Just because you don't have beef broth on hand doesn't mean you can't make a delicious soup or sauce. In this article, we will explore 15 easy ways to substitute for beef broth that will add flavor and depth when your recipe calls for beef broth.
From vegetable broth to chicken stock, hopefully, we've included a substitution that fits your needs!
If you are looking for a vegetarian or vegan beef broth substitute or just don't like the beef broth taste, then we got you covered. We have seven options just for the vegetarian and vegan diets.
How beef broth is often used
Beef broth can serve as a braising fluid or added to stews or soups. But what if you don't have any beef broth on hand and you don't have the time to get to the store? Hopefully, you'll find the perfect substitute listed below.
- How beef broth is often used
- Worcestershire sauce
- Chicken Broth
- Mushroom Broth
- Beef Bouillon Cubes
- Chicken Bouillon Cubes
- Miso Paste
- Bone Broth
- Tomato Paste
- Soy Sauce and Steak Sauce
- Soy sauce
- Beer or Red Wine
- Beef Stock
- Beef Base
- Vegetable Broth
- Homemade Beef Broth
- Liquid Aminos
- Beef Consommé vs Beef Broth
- Expert Tips
- Frequently Asked Questions
- In summary
- More Ingredient Substitution Articles
Worcestershire sauce can make a really a great substitute. Worcestershire sauce is made with anchovies, tamarind, and various spices, and it delivers a delicious flavor and a rich taste.
Worcestershire sauce offers complex umami flavors that take care of the salt factor required in the dish and can even make it a better flavorful choice versus something like soy sauce.
To use Worcestershire sauce as a substitute, add 1 tablespoon to 1 cup of water or vegetable broth for each cup of beef broth.
Unfortunately, since it can contain anchovies or fish soup, it is not a vegetarian or vegan substitute.
If you don't have beef broth, you can use chicken broth as the substitute. Chicken broth adds a mild flavor and light color to dishes.
Both broths have nearly identical compositions: The chicken broth calls for chicken instead of beef meat — causing less flavor but retaining a meaty taste as much as it is savory.
To use chicken broth as a substitute, simply add on a 1:1 ratio.
Mushroom broth is a flavorful and earthy substitute in recipes. It pairs well with dishes that contain onion, garlic, or celery and adds a nice mushroom flavor.
This broth is made by simmering mushrooms in water, which creates a deep, rich flavor. You can, if you wish, make your own mushroom broth with assorted mushrooms. A Couple Cooks has a great homemade mushroom broth that's easy and ready in about 15 minutes.
This alternative is both vegetarian/vegan as it is prepared similar to vegetable broth but most of its flavor is produced from an assortment of mushrooms instead of an assortment of vegetables.
Mushroom broth has similar flavors and consistency to beef broth but you can also add a touch of soy sauce, fresh herbs, or spices to boost the flavor.
To use mushroom broth, substitute at a ratio of 1:1.
Beef Bouillon Cubes
If you are looking for a quick and easy way to add beef broth flavor to your dish and keep that meaty flavor, beef bouillon cubes are a great option for beef stew and other dishes!
Bouillon cubes are made of dehydrated beef broth and dissolve quickly in hot water. To use bouillon cubes as a substitute, add one bouillon cube to 1 cup of hot water.
Chicken Bouillon Cubes
Similar to beef bouillon cubes, these are a great way to add chicken broth flavor to your dish. They are made of dehydrated chicken broth and dissolve quickly in hot water.
Both beef and chicken cubes are a great way to add the flavor of beef or chicken broth to your dish without having to make a full pot of broth.
They are also a quick and easy option if you only need a small amount of broth for your recipe.
To use bouillon cubes as a substitute, add one bouillon cube to 1 cup of hot water.
Miso paste can be a good substitute because it has a deep, savory flavor and contains umami ingredients.
Miso paste is made from fermented soybeans, rice, or barley and is a good vegan or vegetarian substitute.
To use miso, add 1 tablespoon to 1 cup of hot or boiling water.
Bone broth is the closest match because of its texture and rich beef flavor.
To use as a replacement for beef broth, substitute at a ratio of 1:1.
Because its concentrated, tomato paste has a rich deep flavor that's great for soups and stews.
To use tomato paste as a substitute, add one tablespoon of tomato paste to 1 cup of hot or boiling water.
Soy Sauce and Steak Sauce
The combination of soy sauce and steak sauce is a wonderful substitute for beef broth.
To use this substitute, combine some soy sauce with the steak sauce.
While not an ideal substitution, steak sauce can add a similar flavor to dishes that call for beef broth.
If you are looking for a salty and savory substitute for beef broth, then soy sauce is a great option!
