I found out that you can make broth with your vegetable scraps just a couple of months ago and it has changed everything about the way I cook! I can’t believe I used to throw out all the extra bits of veggies that you can’t use for meals. It always felt like a waste, but what are you going to do? No one wants to eat the ends of onions and carrots. So not only does it feel good getting use out of things that normally would have been thrown out, but you have so much more control over the flavor when you make it yourself instead of buying it from the supermarket. It’s always nice to know exactly what you’re eating too. A lot of canned and boxed broths are pretty high in sodium, and contain more artificial flavors than I would like. When you make it at home, you can make it taste amazing just with the natural flavor from the vegetables and with minimal salt and seasonings.
About once a week, I’ll pick through all the bags of veggie scraps we have to get the flavor I want. It’s pretty awesome that every time I make it, it tastes different. It’s so easy, it really doesn’t add any extra stress to my life. And then for the rest of the week, we have this awesome homemade vegetable stock to cook with. Instead of cooking rice, quinoa or pasta in water, we’ll cook it in vegetable broth and it gives the food so much flavor. I can’t imagine it any other way anymore.
So, I know this post is titled, “How To Make Broth With Your Veggie Scraps,” but there isn’t really much to the process. It will probably be the easiest How-To article I ever write. Here ya go!
1. Put all of your veggie scraps from each meal in the freezer in a ziplock bag. It may take anywhere from a few days to a couple of weeks to build up a big enough stash to make your broth, depending on how many vegetables you eat. If you continue saving everything, it’ll build up faster than you can make it! Nothing is really off limits here. You can throw in onion skins, garlic skins, stems, roots, wilted spinach or anything that’s about to go bad. Obviously, just be smart about it. If it’s moldy, freezing it isn’t going to save it.
2. Once you have enough to make your broth, look through the bag of frozen scraps and pick out which flavors you want to go for. I don’t really care for carrots, so I keep those to a minimum, but those are typically a staple in most vegetable broths. Other vegetables that are typically used to make vegetable stocks are:
- Potato Skins
I like to add lemons, green beans, jalepenos, zucchini, squash and all other kinds of vegetables too. My favorite spices to add are bay leaves, thyme, oregano, parsley and basil. You definitely don’t have to stick to any sort of guidelines or recipe, and that’s what’s makes this so easy and fun. Feel free to experiment!
3. Fill a large pot with water (a little over half way) and throw in the vegetable scraps. Bring to a boil. Turn the heat to medium low and cover, letting it simmer for at least 30 minutes. The longer the better, really, just keep checking on it every so often.
There have been days where I get so distracted with the baby that I forget to check on it for a while, and the only thing that happens is it’s even more flavorful!
4. Once it’s cooled, strain it into a large bowl.
5. Label and store it! It’ll last up to a week in the fridge, or you can freeze it in containers, ziplock bags or ice cube trays. I use these:
You can order it on Amazon, here.
I hope this is helpful! It’s so nice to have homemade broth around. Once you start, you’ll be hooked! What veggies do you like to use for your homemade broth? Leave a comment below.