If you eat a reasonable amount of vegetables, making your own broth is a must. For one, it’s a heck of a lot cheaper than buying it. For two, it’s a great way to use up those vegetables that inevitably sit in the fridge just a bit too long and aren’t as fresh and you’d like, and also a good way to use up the leftover scraps from chopping veggies for other recipes. For three, it’s more environmentally friendly because you don’t use packaging and you don’t waste leftover veggies. And for four, it’s super easy!
All you need to do is go through the fridge and toss whatever vegetables are looking a touch limp (don’t use full on rotten vegetables, they should still be edible – but you can get away with using those slightly soft carrots or limp lettuces you forgot about for a few days). You can of course use brand new fresh vegetables to make broth, but I prefer to use it as a way to clean out the fridge once a week or so – it seems less wasteful that way. I do usually add a fresh onion or two, though.
Another way to collect scraps for broth is to keep a “Broth Bag” – whenever you chop vegetables for a meal, throw the scraps into a bag to collect them and keep the bag in the fridge. Then every few days or so you can make a fresh batch of broth with the scraps. Don’t use potatoes (too starchy) or tomatoes (too juicy) – stick to things like onion, carrots, celery, turnips, lettuces, cabbages, etc.
Once you’ve got a pot full o’ veggies just fill it up with water:
Set it on the stove to simmer for at least an hour, preferably 2-4 hours – you can also stick them in the slow cooker on low for 6-10 hours, that works great if you want to leave it while you’re at work!
Once you’ve let it simmer for a bit, you can either put a colander in a large bowl and strain out the broth, or if you’re super lazy (yeah, that would be me) you can pour it straight from the pot through a funnel into your container of choice:
If you opt for that method, definitely do it in the sink as it has a much higher likelihood of being messy. That’s all there is to it – you’ve just made your own homemade vegetable broth! Cheap, easy, and better tasting than the stuff from the store, it should keep in the fridge for about a week. I love when things work together to be inexpensive, eco-friendly, and tasty.