Best Ham Stock Stove or Instant Pot

Best Ham Stock Instant Pot or Stovetop

Here it is, Thanksgiving already. Well, just past. And I thought this might be a great time to put out a recipe on my Best Ham Stock, Instant Pot or Stovetop. I know a lot of you have had Turkey and so I’ve already got you covered with my Best Chicken or Turkey Stock.

Best Ham Stock Instant Pot or Stovetop

Best Ham Stock Instant Pot or Stovetop


There’s nothing like a pot of soup simmering on the stove during a cold, snowy day, is there? And so many good fall soups are ham based. So when I have a ham bone, I like to make a big pot of stock and divide it up and freeze it. Then I can make those soups anytime I want.

If you want, just jump to the recipe and go for it, but if you want to know all about ham stock, the best way to make it, and even “What is that jelly-like stuff when I make ham?” read on, friend!

Why Make Ham Stock Vs. Using a Ham Bone to Make Soup?

Recipes for soups (and sometimes other old-fashioned dishes) using ham come in two varieties. Those that call for using the bone and adding an amount of water to the recipe (and cooking for a long time) and those that call for a certain amount of ham stock and meat.

By taking the ham bone and making stock and then using the stock and the resulting meat that falls off the bone for both of those types of recipes:

  • The quality is better: This long-simmered stock is rich with excellent body and taste, and any recipe you make with a long-simmered Ham stock will be better than a recipe made by tossing in a ham bone, adding water, and cooking.
  • It’s more frugal: Because the quality is better and you’re able to extract more flavor from the bone, you’ll get more stock from the ham bone, usually enough for two big pots of soup rather than one.
  • You may get more meat: Especially if you use the meatier shank bone, there will usually be a lot of meat left and the long-simmering stock will allow you to use all of it; usually, there’s enough for a casserole and more than enough for two soups.
  • It maximizes your time: By making your stock from the bone, you’ll have enough for two soups (or other recipes).
  • It saves time: Your ham stock is at the ready: Anytime you want to make a recipe, you can have stock on hand and shave hours off of the cooking time of many recipes.
  • It puts you in control: You can make any type of ham soup or another ham-based recipe when you want to; having a stash of ham stock means you don’t have to wait for a holiday to roll around just so you have a ham bone.
  • It’s the flavor you want: If you cook a lot, you’ll notice a lot of recipes (even some of mine) based on ham call for chicken stock; use this ham stock instead and you’ll have much better flavor and the right flavor.
  • The mess is over: When you’re around the house, devote some time to making the stock, pick the bone clean, then bag up, freeze it and you’re done. No worries about freezing and storing that bone or starting the whole process from scratch for a soup.
  • You can maximize ingredients: Usually cooking a ham means you’ll have lots of sides, many that use the same ingredients that go into the stock. If you make the stock shortly after you serve the ham, it’s likely you have most of those veggies around. Things like celery, onion, and carrots. Using some of them in your stock is a great way to maximize them and keep them from languishing in the fridge.
  • No waste: As far as those veggies, if you prepare any dishes make sure to save the ends and peelings of carrots, the peelings of any onions, and the tops and root ends of celery. Those bits and pieces can go to waste, but if you use them in your stock that’s not a problem. Plus, they make some of the most flavorful stock!
  • It takes less room: Saving a ham bone in the fridge or freezer is going to take up space and it’s an awkward size and shape. Make the stock, reduce it, bag it and tag it and you’ll have several neat packets stored away.
Split Pea Soup

Split Pea Soup

About Best Ham Stock Instant Pot or Stovetop:

Making your own Best Ham Stock Instant Pot or Stovetop is super easy. It takes time but it’s mostly hands-off and there are a few steps, but it’s so worthwhile. My recipe for making ham stock has always lived on my post for Cuban Black Bean Soup, but I thought it was high time that my Best Ham Stock Instant Pot or Stovetop had the respect it deserves and its page and I’m going to cover all the basics.

You can see that my Best Ham Stock Instant Pot or Stovetop is a gorgeous thing. It has a deep, rich color and a good “gel” or “body.” That gelling is the hallmark of the best stocks. Some people call stocks “bone broth” which is a term that came from the Asian side of cooking and the name has caught on, especially with the Paleo movement. In reality, Bone Broth is just stock.

