How to make delicious veggie stock from kitchen scraps, it’s simple and saves money

This article was originally published by our friend Katja Heino at Savory Lotus.

Waste not, want not!  Make rich, delicious vegetable broth with scraps from your kitchen.  It’s so easy!

Hey, hey!  New year, new health goals.  And one of my goals this year is to consume less and to conserve more. If you are anything like me, you probably spend a ridiculous amount of money on food.  Am I right?

I’ve been making a point to waste as little as possible, especially when it comes to my precious, expensive food.  One of the things I’ve been doing is making crazy good vegetable broth from little vegetable scraps.  You guys know that I’m a big fan of bone broth, but did you know that a good vegetable broth is a powerhouse of minerals as well? You can do so much with a cozy, warm, flavorful vegetable broth.  I use it as a base for soups, stews, and sauces.

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And all you need is some scraps from the kitchen. It’s so easy and cheap to make. Just throw your vegetable scrapes into a bag in the freezer until you have enough for a batch of broth.  Then freeze broth in small portions for making the best soups and sauces EVER!  No more buying broth at the grocery store.

There are no rules to what you can or cannot use.  I basically use it all.  I know that people say not to use cruciferous veggies (like cauliflower, broccoli, and kale), but I throw in little bits all of the time, and my broth tastes amazing.  Of course, I balance it out with lots of sweeter vegetables like carrots and sweet potato scrapes for a nice flavor.

NOTE:  Be sure to use only clean vegetables and scrapes.  Dirty, gritty broth is no good.  And please use your common sense.  If it’s moldy, you probably don’t want it in your broth.

WHAT I USE IN MY VEGETABLE BROTH:

  • any veggies that may have gotten a bit sad and wilty in the fridge
  • carrot peels and small ends
  • sweet potato peels and small ends
  • celery ends and leaves
  • onion and shallot skins
  • green onion or leek ends
  • mushroom stems
  • small amounts of broccoli stems or kale stems
  • slightly wilted greens from fridge
  • any other fun vegetable scrapes I may have

The possibilities are endless.  And your broth will taste different every time depending on what you put in it.  I like to mix it up and add some extras for flavor and to boost nutrients. The recipe below is just a place to start.  Feel free to experiment.

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THINGS I ADD FOR FLAVOR AND NUTRITIONAL VALUE:

  • fresh herbs (parsley, thyme, rosemary, cilantro)- loaded with vitamins and minerals
  • garlic – anti-inflammatory and antimicrobial
  • ginger -anti-inflammatory and  immune boosting
  • peppercorns
  • bay leaf
  • shiitake mushrooms – rich flavor, immune boosting, and loaded with vitamins and minerals
  • turmeric powder – anti-inflammatory

HOW TO STORE VEGETABLE BROTH:

  • Be sure to use clean, glass containers.
  • Vegetable broth is good for up to a week in the fridge.
  • Freeze in thick glass containers.  I like to store in smaller portions  (about 2-3 cups) to use as needed.  I use THIS and THIS.  Be sure to leave room for expansion so as not to crack the glass.
  • Freeze in large silicone ice cube trays and store in large freezer bags. I have THESE and THESE. 

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Here’s to a healthy, happy, and less wasteful New Year. Big love to you all!

xo,
K

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HOW TO MAKE VEGETABLE BROTH FROM KITCHEN SCRAPS

PREP TIME
COOK TIME
TOTAL TIME
AUTHOR: KATJA FROM SAVORY LOTUS
SERVES: ABOUT 3 QUARTS

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 carrots, roughly chopped
  • 1 ribs of celery, roughly chopped
  • ½ onion, roughly chopped
  • 4 cups of vegetable scrapes
  • 3 cloves of garlic, peeled
  • one inch piece of fresh ginger, peeled and sliced
  • 2 bay leaves
  • a few sprigs of thyme or rosemary
  • a handful of parsley or cilantro
  • salt to taste
  • 12-14 cups of clean water (I use about 3 and ½ quarts)

DIRECTIONS

  1. Place everything in a large stock pot. Add water. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer (covered) for 1 hour.
  2. Turn off heat. Using tongs or slotted spoon, remove solids. Then strain through a mesh sieve.
  3. Store in airtight jar for up to a week. Or freeze in small portions for use later.
NOTES
I’ve seen recipes where you saute the carrots, celery, and onion in a bit of oil before you add water. Feel free to do this if you like. It does add a nice flavor. But I’ve been doing this broth for a long time and love how easy and delicious it is just the way it is.


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