How to Turn Your Thanksgiving Leftovers Into a Healing Turkey Bone Broth
Sam Eckstein, cofounder of Springbone Kitchen, shares his easy, nutrient-dense recipe for the holiday season
After gorging on Thanksgiving food, your body might need a little healthy boost to get back on track, and we have just the suggestion.
This year, after you’re done carving your turkey, don’t throw out the bones—instead, you can turn them into a healing turkey bone broth.
Sam Eckstein, co-owner of Springbone Kitchen—a restaurant in N.Y.C. that specializes in bone broth—is sharing an easy way to make the nutrient-packed concoction at home this holiday season.
“It’s one of my favorite things on Thanksgiving. Right when everyone is ready to sit down and watch some TV and have their turkey-induced nap, I make a bone broth,” Eckstein, who opened Springbone with his childhood friend Jordan Feldman in 2016, tells PEOPLE. “It’s so easy and everyone’s going to be so impressed. It’s a huge hit the morning after Thanksgiving. I serve it like coffee in a mug.”
Eckstein quit his corporate job to start Springbone after he and Feldman
“searched obsessively for healthier options on their lunch breaks, but were left consistently disappointed,” he says. They make all their bone broths in-house, but say it’s easy to recreate at home — especially when you have a leftover turkey at your fingertips.
Eckstein recommends the “kitchen sink” method when it comes to making a turkey bone broth.
“I take the whole turkey carcass, everything with all the meat pulled off it, just the bones and scraps and I put it in a pot,” he shares. “Then I grab whatever vegetables we have lying around — onions, garlic, carrots — and whatever herbs might be sitting in the fridge and throw them in the pot, too. Then I fill it up with water and bring it to a boil, then simmer and cook it overnight — around 12 hours.”
“The beauty of this is it’s not like baking, there’s no set amount of vegetables or herbs — it’s whatever you have lying around,” he adds.
The magic of bone broth is in its healing ingredients, according to Eckstein.
Collagen and Gelatin
As the most abundant protein in mammals, collagen makes up all human connective tissue. Maximum collagen = glowing skin, hydrated joints, stronger nails and a happy gut.
Glucosamine and Chondroitin Sulfate
These brotherly compounds are typically sold as expensive joint supplements for athletes.
Amino Acids Glycine and Proline
These anti-inflammatory amino acids are superstars of gut health and digestion, and are essential building blocks to a strong immune system and muscle repair.
This nonsulfated glycosaminoglycan is given as an injection to arthritis patients to lubricate their joints.
Eckstein says you can use whatever vegetables you have lying around your kitchen after your Thanksgiving feast to make the broth, but if you’re the type of person who needs an exact recipe:
Springbone Kitchen Bone Broth Recipe
8 lbs. turkey bones, plus scraps from carving (an 18-lb. turkey should yield this many pounds)
6 celery stalks
10 bunches of herbs (such as thyme, sage or rosemary)
5 bay leaves
1 head garlic
2 Tbsp. whole black peppercorns
3 Tbsp. salt (or to taste)
1. In a large stock pot, combine all ingredients. Fill with enough water to cover all ingredients, approximately 3 gallons.
2. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to lowest setting so it is just barely simmering. Let simmer for 12 hours.
3. Strain broth and discard solids. After straining, skim off the fat that accumulates at the top of the liquid and discard.
4. Broth can be stored in the refrigerator for up to 5 days or in the freezer for up to 6 months.
**This recipe was provided to PEOPLE by a chef, restaurant or culinary professional. It has not been tested for home use.**