Beef broth is an interesting flavor additive that can transform your dish. While making it might take a while, beef broth looks and tastes lovely on all fronts.
However, many people looking to cook could try getting something different from time to time and experimenting with other ingredients. So, a substitute could be more ideal.
What is the best substitute for beef broth? Among the many options, vegetable broth has proven to be the best substitute for beef broth. It has a similar taste to beef broth, and it is pretty easy to make. You will also love the versatility of vegetable broth – another feature that likens it to beef broth.
An Overview of Beef Broth
Also known as beef stock, beef broth is a liquid gotten from mixing beef bones with different spices and vegetables. You simmer the beef bones with onions, celery, carrots, herbs, and more in water over an extended period, and you can make your broth from there.
Many love beef broth because it comes with a great flavor. You can also get an impressive boost for your soups, curries, stews, and much more. From rice and potatoes to grains and couscous, beef broth adds flavor to a great number of dishes.
In beef broth, you get this savory, umami-like flavor. You can also get several impressive health benefits in homemade beef broth, including a healthy dose of iron, amino acids, and calcium, just to name a few.
Why Replace Beef Broth?
- Taste differences: Some people might not like the general taste of beef broth. For these people, a suitable substitute will have to work.
- Production process: The process of making beef broth is pretty lengthy, and you might not have that time. If you’re in a time crunch, you need a substitute that is easy to make and can quickly work with your dish.
- You’re vegan: If you’re vegan, you might not like beef broth so much. So, a vegan-based substitute will have to work in its stead.
Options for Beef Broth Substitutes
Best Overall Substitute for Beef Broth: Vegetable Broth
It’s pretty easy to see why vegetable broth will be the ideal substitute for beef broth. It is already a broth variant, so it contains a lot of the same ingredients as the latter. At the same time, vegetable broth has a lot of similar flavor profiles to beef broth. So, you get to enjoy that as well.
Vegetable broth is a versatile component for many reasons. If you don’t have the time to cook, you could easily get vegetable broth from a grocery store close to you. However, if you’ve got the time and will like to add some personal flavors, you could just as well make yours.
If you’re looking to go a little extra, you can add some bay leaf, rosemary, pepper, or thyme to sauté the vegetables and let them mix properly. You can also add a flavor pinch by throwing in some soy sauce and red wine. Now, you’ve got a party on your hands.
When substituting for beef broth, vegetable broth works as a one-for-one option. So, you can replace each cup or bowl of beef broth with the same quantity of vegetable broth.
With accommodations for people looking to make their own and store-bought options for those time-crunch periods, it’s easy to see what makes vegetable broth such an ideal substitute.
Most Comfortable Substitute: Chicken Bouillon Cubes
Bouillon cubes are popular seasoning options that are used around the world. They add some much-needed flavor to your dish, and they are especially great because they last longer. If you’re not trying to use chicken stock for cooking, bouillon cubes are an ideal option for you.
Essentially, bouillon cubes are small, compact, and flavored cubes that can last for months at a go. They are made of compressed, ground seasonings, and they infuse a considerable amount of flavor into any dish. Bouillon cubes are especially popular for the convenience they provide. You can just throw a cube into your soup recipe and mix it with your ingredients. Let it boil, and you’ve got enough flavor to last you.
To be fair, chicken broth and chicken bouillon come in different flavor packages. However, chicken bouillon can easily bring that meaty and savory feeling to any dish. The fact that the cubes are easy to use and readily available also means you won’t have any problems with them.
Note that you will want to be careful when applying bouillon cubes. Too much could easily overwhelm your dish with the chicken flavor, and you won’t like the outcome at all. It is recommended that you start from a single cube and work your way up from there.
Best Substitutes in a Pinch: Soy Sauce and Worcestershire Sauce
In truth, soy sauce is a bit of an unconventional option. However, it still works as a unique substitute for beef broth nonetheless.
With soy sauce, you can replace the salt flavor available in the beef broth. All you have to do is add one teaspoon of soy sauce and steak sauce to your dish, and you’ll be pretty much ready to go.
Even better is the fact that you can add soy sauce to vegetable stock. If you don’t want to use any stock, just get a cup of water and add a teaspoon of steak and soy sauce to each. Stir the mixture well, and you’re ready to go.
You could also get a lot of service from Worcestershire sauce. It is an ideal option if you don’t want to use soy sauce, providing a more flavorful package that will work pretty well for you. With Worcestershire sauce, you get an umami background flavor for your dish, which should improve your broth taste.