What can I use instead of beef stock? The best substitutes for the beef stock include vegetable and chicken stock, beef-based products such as bouillon cubes and Bovrite, and savory, concentrated sauces like Worcestershire, soy, and liquid aminos. Wine, beer, and miso paste make suitable replacements too.
Immensely flavorful, versatile, and economical, beef stock is a global cooking essential that forms the backbone of a delectable soup, gravy, stew, and other hearty meals. This savory liquid gives food a richer mouthfeel and ‘restaurant-quality’ depth of flavor. If you are vegan or all out of beef stock, you have 9 superb substitutes:
The Best Beef Stock Substitutes
Bouillon Cubes Or Granules
Homemade beef stock requires time and patience: Beef bones are roasted and then simmered long and slow with aromatic herbs and vegetables to create a rich, savory liquid. Furthermore, the fresh storebought stock is not always accessible. Hello, bouillon!
One of the top beef stock substitutes is bouillon, as it’s convenient, non-perishable, and can be used in a pinch.
Bouillon is stock that has been dehydrated and formed into cubes or granules, then packaged as an easy-to-use product.
Beef bouillon is ideal, as it offers the same amount of tasty, meaty flavor and richness. However, the chicken, vegetable, and lamb options are equally acceptable and brimming with flavor.
Bouillon can be used wherever beef stock is called for, such as in soups, curries, stews, sauces, and gravies. You may need to adjust the required amount of salt used in the recipe due to bouillon’s high sodium content.
Dissolve one bouillon cube in a cup of boiling water for the equivalent of one cup of beef stock.
Chicken stock is another superb stand-in for beef stock. While a chicken-based stock may impart a slightly lighter color and richness to the final product, you will still get an incredible meaty taste and depth of flavor.
Homemade chicken stock is packed with nutrients and health benefits, and it is usually cheaper and faster to prepare than beef stock.
Storebought chicken stock, however, is readily available and can be used in a pinch.
You won’t need to do any calculations for this substitution- a simple 1:1 swap will do the trick.
If you wish to deepen the color and flavor of the chicken stock, add a few teaspoons of soy or Worcestershire sauce.
Many seasoned chefs recommend the vegetable stock as an alternative to beef stock-more so than chicken stock. This option still offers incredible flavor despite not having meat as a base.
Simple ingredients like veggie scraps, herbs, and aromatics make this substitute cheap and simple to prepare.
Vegetable stock is highly nutritious, a great choice for vegans and vegetarians, and its neutral flavor means you can apply it to most dishes.
Like chicken stock, vegetable stock can be used as a 1-to-1 replacement for beef stock. You can enhance the color and flavor with a dash of Worcestershire or soya sauce.
Miso paste brings all the savory and umami flavors of beef stock. This thick Japanese paste is made from soybeans and grains (like rice or barley) fermented with salt and a specific mold known as koji.
Miso paste is another stellar nutrient-rich vegetarian or vegan alternative. The fermentation process means it is high in probiotics, which promotes good gut health.
Keep light/white miso paste for sweets and light dressings, and reach for the dark or red miso paste.
The darker varieties undergo longer fermentation, giving them a deeper color and intense flavor to stand up to the ingredients in braises and stews.
Replace one cup of beef stock with one tablespoon of miso paste mixed with one cup of water.
Wine Or Beer
Get ready for a festive cooking experience because wine and beer make fantastic alternatives to beef stock.
With the perfect amount of acidity and complexity on the nose and palate, both beverages will bring color and depth of flavor to the dish.
Beer or wine can replace the beef stock in stews, chili, as a braising liquid for meat, or when deglazing the pan.
Increasing the cooking time will ensure that the alcohol evaporates properly, leaving behind rich and complex flavors.
You can use either beverage as a cup-for-cup substitute for beef stock. Select a wine or beer you would normally enjoy with your meal.
To add depth of flavor and a rich mouthfeel to your dish, reach for red wines like Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon, and Pinot Noir, or darker beers such as porters, ales, or stouts.
Non-alcoholic options will do the trick, too.
Another excellent substitute for a beef stock is Worcestershire sauce- the condiment we love to taste but hate to pronounce!
This classic British sauce is made from an exciting blend of ingredients to achieve its distinctive tangy, sweet, and savory taste.
A predominantly vinegar base is blended with molasses, tamarind, anchovies, garlic, onions, salt, and sugar.
Worcestershire sauce offers a rich color and savory, umami flavor to food. It is an ideal beef stock substitute for braising liquid or when making soups, gravies, stews, and casseroles.
Replace one cup of beef stock by mixing one tablespoon of Worcestershire sauce with one cup of water. Drizzle Worcestershire sauce over your food for an instant hit of flavor.
Worcestershire sauce won’t provide a rich mouthfeel like beef stock because it lacks fat. Add olive oil or butter to help emulsify the dish’s ingredients.
Are you vegan, out of beef stock, in a hurry, or sitting with a bland plate of food? Soy sauce is the versatile and tasty pantry staple you can always depend on!
Also known as shoyu or soya sauce, this all-star Southeast Asian condiment offers massive flavor in every drop.
Soybeans, yeast, and roasted wheat are fermented in brine for a lengthy 12 months, giving the extracted soy sauce its distinct savory-umami taste.
Soy sauce is a versatile and easily accessible beef stock alternative that works well with stews, soups, and braised meat. It will add color, saltiness, and fantastic depth of flavor to the dish.
Mix ½ cup soy sauce with ½ cup water to replace 1 cup beef stock during cooking. Add a few drops of soya sauce to prepared meals for enhanced flavor.
For a gluten-free, mellow, and less salty soy sauce option, choose tamari.
Bovrite Or Bovril
Bovrite (or Bovril) is the classic savory spread most commonly associated with crackers and childhood sandwiches. Beef stock is one of the primary ingredients in Bovrite, making it a prime substitute.
Bovrite has a long shelf life and requires no refrigeration. You can find this spread in most grocery stores.
Like beef stock, Bovrite has a rich mouthfeel, intense color and aroma, and a savory, meaty taste. Bovrite will add a brilliant, complex flavor to family favorites, such as gravies, marinades, and stews.
Since its flavor is extremely concentrated, a little goes a long way. Mix one teaspoon of Bovrite with one cup of hot water to create a suitable replacement for beef stock.
Liquid aminos are brimming with umami goodness, giving your dish the complex flavor and savory, meaty taste of the beef stock. This condiment is a slightly sweeter and less salty version of soy sauce.
To make this tasty sauce, soybeans are treated with hydrochloric acid, which breaks down proteins to release amino acids. The amino acids are then treated with sodium bicarbonate, which gives a distinctly salty taste.
Vegan-friendly, naturally gluten-free, and low sodium content make liquid aminos a desirable beef stock substitute.
Make a broth by combining one tablespoon of liquid aminos with one cup of water to replace a cup of beef stock.
Place your desired amount of liquid aminos in soups, sauces, and casseroles for added complexity and color.