This vegetable bouillon recipe is a cheap and easy way to make veggie stock in a pinch. Yes, you can make your own vegetable bouillon powder with an assortment of herbs and spices that you probably already have in your pantry. And the best part is, homemade vegetable bouillon has none of the additives found in store-bought vegetable bouillon cubes!
Ever read the ingredients list on vegetable bouillon cubes from the grocery store? It makes me not even buy it – so I don’t.
But sometimes you need vegetable stock, and chicken bouillon isn’t always the right flavor profile. Such as when making roasted butternut squash soup or risotto. Or maybe you’re on the hunt for a vegan bouillon powder.
That’s when it’s handy to have a vegetable bouillon recipe up your sleeve. It’s a convenient way to whip up a flavorful broth for making all your favorite recipes.
My vegetable bouillon recipe uses dried herbs and spices from your pantry. It’s super easy to make and without all the nasty additives in commercial vegetable bouillon.
Vegetable Bouillon Powder Ingredients
This homemade vegetable bouillon powder is made with a variety of different herbs and spices found in most spice collections.
I’m talking about thyme, parsley, sage, onion powder, oregano and a few more. See the recipe card at the bottom of this page for a full list of ingredients.
No Salt Vegetable Stock Recipe
One ingredient you might expect, that I didn’t include in this recipe, is salt. This is because everyone has different tastes with respect to the amount of salt we use to season our food.
Where salt is a matter of personal preference, I’ll leave it to you to taste your dishes and season with however much salt you think they need.
How to Make Vegetable Bouillon Powder
This is an easy way to make vegetable broth or vegan bouillon powder in a pinch.
Step 1 (Optional)
This first step is optional. If you happen to have spice grinder, use it to grind up the following herbs into a fine powder: thyme, parsley, sage, marjoram and oregano. (see the ingredients list for quantities)
In lieu of a spice grinder I’ve also done this by putting the herbs in a sealed baggie and crushing them into small pieces with a rolling pin.
FYI, in my experience a small food processor is not effective at turning small amounts of dried herbs into powder form.
Place all the herbs and spices in a medium bowl and stir well until they are evenly dispersed.
This recipe makes 5 teaspoons of vegetable bouillon powder.
Stir one teaspoon of the bouillon powder into a cup of hot water to make homemade vegetable stock. Or use the dried spice mix as a great way to season scrambled eggs, casseroles or a stir-fry.
Store left over vegetable broth powder in an airtight container (such as a small mason jar) where ever you keep your other spices. I always recommend storing spices in a cool dark place away from heat and moisture.
Why Aren’t the Ingredients Dissolving?
A big heads up that some of the ingredients in homemade bouillon, such as garlic powder and dried thyme, do not dissolve in water. They will settle on the bottom after stirring.
But that’s OK. Their flavor will still be imparted into the veggie stock just like when you steep tea.
If you’re blending your vegetable stock into soup, such as roasted butternut squash soup, you won’t notice.
But if you need a clear vegetable broth, stir well then let the herbs sit in the hot water for 20 to 30 minutes. Use a fine mesh strainer to remove any undissolved solids from the broth when you’re ready to use it.
Sage – this recipe calls for 1/2 teaspoon of rubbed sage, which is less concentrated than dried sage. You can substitute 1/4 teaspoon of dried sage if you don’t have rubbed sage.
Thyme – though this recipe uses dried thyme, you can substitute an equal amount of fresh thyme leaves (removed from the stem).
Oregano – you can use an equal amount of dried basil in lieu of the oregano.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is vegetable bouillon made of?
The more expensive brands of vegetable bouillon are made with a variety of vegetable juices, preservatives, dehydrated vegetables, oils and thickening agents. On the lower end of the quality scale, vegetable stock cubes are made with oils, MSG, thickening agents, spices and coloring.
In either case, even if you spend more for a “better” brand of vegetable bouillon, the ingredients still aren’t great. You could opt for boxed vegetable broth, rather than bouillon. But even though the ingredient list on those is cleaner, at $4+ a box they are pricey.
What is vegetable bouillon powder?
Vegetable bouillon powder is made by combining different herbs and spices into a seasoning mix. The seasoning mix is stirred into hot water to make homemade vegetable stock. Homemade bouillon powder is a great way to avoid the high salt content found in store-bought cubes of bouillon and boxes of veggie stock.
What do the ingredients in vegetable bouillon cubes mean?
Vegetable bouillon cubes from the grocery store have a variety of additives that you won’t find in homemade bouillon powder. These include:
- Monosodium glutamate – a flavor enhancer
- Disodium inosinate – a flavor enhancer that increases the intensity of salt so that less of it is needed
- Maltodextrin – a highly-processed additive used as a thickener or filler
- Soybean oil and palm oil – less healthy alternative to olive oil
- Hydrolyzed soy protein – made from processed soy beans, used as a flavor enhancer in foods
- Caramel color – put simply it’s made by treating sugar with heat, caramel color is the most widely used food coloring in the world
- TBHQ – food preservative, found to increase the incidence of tumors in rats, linked to vision disturbances in humans, and behavioral changes in animals
Homemade Vegetable Bouillon Powder
- 1/2 tsp dried thyme or fresh thyme leaves
- 1/2 tsp dried parsley
- 1/2 tsp rubbed sage
- 1/2 tsp marjoram
- 1/4 tsp oregano
- 2 tsp onion powder
- 1 tsp garlic powder not garlic salt
- 1/8 tsp black pepper
- (Optional Step) Use a spice grinder to grind the following ingredients into a powder: thyme, parsley, sage, marjoram and oregano.
- Put all of the ingredients into a medium bowl and stir well until they are evenly dispersed.