Substitute for Chicken Broth – Nutrition Value with Pros and Cons

Substitute for Chicken Broth

Chicken broth is the most common ingredient used in any recipe. But is it possible to always have chicken broth at home? I think we both know the answer. For this exact reason, chicken broth substitution is much necessary to make our lives easier. 

There are many substitutes for chicken broth that can be used in making different foods. But don’t worry; the taste will not be compromised if you follow some steps. So let’s have a look at what you can use instead of chicken broth all the time. 

What is Chicken Broth? 

Chicken broth is mainly the cooking liquid made from simmering the chicken for a short time. If you want, you can have it alone, but it is commonly known to be used in dishes like pasta, soup, gravies, etc. 

You can have questions like whether chicken broth and chicken stock are both the same or not. The answer is that, though they are similar, they are not the same. Chicken broth is mainly made from the flesh of the chicken, which is more flavorful, and stock is made from the bones, which creates a thicker liquid.

If you are wondering if you can substitute chicken stock for chicken broth, then the answer is YES! You can use them as alternatives, as they are almost similar in taste. 

Best Substitutes for Chicken Broth 

There are a few alternatives that you may use instead of chicken broth. So here are the best substitutes for chicken broth that you can use in a 1:1 ratio. 

  • Water 
  • Beef Broth
  • Vegetable Broth
  • White Wine
  • Chicken Bouillon Cube
  • Salted Butter 
  • Aquafaba 

You can use all these as an alternative to chicken broth if that is not available. But be sure to follow the instructions to get the exact flavor. 

Chicken Broth Substitutes: Cooking Ratio & Nutritional Value  

Before including anything in your diet, you should always know what their nutritional values are. So to let you know what you are getting at, here is a chart where you can get a clear picture of the nutritional values of each of the substitutions mentioned above. 

One Cup ofCalorieCarbProteinFatFiberRatio
Water (237g)00g0g0g0g1:1
Beef Broth (240g)170.1g2.7g0.5g0g1:1
Vegetable Broth (220g)132.2g0.5g0.2g0g1:1
White Wine (235g)1936.1g0.2g0g0g1:1
Chicken Bouillon Cube (96g)25617g16g13g0g1:1
Salted Butter (227g)16280.1g1.9g184g0g1:1
Aquafaba (241g)437g2.4g05g0g1:1

Choose the ingredients according to your health preferences and taste with the help of the table mentioned above. 

Top Picks  

Now that you already know what the substitutes are, you should also know the pros and cons of using these. So let’s have a look at the below point:  

1. Water 

Water can be used as an alternative to using chicken broth. But to get the full flavor of the broth, use some extra seasoning and spices along with water, as it will dilute the consistency. 


  • It is cost-effective as water is available in your home. 
  • Water can help the flavor to be neutralized; it won’t clash with other ingredients.
  • You can be flexible in terms of using spices.


  • You always have to be careful to use warm water only.
  • It will not be as flavorful as the broth.
  • It might dilute the consistency of the dish. 

Keep in mind that you can use water as a substitute only when broth is required in a small amount. But if you are cooking stuff like chicken soup, then I am afraid water is not the best substitute here. So use it wisely. 

Warning :

Mixing cold water can cause a drastic change in taste and slow the cooking process.

2. Beef Broth

You can easily substitute beef broth with chicken broth using a 1:1 ratio, as the chemical background is similar in both of them. You can make beef broth at home or buy it at the grocery store. 

You can find beef broth in the same aisle as chicken broth at the store. And to make it at home, you can simmer the bones of the beef in hot water with some vegetables, and you are done. 


  • As you can see from the chart, beef broth is a good source of nutrients compared to chicken broth. 
  • It will add a savory and rich flavor to your boring dish. 
  • It can be used in almost all recipes as a substitute. 


  • It has a very strong flavor, which might overpower other flavors in the dish. 
  • If you are concerned about your fat intake, this is not ideal for you, as it has a high amount of fat. 
  • Not suitable for vegetarians. 

Beef broth is generally thicker and darker than the chicken broth. But I promise you will not regret using this, as it will add more flavor to the dish. 

3. Vegetable Broth

As a substitute for chicken broth, vegetable broth is a great option. Just, instead of chicken, simmer the vegetable in water for some time, and your vegetable broth is ready to use! 


  • It is healthier than chicken broth as it is low in calories and fat. 
  • It is obviously vegan-friendly. 
  • It has a light flavor, which allows other flavors to shine. 


