If your recipe calls for veal stock and you don’t have any, there are some excellent veal stock substitutes that you can use instead.
What Is Veal?
Veal comes from calves that are very young—usually just a few months old. Veal has an intense but very satisfying flavor, and it’s quite tender, which makes it nothing short of delicious. The thing is, veal tends to be an expensive meat because it is so rare.
You may not have any veal stock in your home, and this is where good alternatives to veal stock can come in handy.
4 Great Veal Stock Substitutes
There are four main substitutes for veal stock that you can consider:
- Pork stock
- Chicken stock
- Turkey stock
- Chicken and beef stock
1. Pork Stock
Pork stock is closer to veal stock than other types of stock are. This is because the mild flavors and tenderness of the meat are quite close to those of veal. In short, pork and veal stocks are similar in taste and texture, although stock made from pork has a less intense but still delicious taste.
One of the advantages to choosing pork stock over veal stock is that it is usually more readily available and can be purchased in most grocery stores. While veal stock is expensive and difficult to find, pork stock is inexpensive and easy to find. This, plus the fact that there are so many similarities between the taste and texture of the two stocks, is why stock that comes from pork is usually the first substitute people search for when they need veal stock but don’t have easy access to it.
2. Chicken Stock
Chicken stock is extremely easy to find on most grocery store shelves. It is also a healthy alternative to veal stock and is easy to make if you decide the stock should be homemade. Ingredients to make chicken stock usually include celery, carrots, onions, possibly a few other vegetables and, of course, the chicken.
All you have to do is cook these ingredients together for one to two hours, then remove the chicken and discard the veggies. You’ll then have a beautiful, very tasty type of stock that is the perfect substitute for veal stock.
3. Turkey Stock
Like chicken stock, turkey stock is healthier than veal stock because red meat is generally unhealthier than chicken or turkey. Red meat has a lot of cholesterol that can affect your heart health, which is why many people choose poultry over meats such as beef and veal.
Turkey stock is also easy to find in most grocery stores, so you’ll have that advantage as well as the health advantages.
In general, white meats such as chicken and turkey are low in cholesterol, low in fat, and high in protein, especially when compared to red meats.
Just like chicken stock, it is easy to make your own turkey stock using a recipe similar to that of chicken stock. So while veal is delicious but a bit on the unhealthy side, both chicken and turkey stock are healthier and easier to find.
4. Chicken and Beef Stock
In addition to the usual types of stock, you can choose a stock that is a combination of chicken and beef. If you mix beef stock with another type of stock—chicken, for example—it gives the stock a unique taste and texture that is a great substitution for veal stock.
There is one thing you’ll want to watch out for if you use a combination of two different stocks. Each stock, regardless of what it’s made from, has a unique taste, and you have to keep this in mind when making the stock. If you find two separate stocks in the store and decide to combine them yourself, there isn’t a lot you can do to change or alter the taste. But if you make them yourself, try not to overdo it when sprinkling in seasonings and flavorings. If you overdo it, the taste of the stock will suffer. It’s always better to under-flavor the stock than to over-flavor it. Combination stocks can be a great alternative to a veal stock, but keep in mind that you should use a white meat/red meat combination for the best results.
Finding a substitute for the veal stock required in your recipe isn’t as difficult as it seems. Even though the taste won’t be exactly the same, the right alternative stock can work quite well.