The great gel comes from all the marrow, bone, and collagen that breaks down from the long, slow cooking process. Don’t be surprised when you open your refrigerator door the next day and your lovely stock look as if it’s ham jello. While that doesn’t sound so good, it’s supposed to be that way. It will liquefy again as it’s heated.

Best Ham Stock Stove or Instant Pot

Best Ham Stock Stove or Instant Pot


Flavor of Best Ham Stock Instant Pot or Stovetop:

This stock has tons of flavor. There’s the flavor of the stock itself, from the bones, collagen, and marrow and there’s also the flavor of the aromatics and spices that go into the stock. Depending on how you’ve cooked your ham, there may be different flavors from liquids you’ve cooked your ham in, rubs that have specific flavors, and any glazes you’ve added to your ham.

All that flavor will be passed right into your stock, too, both from the ham meat and the juices & drippings, and scraps. I do give some thought about how I flavor and cook my hams and how that will affect the flavor of my meals and soups made from the leftovers, including the stock.

(This is a good place to plug my post on Leftover Ham Recipes; click the link to see them!)

Sometimes I just roll with the subtle nuances the ham glaze and flavorings give the resulting stock. Other times I will make a soup that actually plays up the specific flavors from a particular ham. For instance, when I made my Honey Glazed Cajun Spiced Ham, I chose to make a Cajun Ham & Rice Soup to drive that Cajun flavor home.

Other times, I’ll use a method to cook my ham in order to downplay the flavors in the juices & drippings and still keep the Ham itself super flavorful. When I made my Not Your Fathers Root Beer & Bourbon Glazed Ham I knew all the ham juices I’d want to use in my stock would be strongly flavored by the Root Beer and Bourbon glaze. I wasn’t feeling those flavors in my soups, so I deliberately cooked my ham to minimize that.

I put my ham on a rack and before glazing, I removed the ham from the oven, poured off all the lovely rendered juices and drippings from the pan, and refrigerated them. Then I glazed the ham, added water to the pan to prevent burning, and finished the now glazed ham in the oven. Those precious drippings were then just ham-flavored, not Root Beer flavored.

Not Your Fathers Root Beer & Bourbon Glazed Ham

See how I cooked Not Your Father’s Root Beer & Bourbon Glazed Ham on a rack so it would be easy to get the drippings before it was glazed.

Bones & Scraps for Best Ham Stock Instant Pot or Stovetop:

If I have any choice, I’ll choose the shank end of the ham for cooking because the bone is so much better. The bone helps to keep the ham juicy and flavorful & the shank is the best (IMHO) for the Ham stock. If I don’t have the shank, I just use what bone is there. “It’s all good” as they say. I also use all the juices, drippings, and scraps. And I especially use any of the jellied drippings you might find around the ham. They’re like gold and are concentrated gelatin that comes from the collagen in the ham. Never waste flavor!

In end, you’ll want to skim off any fat that floats to the top of your stock anyway preferably after an overnight stay in the fridge, so it doesn’t matter if you start out with some of the fattier, scrappy pieces of ham. When the stock congeals, it will form a layer of fat on the top that’s easy to either just pick up or spoon off. You can cook with that if you wish. Fry with it or use it in a savory dough like one for tamales or empanadas or maybe a savory pie crust. There’s a little hint of the ham flavor, not overwhelming, but it won’t do for a dessert pie, for instance.

Some people like to make their Ham stock with things other than ham, items like smoked shank, smoked pigs’ feet, etc. Those all make fantastic stocks, but you will need several to get the same depth of flavor that you would when using a larger ham bone. I think you’d be fine to go with two per quart or two of stock, depending on the size of the meaty bones you’re using.

How Much Meat from the Bone goes in Best Ham Stock Instant Pot or Stovetop:

I’m frugal and try to cut as much meat off the bone for other uses as I can. Since I usually use the shank end of the ham, I usually have enough meat for a casserole and meat and stock for two big pots of soup.

When you get close to the bone, you’ll probably find that some of the meat has quite a fit of hard fat running through it – it will be almost crunchy and not so great to eat. The fat and ligaments haven’t all softened and rendered during the cooking process. That I leave on the bone.

After the bone has been simmered for a while and all that meat has softened up, if time allows and I’m thinking about it, I’ll remove the ham bone and cut or pick off some of that remaining meat before it spends too much time in the stock, maybe at an hour to an hour and a half into the simmering process.

