Homemade Vegetable Broth

I have recently started making my own homemade vegetable broth for a few reasons.  First, most commercial vegetable broths are laden with MSG and other scary additives.  The only decent brand I have found was Pacific Organic.  You can read more about my comparisons of soup broth here.  Making your own homemade vegetable broth is easier than you would think.   The best part?  Homemade vegetable broth costs nothing because you use all the veggie odds and ends that you would normally throw away.

broth 1

This is the bag I keep in the freezer.  I just throw all kinds of veggie scraps in there and wait until I get a decent amount.  The tomatoes I had in my fridge, but they were almost on their way out, so I threw them in as well.

broth 2

 Homemade Vegetable Broth

Homemade Vegetable Broth

Cook Time 6 hr


  • There really isn't a recipe, per say. Just a method. You can throw in any combination of vegetables and it will work.



    Recipe Notes

    In this case, I had cabbage, tomatoes, celery, green onions, garlic and broccoli.  I also threw in some sea salt and a bay leaf for extra flavor.  I threw everything in a pot and filled with water.  On the stove, I brought it to a boil and then turned down to low, covered it and let it simmer for 6 hours.  Most of the veggies break down in the long cooking process.  When it’s done, strain it into a bowl.  If you like a chunky broth, you can puree what is left of the veggies and throw them back in.  I strained mine and this is what I had at the end.

    I made about 10-12 cups of broth.  About enough for 3 large soups.  I just store it in the freezer in serving size containers so I just pull out what I need.  That’s it.  Super easy.

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    85 thoughts to “Homemade Vegetable Broth”

    1. Have you ever made this in your crockpot overnight on low? I make my chicken stock in the crockpot overnight after I make a whole chicken (I use the leftover chicken bones and some veggies from the freezer like you do). When I wake up in the morning it smells like Thanksgiving in my house. I love it! Plus it cuts down on the time my stove is on during the day.
    2. does it matter what ratio of left over veg to water? --- i love this idea as all veg stocks you buy are loaded in sodium - even the low sodium brands :(
    3. I just made some this week! I usually throw it in the slow cooker overnight on low. By the morning it's good to go if I need it for that day. Otherwise I strain it, let it cool then pour into ice cube trays to freeze before throwing the cubes into the bag. I find myself not remembering to take the broth out of the freezer in enough time to properly thaw and end up having to cut the bag. Having them in ice cub pieces makes it easy to pull out and melts much quicker.
    4. Many, many years ago, around the turn of the 19th century, a basic part of any kitchen was the stock pot simmering on the back of the stove. Into this pot went all the veggie scraps. Anytime the cook needed broth for anything, it was readily available. Because most stoves at that time were woodburning, this burner was always on a low heat. Nice to see we are coming back around to something that was so common to our ancestors.
    5. I wonder what the leftover pulp that my juicer leaves behind would be like if I saved it up and boiled it down for a few hours, do you think it would work as a stock, seems a waste to throw it away and I could do with making my own veg stock, what do you think x
      1. Yes you totally can do that. Here is a great post on uses of leftover pulp. http://www.plantoeat.com/blog/2012/06/ideas-for-using-juicer-pulp-or-what-do-i-do-with-this-stuff/
        1. Thanks for that, lots of ideas to try. Made your overnight oats with almond butter and chocolate last night, I love it, I put some ground pistachios in it too! Love your website x
    6. I almost never buy stock. I make it regularly and then freeze 2-3 bags for a quick meal. While i agree that a stock is more about the method than recipe, i have a couple of staples that i always have in the fridge for use in broth/stock. Here they are: - Parsnip - gives an incredible flavor. I put one small/med. or a half of a large one; - Carrots - give color - flavor-sweetness. I put 1 or 2. - Roasted onion. As i start cooking, i put one onion in a toaster onion without peeling it. Bake on 350-400F for about 20-30', then peel and put the entire thing in the boiling pot. Gives color and flavor. - I am a HUGE fan of thyme and always have is in my freezer. a couple of twigs give a beautiful aroma. - Celery - 2-3 stalks. I actually freeze ends-leaves and use those too. These are my main ingredients that i always use in a stock. Everything else - optional :) Melissa, thank you so much for the incredible site! I greatly appreciate that the site is friendly to non-vegetarians who like to eat healthy. I tried a bunch of recipes and will continue to follow your wonderful site!
    7. I have been collecting scraps in my freezer so I can make this. How much is "a decent amount". I mean, how do I know when I have enough scraps that it will turn out alright and not too watery?
    8. Love all the ideas and can't wait to make my first batch. . . my question is about storage/freezing containers. What works best?
    9. This may be a dumb question, but could you use avocado? put that in the freezer bag? Or how about the core of red/green peppers with the seeds? I dont know if the seeds would add any flavor, but would it do any harm tossing it into the freezer bag too? I usually toss these scraps into the compost, but what a great way to use them!

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