How to Make Veggie Bone Broth
Soup and broth for vegetarians does not need to be boring and bland!
Learn how to make immune boosting veggie bone broth. This healthy and delicious recipe is a great way to enjoy the gut healing goodness of vegetables without adding any animal products into your diet.
My simple recipe can be made in 90 minutes. You'll get tons of hydration in this absolutely delicious 100% plant based soup. But how do you get that umami taste without meat you ask?
Well... there are some secret ingredients I use to bring out these wonderful flavors. It's the absolute best substitutions for chicken broth.
First a quick disclaimer: If you are ever interested in bone broth, theres a delicious low sodium powder bone broth made by Bluebird Provisions.
It has 12 g protein per serving is made from USA pasture raised, non-gmo chickens and comes in a recyclable pouch.
With that out of the way let's get onto the recipe.
Intro to Vegetarian Bone Broth Alternatives
If you're vegetarian and can't eat meat, I have great news for you. There are amazing plant-based variations. You won't be getting the health benefits of the real stuff because you need meat cartilage and bones to get those amino acids.
But you can get other gut friendly nutrients, immune boosting minerals and natural electrolytes to hydrate you throughout the day.
Veggie Bone Broth Health Benefits
Veggie bone broth benefits include hydration, source of crucial vitamins and minerals, immunity, possible weight loss, brain health and stress reduction. Let's discuss these in more detail below.
- Crucial Vitamins and Minerals: rich source of minerals like manganese, magnesium, selenium and calcium and are also packed with vitamins like A, C, E, K, and some B vitamins.
- Immune Supporting: Shiitake are medicinal mushrooms also known as adaptogens. Adaptogens strengthen your immune system, help your body destress, reduce anxiety and help you sleep.
- Whole Food Hydration and Electrolytes: The absolute best whole food source of potassium, magnesium, phosphorous and chloride. You don't need fancy electrolyte tabs or powder when you drink this broth.
- Low Calorie: Great for any diet or eating plan at only 20 calories per cup. Many people use vegetable broth for intermittent fasting because of the natural salt and electrolytes. It won't kick you out of ketosis or break your fast.
Antioxidants can be supporting for your liver, as well as potentially lowering the risk for cardiovascular disease and cancer. This is one of the unique benefits of vegetable broth made using the right ingredients.
Gut Healthy Soup and Veggie Bone Broth
Veggie Bone Broth is a great way to add gut friendly nutrients to your diet. It doesn't quite have the same gut healing capabilities as bone broth, but it will help your digestion.
But how? Warm beverages on their own are show to help stimulate gastric juices in the gut to move things along. And the antioxidants in it are helpful in rebuilding inflamed gut lining to help you digest and absorb food properly.
How does veggie bone broth compare to other types of broth?
Veggie broths lack the protein and amino acids for collagen production, joint health, blood sugar control and skin health. However, they have other things that are great for your health and wellness and they taste delicious. See the benefits above for more details.
Veggie broths typically have less calories than other types. They have more carbs and less protein than meat based stocks.
Some of the nutrients found in a veggie include potassium, vitamin C, B vitamins, polysaccharides, magnesium and vitamin E.
What are the best vegetables to use for veggie bone broth?
You can use any vegetables you want for an umami veggie bone broth. A good tip is to save your vegetable scraps throughout the week or month in a bag in your freezer. Carrots, onions, leeks, celery, mushrooms and beets are all great things to place into your broth.
Hot tip: make sure veggie scraps are rinsed well to prevent your broth from tasting like dirt. If you prefer to use whole veggies instead of kitchen scraps, that's fine too. Don't use too many skins from onions or garlic, which will give the broth a bitter flavor.
Avoid using leafy greens in your soup recipes because they tend to break down a lot leaving an off-putting green color and bitter taste.
Can I make it at home?
Yes, you can make broth at home. It is cheaper to make broth at home than to buy it and a great way to reduce food waste. You see, broth gives food scraps a second life!
It's also healthier to make broth at home because you can control the salt and other ingredients.
The Best Veggie Bone Broth Recipe
This plant-based broth is warming and comforting and the perfect thing for a savory sipper. It's also full of nourishing goodies and is a great chicken broth alternative. Perfect for a chilly morning, when you feel something coming on or in any soup. It freezes incredibly well, so it's perfect for batch cooking and smells delicious too.
Ingredients for Healthy Vegetable Broth
- 12 cups water
- 3 large carrots, scrubbed and coarsely chopped
- 3 celery stalks, coarsely chopped
- 1 large onions, peeled and coarsely chopped
- 1 leeks, washed and coarsely chopped
- 3⁄4 pound crimini mushrooms, chopped
- 2 cups dried shiitake mushrooms, chopped if you can
- 10 g dried Wakame, for steeping
- Himalayan salt to taste
- Optional: fresh or ground ginger and peppercorns
Instructions for Healing Broth
- Place all the ingredients except the wakame in a large stock pot and add about 12 cups of cold water.
