Foundation Diet and Health
Diet and Health
QR Code
The best perspective for your health
This page was translated through Google Translator

Vegetable broth with little salt (organic?)

Low salt vegetable broth means that the sodium content is 234 mg instead of the usual 400 mg. The broth is 98% water. Organic?
Macronutrient carbohydrates 100%
Macronutrient proteins 0%
Macronutrient fats 0%

The three ratios show the percentage by weight of macronutrients (carbohydrates / proteins / fats) of the dry matter (excl. water).

Ω-6 (LA, <0.1g)
Omega-6 fatty acid such as linoleic acid (LA)
 : Ω-3 (ALA, <0.1g)
Omega-3 fatty acid such as alpha-linolenic acid (ALA)
 = 0:0

Omega-6 ratio to omega-3 fatty acids should not exceed a total of 5:1. Link to explanation.

Values are too small to be relevant.

Vegetable broth with little salt can increasingly be bought in supermarkets. However, these often contain additives. When making your own broth, you can determine the salt content yourself.

Use in the kitchen

Vegetable stock with little salt is used in health-conscious cooking in the same way as normal vegetable stock. It is used to season risotto , millet risotto , sauces, braised dishes, stews and soups , to refine bread and pizza dough and as an ingredient in salad dressings. Side dishes cooked in vegetable stock such as rice , quinoa , millet and couscous get a fine, well-rounded taste.

In addition to reduced-salt broth, there is also salt-free vegetable broth .

How do bouillon, broth and stock differ? With broth, you cook the vegetables in water until they are cooked. At the end, you can add salt to the broth as needed. The thinner broth can be eaten on its own or used for other purposes. Bouillon is a stronger broth (strong broth) that thickens when cooked for longer. With vegetable stock , you cook the vegetables in water. You don't eat the vegetables, but separate them from the stock after cooking. That's why "vegetable waste" such as trimmings and peels, and possibly herbs and spices, are suitable for making stock. You don't eat stock on its own, but use it as a base for soups and sauces. It has a very intense flavor.

It is important that you boil the vegetables in cold water without salt. This is the only way to ensure that the flavor is transferred into the water. The water should not be boiling, but only simmering gently to preserve the flavor.

Making your own vegetable broth with little salt

Vegetable broth is particularly aromatic when you use fresh vegetables. Put the cleaned and chopped vegetables in a pot of cold water. After boiling briefly, reduce the heat and simmer the broth in a covered pot until it reaches the desired strength. Only add a little salt at the end of the cooking process. You can then eat the broth with the vegetables or strain the broth to reuse it.

In the supermarket you can buy soup vegetables (soup greens), which usually contain carrots , celeriac , leeks , savoy cabbage and onions . You can add fresh herbs ( parsley , lovage , thyme ) and spices (peppercorns , cloves , bay leaves ) to the vegetables. Mushrooms , porcini mushrooms and shiitake mushrooms give the soup a hearty taste. A small chili pepper adds some spice if needed.

Beetroot , pak choi , broccoli , white cabbage and kohlrabi are less suitable for making vegetable broths as they can make the broth bitter. Starchy vegetables such as corn , potatoes , pumpkin and sweet potatoes make the vegetable broth cloudy.

Recipes for thin vegetable broths can be found under the following links: vegan vegetable broth and mushroom vegetable broth .

If you want to keep the vegetable stock for longer, you can pour it through a sieve into a second pot and fill it hot into sterile screw-top jars. Strictly speaking, a (strongly) boiled vegetable stock without salt and after removing the solid components (vegetables, herbs, mushrooms) is called vegetable stock .

Making your own instant vegetable stock with little salt

Grainy or powdered vegetable stock with little salt is easy to make at home. It is advisable to prepare a large amount at once, as the stock can be stored for a long time. You can also pay strict attention to organic quality. The easiest option is to buy freeze-dried soup vegetables and grind them in a high-performance blender until they reach the desired grain size. Then mix with a little salt.

