone broth made with organic beef bones, organic carrots, onion and celery along with apple cider vinegar, parsley, bay, thyme, black pepper and rosemary. As well as the ingredients all being organic, this is Non GMO Project Verified, dairy free and is also certified as gluten free. It can be used in Whole30, Paleo and Keto diets and provides 6 grams of protein and 10 grams of collagen per serving.
2. Kettle & Fire Mushroom Chicken Bone Broth
With organic chicken bone broth as its base, this also contains organic lion’s mane, portobello and shiitake mushrooms for an earthy and rich flavored broth. Other ingredients include carrots, onion, leek, fennel, apple cider vinegar and a range or organic herbs. Certified as gluten free and Non GMO Project Verified, you can have this mushroom chicken bone broth as part of your Paleo, Keto or Whole30 diet. Not only can you just have this as broth, it also makes a great base for many recipes, not least chicken dishes.
3. Kettle & Fire Chicken Noodle Soup
Available in 16 oz cartons, the Kettle & Fire chicken noodle soup uses chicken bone broth as its base and contains 11 grams of collagen to support joints. A one cup serving contains 5 grams of total fat, 16 grams of carbs 11 grams of protein.
Already a hearty soup and just like what you’d make yourself, if it is not quite as hearty as you would, you can just throw in some left over veggies or extra chicken while you are heating the soup up.
4. Kettle & Fire Tomato Bone Broth Soup
This is a rich tomato soup with a chicken bone broth base which is perfect for lunch alongside a grilled cheese sandwich on a chilly day. As well as organic tomato paste, this also contains organic vegetables, coconut milk, herbs, spices, garlic and sea salt. This certified gluten free broth is perfect to eat as is heated from the pan or you could use it as a base for tomato-based recipes and stews.
5. Thai Chicken Curry Bone Broth Soup
Certified gluten free and Non GMO Project Verified, the Thai chicken curry bone broth soup is made with authentic and organic Asian spices, coconut milk and contains chunks of chicken. You can either eat this spicy soup alone or alongside a salad, or just add some extra meat, lentils or vegetables for a more robust meal.
6. Kettle & Fire Chipotle Beef Bone Broth
If you enjoy a hot and spicy soup or just want to add some extra smoky flavor to your chili or even black eyed peas, then the chipotle beef bone broth may just be the one for you. Made with organic ingredients, this is Non GMO Project Verified and is Paleo and Keto friendly as well as being Whole30 approved. You can also use this in a gluten free diet. One serving provides 40 calories, 10 grams of protein and 8 grams of collagen.
7. Kettle & Fire Broccoli Cheddar Bone Broth Soup
With a chicken bone broth base, the broccoli and cheddar soup gets its extra flavor from the addition of sharp and aged organic cheddar along with chunks of organic broccoli. Although Keto friendly, this broth soup is not as suitable for Paleo or Whole30 diets. It is however certified gluten free and Non GMO Project Verified.
You can eat this popular soup on its own or add extra vegetables, cheese or even meat or beans to make a more substantial meal.
8. Kettle & Fire Butternut Squash Bone Broth Soup
Containing organic squash puree with coconut milk and chicken bone broth, this is a creamy broth soup which you can enjoy alone or use in a variety of recipes. Paleo friendly, it contains 6 grams of protein and 210 calories per serving. It is also dairy free and certified as being gluten free.
9. Beef Chili with Beans Bone Broth Soup
Although not suitable for Paleo, Keto or Whole30 diets, the chili is perhaps the heartiest bone broth option available from Kettle and Fire and is perfect for a filling lunch or a late dinner when you don’t feel up to cooking. One serving provides 300 calories and 19 grams of protein. It does not contain any dairy and is also certified as being gluten free.
10. Kettle & Fire Premium Vegetable Broth
Suitable for vegetarian and vegan diets, the vegetable broth is made with vegetables, herbs and spices and can be used as a base (cooking broth) for stews, soups and so much more. Containing just 5 calories per one cup serving, this is also fat free, free from any added sugars and low carb. It is also certified gluten free.
Unless you want to spend your spare time breaking up bones and simmering them overnight, then Kettle & Fire is definitely the best option available to add high quality bone broth to your daily diet. Not only does bone broth add richness of flavor, it also gives a nutritional boost to the daily diet.
For me, the fact that the products are organic and free from added colors, flavorings and preservatives is important as well as how many diets these are suitable for. From the downside of this Kettle and Fire review, I think that the premium cost of the bone broths will certainly be an issue for some household budgets and in the future, I would like to see one or two options that are low sodium – as this would help make them suitable for even more diets.