How long to cook the neck bones?

Neck bones may not be the most glamorous cut of meat, but they sure make up for it in flavor and versatility. Whether you’re looking to add depth to your favorite dish or create a budget-friendly one-pot wonder meal, neck bones have got your back.

In this article, we’ll explore the different cooking methods for neck bones, including how long to cook them depending on the method used. We’ll also discuss the types of neck bones available and their ideal cooking times before delving into their health benefits. Finally, we’ll share tips and tricks for perfectly cooked neck bones every time.

Preparing Neck Bones for Cooking

Before diving into the different cooking methods for neck bones, let’s first discuss how best to prepare them for cooking.

Cleaning and Cutting the Bones

First things first — clean those neck bones thoroughly under running water to remove any dirt or blood clots that may be present. Once cleaned, use a sharp knife or kitchen scissors to cut them into manageable pieces if needed.

Seasoning and Marinating the Bones

Seasoning and marinating your neck bones is a crucial step in bringing out their deep rich flavor. A basic seasoning blend should include salt, black pepper, onion powder, garlic powder or fresh garlic.

For added flavor, consider marinating your neck bones overnight in either vinegar-based marinade (such apple cider vinegar mixed with herbs like rosemary) or acidic marinade (like lemon juice can provide tenderizing effects).

Different Cooking Methods for Neck Bones

Now that we have our seasoned and marinated bone ready let us delve into THE THREE (3) MOST COMMON cooking methods:

1. Braising Neck Bones

Braising involves searing and slow-cooking meats in a liquid mixture until tender; browned outer covering ensures maximum flavors are locked in nicely during braising time.

How long should you braise the neck bones?

For bone-in meat like neck bones, the ideal braising time is 2-3 hours at a low simmer. Check doneness and reach reduced liquid sauce or gravy consistency.

Steps in Braising Neck Bones

  1. Preheat your oven to 350°F.
  2. Heat a large saucepan or Dutch oven over high heat until hot
  3. Season your cleaned and cut neck bones with spice rub of choice
  4. Brown the meat in oil for about 5 minutes per side or until crispy and browned nicely.
  5. Remove meat from pan after browning and pour in your broth mixture or defined gravy composition
  6. Add aromatics to onion garlic before adding back to browned meat,
  7. Simmer over medium-low heat until the neck bones are fork-tender.


Pro Tip for tender delight: Always use wine, beer, soy sauce, coconut water, cold water as the liquid base for braising bone-in meats (such as chicken, pork, and beef) but DO NOT add extra salt because most of these liquids already contain high levels of sodium.

2. Roasting Neck Bones

Roasting is ideal for when you’re looking for crispy skin and reduced juices that can be transformed into flavorful sauces afterward.

How long should you roast neck bones?

Roasting typically requires a temperature between 375°F -400 °F so cook the neckbones on average around an hour-plus depending on size until internal temp reaches at least 165F (well done).

Steps in Roasting Neck Bones

  1. Preheat your oven to around 375-400°F.
  2. Dress the clean spiced-up Neck Bones with Olive oil
  3. Arrange seasoned neck bones on baking sheets along with vegetables or herbs for a more robust flavor punch.
  4. Roast uncovered for approximately an hour (depending on size) until golden brown and crispy or until cooked through.
  5. Serve neck bone with side dishes, or a homemade sauce made from roasted juices.


Pro Tip for flavor enhancement: Add fresh herbs like rosemary, thyme leaves under the skin to infuse the meat with additional depth of flavor.

Boiling/Simmering Neck Bones

Boiling or simmering is one of the most basic forms of cooking used. The technique involves cooking animal parts with vegetables and other essential ingredients in a stockpot until tender enough to be taken out and served.

How long should you boil/simmer neck bones?

For good results, let your neck bones simmer lowly in salted water for several hours until tender before serving over rice or plain boiled potatoes/veggies as desired.

