Do you find yourself craving chicken broth but don’t want to use actual chicken? These vegetarian substitutes below will help you achieve the delicious taste of using chicken broth while keeping your diet out of animal products.
What is chicken broth?
Chicken broth is a staple in many kitchens.
It is basically the liquid that has been boiled out of the raw or cooked chicken meat with salt and pepper added to taste.
The difference between chicken broth and chicken stock is that the broth is made with chicken meat while the stock version is made with bones.
Therefore, if you are looking for a thinner liquid but meatier and more flavorful, chicken broth is what you are looking for.
Many people also simmer fragrant vegetables like carrot, onion, and celery with chicken meat to enhance the flavor of their chicken broth.
This cooking ingredient can be used for cooking rice, pasta, noodles; as a base for soups, stews, sauces, or gravies; or even to moisten dry bread crumbs before adding them to meatloaf for an extra flavor boost.
Chicken broth is best to be made at home by simmering chicken with other ingredients and spices for about six hours.
However, due to the convenience of the premade version, many people tend to opt for store-bought chicken broth that is ready to be served out of the can.
However, processed chicken broth is likely to contain preservatives and is higher in sodium, so you better keep your eyes on the selection process to choose the best product, in both flavor and quality.
Can you substitute chicken broth in cooking recipes?
The good news is you totally can substitute chicken broth in any cooking recipe like making soups, stews, or sauces.
When you don’t have chicken broth available in your kitchen, or there are some unexpected guests that visit your house and you don’t have time to simmer chicken for hours to make the best chicken broth for your dishes, it’s time to think about alternate chicken broth with other ingredients.
There might be some slight difference in the flavor because nothing tastes similar, but in general, your resulting dishes will be as amazing as when you use chicken broth.
You will also need to adjust the amount of the chicken broth substitute in the recipe to achieve a perfectly balanced taste.
If you are a vegetarian, don’t worry, you can still substitute chicken broth with other meat-free ingredients.
Are you wondering what we can use to replace chicken broth? Let’s read our section below.
What vegetarian ingredients can you substitute for chicken broth?
Chicken broth is definitely not for people who follow a vegetarian or vegan diet.
Therefore, they must seek other ingredients that can substitute this kind of broth in case they want to make the best soups or stews.
Below are our best suggestions for vegetarian substitutes for chicken broth:
1. Vegetable broth
Vegetable broth is the number one substitute for regular chicken broth if you want to cut down the animal protein.
Vegetable broth is typically made by simmering aromatic vegetables, normally celery, onion, cabbage, and carrot with spices like salt, sugar, and pepper to taste.
Compared to chicken broth, the vegetable version is milder in flavor and lighter in texture, but it is still sweet and perfect to use as a base for many recipes.
Vegetable broth is also very popular on the market if you want to opt for the store-bought version.
It even comes in different forms, such as liquid, granules, or cubes, giving you many options to choose from.
2. Mushroom stock
Mushroom stock is also a great substitute for chicken broth.
It has a dark color like a beef stock that can create a beautiful look to your dish without using any meat ingredients.
The mushroom stock has a nutty and umami flavor and is rich in many nutrients but low in calories.
3. Miso paste
Miso paste might be a more familiar ingredient in Japanese cuisine.
It is made by fermenting soybeans with salt and koji, a kind of mold that is cultivated from rice or barley.
This ingredient has a typical umami flavor that you can get from any dish in Japan.
It should be diluted before adding to your dish to prevent lumps.
4. Water and butter
Last but not least, you can even substitute chicken broth with a very economical ingredient, which is water.
Indeed, water actually works great in some cases without needing meat broth.
Try adding one tablespoon of butter with one cup of water to replace one cup of chicken broth, you may be surprised with the result.
The bottom line
As you can see, there are actually various ways to satisfy your craving for chicken broth without using real chicken.
From the most common ingredient like water or vegetable broth to mushroom stock and a more iconic one like miso paste, all can work well in your kitchen when you don’t have chicken broth on hand.
So what kind of substitutions do you like the most? Share with us in the comments!
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