If there’s enough meat (it won’t be nice pretty pieces like you’d want for a sandwich) I usually make a casserole out of it, probably my Scalloped Potatoes Like the Ones Your Grandma Made and there’s usually still more than enough for a generous amount of ham my soups. At that point, the bone may or may not have meat left on it, but if there is, that can still be used in your soups, too, and it will continue to soften during the rest of the simmering process.

Scalloped Potatoes Like the ones your Grandma Made

Scalloped Potatoes Like the ones your Grandma Made

Aromatics & Ingredients for Best Ham Stock Instant Pot or Stovetop:

I have a set recipe that I use for my stock, but not one that’s set in stone. I use carrots, celery, and onion along with a few peppercorns and a couple of cloves. I skip that clove if my ham has been already cooked with cloves.

When you make your stock, you can use every bit of the vegetable. Wash the whole thing first and use the bottom and ends of the celery, the peelings and tops of the carrots, and the skin of the onions. It’s all flavor. Usually, when I use the celery, I’ll just pull out the sleeve and chop across the whole celery and use all of the leaves from the package.

My best stocks are always made from the scraps of veggies I’ve saved through the week or added to a bag in the freezer, rather than whole veggies I cut up. These smaller scraps add so much flavor and make a much better stock – plus you’ve eliminated a lot of waste.

As I cook other meals or make side dishes to go with my ham, into a bag go the celery tops or bottoms if they’re in good shape. The peels & tops from carrots. The skins and the ends of onions – those skins add beautiful color to the stock. Because these items are already broken down they really give up a lot of flavor and color.

Many frugal cooks do this; it doesn’t save a ton of money but it does add a ton of flavor for pretty much no cost and eliminates so much waste. You pay for it, you might as well use it, right? All those bits and pieces float on top of the soup, making a “raft” that clarifies the stock as the stock percolates through it at a slow simmer. You’ll want to skim it off all those veggies before straining your soup, but the bonus is that you won’t have to do any skimming during the cooking process.

I like to add a touch of neutral vinegar to my stocks; the acidity helps to leach the collagen and nutrients (supposedly) from the bones. Lemon or wine are both acidic and work well, too. They are a bit costlier. In addition to that, there’s not enough vinegar (or another acid) to taste, but it “wakes up” the flavor of the soup. It’s kind of like a little magic!

Best Chicken or Turkey Broth

Onion, Carrot, Celery – save for soup,

Should I make Stock in the Instant Pot or on the Stove?

There are advantages and disadvantages to both methods of cooking your Best Ham Stock Instant Pot or Stovetop. I hands down prefer to make my stocks on the stove rather than under pressure, but you can get a decent stock from the pressure cooker, too. Maybe not a great one. You might want to try both methods and see what works for you. If you know or follow me, you know I love my Instant Pot, I just don’t love it as much for stocks as the stovetop method.

  • Time: The Instant Pot is faster, although it’s still not a fast process, the major benefit is it’s pretty much hands-off. There’s no tinkering with the heat level, adjusting for just the perfect simmer, etc. And while its a bit faster, it’s going to take about 20 to 25 minutes to come up to pressure and a long time on a natural or a quick release to come down. It’s all cooking time, so that’s not a biggie, but if you do want to do a quick release, it will take 10 to 15 minutes.
  • Gel: While the IP is going to give you that hands-off cook time, I’ve found my stocks made in the IP do gel some but don’t give me the beautiful gel I’m looking for. They do better on low pressure than high, which kind of negates the speediness (but not the hands-off) part of the process.
  • Flavor: I think my simmered stocks have more flavor. While stock doesn’t reduce in the Instant Pot as it does on the stovetop, in theory, you’ll use less water to start with and that stock should then be concentrated flavor. In reality, I Instant Pot Ham Stock is still very good, but I still prefer and think my simmered stock has better flavor.
  • Logistics: In the Instant Pot, it’s sometimes hard to fit in the larger shank bones and the number of aromatics needed to make a good stock, and of course, that’s not an issue in a big old stock pot on the stove. There’s a rule that the IP should never be filled past the “fill” line, but it is ok if bones stick above it, just watch the waterline. If you have limiting physical issues, the Instant Pot can be very helpful; the liner is compact and much easier, and much lighter to deal with than a large stockpot.
  • Cleaning: Hands down it’s easier to clean the Instant Pot liner than a large stockpot that has been on the stove reducing and the liner doesn’t need the sink room a stockpot does. This might be a factor for those with small kitchens, stoves, small sinks, and/or inadequate faucets or physical limitations.
  • Meat: As mentioned, I like to remove the bone and some of the meat on it partway through the cooking process. That can be done with an Instant Pot but requires the time it takes to release the pressure, which can be considerable. On the plus side, it will come back up to pressure pretty quickly with all that hot stock in it.

