6 Best Apple Cider Vinegar Replacements

Apple cider vinegar is produced by fermenting the sugar in apples. Acetic acid is the main active ingredient in this vinegar.

This highly versatile vinegar is popularly used as a nutritional supplement and a natural remedy for some general health issues. Above all, it’s a popular and useful cooking ingredient in soups, sauces, salad dressings, seasonings, and flavoring dishes. Also, many recipes use apple cider vinegar as a spritz for the meat as it smokes.

If you don’t have the apple cider vinegar required for your recipe, don’t panic. Try a suitable apple cider vinegar replacement that this article will reveal.

Rice Vinegar – The Best Substitute For Apple Cider Vinegar 

All chefs agree that rice vinegar is a great substitute for apple cider vinegar.

Rice vinegar, made from fermented rice, is mildly acidic and sweet, like apple cider vinegar. This vinegar is a staple ingredient in many Asian dishes.

Of course, rice wine vinegar doesn’t have the mild apple flavor, but its sweet-to-sour ratio and tangy flavor are identical to ACV. It will do a great job standing in for ACV in most recipes.

Rice wine vinegar is the best apple cider vinegar substitute. Add a bit of citrus fruit juice to achieve a flavor similar to ACV, preferably apple juice or orange juice.

The substitution works best in a 1:1 ratio.

Other Simple Apple Cider Vinegar Substitutes 

Other types of vinegar and acidic citrus juices can very well replace apple cider vinegar in your recipes. Here are a few more useful substitutes:

Balsamic vinegar

Balsamic vinegar is a dark, concentrated, and intensely flavored vinegar made from grape must. The fruity flavor of this vinegar is quite similar to that of ACV.

The flavor of this vinegar is less acidic and sweeter than other vinegar. This works as a nice replacement for apple cider vinegar in vinaigrettes.

However, the thicker texture of balsamic is a disadvantage when using it in some recipes. For example, it may not be suitable for pickling and seasoning instead of apple cider vinegar.

Importantly, using balsamic vinegar in small quantities would be best, as its strong and distinctive flavor can become overpowering. The dark color of this vinegar can also slightly alter the appearance of your dish, unlike ACV.

Lemon juice or lime juice 

Fresh lemon juice and apple cider vinegar have similar properties; weak acids with a low pH.

Similar to ACV, lemon juice is acidic and has a fruity flavor. Both of them have a similar tartness that adds flavor to your dishes.

Lemon juice can easily be integrated into most recipes requiring ACV, and it goes well with marinades and salad dressings. You can use it instead of apple cider vinegar in canned foods like tomato sauce and pickles.

It should be noted that adding lemon extract to foods cooked on high heat will take away their nutritional content, like Vitamin C. In such a scenario, there are better substitutes for apple cider vinegar.

Lemon extract is slightly less acidic than ACV. So while substituting, use lemon juice in a little more quantity than apple cider vinegar if you enjoy the citrusy flavor. Otherwise, substitute one tablespoon of lemon juice for one tablespoon of apple cider vinegar.

White wine vinegar

White wine vinegar, as its name implies, is made from white wine. This vinegar tends to be milder and less acidic than cider vinegar. Naturally, a great ingredient for dressings and marinades

When you miss the ACV, you can use it in most recipes requiring cider vinegar.

Although it doesn’t have the fruity taste of apples, it has a pleasant tangy taste, making it a worthy addition to vinegar-based recipes.

When substituting, use one tablespoon of white wine vinegar for one tablespoon of apple cider vinegar.

Red wine vinegar

You are familiar with the red wine vinegar made from wine grapes. Red wine vinegar’s fruity flavor is almost like apple cider vinegar’s.

Of the wine vinegar, red wine tends to be punchier, with a more vibrant grape flavor. Certainly, you’ll enjoy its hot and robust flavor.

If you are looking for an apple cider vinegar substitute, red wine vinegar will be an appropriate choice for some recipes.

Notably, this vinegar is less tart than cider vinegar. You may need to add this vinegar to your dishes in a little more quantity than ACV.

Take note that the deep red color of this vinegar will certainly alter the final product’s appearance.

Swap red wine vinegar for apple cider vinegar in a 1.5:1 ratio.

Malt vinegar

Malt is the term used for germinated, dried grains of barley. Malt vinegar is made from barley that is first malted and then fermented.

It tastes like yeast, and its mild acidity and sweetness are identical to those of apple cider vinegar.

Moreover, its bold, unique flavor makes it a great condiment for classic French fries, fish, or chips. As well as a tasty addition to pickling and salad dressing.

On the downside, the yeast flavor of this vinegar can be overpowering in some dishes. Also, it contains some gluten, which is not suitable for those who are gluten sensitive.

Use it as a substitute for apple cider vinegar in a 1:1 ratio.

Frequently Asked Questions 

Can I use sherry vinegar in place of ACV? 

It’s possible to use sherry vinegar in place of apple cider vinegar. However, sherry vinegar has a more complex flavor than ACV, with hints of sweetness and spice.

Sherry vinegar is more acidic than ACV, so you may need to add less to your recipe. You could use two teaspoons of sherry vinegar if a recipe calls for one tablespoon of ACV.

Sherry vinegar tastes best in marinades, vinaigrettes, soups, stews, and desserts.

Can I substitute white vinegar for ACV?

In some recipes, you may be able to substitute white vinegar for ACV, but it may affect the taste and texture of the dish. When substituting white vinegar for ACV, you can use a 1:1 ratio.

Distilled white vinegar is more sour than ACV, and you may need to add a little less of it to your recipe. For example, if a recipe calls for one tablespoon of ACV, you could use two teaspoons of white vinegar. Add two tablespoons of apple or orange juice to achieve a similar flavor.

Can I use champagne vinegar to substitute ACV?

They have distinct flavors that may affect the outcome of a recipe if used interchangeably. Champagne vinegar has a mild, delicate flavor with hints of sweetness. However, you can substitute it for ACV without any major problems, but it may alter the taste slightly. Champagne vinegar is less citrusy than ACV, so you may need to add more to your recipe.

Final Thought 

Apple cider vinegar is a commonly used flavoring ingredient in many recipes, especially in Mediterranean cuisine.

For some reason, if you want to find a replacement for apple cider vinegar, there are a few good options.

The mildly sweet and acidic rice vinegar is the best replacement for apple cider vinegar. Then there are others, like balsamic vinegar, lemon juice, or white wine vinegar, that you can use instead.

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