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6 Easy Substitutes for Bouillon Cubes in Your Cooking

Imagine you’re in the middle of whipping up a tasty soup or a scrumptious stew, and bam, you realize you’re out of bouillon cubes.

We’ve all been there, right? Suddenly, you think, “Hmm, what can we use instead?” Well, worry not, because we’ve got your back.

We’ve pulled together the easiest and most accessible substitutes so you won’t even miss those little cubes.

Whether you’re using stuff already in your pantry or taking a trip to the store, there’s no need to hit pause on your cooking plans. So, let’s keep that delicious momentum going!

6 Easy Substitutes for Bouillon Cubes

For those who don’t know, bouillon cubes are compressed broth or stock that adds flavor to soups, stews, sauces, and more. They’re made of dehydrated vegetables, meat stock, fat, salt, and seasonings. So when you need a substitute for them in your cooking, just think about ingredients that can provide a similar flavor profile.

SubstituteTasteTextureRatioSuitable Dishes
Homemade BrothRich, flavorfulLiquid1 cup broth per 1 cubeSoups, stews, sauces, rice dishes
Soy Sauce or TamariSavory, umamiLiquid1-2 tsp per 1 cubeMarinades, stir-fries, braises
Miso PasteSavory, umamiThick, paste-like1-2 tbsp per 1 cubeSoups, sauces, dressings
Powdered StockConcentrated, savoryPowder1 tsp per 1 cubeSoups, stews, sauces, rice dishes
Dried Herbs and SpicesAromatic, flavorfulDry1 tsp per 1 cubeRoasted vegetables, meats, rice dishes
Bouillon PowderConcentrated, savoryPowder1 tsp per 1 cubeSoups, stews, sauces, rice dishes

1 – Homemade Broth

Making your own broth is a great way to substitute bouillon cubes. It’s simple and adds tons of flavor. All you need are some basic ingredients and a bit of time.

Start with bones, meat, or veggies. Pop them into a pot of water. Add some salt, pepper, herbs, and spices. Let it simmer for a few hours.

The result? A rich, flavorful broth that’s perfect for soups and stews. Use 1 cup of homemade broth for every bouillon cube. Homemade broth makes your dishes taste fresher and more personal. It’s worth the extra effort.

There you go, broth-making 101 in a nutshell.

2 – Soy Sauce or Tamari

Next up, we have soy sauce and its gluten-free cousin, tamari. These two can give your dishes a savory kick. Swap one tablespoon of soy sauce or tamari for one bouillon cube. They add a salty, umami flavor, which boosts your soups and stews.

Soy sauce is a pantry staple for Asian cuisine lovers. Tamari is simply a great swap if you’re avoiding gluten. The flavors are intense, so taste as you go. We’ve used soy sauce in a pinch, and it worked wonders. Want more on soy sauce? Check out these soy sauce substitutes.

3 – Miso Paste

Miso is our go-to when we need flavor fast. This fermented soybean paste brings umami punch and depth to soups and sauces. Mix one tablespoon of miso paste with a cup of hot water to swap for one bouillon cube.

Use it in ramen, broths, or marinades. It’s that versatile. Our favorite trick is adding it to soup. It gives a rich, salty edge we love.

Miso’s long shelf life is a bonus. It’s friendly to vegetarians and fills the kitchen with a savory aroma. Learn about miso substitutes here.

4 – Powdered Vegetable or Chicken Stock

Powdered stock is a quick swap for bouillon cubes. It’s super simple and saves time. Use one teaspoon of powdered stock for every bouillon cube.

Just mix it with hot water, and you’re set. We often keep a jar in the pantry. It’s handy for soups and stews.

The flavors are solid and dependable. We’ve noticed homemade soups taste better with it.

It dissolves easily and packs a good punch. Perfect for fast weeknight meals. No fuss, no muss.

You can also control the salt level, which is a bonus. Give it a try in your next soup.

5 – Dried Herbs and Spices

Dried herbs and spices are a pantry staple. Mix them to match the flavor profile of bouillon cubes. Use one teaspoon of mixed herbs and spices for every bouillon cube.

We like a combo of thyme, rosemary, and garlic powder. The aroma is great and the taste is spot on. Not to mention, no extra trips to the store.

We tried this in our last stew. It brought out a deep, earthy flavor. Plus, you can adjust the seasoning to suit your taste.

Definitely a go-to for homemade soups and sauces.

6 – Bouillon Powder

Last on our list is bouillon powder.

This is super easy to use. Just mix one teaspoon of bouillon powder with one cup of hot water to replace one bouillon cube. Bouillon powder dissolves quickly and has a consistent flavor.

We’ve always got some in the pantry for those quick soup nights. It’s reliable and adds a rich taste.

The best part? You can control the saltiness. It’s versatile and great in stews and sauces too.

We used it last week in our chicken soup. It turned out amazing. Bouillon powder is an efficient, tasty choice.