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Oct 28, 2009 04:49 PM

What can you do with stock vegetables after you've made stock from them?

I usually only make stock after roasting chickens, but since I have a bunch of celery and fennel stalks around, I'm planning to make vegetable stock from them and other trimmings (mushrooms, herbs, onions, carrots -- the usual).

Every stock recipe I've ever read says to discard the veggies after simmering them forever, but I'm wondering: Can I reuse some of the ingredients, namely the carrots, after making stock from them?

It seems a waste of a softened carrot to dump it afterward, rather than puree it into a squash soup or something. That said, I know nothing of the nutritional value of typical stock vegetables after the whole process.

Thoughts...? I appreciate any tips.

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  1. They really have not much left to give, so unless you have farm animals that eat table scraps you may as well forget it. The only possibility I can think of has to do with the practice of saving braising vegetables, say from a pot roast, and puréeing them in a blender with the liquid to make a vegetable-thickened gravy, much healthier than using a roux. So I suppose you could freeze these vegetables in case you'd want them for such a use as that. But herbs and onion skins would probably not be worth saving...

    4 Replies
    1. re: Will Owen

      Aside from what Will Owen wrote about using the veggies for gravy thickening, they're better off in the compost heap. All the flavor they had is now in the stock, including any nutritional value.

      1. re: bushwickgirl

        Totally agree with both of you. Not worth the effort, unless you have a farm or want to use them to thicken a gravy, but they are done.

        1. re: Phurstluv

          Isn't there fiber in it still? Wouldn't that be worth saving it to use elsewhere?

      2. re: Will Owen

        Well, I SUPPOSE you could call my 3 rescued racing greyhounds farm animals, since they were born on a "greyhound farm" as the industry calls breeding facilities. They readily eat the spent vegetables, especially the carrots and onion, as have past pet dogs of mine. Celery not so much. (No need to warn me about onion toxicity - that's a serious risk in onion powder but not cooked-out fresh onions). Their alchemist guts transform it all to sulfur, though!

        Pureeing the spent vegetables for inclusion in gravies or soups is fine, but realize that they will provide body, not flavor. Additional vegetables are needed if flavor is your goal.

      3. Puree it and you can add it to thicken things like chili, marinara sauce, or your favorite sloppy joe's recipe.

          1. When I make my roasted vegetable stock, I take all the veggies and a little of the resultant stock and puree the whole lot as a basis for a really lovely soup. Then I might add a little curry powder and cashew butter for a rich, Indian-flavored soup... or some smoked paprika... or top with a little yogurt and lemon zest...