Cooking Scraps Soup Broth

Zero Waste Homemade Veggie Scrap Broth 3
Straining out the cooking scraps.

Don’t just throw away the food scraps left over from cooking! Instead, collect the most flavorful bits to make a free homemade broth. Not only is this broth super easy, but it’s also more sustainable because it helps reduce food waste. Plus, it will save you money because you won’t need to buy prepared broth from the store.

Give your cooking scraps a second life by making homemade broth. Here’s how you do it:

Zero Waste Homemade Veggie Scrap Broth
Homemade soup broth in the crockpot.
Zero Waste Homemade Veggie Scrap Broth 2
Soup (broth) is on!
Zero Waste Homemade Veggie Scrap Broth 4
Cooled broth in a reused container about to go into the freezer for later use.

Cooking Scraps Soup Broth


  • 2 or more cups of cooking scraps*
  • Equal amount of filtered water as cooking scraps
  • A dash of sea salt
  • Optional: 1-2 tablespoons of apple cider vinegar
  • Optional: 3-5 bay leaves


  1. Once you have saved up a few cups of cooking scraps, place them in a large soup pot or a crockpot. Add as many cups of water as you have cups of veggies scraps (so 1:1 water to scraps ratio) or simply fill the pot with water until the scraps are just submerged.
  2. Bring to a simmer if cooking in a soup pot, then allow to simmer for 1-2 hours. If using a crockpot, cook for 3-4 hours on high heat or 5-6 hours on low heat. Take a sip to determine when it’s done – it will be watery but should have a discernibly savory taste.
  3. Use a strainer to scoop out the cooking scraps.
  4. Pour the broth through the strainer again (just to catch remaining scraps) into smaller containers, to refrigerate or freeze for later use.

Perfect in soups, to cook grains, or to sip on when you’re sick!

* Recipe Notes:

  • Save veggie scraps leftover from your cooking in a bag or container in the freezer. This can be scraps like: onion skins, garlic skins, carrot skin peelings, broccoli stems, kale stems, bell pepper tops and seeds, animal bones, or any other unwanted scrap. (Of course, be sure to NOT save any scraps that are moldy, old, or in any other way not safe to eat.)