Amounts & Storing Best Ham Stock Instant Pot or Stovetop:

You’re always going to have a variable in the exact amount of stock you’re going to get when you make your Best Ham Stock Instant Pot or Stovetop. The intensity of flavor might vary, too. If your stock is really intense, you can cut it with a bit of water, or if it isn’t souper (sorry) flavorful, it can be simmered and reduced or used with a combination of beef or chicken stock depending on the recipe.

When I make my Best Ham Stock Instant Pot or Stovetop, I usually have quite a bit of stock, several quarts plus a good amount of the meat from the bone. I like to divide the stock and meat up and freeze it in quart bags so it’s ready to go for any soup I make later.

I label the bags with a sharpie and include the name, date, and amount along with any instructions, then fill, then lay the filled bags (dry them first if you’ve spilled stock on the outside of the bags, so they don’t freeze together) on a sheet tray. When frozen, they can be easily stacked.

Freezing in Ice Cube Trays:

Yeah, it looks good on Pinterest, all those cute bags of ham cubes, and I see cooks on TV recommend it all the time, but here’s why I don’t do it (nor do any cooks I personally know):

  • It’s several extra steps. You’ll freeze in the ice cube trays and then put those ham cubes in Ziplocs anyway. And then you’ll have to clean the icecube trays and your trays may smell like ham for a long time.
  • Stock recipes make quarts, which means a lot of ice cube trays; I don’t have that many and don’t have time to wait around, freezing multiple batches.
  • The trays are difficult and messy to fill, especially to fill evenly, and you’ll have to do major math to figure out how much stock is in a frozen ham cube.
  • You’ll probably stack the trays to freeze them, they’ll stick together; it’s almost inevitable that some stock will be spilled on the trays as they’re filled or as they are put in the freezer. Then when you get them apart and pop out the ham cubes, the cubes will probably be warm on the edges and freeze together once back in the freezer in the Ziploc bags.
  • Pull the trays apart and unless you’ve filled perfectly with the precise amount of headroom, some ham cubes will be stuck to the tray above and have to be pounded or melted enough to get off.
  • It takes room to freeze the trays and they have to be sitting absolutely flat. Bump a tray before it’s solid and you’ll be sorry as you clean half-frozen ham stock off everything it’s spilled on and sorry later as you pry apart the icecube trays apart after they’ve frozen.
  • They are notorious for sticking together once out of the trays and put in Ziplocs; especially if the cubes get warmed on the edges from removing them from the trays and bagging them. The richer the stock, the more they stick, so reduced stock is even worse.
  • Once stuck together, the frozen cubes have to be melted or pounded apart, sometimes they have to be pounded to get them out of the bag. Then any not used has to be put in another bag. Wasteful.
  • When I make stock, I often freeze the ham that comes off the bone right along with it. That’s impossible to do in icecube trays.
  • Probably the best reason not to freeze in icecube trays? Frozen ham cubes in Ziploc bags take up a ton of room in the freezer and all the edges are exposed to air.

Reducing Your Ham Stock:

If you want to reduce your Ham Stock for storage, first taste it and adjust the stock so it tastes right, as mentioned above.

  • If your stock is strong you can add water until it tastes just right.
  • If it’s weak, simmer until it’s perfect.

Remove any actual ham meat first, which you’ve probably already done while straining the soup. Set aside. You can add it back in the bags before freezing. Measure the stock out after adjusting the flavor so you know how much you have, then simmer briskly to reduce it to an amount that seems reasonable to you to store.

For instance, if you start out with 6 quarts, you could reduce it down to six cups. Put each cup in a bag & label the bag so when you pull it out of the freezer later you know what you’re dealing with. In this case, each cup of stock equals 1 quart but you need to add water to make that quart. Since 4 cups are 1 quart, you’ll need 3 cups of water. Label something like “1 cup ham stock, add 3 cups water to make 1 quart.”


