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Vegetable Stock from Scraps

Making Vegetable Stock is super easy, money-saving, and smart. Check out how simple it can be!

Vegetable Stock from Scraps

Vegetable scraps make great veggie stock

Rather than waste all those veggie scraps–leek greens, cabbage cores, green onion tops, carrot tops, zucchini and squash ends, broccoli stalks, ugly potato pieces, etc.–why not make your own vegetable stock from scraps? Saves money and you know exactly what’s in there.

veggie scraps in pot for making broth
Instead of throwing out those scraps, use them to make veggie broth.

Saving vegetable scraps for broth

During the weeks, as I’m chopping veggies, I save all the scraps in a gallon size freezer bag and keep them in my freezer.

Below is a bag I just started with baby carrots that were on the verge of going bad and the outer leaves of Napa cabbage that had those brown spots on them.

Vegetable Stock from Scraps. veggie scraps in freezer bag
Collect scraps and store them in a gallon-sized freezer bag until needed.

Full bag means stock-making time

When the bag gets full, I know it’s time to make homemade broth. I dump the scraps into a large stockpot and fill it with water and spices like:

  • 2 bay leaves
  • tarragon
  • Italian seasoning (oregano, parsley, basil, etc.)
  • Worcestershire sauce (without anchovies)
  • or any seasonings you like
Vegetable Stock from Scraps. spices
There are many different flavoring options to choose from.

Use whatever spices you like, but remember, so it can be used in many different recipes, don’t get too crazy.

Bring to a boil, then turn the heat down to medium-low, cover, and let simmer for 30-40 minutes.

Allow to cool, then strain out veggie scraps in a colander and large bowl.

Another great idea is to do this in a CrockPot and allow it to cook on low all day.

Vegetable Stock from Scraps. straining
Strain veggie scraps from broth and discard the cooked scraps.

 Salt is a big thing when comparing the taste of homemade broth to store-bought. The prepackaged versions are loaded with salt and have about 600 mg of sodium per one-cup serving, which is nearly 1/2 of the recommended daily allowance.

Store broth in refrigerator or freezer

Pour into mason jars and keep in the refrigerator and/or into quart-size freezer bags to store in the freezer.

One batch makes 4 quarts of broth, so I usually pour into 2-quart mason jars and 2-quart freezer bags. I use this broth for many purposes, and add salt and more seasonings while I’m cooking, depending on what I’m using it in.

Uses for vegetable broth

  • stir fry veggies in, instead of oil
  • add to hummus, instead of plain water
  • add to salsas
  • stock for soups
  • add to sauces and dips, when needing to thin out
homemade veggie broth stored in mason jars
Store in mason jars and/or freezer bags.

Vegetable broth ice cubes

Ice cube trays can also be used if you would like to be able to pull out approximately 1 Tbsp at a time for sauteing.

Just pour the veggie stock into trays and freeze. When they are solid, pop the cubes out and store in a freezer bag for easy use. So simple and handy!

homemade veggie broth in ice trays
An ice cube is about 1 Tbsp of veggie broth.

I love the idea of not wasting scraps and making my own stock! Saves money, and I know exactly what’s in my broth, unlike the bought brands.

Homemade Vegetable Bouillon Powder

Another great option is this easy vegetable bouillon powder that is a great way to add incredible flavor to those soups, casseroles, and veggie dishes. It is super quick and simple to make in only minutes and also makes a terrific vegetable broth substitute.

vegetable bouillon powder in a glass jar with lid on a white wooden table
Homemade Vegetable Bouillon Powder. Click the photo to see the recipe.

This post may contain affiliate links. Read my full disclosure here.

Veggie stock

Vegetable Stock from Scraps

Yield: 5 quarts
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes

Rather than waste all those veggie scraps–leek greens, cabbage cores, green onion tops, carrot tops, zucchini and squash ends, broccoli stalks, ugly potato pieces, etc.–why not make your own vegetable stock from scraps? Saves money and you know exactly what’s in there.

Ingredients

  • 1 gallon freezer bag vegetable scraps
  • 5 quarts water
  • spices (Italian seasoning, tarragon, bay leaf), any spices preferred

Instructions

  1. Place all frozen veggie scraps in large stock pot or crock pot with water and spices and bring to a boil.
  2. Turn heat down to medium-low, cover, and let simmer for 30-40 minutes.
  3. Allow to cool, then strain out veggie scraps in a colander and large bowl.
  4. Pour into mason jars and keep in the refrigerator and/or into quart-size freezer bags to store in freezer.
  5. Ice trays are great for freezing 1 Tbsp portion sizes. 

Notes

Salt is a big thing when comparing homemade broth to store-bought. The prepackaged versions are loaded with salt and have about 600 mg of sodium per one-cup serving, which is nearly 1/2 of the recommended daily allowance.

Detailed instructions, in-process photos, and my personal helpful tips can be found in the article above.



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Nutrition Information:
Yield: 25
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 23Total Fat: .3gCholesterol: 0mg

To obtain the most accurate representation of the nutritional information in a given recipe, you should calculate the nutritional information with the actual ingredients used in your recipe, using your preferred nutrition calculator. You are solely responsible for ensuring that any nutritional information provided is accurate, complete, and useful.

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Make veggie stock
How to Make Vegetable Stock from Scaps
Making your own veggie broth is easy and saves money.

Adele

Wednesday 13th of January 2021

I can’t find spice amounts in recipe

Terri Edwards

Thursday 14th of January 2021

Hi Adele- Approximately 1 tsp each of the spices and a couple of bay leaves should work just fine. The amount of veggie scraps used in this will vary greatly, so the measurements are just estimates. Salt can also be used, but I usually just wait until I'm cooking and add it to the recipe I'm working on.

Top 15 Spices for Plant-Based Cooking - Center for Nutrition Studies

Wednesday 23rd of January 2019

[…] 7. Tarragon has a unique flavor that easily dominates other flavors, if used too heavily. It pairs well with artichokes, carrots, mushrooms, onions, potatoes, salads, and spinach. I add it to many dishes, including my homemade veggie broth. […]

Kathy

Saturday 10th of February 2018

You can use the onion skins and other peelings, just not too much of broccoli or cabbage because it gets too strong. Homemade broth is so much better than store bought and when it’s cooking makes your house smell wonderful

Jennifer Arent

Friday 23rd of June 2017

I am seriously going to do this! How much water should I put into the pot, though, to be able to have 4 quarts after it's done?

Thanks for all your work - I have been following your blog (newsletter) and facebook for a while now and love it!

EatPlant-Based.com

Friday 23rd of June 2017

Hi Jennifer, I put approximately 5 quarts in the pot for veggie broth. Thanks so much for following!

Kirsten Ness

Friday 26th of August 2016

Is there anything that you wouldn't put in? I know some people use onion peel amongst other things. Will anything taint the broth or put the taste off?

EatPlant-Based.com

Friday 26th of August 2016

Kirsten, I wouldn't use the outer skin (brittle part) of the onion. Other than that, I can't think of any others.

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