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How to make FLAVORFUL Vegetable Broth! Learn the secrets to creating vegetable stock that is nutritious, flavorful and full of depth- the best foundation for soups, sauces, risottos and more. Adaptable and easy to make! Includes a Video.
Life is simple. Everything happens for you, not to you. Everything happens at exactly the right moment, neither too soon nor too late. You don’t have to like it… it’s just easier if you do. ~
Making your own Vegetable Broth will uplevel your soups and other recipes exponentially! The vegetable broth should be delicious, just as it is. This recipe is so good-go ahead enjoy a mug by itself!
It may feel like an extra step at first, to make your own broth, but once you get the hang of it is really quite simple with very little hands-on time. You will eventually get into the rhythm and I think you will be so happy with the boost in flavor and nutritional quality of your recipes!
How to make Veggie Broth! | Video
The basic Ingredients in Vegetable Broth
- onions, shallots, or leeks
- peppercorns and sea salt
- mushrooms- give a deeper flavor
- apple or pear- a slight sweet balance
- tomato- just a touch of tang
Things that can make a broth bitter
- brassica’s (kale, brussels, cabbage, bok choy, cauliflower, broccoli, mustard greens etc.)
- zucchini and green beans
- outer celery leaves
- too many tomato seeds
- some carrot peels and tops
- too many onion skins and ends
- cooking too long
- powdered herbs
How to make Vegetable Broth
In a 6-8 quart stockpot, sauté onions, mushrooms and celery in olive oil for 15 minutes or until lightly caramelized. This is going to add a ton of flavor to the broth.
That said sometimes, when short on time, I skip this step and just go straight to the simmering. You’ll still get good flavor, just not as rich and deep.
Add carrots, leeks, garlic, tomato, apple or pear, parsley, bay leaves, basil, peppercorns, salt, and dulse flakes. Add cold water. Cover with a lid slightly vented. Low simmer for one hour.
Let cool and strain. Freeze in cup, pint and quart portions for easy prep. You will be so happy you did! This homemade broth is so far beyond delicious compared to what you buy in the store.
How to store Vegetable Broth
Keep sealed in the fridge for 5 days. It also freezes beautifully.
When freezing I use ball jars with these leak-proof lids. It is important to fill to just a couple of inches from top of the jar for room to expand as it freezes.
- Cut your veggies– the more surface area exposed, the more flavor will be imparted into the broth.
- No need to stir– stirring can break down veggies and cloudy up the stock.
- Use cold water- veggies have different cooking times and flavor solubility, cold water allows them to release flavor slowly and more fully without breaking down.
Ways to elevate
- sautéing (esp. mushrooms and onions) adds depth
- add a handful of soaked beans or bean water left from cooking
- add a few tablespoons of walnuts or almonds
- a few teaspoons tomato paste or roasted tomatoes
- roast or grill the veggies beforehand
- a few splashes of wine
- small handful of dried mushrooms
- for Italian / European recipes use rosemary, thyme, oregano and sage.
- for an Asian direction add a little ginger, shiitakes and cilantro.
Nutritional Boosting Tips
Make your broth a supertonic by adding one or more of these. They do impart an herby, earthy and rooty flavor.
- reishi mushrooms- deeply nourishing, adaptogenic, anti-cancer, immune modulator, anti-inflammatory
- burdock root– eliminates toxins, increases circulation, blood cleanser
- dandelion root– antioxidant, supports liver health, balances cholesterol,
- astragalus root- an amazing adaptogen supporting physical and mental stress
- kelp and dulse– fiber, tons of nutrients, minerals, antioxidants
Saving Scraps for Vegetable Broth
I keep a plastic ziplock in the freezer and every time I am prepping I throw in broth-worthy scraps. I add this to the broth when cooking, adjusting amounts depending on how much I have.
- carrot ends and peels (some can be bitter!)
- leek tops
- onion ends and outer peels (go light on the skins and ends)
- mushroom stems
- parsley and cilantro stems
- tomato tops and ends
- shiitake stems
- fennel tops
- beet tops
- celeriac peels
- romaine or mild lettuce leave
- herb stems
Recipes to use your veggie stock in
- Harvest Vegetable Soup
- Creamy Spinach Soup with Mint
- Smoky Tomato White Bean Soup
- Instant Pot Wild Rice Soup w/ Spinach & Mushrooms
- Pumpkin Soup with Leeks and White beans
- Instant Pot Risotto!
