Basic Pressure Cooker Vegetable Stock Recipe

These days I begin my weekend bulk cooking with a homemade vegetable broth.  I love dipping into the 8 – 10 cups of hot, fresh stock on the counter as I make seitan, beans, soups, and more.

Many of you, via comments and email, have asked how to make your own broth.  Finally, after making it just about every weekend for the past couple of months, I think I’ve got a formula down that works perfectly, for me.

Basic Pressure Cooker Vegetable Broth

by JL goes Vegan: Food & Fitness with a side of Kale

Makes 8 – 10 cups


  • 8 cups of water
  • 1 t olive or avocado oil (optional)
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1/2 teaspoon each of 3 or 4 spices of choice (for example 1/2 teaspoon each rosemary, thyme, basil and oregano)
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt (optional)
  • 1 gallon freezer bag of vegetable scraps (for example, red and yellow onion scraps and peel; garlic scraps and peel; asparagus stems; tomatoes; lettuce – romaine, endive, radicchio, etc.; carrot and celery ends; bell or sweet pepper ends and seeds; mushroom stems; spinach; zucchini) or freeze vegetables you don’t think you’ll use soon and are about to turn.


    1. Thaw (or partially thaw) frozen veggie scraps.
    2. Add oil and water to the pressure cooker and heat on high (uncovered).
    3. Add all spices and salt.
    4. While the water is heating coarsely chop your vegetables and scraps (I toss in a full onion in quarter pieces, halved garlic cloves unpeeled, etc.).
    5. Add the vegetables to the pressure cooker, cover and bring to pressure.
    6. Cook at pressure for 10 minutes and allow for a natural release.

      The veggies and scraps, post pressure-cooking
    7. Pour the stock through a cheesecloth in a large container. Use tongs to squeeze out every bit a veggie broth possible.

    8. Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator or in a plastic bag in the freezer

      The broth

The pressure cooker is my go-to method for making delicious, homemade vegetable stock. If you want to use a crockpot, cook on low for 8 hours. For a stove top stock, bring to a light boil, reduce to medium-low heat and simmer for an hour or longer.

Back tomorrow with the first recipe I made with this particular batch of homemade broth. Two words:  Vegan Sausage.

27 thoughts on “Basic Pressure Cooker Vegetable Stock Recipe”

  1. Thanks for posting this. I tried the stove top method this past weekend (it was my first time) and I royally screwed up. I didn’t research enough about it and I had scraps from cabbage and broccoli in my bags. It was aweful–totally bitter. So I’m starting over and I love the idea of doing it in the pressure cooker! Next weekend . . .

    1. Oh, yes, I used kale stems and cabbage in a stock and learned the hard way, too!  Pretty much anything in the cabbage family should be avoided (kale leaves, just a few, seem to work, but I just save the stems for juicing!)

  2. I used to make my own with freezer scraps too. Until I ran out of room to store them in my freezer. Now I have to buy broth. I really need a bigger freezer…

  3. oops! I read your recipe and thought I had it memorized…. So got my trusty bag of scraps out and did the 8 cups of water and some salt. Lo & behold when it was done and I tasted it….it tasted a little bitter. So went back to re-read your recipe and realized I forgot the bay leaves and spices. Do you think that’s why it turned out so bitter? Only other explanation I can think of is the choice of scrap I had. Mostly red onions, some carrots, leeks and garlic. HMMMM? I’m not throwing it out but I think when I go to use it I’ll be sure to season it and hope all goes well. Getting ready to make the pepperoni seitan this week. Thanks.

    1.  Hmm, sounds like you mostly made an onion broth!  😉  I got pretty heavy on veggie scraps and then just make sure to add some onion and garlic, but it’s not the base. I love leafy greens and veggies in mine (zucchini and lettuce scrap). When I first read bitter I thought maybe you added cabbage, kale or broccoli, all of which can be a bit bitter in stock.  Adding seasoning is a definite plus, too.

      1. Come to think of it, I might have had a little bit of kale in there…no cabbage though. It was a learning experience being my first time ever making homemade broth.. So I’ll try the milder veggies next time and be sure to tame down the onions. I might just usewhat I made for french onion soup!! 2 quart jars just

        ready to go! Thanks for your inspirations.

  4. I’ve been making my own broth for years either in a regular pan or in a slow cooker. Thanks for the guide to pressure cooking it instead! Mine actually turned out unexpectedly bitter also, but it was very heavy on alliums and probably also too heavy on (not very fresh) celery. I sure love the speed, and how quickly it made my apartment smell wonderful!

    1. The fruit and veggie combo really matters, doesn’t it? I used too many kale stews one time (before I realized I should stay away from the cabbage family veggies when making stock) and it was yucky!

  5. i just started using the broth bag idea a few months back and have been making it on the stove top. no why didn’t i think of using my precious pressure cooker? thank you! first batch is just cooling down now. i had a myriad of scraps, onions, garlic, sping onions, courgettes, carrots, red peppers, sweet potato, mushroom stalks, celeriac, celery… can’t wait to take the lid off! thank you for your wonderful page, i only discovered it today.

    1. Thank you so much for the comment, @00bb28621d17a81af5305de127e8d2e0:disqus! Welcome to this community!

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