The vegetable broth is much more aromatic if you use fresh vegetables. Put the cleaned and diced vegetables in a high-performance blender or a food processor. Alternatively, you can grate or chop them very finely. Dry the vegetables in the oven (50 °C) or in the dehydrator (40-50 °C) for several hours and allow them to cool well. The dehydrator is a good way to preserve heat-sensitive vitamins at mild temperatures. Finally, finely shred again in the blender and add a little salt. Make sure that the powder is really dry and store it in a screw-top jar.

A recipe for instant vegetable broth can be found at the following link: Instant vegetable broth with carrots, celery and leeks .

Vegan recipe for barley risotto with tomatoes

Ingredients (for 4 people): 170 g pearl barley , 650 ml vegetable stock (a little salt), 2 onions , 2 cloves of garlic , 4 tomatoes , 2 tbsp water , 2 tbsp yeast flakes , 1 tsp cumin , 1 tsp chili flakes ,black pepper , paprika powder (sweet) .

Preparation: Put the barley and the vegetable stock in a pot, bring to the boil and simmer gently over a low heat for about 25 minutes. The barley is ready when the grains are soft throughout but still intact. Drain the finished barley into a sieve, collecting the stock for later use.

Peel the onions and garlic cloves and cut into small pieces. Wash the tomatoes, remove the stalks and cut into small cubes. Add 2 tablespoons of water to the pan and sauté the onions and garlic cloves. Add the yeast flakes, cumin and chili flakes and sauté for 30 seconds. Add the diced tomatoes and 100 ml of the collected stock. Bring to the boil and simmer for 5 minutes. Add the barley, mix well and season with black pepper and paprika powder.

Vegan recipes with reduced-salt vegetable broth can be found under the note: " Recipes that have the most of this ingredient ".

Not only vegans or vegetarians should read this:
Vegans often eat unhealthily. Avoidable nutritional mistakes

Purchasing - Storage

Vegetable stock (vegetable bouillon) can be found in the supermarket in various forms. Vegetable stock can be bought dried as granules or powder, loose or pressed as stock cubes (stock cubes, bouillon cubes).

Vegetable broths with reduced salt are usually not labelled as such, but organic products or vegetable broths for children often contain less salt. Large retailers such as Coop , Migros , Denner , Volg , Spar , Aldi , Lidl , Edeka , Rewe , Hofer and Billa sometimes sell vegetable broths without added salt . Organic supermarkets such as Denn's Biomarkt and Alnatura also sell "reduced salt" or "salt-free" vegetable broths. Online retailers are also a good source.

Before buying a product, you should read the list of ingredients and the nutritional table. Some products contain little salt, but a lot of other additives, such as flavor enhancers (including yeast extract ), stabilizers (maltodextrin), starch, gluten, flavors and sugar.

The availability of vegetable broth with little salt varies depending on the size of the store, catchment area, etc. Our recorded food prices for the DA-CH countries can be found above under the ingredient image - and by clicking on them you can see their development at different suppliers.

Storage tips:

Powder or granules for vegetable broths can be stored for several months if stored dry and protected from light. If the humidity is too high, the powder can start to clump. A boiled vegetable broth has a similar shelf life to other canned foods.

Homemade liquid vegetable broth can be stored in the refrigerator for a few days. For a longer shelf life, it should be pasteurized or sterilized in jars.

Ingredients - Nutritional values - Calories

The values given in the nutrient table correspond to a vegetable broth made from a low-salt product. Vegetable broth with little salt means that the sodium content per 100 g is around 234 mg instead of the usual 400 mg.

The energy content is only 5 kcal per 100 g of broth. It is fat and protein free and consists of 98% water. The carbohydrate content is 1.3 g/100g. The salt content of this reduced-salt vegetable broth is 594 mg/100g. This corresponds to 24.8% of the maximum recommended daily intake. 1

Vegetable broth contains few vitamins and minerals. 1

The complete ingredients of vegetable broth (with little salt), the coverage of the daily requirement and comparison values with other ingredients can be found in our nutrient tables. In the article Nutrients explained you will get a detailed insight into the topic.

Effects on health

Homemade vegetable broth made from 100 percent vegetables scores points for its naturalness. In addition to a very low sugar and sodium content that occurs naturally in vegetables, it does not contain any added flavors, flavor enhancers (glutamate, yeast extract), preservatives, fillers or added salt or sugar.