Steps in Boiling Neck Bones

  1. In a big pot, add the Cleaned seasoned neck bones alongside onions, garlic cloves, and any preferred aromatics such carrots/celery.
  2. Pour sufficient liquid amount to fully cover the bones. You can add water or store-bought broth for richer flavors
  3. Bring to a boil; reduce heat and then partially cover pot to simmer open button arrangement until tender approximates 4-6hrs
  4. Skim off foam/scum as it frees while simmering.
  5. Remove from water bath when completely cooked/tender if necessary (you can save broth AS stock).

Types of Neck Bones to Cook With

While pork is probably the most well-known option for neck bones, beef and chicken necks are not too shabby either!

Pork Neck Bones

Pork neck bones generally have a sweet taste profile due largely because they contain more fat than other meats cut making them especially suited baked recipes that go well with honey glaze/ BBQ sauce.

Preparation timing: Depending on size and cooking method Pork takes up an average of 2-3 hours (braised /simmered) and 1 hour roasted at temperatures above 375°F.

Beef/Chicken Neck Bones

Although less beloved than pork and other cuts of meat, both chicken and beef neck bones are affordable protein options that have more savory taste profiles. Beefs are better used in making flavorful roasts, soups, stocks while Chicken necks go well with stews since the bone provides additional flavor beyond muscle protein.

Preparation timing: Both Beef & Chicken takes up an average of 2-4 hrs (braised/simmered). When roasting, make sure to adjust cooking time based on size(bigger is often longer).

Health Benefits Of Eating Neck Bones

Soft tissue meats like neck bones contain varying nutrient levels such as essential amino acids needed for joint mobility and support. Adding Neck Bones to meals can be especially helpful for those who lead active lifestyles or people seeking healthier alternatives different from the traditional beef rib glazing that adds unwanted calories to their diet.

Moreover, the high collagen count often found in neckbones provides many benefits like being a great protein source AND low-fat food option while maintaining tenderness!

Tips And Tricks For Perfectly Cooked Neck Bones

  1. Add healthy herbs such as thyme & rosemary to boost flavor profiles.
  2. Simplify marinating seasoning: vinegar & acidic marinades work magic when trying to AVOID lemon juice!
  3. Cooking times vary among different methods used so use a meat thermometer tool regularly during the process to prevent overcooking
  4. Experiment with varied liquid bases like beer/wine without adding extra salt- allows for subtle flavor upgrades specific dish requirements.


Neck bones once considered by us “cheap eyesores” are now heralded as rich economical meats options that provide quality nutrition with flavors unparalleled.

Overall, whether cooked Braised or Roasted- cooking techniques produce tender has never been easier with the tips and tricks available in this article. Fortunately, the choice to Add neck bones to your nutrition is no longer an option but gives cheaper food options yet deliciously tasting preparing wholesome meals.


  1. How long should I cook neck bones for a flavorful broth?

    Cooking neck bones for a rich and meaty broth can take anywhere from 3-5 hours, depending on the size of the bones and personal preference for tenderness.

  2. What is the perfect cooking time for tender and juicy neck bones?

    To achieve perfectly tender and juicy neck bones, it is recommended to simmer them in water or broth for at least 4-6 hours on low heat. This will allow the collagen in the bones to dissolve, resulting in a velvety texture and irresistible flavor.

  3. Can I cook neck bones quickly on high heat instead of simmering them slowly?

    While it may be tempting to speed up the process by cooking neck bones on high heat, this can result in tough, rubbery meat that is difficult to chew. It is best to cook neck bones low and slow to ensure they are both flavorful and fall-off-the-bone tender.

  4. What are some ways to use leftover cooked neck bones? After cooking your neck bones to perfection, consider using them as a base for stews, soups or even BBQ sauces! You can also shred the meat off the bone and mix it into risottos or pasta dishes, creating an easy yet satisfying meal. Don’t waste any part of that deliciously cooked neck bone!

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