Learn how to make vegetable broth using a variety of roasted vegetables for a homemade vegetable broth that is perfect for soups, stews, casseroles, and more! This vegetable broth recipe is the perfect way to use up leftover veggies and tastes even better than store-bought varieties.
The 2nd installment of our Healing week, this guide teaching how to make vegetable broth is part of our Restorative Health Series, meaning it’s made with gut-healing ingredients and wholesome vegetables to nourish the body from the inside out.
Today, I’m giving you something a little different than what you might be used to seeing here. Of course, I still have a recipe for you. However, I’m also going to give you a bit of a tutorial, and I couldn’t be more excited! If you’ve been browsing social media lately, you’ve probably noticed more and more people making their own vegetable broth.
For good reason, too! Not only is it great to sip on, but it’s also a crucial ingredient to healing recipes such as Thai Chicken Soup, Roasted Butternut Squash Soup, and even Slow Cooker Dairy Free Mashed Potatoes!
Of course, vegetable broth is super easy to find at pretty much any of your local grocery stores, but have you ever tried making it yourself? It’s all the rage! (Do people still say that?) I know the process can seem intimidating, but I promise it’s not. In fact, learning how to make vegetable broth at home is a great way to save money and prevent waste by using up all your leftover veggies. It may seem intimidating at first, but don’t worry. I’ll walk you through everything you’ll need to know below!
Benefits of Vegetable Broth
Did you know that vegetable broth is an extremely healing food? Depending on the different vegetables and spices used, vegetable broth can offer a wide variety of benefits and is easily adaptable to fit your individual dietary needs. For instance, the vegetables used in this recipe contribute a variety of vitamins and minerals along with fiber to help improve digestion, boost bone mass, and reduce inflammation. Thanks to the abundance of nutrients, vegetable broth has long been used to boost immunity and is an excellent way to stay hydrated and balance the body’s pH levels.
Vegetable Broth vs Stock
While often used interchangeably, vegetable broth and vegetable stock are not the same things. Admittedly, they are very similar. However, there are several key differences in how they taste and the ways in which they are used. For instance, vegetable broth contains seasonings and is meant to be either consumed on its own as a healing drink or added to other recipes such as soups. Meanwhile, vegetable stock contains no seasonings and is not consumed by itself. Instead, it is used in recipes such as soups, casseroles, and sauces.
If you’re still a bit confused, you’re not alone. In fact, in many instances, only culinary professionals can tell the difference! To help break it down further, I’ve outlined the primary differences below.
- Contains seasonings and spices
- Vegetables used are peeled, trimmed, and prepared as you would you them in a soup
- Can be consumed by itself
- Doesn’t contain seasonings
- Vegetables are used whole (leaves, stems, stalks, roots, shoots, and all!)
- Used as an ingredient in recipes, never on its own
- Stocks have more concentration of flavor and should be diluted
Note: In an effort to be vegan-friendly, this guide to make homemade vegetable broth strays from traditional versions but retains the same taste and texture you look for in a homemade vegetable broth!
The Best Vegetables for Homemade Vegetable Broth
When making vegetable broth, you’ll want to include vegetables that are fairly neutral yet slightly savory in flavor. In general, onions, carrots, celery, and mushrooms are the most common vegetables included in basic broth recipes.
For this vegetable broth, I also tried to include vegetables higher in protein to help boost the nutritional benefits even more! For a super flavorful homemade broth, I included:
- Garlic Cloves
Recipe Note: Unlike other traditional homemade broths I also include herbs and spices such as thyme, oregano, bay leaves, peppercorns, and salt to help enhance the flavor of this recipe!
Vegetables Not Well-Suited for Vegetable Broth
Feel free to experiment with different veggies to make this vegetable broth recipe your own. Just make sure to avoid including cruciferous vegetables such as broccoli, Brussels sprouts, and cabbage as they will add an undesirable bitter flavor to the broth.
How to Make Homemade Vegetable Broth
This vegetable broth recipe can be made in one pot in little time for a comforting broth perfect to keep on hand for all your favorite recipes!
- Roast (Optional). To get the most flavor out of your veggies, roast them before making the broth. To do so, arrange them in a single layer on a baking sheet, drizzle them with olive oil, add salt and pepper to taste, and roast the veggies at 425 degrees Fahrenheit for 20-30 minutes or until they are tender and browned, turning them every 10 minutes.
Baking Tip: If you don’t want to roast your veggies, feel free to saute them for 5-10 minutes instead. Or, skip cooking them altogether, and just add them to a pot!
- Combine. Next, combine the vegetables and herbs in a large Dutch oven or stockpot, and pour water over them. Then, add the salt and peppercorns, and bring the mixture to a boil.
- Simmer. Once boiling, reduce the heat to low, and let the ingredients simmer for 45 minutes, stirring occasionally.
- Strain. Using a sieve, strain the broth into a large bowl. Save the leftover vegetables for soups, casseroles, and more!
- Cool. Let the broth chill at room temperature before covering and storing.
Meal Prep Q&A
I love to save leftovers throughout the week to use in a big, flavorful broth! To do so, just save any leftover veggies you have throughout the week. Then, chop them into similarly-sized pieces, and store them in a sealable bag or airtight container in the fridge for up to a week. Or, if you want to create a big batch of homemade vegetable broth, store leftovers in the freezer until you’re ready to use them!
Once your vegetable stock has cooled, add it to an airtight container and store it in the fridge for up to 5 days. Or, keep it in the freezer for up to 3 months for easy meals any time!
Unfortunately, homemade vegetable broth does taste bitter every once in a while. If you avoided using naturally bitter-tasting vegetables, this result is likely a result of cooking the broth too long. When this happens, the protein bonds of the ingredients break down, creating a bitter taste.
Luckily, adding 1-2 tablespoons of tomato paste is an easy way to help mitigate some of the bitterness!
Ways to Use Homemade Vegetable Broth
As mentioned, vegetable broth can be used for a wide variety of recipes including soups, stews, casseroles, dressings, gravies, pastas, and more! However, if you’re looking for inspiration, some of my favorite broth-containing recipes include:
After learning how to make vegetable broth, I’ve never gone back to store-bought varieties! Why would I when it’s super easy to make and helps prevent waste? Not to mention, it’s so flavorful, too! If you give this vegetable broth recipe a try, I would love it if you let me know in the comments below!