How to Make a Cheesecloth Bag of Herbs and Spices for Soup or Stock

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  • 01 of 07

    Add Flavor to Your Stocks with a Sachet

    A sachet used to flavor stocks
    The Spruce / Barbara Rolek

    A good soup or saucy dishes like braised short ribs or oxtail stew starts with a good stock and a good stock starts with the seasoning—a sachet or a bouquet garni.

    They are both bundles of cheesecloth stuffed with herbs and spices and used to season soups, stews, and stocks. The bundle is tied with butcher's twine to a handle of the cooking pot, allowing for easy removal from the finished product.

    A sachet differs from a bouquet garni in that the latter only consists of herbs, usually parsley, thyme, and bay leaf.

    A sachet includes those three herbs plus, usually, black peppercorns. 

    Here's what you'll need to make a stock sachet:

    • 4-inch square of cheesecloth 
    • 18 inches butcher's twine
    • Utility scissors
    • 12 parsley stems
    • 1 tablespoon black peppercorns
    • 2 sprigs fresh thyme
    • 2 bay leaves
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  • 02 of 07

    Gather the Ingredients for the Stock Sachet

    Gather the ingredients you'll need to make the stock sachet
    The Spruce / Barbara Rolek

    Have everything you need—the cheesecloth, twine, utility scissors, parsley stems, peppercorns, fresh thyme, and bay leaves—at hand before you begin.

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  • 03 of 07

    Place Ingredients on Cheesecloth

    Place the ingredients in the center of the square of cheesecloth
    The Spruce / Barbara Rolek

    Bend the parsley stems and thyme sprigs in half and place them along with the peppercorns and bay leaves in the center of the cheesecloth square.

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  • 04 of 07

    Begin Gathering the Cheesecloth

    Begin forming the bundle
    The Spruce / Barbara Rolek

    Fold up one corner of the cheesecloth to meet the opposite corner, forming a triangle, and enclosing the sachet ingredients.

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  • 05 of 07

    Form a Bundle

    Tie off the bundle
    The Spruce / Barbara Rolek

    Gather up the other two corners of the cheesecloth and form a bundle. Tie an 18-inch length of butcher's twine around the bundle, leaving the ends free.

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  • 06 of 07

    Tie the Sachet Bundle to the Pot Handle

    Attach the sachet to the pot handle
    The Spruce / Barbara Rolek

    Securely tie the end of the strings to the handle of a soup pot, making sure no long ends, which could catch fire, are hanging.

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  • 07 of 07

    Drop Sachet into Stock Pot

    Drop the sachet into the stock pot
    The Spruce / Barbara Rolek .

    Drop the sachet into the stockpot and add the stock ingredients. When the stock has finished cooking and is ready to be strained, remove the sachet by pulling up on the string.