bouillon powder substitute

What is a Bouillon Powder Substitute In The UK

Bouillon powder is a versatile ingredient used in cooking to enhance the flavor of soups, stews, sauces, and more. It’s a convenient way to add depth and richness to your dishes.

However, if you find yourself in the UK without bouillon powder or if you’re looking for alternatives for dietary reasons, there are several excellent options available.

In this article, we’ll explore bouillon powder substitutes in the UK, including vegetable bouillon alternatives and non-bouillon thickening agents for vegan cooking.

Vegetable Bouillon Alternatives

Vegetable Bouillon Alternatives

1. Vegetable Stock Cubes

One of the most readily available substitutes for bouillon powder in the UK is vegetable stock cubes. These cubes are made from a concentrated vegetable broth, dried herbs, and seasonings.

They can be dissolved in hot water to create a flavorful vegetable stock that can be used as a base for soups, stews, and sauces.

Simply dissolve one or more cubes in hot water according to the package instructions, and you have a flavorful alternative to bouillon powder.

2. Cooking Wine

Cooking wine can be an excellent substitute for bouillon powder, especially in recipes where you want to add depth of flavor. When using cooking wine, it’s crucial to choose a variety that complements the dish you’re preparing.

For example, white wine can be used in dishes like risotto or creamy sauces, while red wine is ideal for hearty stews and red pasta sauces.

Keep in mind that cooking wine contains alcohol, so some of it will evaporate during cooking, leaving behind the rich flavor.

3. Vegetable Stock/Broth

Vegetable stock or broth is another readily available substitute for bouillon powder. You can use store-bought vegetable stock or make your own by simmering vegetables, herbs, and seasonings in water.

Homemade vegetable broth allows you to control the flavor profile and sodium content. It’s an excellent base for various dishes, from risotto to vegetable soups.

4. Marmite

Marmite, a yeast extract spread, is a unique and flavorful substitute for bouillon powder. While it has a distinctive and somewhat polarizing taste, Marmite can add a rich umami flavor to your dishes.

It works well in stews, gravies, and sauces. Start with a small amount and adjust to your taste, as Marmite’s flavor can be quite intense.

5. Chicken Stock

For non-vegetarian recipes or those that require a richer flavor profile, chicken stock can be a viable substitute for bouillon powder.

You can use store-bought chicken stock or make your own by simmering chicken bones, vegetables, and seasonings. Keep in mind that this option is not suitable for vegetarians or vegans.

Also read the equivalent of canned biscuit dough in the UK.

Non-Bouillon Thickening Agents (Vegan)

Bouillon Alternatives in UK

1. Cornflour Mixed with Water

Cornflour, also known as cornstarch, is a versatile thickening agent commonly used in cooking. To use it as a bouillon powder substitute, mix a tablespoon of cornflour with an equal amount of cold water to create a smooth paste.

Stir this paste into your dish, and it will thicken as it cooks. This method works well for gravies, sauces, and soups.

2. Coconut Flour

Coconut flour is an excellent thickening agent for vegan dishes, adding a subtle coconut flavor to your recipes.

It works particularly well in curries and tropical-inspired dishes. Be mindful of the coconut flavor when using coconut flour, as it may not be suitable for all recipes.

3. Xanthan Gum

Xanthan gum is a plant-based thickening agent that is often used in gluten-free cooking. It can be used to thicken soups, sauces, and gravies.

However, it’s essential to use xanthan gum sparingly, as a little goes a long way. Start with a small amount, such as a pinch or 1/8 teaspoon, and gradually add more if needed.


In the UK, finding bouillon powder substitutes is relatively easy, thanks to the availability of various alternatives. Whether you’re looking for vegetable bouillon alternatives or non-bouillon thickening agents for vegan cooking, there are options to suit your culinary needs.

Vegetable stock cubes, cooking wine, vegetable stock, Marmite, and even chicken stock can be used as bouillon powder substitutes, depending on your dietary preferences and the flavor profile you desire.

Additionally, non-bouillon thickening agents such as cornflour mixed with water, coconut flour, and xanthan gum are valuable tools for achieving the desired consistency in your recipes without the need for bouillon powder.

These alternatives allow you to create delicious and flavorful dishes while catering to specific dietary requirements or flavor preferences.

So, whether you’re making soups, stews, gravies, or sauces, you can confidently explore these alternatives in your UK kitchen.

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