Do you use fresh veggies in your house? Do you make soups and sauces on occasion? Then you need to be turning the scraps from your vegetables into vegetable broth. It requires no additional ingredients besides the veggie scraps, and basically no extra work at all.
First off, you don’t have to be vegetarian to use veggie broth. This stuff is layered with flavor and is sure to bump up any soup or sauce you want to throw it into. You could even drink this broth on its own. Whereas, it doesn’t have all of the health benefits of a bone broth, it’s still good for you. Plus, it can still have a lot of really good things that are beneficial to your health depending on what veggies you toss in.
Second off, if you’re thinking “great, another recipe to keep track of.” THINK AGAIN. This is probably going to be one of the easier tools to add to your kitchen toolbox of knowledge. Get ready because I’m about to blow your mind.
First, you grab a one gallon Ziploc freezer bag. Every time you cut up vegetables, add the scraps to this bag. Keep this bag in your freezer, and once you can’t fit anymore in there, it’s time to make broth.
Here are a few ideas of what to put into your broth. Onion ends and peels. Garlic ends and peel. Carrot ends and peel. Potato peels. Mushroom stems. Stems from fresh herbs. Caps from peppers (no seeds). You get the idea. Don’t stick to just this. Throw in anything you’d like.
“to the broth machine.”
Once you’ve filled your bag, it’s off to the broth machine. Or, as most people like to call it, the slow cooker. Take your veggies, dump them into the crock of a slow cooker, cover them in water, and cook on low for 3-4 hours, or as long as you darn well please. I’ve never gone past 12 or so. I like to make my broth without salt, so I can add the salt as I please in each application of the broth. You can add yours in the beginning if you’d like. I’d go with a tablespoon or two.
I use a Hamilton Beach 6 quart locking slow cooker. It’s nothing fancy, no timer or anything. Just a nice sturdy crock, a knob to set the temperature, and a locking lid. This is all I need from a slow cooker and it has worked perfectly for me for over 5 years now with regular, steady use. Grab one here and stop cooking so fast…..Hamilton Beach Stay or Go 6 Quarter Slow Cooker.
Also feel free to add any spices you’d like. Literally any. Turmeric is renowned for its health benefits and can add a very distinct flavor. So do cloves, peppercorns, fennel, dill, you name it! Toss it in, cook it down, drink it up. Or…cook it up I guess. How ever you use it.
Finally, when all is said and done you’ll wind up with this beautifully colored and delectable smelling broth. Mine always comes out this gorgeous reddish, brown color. Making this broth is definitely a sensory experience all together.
My take away for you from this post would be: save your veggie scraps. Make them into broth and keep that broth one hand for your next soup, sauce and any other time you need some sort of broth. If you do this consistently, you can wind up with gallons of this delicious and FREE broth sitting in your freezer waiting to be used.
All of that being said, do you have you Ziploc bag ready? Go now!
- 1 gallon bag
- vegetable scraps
- crock pot
- Keep all of your vegetable scraps in a gallon bag in your freezer.
- Once the bag is full, you can make your broth. Put all of the veggies in a large crock pot, add it any more herbs or spices, cover with water, and cook on low for 3-4 hours, or as long as you like.
- Allow to cook and transfer to quart size bags in two cup increments for freezing.