Making Soup with Best Ham Stock Instant Pot or Stovetop:

When you start cooking soups made with ham, you’re going to notice that some recipes have you start out with a ham bone and instruct you to add water while others call for ham and ham stock. This is a crazy maker, especially if you don’t have a ham bone and are trying to figure out how to adjust the recipe! Let’s look at a few examples on my site. (Only a few recipes are featured here; you can find more on my menu for Soups, Chowders & Chilis.)

Here’s my Split Pea Soup and my Navy Bean Soup with Bacon. Both of those call for a ham bone and about three quarts of water (12 cups.) That’s a pretty standard amount for recipes that call for cooking the ham bone to make the stock. The more frugal way, as discussed above, is to stretch that ham bone by making a bit pot of pot of stock and then divvy that stock up in these kinds of recipes.

I usually use about 1 1/2 cups less stock than the water called for to allow for the evaporation that would have happened if I started with a bone and water. I thaw out a little extra, though and hold it back until the soup is nearly done and add a little more if I think the finished soup is too thick and needs to be thinned a little.

Other recipes will call for an amount of Ham Stock, and will usually call for anywhere from six cups (1 1/2 quarts) up to 12 cups (3 quarts). A couple of examples are My Sister’s Ham & Potato Chowder which uses six cups of Ham Stock, my Lentil and Ham Soup, which calls for 11 1/2 cups, and my Cuban Black Bean Soup, which uses 10 cups of Ham Stock.

In cases like this, thaw out the amount of stock you need, pour the rest of the thawed ham stock into a fresh Ziploc, label it with the amount, and re-freeze it. It’s perfectly safe to refreeze stock. You can then accumulate several smaller bags to combine for another soup or use in recipes that need just a bit of ham stock. Maybe an old-fashioned Succotash or this crazy good Summer Bean Salad that calls for five cups of Ham Stock.

Summer Bean Salad Corn Green Beans Limas

Summer Bean Salad – since the beans are cooked, this is ideal for leftover beans.

If you have standard recipes you like to make all the time, measure the ham stock out in the right amount before you freeze it or reduce and freeze it and you can get pretty specific and not have little bits of stock left over. For instance, I might just measure out the 10 cups for my Cuban Black Bean Soup and label the freezer bag “10 cups of Ham Broth for Cuban Black Bean Soup.”

If you’re reducing your stock, the math can be harder but generally, when you’re making soup you don’t have to be absolutely exact. The 10 cups of stock for the Cuban Black Bean Soup equals 2 1/2 quarts, so if I’ve reduced each quart to a cup, I need 2 1/2 cups & a note on the Ziploc to add in the 7 1/2 cups water to get back to that 10 cups.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Saving Money on The Best Ham Stock Instant Pot or Stovetop:

Making your own stocks, especially making the stock by itself to divvy up for different recipes rather than using the big ham bone for just one soup is always a lesson in frugality. And of course, especially if you’re using vegetable scraps. Even if you don’t have the scraps on hand, most of the basic veggies for a stock, onions, celery, and carrots are dirt cheap and often in (at least in my) fridge.

What you’re really doing is not just about frugality, it’s about quality, too. You just can’t beat the flavor of a soup made with homemade stock. And yes, you can buy stock, but yanno what? It’s pretty darned pricey, at least for a good one, and even a good one doesn’t approach the taste and body of homemade stock.

Plus, isn’t it nice to know that you’re using everything you’ve paid for and not just wasting it?

Best Ham Stock Instant Pot or Stovetop

Best Ham Stock Instant Pot or Stovetop


Best Ham Stock Instant Pot or Stovetop

Whether slowly simmering on the stove or using the Instant Pot, the Best Ham Stock Instant Pot or Stovetop is a game changer!

  • Author: mollie kirby
  • Total Time: varies
  • Yield: varies 2 to 3 quarts 1x
  • Category: Soup


  • Ham Bone, most of the meat removed
  • 2 to 3 carrots, chopped into several pieces
  • 2 to 3 stalks of celery, tops are fine, chopped into pieces
  • 2 onions, quartered and studded with 4 cloves
  • 4 cloves (for studding the onion)
  • a few black peppercorns
  • 2 tablespoons white vinegar (optional)


Stovetop Instructions:

Add ham bone, vegetables, and remaining ingredients. Cover with cold water by about an inch, bring to a boil, turn down to a bare simmer (a few small bubbles popping up one after another), and simmer until the meat literally falls off the bone, usually four to six hours. Add more water if bone becomes exposed.

