Low Cost, Low Salt, Low Fat Vegetable Broth

"I put all my vegetable peelings, onion skins, a few egg shells (for calcium) and other edible waste in a 3 qt zip lock bag that I keep in the freezer. When it is full I use it to make stock. (Knowing this, I wash dirt off items before peeling.) Yield is approximate. Time is for stove or crock pot - pressure cooker only takes an hour."
photo by a food.com user photo by a food.com user
Ready In:
10hrs 5mins
3 quarts


  • 3 quarts vegetables, peelings
  • vegetables, from fridge (leftovers, limp or old)
  • 3 -6 eggshells (any number, for calcium) (optional)
  • 14 - 12 cup vinegar (to extract calcium from egg shells) (optional)
  • water, to cover
  • For extra flavor (to taste)

  • 1 large onion, quartered (don't peel)
  • 12 - 1 bulb of garlic, halved horizontally (don't peel)


  • Cooking options: Pressure cooker, stock pot or crock pot.
  • Pressure Cooker: Put all ingredients in pot. Add water to 3/4 full. Cook at 15 lb pressure for 1/2 hour or so.
  • Let cool to reduce pressure.
  • Pot: Add water to cover, simmer (very low) on stove for 10 hours or so.
  • Crock Pot: Put everything in 6 qt crock pot. Add water to 3/4 full. Cook on low for 10 hours or so.
  • The times are approximate though I like to cook it for a minimum of 8 hours unless using the pressure cooker.
  • Strain: Line a colander with a clean loosely woven dish cloth and place another colander on top. (The cloth will be sandwiched between the two colanders.) Strain broth, discard the 'mash' - it has no nutrients left!
  • Use in recipes calling for broth - I find that the pressure cooker broth is very concentrated and I often dilute it when I use it. Taste yours to see.
  • As this broth is salt free, you will have to add salt to taste. I do not add herbs because the long cooking pretty much destroys the flavor. I add them when using the broth to suit the dish I am making, as this is more economical. Because of this, the broth may not taste that great but it will taste just fine used in cooking and for soups.
  • The yield is approximate.
  • Ideas:

  • Add the bottom of that celery bunch that you usually throw away. Don't forget mushroom peelings. Toss in that lettuce that didn't make it to the salad. Add that nearly empty jar of salsa for flavor. You get the idea. I sometimes include the peel of an orange or lemon - but only one as otherwise the broth is too bitter.
  • I used to toss in small amounts of cabbage, broccoli or cauliflower leftovers and get away with it but stopped after one batch was dominated by a bitter cabbage flavour.

Questions & Replies

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  1. Jean this is aa very nice use of the throw away business of cooking. I appreciate your thoughtfulness in responding to some questions I had. The broth came out quite flavorful. I made vegetable beef soup for DH and I for lunch using the broth and then froze the soup leftovers for another day. Thank you. I already started another bag of scraps in the freezer for broth to make lentil soup.
  2. Wonderful use for peelings - it's like a 2nd use - how could you NOT do this?! I added parsley, a couple bay leaves and just a pinch of italian seasoning. My broth was peelings/trimmings from broccoli, caulif, lettuce, carrots, celery, onions, fennel and sweet peppers. VERY delicious! Thanks for the great idea!



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