I hope you have fun playing around with this Vegetable Broth recipe!Print
How to Make FLAVORFUL Vegetable Broth
- Prep Time: 10 minutes
- Cook Time: 60 minutes
- Total Time: 1 hour 10 minutes
- Yield: 4 quarts 1x
- Category: broth, soup,
- Method: stove top
- Cuisine: American
- Diet: Vegan
How to make Vegetable Broth! A nutritious and deeply flavorful recipe to enhance your soups, risottos, sauces, and more.
- 2 large onions, roughly chopped
- 1/2 lb mushrooms
- 2 large carrots, cut in chunks
- 2 celery stems, some inner leaves are fine, chopped
- 1 leek or 1 bunch scallions or a handful of chives, chopped in rounds
- 1 head of garlic, cut tips off the head
- 1 tomato, quartered
- 1/2 apple or pear, sliced
- 1 hand full of parsley with stems
- 2 bay leaves
- 1 tablespoon dried basil
- 1 teaspoon peppercorns
- 1 tablespoon sea salt
- 1 tablespoon dulse flakes (optional)
- 5 quarts of cold water
- See post body for other additions to elevate this.
- In an 8 quart pot, sauté onions, mushrooms, and celery in a little olive oil for 15 minutes or until lightly carmelized.
- Add carrots, leeks, garlic, tomato, apple, parsley, bay leaves, basil, peppercorns, salt, dulse flakes and water.
- Bring to a gentle boil. Turn down to a simmer cover with a with a lid slightly vented for an hour.
- Let cool. Strain.
If you prefer not to sauté, just skip that step and throw everything in the pot to simmer.
Keeps in fridge 5 days.
Freeze in pint and quart portions for easy prep. If freezing in jars, leave 1-inch headroom.
- Serving Size: 6 oz
- Calories: 24
- Sugar: 1.7 g
- Sodium: 279.1 mg
- Fat: 0.2 g
- Saturated Fat: 0 g
- Carbohydrates: 5.2 g
- Fiber: 1 g
- Protein: 1 g
- Cholesterol: 0 mg
Keywords: vegetable stock, vegetable broth, veggie broth, the best vegetable stock, how to make vegetable stock, vegetable stock recipe
Would love it if you could adapt this veggie stock recipe to InstantPot. Thanks! Off to google the rest of the net, now
Thanks for the suggestion Tessa.
I can’t wait to make this recipe! I had a question regarding the process. When you say to strain the soup, do we discard the veggies? Also would it work to puree this soup?
Yes the veggies are discarded here. Many broths are created from vegetable ends, peels and stems. Most of the good flavor has been imparted into the broth. This broth recipe is made to really up level your soup recipes that call for broth. 🙂
Thank you for this easy and delicious recipe! I have been using it for several months now to keep my supply of stock in the freezer for all your scrumptious soup recipes. I rarely use boxed stock anymore! Great suggestion about only cooking for about an hour. Really keeps the flavor intact without bitterness. I usually just clean out my fridge and put in the end of the week’s veggies. Always add a piece of kombu and a few Japanese yams for extra minerals.
We are so happy you enjoyed this, Sharon!
WOW wow wow. SO good. I followed the recipe, without dulse ’cause I didn’t have any but otherwise word for word. This is so good. Can’t wait to make it again & branch out to variations.
Great to hear Christine!
I am just wondering, finding dulce in South-Africa is still a bit difficult, especially inland. Can we perhaps replace it with a small piece of Nori (I know it’s not the same, Nori maybe too sharp or potent). or should we rather perhaps substitute it with a teaspoon of Miso paste, for Umami?
The dulse is totally optional. It is mostly added for the mineral content. Maybe make it without and then adjust to taste (by adding miso or nori etc.) if need be. 🙂
I used this as a base for my roasted garlic miso ramen soup and it had so many brilliant layers! Thank you for sharing it!