Note: Meat may be removed when soft enough to work with, at about 1 1/2 hours then the bones can be placed back in pot and simmered for the remainder of the time and meat may be refrigerated. Skim off any dark foam that comes to the top during the cooking process.

Strain, reserving solids and broth.

Refrigerate broth overnight, then lift the fat off and discard or save for cooking. Yield should be about 21 cups. Taste. If too rich and intense it may be cut with water. If not rich enough may be reduced by simmering. Measure stock and reduce to store if desired.

Sort through the strained solids and remove the meat (there will probably be around three to four cups.) Refrigerate meat until the next day to return to the broth (part may be used in another recipe like a casserole if there is a lot.)

Divide broth and meat into containers and freeze until ready to use.

Instant Pot Instructions:

Add ham bone, vegetables, and remaining ingredients to Instant Pot. Add cold water to fill line. Seal and cook at high pressure for around 2 hours or low pressure for around 5 hours. Release using a quick release if desired, about 10 to 15 minutes or allow to go to natural release, 20 to 30 minutes.

Strain, reserving solids and broth.

Refrigerate broth overnight, then lift the fat off and discard or saving for cooking. Yield will be variable. Taste. If too rich and intense it may be cut with water, or if not rich enough may be reduced by simmering.  Measure, and reduce for storage if desired.

Sort through the strained solids and remove the meat (there will probably be around three to four cups.) Refrigerate meat until the next day to return to the broth (part may be used in another recipe like a casserole if there is a lot.)

Divide broth and meat into containers and freeze until ready to use.

Keywords: Ham, ham bone, Ham Stock, Instant Pot, Soup

Did you make this recipe?

Share a photo and tag us — we can't wait to see what you've made!


I’ll be sharing Best Ham Stock Instant Pot or Stovetop at Fiesta Friday #251 where this week I’m one of the co-hosts along with Monika @ Everyday Healthy Recipes

Whether slowly simmering on the stove or using the Instant Pot, the Best Ham Stock Instant Pot or Stovetop is a game changer! Every thing you need to know: The best way to make stock, what to put in it, how to reduce and store. Best of all, how to convert recipes using a ham bone to use stock instead! #BestHamStock #BestHamStockInstantPot #HamStock #OldFashionedHamStock #HamBone #LeftoverHam #LeftoverEasterRecipes #LeftoverChristmasRecipes #HamBroth #HomemadeHamStock #ScratchHamStock


23 thoughts on “Best Ham Stock Instant Pot or Stovetop

  1. Wayne

    Making this today in my Instant Pot to use the shank bones. Thinking we’ll save it for the next time we make a ham and use it to make the ham gravy – roux + dripping + stock (but ham stock instead of chicken!) + pino grigio.

    • FrugalHausfrau

      Sounds delish! I’ve done the same thing with turkey before. Saved stock from the last turkey for the next turkey gravy! Whatever you do with it, a little stock in the freezer is like gold! Thanks for commenting Wayne!

  2. Barb

    FrugalHausFrau, you are a GENIUS!!! I will make this ham stock (as long as I’m blessed to have a ham bone) for the rest of my life. I made your stock recipe yesterday, and your split pea soup is simmering on my stove right now (almost done). My house has smelled like heaven for two days, and I have enough ham stock to freeze for bean with bacon soup at a later date. Will probably use your bean soup recipe for that one too. THANK YOU!

    • FrugalHausfrau

      Hi Barb, Sorry to reply so late (somehow I missed your comment or my phone wasn’t successful in replying!) but I just caqme across your comment on the split pea soup, too! I’m so glad you enjoyed it! Hope your new year is a happy one~!


  3. Rex

    I have been making ham stock from bones for over 20 years on the stove top. I looked forward to cutting the time by using an instapot. Pressure cooked 1:30 on high pressure, natural release. Both times I have tried it, the stock came out very salty, something that was never a problem simmering on the stove. Any suggestions?

    • FrugalHausfrau


      I do cook longer in the IP than you did. You can consider the ip usually cooks (on high) about 4 times faster than the stove or oven, for a rough rule of thumb. I prefer low.

      I’ll use the Instant Pot now and then for stock (you can’t beat set it and forget it and very little mess and no babysitting) but I swear it is better on the stovetop. I feel like the stovetop gently leaches the marrow from the bones and makes the stock richer and makes it taste better.

