Difference Between Similar Terms and Objects

Difference Between Stock and Broth

food-broth-pdStock vs Broth

Cooking various dishes requires familiarity with different cooking terms. This is a good way to ensure that you will never go wrong when preparing your favorite family dishes. Let’s take a look at two of the most common terms often interchanged: Stock and broth.

Stock is simply flavored water. It is prepared by simmering various ingredients, which could be scrapped meat, bones and mirepoix (which is a combination of celery, carrots, onions or other vegetables), as well as herbs and spices. The ingredients are placed in cold water, and simmered. The cold water promotes the extraction of collagen, because hot water normally seals in collagen. It is prepared with the absence of salt, since the liquid is reduced to make soups and sauces. Then, it is simmered gently, with bubbles just breaking the surface, and not completely boiling. Boiling the stock will make it cloudy.

Nowadays, readymade stock cubes consisting of dried stock ingredients, are available on the market. This provides convenience when preparing quick meals.

On the other hand, broth is the liquid wherein meat, bones, fish, vegetables or cereals have been simmered and boiled for long periods, in order to extract the flavor and nutrients of the ingredients. It is used as a base for soups, gravies and sauces. In some places, broth is synonymous to soup, and can be eaten alone or with garnish.

For a cleaner presentation of the broth, egg whites may be added during simmering. They will coagulate, and trap the sediments in order to clarify the broth.

Both stock and broth are popular in preparing healthy meals all over the world. Correct preparation is the key to ensure that delicious meals will be served, right at your dining table.


1. Stock is prepared by gently simmering the ingredients without boiling them, while broth requires a long period of boiling.

2. Stock is less palatable, as it is usually made up of meat and vegetable scraps, while broth is made up of viable ingredients, and can be eaten alone like a soup.

3. Stock preparation begins with cold water to promote collagen extraction, while broth requires steady heat to allow the extraction of flavor.

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