Vegetable broth with little salt helps reduce sodium consumption. An unbalanced high salt consumption is associated with an increased risk of hypertension (high blood pressure), increased cardiovascular risks and other organ-damaging secondary diseases. 6,7 For this reason, the WHO recommends keeping sodium intake below 2 g per day, which corresponds to less than 5 g of salt per day (≈ ¾ tsp). 8

Dangers - Intolerances - Side effects

Celery is contained in most vegetable broths and is one of the 14 main allergens. If you are sensitive to celery, pay attention to the ingredients list of the vegetable broth and leave out celery completely when preparing your own.

Instant vegetable broths can contain yeast extract as a flavor enhancer. Yeast extract is an industrially modified ingredient and unhealthy in large quantities. For a long time it was considered the better alternative to artificially produced glutamate. Yeast extract is now also controversial because of the glutamic acid it contains. This has a similar effect to glutamate and blocks the feeling of satiety, so that we eat more than necessary. 2,3 Organic yeast extract is not really any better either and we recommend using natural herbs and spices to improve and intensify the flavor. Yeast extract is not a food additive and does not have to be officially labeled as a flavor enhancer, unlike industrially produced monosodium glutamate (MSG) E 621 or other glutamates in isolated form. 4 Even products with the EU organic seal 5 may contain yeast extract. However, glutamate is prohibited there.

Ecological footprint - animal welfare

Commercial vegetable broths have a CO 2 footprint of approximately 1.13 - 5.03 kg CO₂e/kg. 9 This greenhouse potential can be roughly compared with organic tomatoes (1.1 kg CO2eq/kg) and whole milk (1.4) to fish from aquaculture (5.1). 17

The Tagesspiegel in cooperation with offers the possibility to calculate the CO 2 footprint of your own recipes on its website (see sources). 11 We tried this out with our recipe for vegan vegetable stock :

A standard portion of our homemade broth, i.e. 33% of the daily nutrient requirement, produces 319 g of CO 2 . If you convert the greenhouse gas potential to the calorie content, you get 621 g of CO 2 per 500 kcal. This means that the vegetable broth produces 38% fewer CO 2 equivalents than the average of the foods examined. The soup can therefore be classified as very climate-friendly. 11

While vegetable and chicken broth are in the "green" range, beef broth falls into the category 'These foods worsen our carbon footprint'. 12

The salt in this soup has a small carbon footprint (0.05 - 0.22 kg CO₂eq/kg). 16 This value can vary greatly depending on production and transport.

We could not find any specific data on the water footprint ; only one study on the water footprint of gazpacho: This cold Spanish soup consists of tomatoes ,pepper , onion , cucumber , garlic , olive oil and vinegar . The water footprint was 580.5 l/l of soup. 10 For comparison: the global average water footprint of vegetables is 322 l/kg, that of fruit 962 l/kg; and animal products such as eggs or beef come to 3265 l/kg and 15,415 l/kg respectively. 13

Detailed explanations of various sustainability indicators (such as ecological footprint, CO2 footprint, water footprint) can be found here .

Animal welfare - species protection

When buying, look for organic certificates. Chemical substances used in conventional agriculture not only have negative effects on our health, 15 but also on all other living creatures. In the EU, 24.5% of endangered species are threatened by agricultural pollutants such as pesticides and synthetic fertilizers. 14

Worldwide occurrence

Vegetable stock and vegetable broth are used worldwide. Depending on the region and season, they are made from different combinations of ingredients. Root vegetables, herbs and mushrooms are usually used. For an Asian-inspired vegetable broth, you can also use ginger , lemongrass or Thai basil (Horapa) .

The first soup cubes came onto the market in 1884. It was not until the 1980s that organic manufacturers produced the first vegetarian or vegan vegetable stock cubes. 2

Further information

Commercially available vegetable broth consists mainly of salt, fat, seasoning, flavour enhancers and only a small amount of vegetables. The vegetable content of conventional vegetable broth products is in many cases less than 10%. In vegetable stock cubes it is often only 1-3%. 2

Alternative names

Vegetable broth is often colloquially called vegetable bouillon. In English it is called vegetable broth. Vegetable stock is the name for vegetable stock .