A lot of recipes call for vegetable broth (Mexican Quinoa, Coconut Curry Butternut Squash Soup, etc.) I also like to keep some on hand to use when I’m cooking grains like brown rice, quinoa, or farro because boiling the grains in broth rather than water adds some extra flavor right off the bat. Rather than relying on the store-bought stuff, why not save some money and reduce waste by making your own?
I recently discovered how easy it is to make vegetable broth from scraps. I simply keep a gallon ziplock bag in the freezer and throw in my vegetable scraps as I cook. When it’s full, it’s time to make some broth!
Now, what kind of vegetables should you save? Think things like roots, stalks, leaves, ends, peelings and skins. Onions, carrots, celery, garlic, shallots, leeks, green onions, thyme, rosemary, potatoes, squash, and pea pods all work great! You can also toss in vegetables and herbs that are sitting in your refrigerator and may not be looking so hot- like some mushrooms, bell peppers, or a bunch of limp parsley.
If the vegetables are bitter, your broth will also be bitter so I would stay away from using cruciferous vegetables like broccoli, cauliflower, kale, cabbage and Brussels sprouts.
This recipe makes about 5 cups of broth, but you can definitely adjust the scrap/liquid amount based on your needs. You can freeze the broth to use at a later time or store it in the refrigerator for about a week.
- 1 gallon ziplock bag full of vegetable scraps (about 5 cups)
- 9 cups of water
- pinch of salt and black pepper
- 1 bay leaf
- Add the vegetable scraps to a large pot with about 9 cups of water.
- Bring to a simmer over medium heat. Add salt, pepper and bay leaf.
- Simmer uncovered for about an hour.
- Turn off heat and let pot cool slightly. Carefully pour into a mesh strainer over a large bowl and discard the solids.
- You can freeze the stock to use later or store it in the refrigerator for about a week.