Beef broth is particularly popular because of the distinct flavor it brings to dishes. However, you may find yourself without the broth on hand, and you need to add flavor and texture to your dish.
Don’t fret! There are a lot of beef broth substitutes you can use to mimic the benefits of the missing ingredient and here are some of them.
- Beef Stock
- Beef Consume
- Chicken Broth
- Vegetable Broth
- Mushroom Broth
- Beef Bouillon Cubes
- Bouillon Granules
- Court Bouillon
- Beef Base
Some of these alternatives may just be sitting in your pantry, waiting to be called into action. You may even make your own beef broth if you prefer. We have also included a recipe on how to create your own beef broth at the bottom of this post.
17 Best Substitute For Beef Broth
Broth is a must-have ingredient if you are planning to make a delectable soup, gravy, rice, and casserole, among many other savory dishes. It is readily available in many grocery stores today, most commonly in bouillon form.
The liquid ingredient is made by simmering water, herbs, meats, and vegetables together to come up with a delightful blend of flavors.
Following are some of the best substitutes you can use in lieu of beef broth, depending on the particular recipe you are preparing:
While you can use beef broth and stock interchangeably, they are not one and the same thing. There are distinct differences between the two.
For one, you create beef broth by boiling bones, veggies, and aromatics. On the other hand, you make beef stock by only reducing down the bones and meat.
You can use a 1:1 ratio when substituting beef stock for recipes that require beef broth. You can achieve almost the same flavor this way.
To make beef consume, you need to reduce the broth until it turns into a thick, sauce-like consistency. Beef consume has a thicker and richer taste compared to broth, so adding a little less beef consume than the broth required in the recipe may do the trick.
If you have beef consume readily available at home or you encounter some in a grocery store, you may want to make it thinner first before using, by mixing it with some water to dilute a bit.
Once you’ve achieved the desired consistency (or a consistency that matches that of broth), you can then substitute consume for broth at a 1:1 ratio.
One decent replacement for beef broth is chicken broth. While it may slightly lack the rich and deep flavor of beef, it is nevertheless a flavorful and popular ingredient on its own.
You can create chicken broth the same way you would make beef broth (see the recipe for beef broth farther down the list.)
Use a 1:1 ratio for substituting chicken broth for beef broth. Just make sure to add Worcestershire or soy sauce if you prefer to have more flavor or color in your dish.
Made by boiling aromatic herbs and veggies similar to making beef and chicken broth, vegetable broth is a good alternative to beef broth, especially if you are preparing a vegan or vegetarian recipe.
To substitute for beef broth, use an equal amount of vegetable broth. And to enhance the flavor and color of your dish, just add a little amount of sauce.
An equally deserving substitute to beef broth just like vegetable broth, mushroom broth is also a vegan and vegetarian-friendly option. It works great when added in soups, casseroles, and stews, among others.
To substitute for beef broth, use a 1:1 substitution ratio. If preferred, you can put a dash of Worcestershire or soy sauce to add a bit more flavor.
Beef Bouillon Cubes
Bouillon is a French word that means “to boil.” Beef bouillon cubes are a good alternative to use in place of beef broth. The substitution will result to little differences in terms of flavor and texture.
To use beef bouillon cubes as replacement for beef broth, just boil a cube in water, then use the 1:1 substitution ratio, or follow the instructions on the package.
Made from ground dehydrated stock or broth, beef bouillon granules bring the same flavor to the dish as beef bouillon cubes. Just like bouillon cubes, the granules bring the same beefy taste and texture to many dishes, making them an ideal replacement for beef broth.
For best results, make sure to dissolve the beef bouillon granules first before using. Dissolve a teaspoon of the granules in a cup of warm water. This will make a good replacement for a cup of beef broth in recipes.
A flavorful liquid, court bouillon is often used for poaching veggies, fish, meat, seafood, and eggs, among others. You can make the bouillon using short boiling ingredients like white wine, water, black pepper, salt, carrot, celery, onion, and other herbs.