This condiment has a savory umami flavor, providing similar salability to beef soups in several recipes, in addition to sauces, stews, and gravies.
Definitely start out low when it comes to using soy sauce as a substitute. Perhaps start as low as 1 tablespoon per 1 cup of water and work your way up to a suitable ratio.
Soy sauce makes a very nice substitute for vegetarian and vegan dishes, too.
Beer or Red Wine
If you are looking for a flavorful substitute, beer or red wine can be an option! Beer and wine both have a strong flavor, and they can be used to add richness to dishes.
To use beer or wine as a substitute, add 1 cup of beer or wine for each cup of beef broth.
If you are looking to avoid the alcohol, which will cook off during the cooking process, you can use a high-quality non alcoholic beer to add great flavor to your dish.
If you are looking for a substitute that is similar in flavor, beef stock is a great option! It is made by simmering beef bones, water, and vegetables.
To use beef stock as a substitute, you can use equal amounts of stock as beef broth called for in your recipe.
If you'd like, Recipe Tin Eats has a great recipe for homemade beef stock.
Beef base is a dehydrated product made from beef broth. It is a concentrated flavor enhancer that you can add to sauces, soups, or stews.
You can add onion and garlic powder to your base if you feel the need for a bit more flavor.
To use beef base, substitute at a ratio of 1:1.
Using this as a substitute for beef broth is a great way to add flavor to your dish. Vegetable broth from vegetable stock is a flavorful alternative that is perfect for vegetarian and vegan dishes. Add some bay leaves for a different flavor.
Vegetable broth is made of vegetables and water. To use it as a beef broth substitute, use the 1:1 ratio.
An article from Organic facts suggests vegetable broth is the best all-around substitute for beef broth.
Homemade Beef Broth
If you don't have canned beef broth and have some free time, you can create your own beef broth at home. Although the process requires some time and effort, it is possible to make your own homemade broth.
Taste of Home has a great recipe for homemade beef broth.
If you are looking for a vegan substitute for beef broth, the savory liquid aminos is a great option and can add some intense flavor. It is a light, flavorful alternative that is perfect for vegan dishes.
It's made from concentrated amino acids from soy.
To use liquid aminos as a substitute, add half a cup of liquid aminos to the recipe.
Beef Consommé vs Beef Broth
You may wonder what the difference is between beef consommé and beef broth. Essentially, there are some basic differences in color, taste, and texture.
Broth is a cloudy, light to medium brown liquid. Consommé can be clear but it's much darker and a little thicker.
Consommé has more of a rich, robust flavor while broth is usually on the milder side.
For more in-depth information about this topic, The Daring Kitchen has a great article Beef Broth vs Beef Stock vs Beef Consumme you may want to check out!
While there are many very suitable substitution options, your choice will come down to what you have on hand and if you are interested in a vegan/vegetarian option.
One of the key tips is to test the flavor of your broth substitute. The addition of bay leaves or other herbs and spices can really enhance the flavor.
If you only have a small amount of beef broth and not enough for your recipe, you can combine beef broth with a substitute above for your recipe.
Frequently Asked Questions
Using water alone as a substitute for beef broth will not produce the same results. Beef broth is made by simmering beef bones, water, and vegetables. Using water in place of beef broth will not add flavor to your dish and may dilute the flavors of the other ingredients.
If you must use water, you can add some olive oil along with a bay leaf or two, spices, parsley sprigs, herbs, or yellow onion to add some flavor. If you have any on hand, you can also try Italian seasonings.
Yes, you can substitute beef consommé for beef broth in a recipe. It has a rich flavor that will add depth to your dish.
To use beef consommé as a substitute, you can also use equal amounts of beef consommé as beef broth called for in your recipe.
Often people do not realize how beef broth is different from beef stock. The first thing you have to understand about broth and meat stock is their production methods.
Stock is prepared by simmering beef bones for a long period of time which gives it a balanced, flavorful liquid.
The broth essentially comes from simmering the meat of the animal, not the bones. It results in thinner liquids and lots of flavors. Its two main differences are related to seasoning. Stock has no spices or salt compared to beef broth.
There are a variety of substitutes for beef broth that will add flavor to your dish and are great options for healthy eating. Vegetable broth, homemade beef broth, liquid aminos, and beef consommé are all substitutes that will add depth to your dish. If you do not have beef broth on hand, try using one of these substitutes to help add flavor to your recipe
Beef broth may be one of the main ingredients for countless meals and a kitchen staple, but there are many substitutes for beef broth available.
Although other broth substitutes may work, remember that some of those may result in different flavors for the finished product.
More Ingredient Substitution Articles
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