Updated: Mar 15, 2019
Last year, I decided to try a vegan diet because I wanted to feel healthier. I had started following a few people on Instagram and admired how they embraced the vegan lifestyle, and made it look easy. I thought, wow, I‘m at a place in my life where (I’m recently divorced) I’m cooking for just myself most of the time and I can do this too. My 17-year old isn‘t home much (because he’s a teenager and has a life of his own, and survives off fast food and Mountain Dew...duh), but he has liked several vegan recipes I’ve prepared. Anyway, that’s another post for another day.
I love cooking vegan, but when a recipe calls for vegetable broth I cross my fingers that the other ingredients in the dish will mask the flavor of the broth. I strongly dislike the taste of store-bought vegetable broth—can you tell? In my opinion, the flavor is blah and it smells weird. Another thing that bothers me is that some brands, even organic ones, add natural flavors (which really aren’t natural at all). Unless the manufacturer states the natural flavors are vegetarian or vegan, it can be made from animal products, not to mention lots of chemicals. I avoid natural flavorings as much as I can, because I want to know exactly what is in my food.
The only thing I could do to combat both my issues over store-bought broth, was to make my own. So, I did a few searches on Pinterest and came up with one of my own. It’s not rocket science, it’s literally scraps from the veggies you are using daily. All you need to do is wash your vegetables then peel, cut, and store in a bag in the freezer. When you have a full bag you make the broth!
I don’t know about you but I love the colors going on in here. That’s a tasty combination!
In a large stock pot add:
1 T avocado oil
Heat the oil on medium high, then add your veggies and sauté a few minutes until semi-soft and fragrant.
These are the skins and scraps I used:
onions - 2-3 tops and bottoms plus skin
potatoes - skins from 5 lb bag
carrots - tops and bottoms and peelings
celery (lots because I drink celery juice everyday and I used the pulp as well as the tops and bottoms)
kale - stems from one bunch
garlic- 2 cloves mashed, leave skins on
fresh thyme (3 springs) dried works too
2 bay leaves
Pink Himalayan salt (1teaspoon or to taste)
Fresh, cracked black pepper to taste
Trader Joe’s Garlic Salt (the best stuff EVER!) you don’t have to use this but if you don’t I’d suggest adding 1 teaspoon garlic powder.
When your vegetables are good and sautéed, cover with water. I use filtered but tap is fine. Add your spices and bring to a boil, then turn down the heat and simmer for an hour and a half.
Try not to stir too often because veggies will become mushy.
When your broth has simmered for the appropriate time, turn off the heat and let cool.
Drain through a mesh strainer into another container so you can divvy out portions.
I like to use Mason jars.
(One can of store bought broth is approximately 2 cups, so try to store in 2 cup quantities for easier usage)
*Make sure to leave enough room at the top for expansion if you’re freezing your broth.
Keep refrigerated for up to 3-5 days or freeze for up to 3 months.
**fun fact...this batch made 96oz of broth which saved me approximately $9