- Bring to a boil over high heat, skimming off the foamy impurities every 15 minutes.
- Reduce the heat to medium-low and cook on a rolling simmer for 80 minutes, skimming occasionally.
- Turn heat off and remove pot from stove top. Place it on your counter. Let it cool for 10 minutes, then add wakame and let it steep in the broth for 15 minutes.
- Use a spider strainer to remove the solids and discard (or save the wakame for a seaweed salad).
- Strain the broth through a fine-mesh sieve or strainer into a bowl. Taste to see if any additional salt is needed.
- Transfer the cooled broth to storage containers (leaving any sediment in the bottom of the pot to rest)
- Enjoy within 5 days in the refrigerator or freeze for up to 6 months.
Notes and Tips for Plant-Based Broth
- You can puree the used vegetables to make a yummy soup or compost them.
- Do not over steep the wakame seaweed or else it will be bitter and over powered. This is the most important part.
- You can use kombu or any sea vegetables in place of wakame.
- Feel free to keep the lid on while it cooks. The idea here is to prevent the liquid from reducing.
- Don't be afraid of cooking it too hot. You need a good rolling simmer to break down the dried ingredients into mushroom flavor.
- You can adjust your cook times to longer or shorter. This is a good practical cook time to get my point across.
- You won't believe the umami flavor or this!
How to Store Vegetarian Bone Broth
Cool and store the broth within 2 hours of removing it from the heat to extend the natural shelf life even further. You want to pour it into your glass containers or mason jars as quick as possible, then get them into the fridge or freezer right away.
This minimizes the time in the critical temperature zones where bacteria develop (between 40 and 160 degrees Fahrenheit or 4 to 72 degrees celsius).
The goal is to get it to below 40 degrees as quickly as possible. You can even pour the cooled broth into ice cube trays or other freezer containers for easy access and single use options. This way you don't have to thaw out a big block just for one use.
You can toss your broth cubes into smoothies or into a pan to deglaze it for extra flavor.
You can expect 20 calories with 3 g carbs, no fat and 1 g protein from this vegetarian broth recipe. But everything comes down to your ingredients and cooking methods. The nutrition facts of your stock might be slightly different.
Are there any risks associated with veggie bone broth?
There are no risks associated with veggie bone broth. This liquid is a great way to get gut healing, reduce stress and fight inflammation. You can drink as much as you please and it's great for any diet including keto / low car and fasting.
My advice is to try 1-2 cups (or 1 bowl) on your first day ands see how you feel. From here you can drink more or less.
And if you are curious about bone broth, read my review of the top bone broths on the market this year.
Where can I buy veggie bone broth?
You can buy veggie bone broth at a variety of speciality grocery stores and online. The question and concerns are around quality. Be very careful with store bought versions. They are full of sodium, preservatives, chemicals gums and filler ingredients. Anything these big food brands can use to save money they will do.
The problem is that all of them use those dreaded 'natural flavors' as well as yeast extracts. These are awful things that are full of chemicals and GMO dextrose. Not what you want in your body.
Don't even get me started with vegetarian bouillon. This stuff is so awful for you it's disgusting.
How do I know if veggie bone broth is high quality?
Veggie bone broth is high quality if it uses ingredients you have heard of that are whole food sources. Check for the salt content and carbohydrate content on the nutrition facts. Also look at the ingredients to make sure there are no processed additives as these are bad for your gut health.
Can you puree this vegetable broth?
Of course you can puree this recipe! This veggie broth is made with real fresh vegetables and savory herbs and spices. You can either transfer it little by little to a food processor, blender or the easiest is to just use a submersion hand blender.
Can you use dried herbs in place of fresh?
You can use dried herbs in place of fresh. Although fresh is best, they are difficult to find. Simply swap in dried and your recipe will be fine. 1 tsp dried dill and 1 tsp dried parsley will work great in place of fresh.
My advice is to get comfortable making this veggie broth substitute. It is such a fantastic addition to your diet or kitchen pantry. I use it to cook just about everything from rice / quinoa (sub water for it), to sautés and stir frys and as a vegetarian soup base.
Just adding a small amount can transform any meals you're making in a matter of seconds thanks to the umami taste.
If you are ever curious about what a traditionally made bone broth tastes like and want the healing benefits, give Bluebird Provisions a try. It's seriously the highest quality product you'll find in store or online.
You just got a taste of the best vegetarian broth recipe.
Once you make it, let me know how it tastes. Did you enjoy it? Not enjoy it? Leave a comment and let me know.
Hi JWW I would omit the mushrooms if you don’t like them.
As for the herbs, they are just an option if you want to add more flavor. That is why I left them off the recipe.
You say it’s OK to use dried herbs in the recipe, but I don’t see that the recipe calls for any herbs, fresh or dried(?)
Also, what do the mushrooms do, other than flavor. I have a very strong taste aversion to mushrooms and my body doesn’t digest them. They come out just as whole and same as when I ate them.