Simple Beef Stock a La Julia Child

Want more from Genius Kitchen?

Watch on your Apple TV, Roku, or Fire TV and your iOS, Fire, or Android device.

Learn More
“This simple stock, adapted from a recipe in "Mastering the Art of French Cooking," is a wonderful base for many soups, sauces, and, of course, for Julia's boeuf Bourguignon.”
5hrs 40mins
2-3 quarts

Ingredients Nutrition

  • 3 -4 lbs beef bones, meaty
  • 3 carrots, scraped, broken in several pieces
  • 2 medium onions, peeled, quartered
  • 3 stalks celery, broken in several pieces
  • 2 leeks, cleaned and cut into chunks
  • 1 sprig thyme
  • 2 fresh bay leaves
  • 2 garlic cloves, unpeeled (More if you like)
  • 2 whole cloves
  • 6 -8 peppercorns


  1. Place the beef bones in a large heavy pot and cover with cold water by about two inches.
  2. Bring to a simmer over medium heat and skim the sum which rises to the top--this should take about five minutes.
  3. Add the remaining ingredients and more cold water so that everything is covered by at least an inch or two.
  4. Bring the stock to a simmer again, skimming as necessary.
  5. When the stock is simmering (Do NOT allow it to boil), partially cover and maintain at a very slow simmer for four to five hours.
  6. If the water level gets too low, add boiling water to the pot.
  7. Skim as necessary.
  8. When the vegetables and the bones have given their all to the broth, strain the broth and discard the solids.
  9. Set the stock, uncovered in the refrigerator until the fat has risen to the top and solidified.
  10. Remove and discard the fat.
  11. Taste the degreased stock (remembering it contains no salt) and if it is not strong enough, reduce it over medium heat.
  12. When the stock is cold, store in the refrigerator for up to three days or in the freezer.

Watch more

Join the Conversation

  • all
  • reviews
  • tweaks
  • q & a