Sounds yummy! Glad you enjoyed.
Much richer and more deliciou and nutritious than most such recipes. Thanks!
So happy you enjoyed this!
This broth is just wonderful! Perfect to make on a rainy day and save some for later. Thank you!!
So happy you are enjoying Amy!
This is absolutely delicious! I cannot believe how flavorful the broth was, even after only 20 minutes! I added a rhutabaga, turnip, parsnip, fresh cilantro, fresh dill (in addition to parsley). After sipping on a steaming hot cup of this unstrained (yummy), I strained it, then made your cabbage soup (so so good) and your ayurvedic turmeric soup. Amazing recipes, thank you,
Love it Laurie! Thanks for sharing 🙂
Today was the second time making this broth — exactly as written, including the dulse flakes (I ordered online). The prep couldn’t be easier–it’s mostly hands-off– and it is hands-down THE BEST veg broth I’ve ever had! I no longer waste money on purchasing veg broths that have funky, off flavors and smells. This is clean and delicious to sip straight or to use in recipes calling for veg broth. I make a batch then freeze in quart jars or 1-cup portions for future use.
So great to hear Gina. I agree-once you make it, it is hard to go back to store bought!
The apple is a stroke of genius! And the tomato and mushrooms. Sounds counterintuitive but those items gave the broth depth, and the apple mellowed all. A truly superior broth recipe.
My home grown parsley was a bit bitter 0so I yanked it out of the broth and used some dill instead. Was careful not to use the bitter upper celery stems and outer leaves.
So glad this worked for you Carolyn! And yes, tasting the ingredients first is smart, sometimes the celery is bitter and sometimes not. I also find that the parsley stems can be sweet even if the leaves are bitter.
Very good to know that! I’ll start saving the stems in the freezer for my next round of your lovely vegetable broth.
Instead of sautéing the vegetables, could I instead roast them for approximately 15 minutes?
Yes Frank! That would add great flavor.
This is a great, simple and easy recipe. I added dried shitake mushrooms bought in bulk at an Asian market. Just a large handful or so. Along with the fresh mushrooms it added that little umami kick we all like.
Thank you for this great recipe, and know that it is infinitely adaptable.
Love it Deborah!
I just want to verify as I’m making this now, but you use 20cups of water? That’s the equivalent of 5 quarts. That just seems like so much broth!!! Lol
Yes, a big pot of stock- feel free to halve!
You should always saute your vegetables first it brings out the natural sweetness and you’ll have a much better stock you can go step further and roast your vegetables in the oven and make a roast vegetable stock caramelize them it’s a good recipe
Roasting the veggies works too.
My first introduction to your vegetable recipes. I will try to prepare it for lent. Thank you very much.
Wonderful Pete. Let us know how it turns out for you!
This broth is the basis of some very delicious meals and it is easy to make. I usually have enough for two or 3 quart jars so I freeze one and use the others for immediate needs.
I’ll have to try the suggestions for elevating the flavours in my next batches.
Thanks Anna, so happy you are enjoying!
I’ve made this several times. Very tasty and perfect to give you a kick start. Will continue to make this every chance I get.
So great to hear! Thanks Rachel 🙂
I made just as the recipe was written and it was delicious! I made it for my friend for her post surgery and she needs to be on a liquid diet. I think she will enjoy it!
Wonderful Mel! What a lovely healing gift for your friend.
Thank you for how thorough this post is ! Super helpful
So glad it is helpful Kaylee!
I made this broth tonight and I’m drinking my 2nd cup. It’s so good. Thank you
So good to hear!
Can all that lovely veg be used for something once the stock is done?
It makes the compost pile happy! 🙂
I was wondering the same thing. I hate to waste all those veggies. What did you end up doing with them? I’ll probably use them in a stew.
Let it live out its golden age knowing that it left behind an epic stock… and retire in the compost pile. 🙂
In step one, it says, “In a 6-8 gallon stockpot.” I wonder if that should read “quart?”
Oh my! Yes, recipe adjusted. Thanks.
Hands down the most flavorful vegetable broth I have ever eaten. Didn’t have a leek but added a parsnip. Wonderful recipe!
Perfect! Thanks so much Loretta.