  • Not as thick as chicken broth. 
  • It requires extra seasoning for the flavors. 
  • Vegetable broth bought from stores is high in sodium.

Always remember to adjust the spices, as the vegetable broth will not taste the same as chicken broth. Add proper seasoning to ensure that you are getting the full flavor of it. Vegetable broth is considered healthy broth because it is made by simmering the vegetables. Although it will not be as thick as chicken broth, you can use it in a 1:1 ratio. 

4. White Wine

You can add white wine as a substitute for chicken broth if the requirement for broth is half a cup or less. 


  • It adds an acidic or fruity flavor that the chicken broth can not provide. 
  • It is low in calories, reduces the risk of heart disease, and controls cholesterol levels. 


  • It contains alcohol, which might not be suitable for all. 
  • You need to add more liquid to adjust the recipe. 

Note: White wine will add an extra kick to the dish and a slightly acidic flavor, which can be balanced by using the right amount of salt or spices.

5. Chicken Bouillon Cubes

Another great substitute for chicken broth that I personally use is chicken bouillon cubes. These are mainly cubes that are made from dehydrated meats, which are then transferred into powder or paste. This powder is then dissolved into water to make a delicious broth.


  • It is very cost-effective compared to chicken broth. For one cup of broth, you only need one bouillon cube. 
  • Convenient to use and very easy to store as well. 
  • It has a long shelf life and can be stored to use in emergencies.


  • It is high in sodium, which is not ideal for people with high blood pressure. 
  • It will not provide the same texture as chicken broth itself. 

6. Salted Butter with Water 

If you do not want to use the water only, then add salted butter to the water. It will not be as bland as water, and it will also provide a rich flavor to your dish. 


  • It is very easy to make, as it needs only two ingredients. 
  • It is a quick and convenient option. 
  • It can be used literally in any dish you want! 


  • The flavor is very limited compared to chicken broth. 
  • It contains a very high amount of fat, which is not healthy and, in fact, risky in some cases. 
  • As the name says, you are adding extra salt when you use salted butter. So you have to be careful when adding the required amount of salt called for in the recipe. 

You can easily use this as a chicken broth substitute in any dish except for the recipe where chicken broth is the main ingredient. 

7. Aquafaba 

If you are a vegan and looking for a substitute for chicken broth, then this is the dish for you. Aquafaba is mainly made from the liquid water of chickpeas. 

First, dilute the starchy liquid with water and then use it as a substitution for chicken broth. Add other spices to add that kick that chicken broth would give. 


  • It is a very suitable option for all the vegans out there. 
  • It is low in calories, which is beneficial for your diet. 


  • It is very watery and has a thin texture compared to the chicken broth. 
  • It can be difficult to find aquafaba in local grocery stores.

As I have mentioned before, use this substitution only if the broth is not required as much. But if the broth is the main ingredient, then use other broths that I have mentioned above, like vegetable broth or beef broth. 

How to Choose the Best Alternatives

Choosing the best alternatives for an ingredient is a crucial factor in making your cooking perfect. Below are some factors that you need to consider when choosing the best alternatives for any ingredients: 

1. Nutrient Availability

Double-check the nutritional benefits of the substitute component to ensure that they are comparable to those of the original item. For instance, if you’re looking for a substitute of chicken broth for a vegetarian or vegan one, ensure that it still has the same amount of protein.

2. Quality

Make sure that the ingredients that you are using are right for the recipe, as you do not want to compromise the quality of your dish. Check if the substitute goes with the other ingredients in your dish and gives it a nice flavor. 

Consider whether the substitute component will have a consistency comparable to the original ingredient. This means that if the primary ingredient was rich and creamy, the substitute should be the same way.

For example, if you are thinking of using cream of chicken soup as a substitute, then you definitely should stop, as the cream of chicken is much thicker and has a different texture than chicken broth. 

3. Cost 

Consider the price and accessibility of the substitute ingredient. Pick the ingredients that are available in your local grocery stores and easy to make at home as well. 

It might not be the best choice for your recipe if it’s hard to find or excessively expensive. You don’t want to spend a fortune on this. 

The Final Thought

One substitute ingredient can make or break your dish. So it is a very crucial step to choose the ingredients wisely. I have mentioned all the substitutions for chicken broth that can be used in different recipes by maintaining some steps. Be sure to follow that and let me know which substitution works best for you.

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