To bring out flavors from the other ingredients faster, you can add vinegar, lemon juice or wine. The prep time you need for court bouillon is shorter compared to preparing stock or broth; thus, it is also referred to as “short broth.”
Court bouillon has a mild herbal flavor, which makes it an ideal replacement for recipes that require beef broth. Use a 1:1 ratio when replacing beef broth with court bouillon.
You can create beef base by reducing down beef stock until you achieve a paste-like, syrupy consistency. The highly concentrated stock brings a very intense flavor to your dish, just like consume.
When substituting beef base for beef stock, use a ratio of 1:1 after thinning out the beef base with some water.
Beer or Wine
Did you know that you can use beer or wine to substitute for beef broth? You may think it’s a bit odd, but remember that there are many sauce, gravy, and soup recipes that already require the use of such ingredients. The reason is that a little amount of beer or wine goes a long way in adding color and flavor to a lot of dishes.
If you don’t like the idea of consuming alcohol in your meals, you can find non-alcoholic beer options that you can try. Use a 1:1 ratio when substituting wine or beer for beef broth in soups, gravies, and sauces.
If you’re a vegetarian or vegan, liquid aminos offers a good alternative in place of beef broth. Just like soy sauce, liquid aminos can add the same flavor depth to your recipes.
In addition, the ingredient is gluten-free, which is ideal if you’re trying to cut down on carbs.
When using liquid aminos as an alternative to beef broth, mix it first with an alternative broth such as chicken or vegetable, or with plain water before making a 1:1 substitution.
In Asia, soy sauce is a very popular ingredient and is readily available in most grocery stores. To avoid overpowering your dish, however, use soy sauce in a lesser amount when replacing beef broth. A little trial and error is involved in determining the right amount to add. You can start adding just a bit of soy sauce, then tasting before adding more.
Similar to liquid aminos, you need to mix soy sauce with water or another broth when substituting for beef broth using a 1:1 ratio.
Worcestershire sauce brings a unique, umami flavor, and pairs particularly well with beef dishes. It is likewise an ideal vegetarian option as it is devoid of animal-based ingredients.
To flavor your dish, start with a dash of Worcestershire sauce, and add more as desired. To use as substitute for beef broth, mix the sauce first with a broth or water. Then, replace beef broth using a 1:1 ratio.
Soy Sauce with Steak Sauce
Try to mix soy sauce and steak sauce together to come up with a flavorful alternative to beef broth. This way, you can achieve the broth’s deep flavor in your dish. Just make sure to use just a little bit of the mixture to avoid overpowering the flavor.
To adjust, just add 1 or 2 tablespoons of the soy sauce-steak sauce mix, then taste. Remember that just a little amount can make a lot of difference.
In situations where you are pressed for time, and you need to come up with an alternative ingredient to beef broth fast, you can use plain water for the purpose. Just add some seasonings, and butter or oil. You can also add garlic, parsley, and bay leaves when substituting for beef broth to add a little bit of flavor.
Use a 1:1 ratio for substitution when beef broth is only a minor ingredient in the recipe you are preparing.
Making Your Own Beef Broth
If you have the time, you can prepare beef broth right in your own kitchen. You’ll be surprised how easy it is to do. You can begin by saving your veggie and meat scraps, then storing them in your freezer for later use.
To prepare your own broth, you will need the following ingredients on hand:
- 1 lb. of beef bones
- 1 cup of chopped onions
- 8 cups of water
- Salt & pepper, to taste
If preferred, you can add more seasonings and vegetable scraps. This way, you can avoid putting excess ingredients to waste.
- Put all the ingredients in a crockpot or slow cooker, then set the temperature to low. Pour more water as necessary, but avoid filling over the top.
- Allow to cook for at least 16 to 18 hours. Remember that the longer you cook, the better results you will achieve.
- Once the cook time is complete, you may turn your cooker off. Allow the broth to cool down for around 10 to 15 minutes. Then, strain the broth to get rid of any solid pieces.
- You can now use your homemade beef broth. However, if you want to save some for future use, store the leftover broth in tightly sealed mason jars, and store in the freezer.