      I haven’t noticed the IP making the stock salty so much, but I have noticed it is not as rich and not as balanced. It sometimes doesn’t even “gel” properly, especially on high and especially for shorter cooking times. I think it’s a harsher cooking method in the IP and I don’t think the IP pulls all that marrow out the way the stovetop method does.

      I’m no food scientist, but I’m guessing that when the stock isn’t as rich, the salty flavor is more prominent – it wouldn’t be muted by the other flavors.

      But a couple of other things to consider:

      You won’t use as much liquid in the IP. The salt flavor could be more concentrated. Technically, ALL the flavor should be more concentrated (although that doesn’t always seem to be the case so I’d try cooking longer than you are (the full 2 hours on high or even better the five on low) and then adding water as needed when it’s finished to see if you can get closer to a stovetop stock.

      I wonder if you used the same type of ham both times? Could that particular brand be saltier?

      Did you keep a generous amount of ham on the bone? I’m guessing the more ham on the bone the more that the IP pulls those flavors (whatever they are, the salt inherent in ham as well as any glaze or spices) out.

      Finally, are you using all the aromatics? They will help add balance.

      So anyway, that’s some food for thought!!


  4. Karin

    Thank you for this information! You provided so much detail, and for someone doing this for the first time (and sheltering in place for Covid) I needed it. It’s those like you that have helped me find a new joy in life through cooking! I never comment on recipes, but felt the need, given you really put a lot of time and thought into each step. I love you linked to your other recipes too! I’ll have your page bookmarked now. Thank you!! My ham stock smells so good! I can’t wait to make my soup tomorrow!

    • FrugalHausfrau

      Karen, you made my day~! Thanks for your comment; it’s much appreciated and you’ve spread that joy right back!

      I do always try to imagine I’m teaching someone (usually I think about my daughter when she was a teenager) and what and what we’d chat about and what I’d explain, if we were in the kitchen together. I know when I make a recipe, I hate to look at multiple sites to get the information I need, so I do try to be thorough.

      I’m not always on my site but I often am so if you have any questions, just comment! Btw, we bloggers love love love comments! At least I do. It makes me feel I’m talking to someone, lol!

      Good luck on your soup and glad to hear you’re sheltering, too, and safe!


  5. Jessica McIntosh

    Hi I just used my ham leftovers for a ham and bean soup but I’m still going to try to make stock from the left over bones I hope I get some not sure how much I need to make Gordon Ramseys pumpkin and wild mushroom soup.. I couldn’t find exact instructions all the guessing at everything bc I just watched the video a few times.

  6. Vallan

    I wonder if adding chicken bones would detract from the ham taste, I love ham but also have frozen chicken bones I was saving for broth as well, also would pearl onions work? I am stealing the brown skin off my husband’s onion shh😂 for the color but I have a pound of pearl onions I need to use up, tx!

    • FrugalHausfrau

      Hi Vallen, Sorry to have taken so long to reply. I think that ham is such a strong flavor that you don’t need to worry, brilliant to take some of those skins (although I don’t know what your hbs will think, lol, probably all will be forgiven when he has the soup! ) and I always seem to have pearl onions that i need to use up….why is that? I think I always mean to make bourguignon and when I get a hold of a chuck roast end up using it for something else and they sit in my freezer! You might not need all of them depending on how much you’re making! If you’ve already made it, hope it turned out well! Sounds as if it will be marvelous!


  7. Alisa

    Might be a silly question… Can you eat the vegetables after the stock has been strained? Or will they be mush by then?

    • FrugalHausfrau

      Hi Alisa, sorry to have not replied right away – the veggies are usually pretty mushy and you can eat them but they seem to give up all their flavor.

    • FrugalHausfrau

      I’d never say that! One year I left my Mom’s after Christmas and forgot the ham bone she was sending back with me…I actually got to the interstate and turned around for it – and I turned down Mom’s street and there was my sister…she stopped me, rolled down her window and waved a big ziploc with the ham bone in it, lol! She did give it up – but when it was just me and my daughter, we’d never be able to get through a whole ham so the bone was prized!

  8. Pingback: Best Ham Stock Instant Pot or Stovetop — Frugal Hausfrau | My Meals are on Wheels

Hearing from you makes my day! Comment below.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.