7 Good White Wine Vinegar Substitutes & 4 More, Just in Case
White wine vinegar is probably one of the most common ingredients in everybody’s kitchen. But if you don’t have it around, don’t fret! Just adapt and use one of these white wine vinegar substitutes!
White Wine Vinegar Flavor Profile
With a tangy feel, a touch of zing to it, and a certain mellow quality, white wine vinegar can add a lot of flavor to your dish. Being made from fermented white wine, this vinegar is light in terms of body and coloring. It adds a fruity, delicate aroma too.
You can use it to marinade fish. Or to make delicious sauces and dressings for your salads and veggies. You can use it to pickle foods. You can even drizzle some in deserts. Add it soups, stews, vinaigrettes.
It’s great for braising your meats for extra tenderness. And what would a Béarnaise and a Hollandaise be without white wine vinegar? Not the same, you’d think, huh? Still, if you have none around and the recipe calls for it, you do have some alternatives.
1. Rice Vinegar
Rice vinegar vs white vinegar: are they the same? Could they be swapped in case of necessity?
Well, rice vinegar does work. It’s mild in terms of acidity and comes close to white wine’s flavor profile. Make sure to choose an unseasoned Asian-style vinegar since it comes close in terms of aroma. The seasoned version has sugar and salt, and it will change the taste of your dish. Use it in a 1:1 ratio.
2. Apple Cider Vinegar
A lot of people wonder if they can substitute apple cider vinegar for white vinegar. Yes, it is a possibility! It’s one of the next best things! While a little bit bolder in flavor, apple cider vinegar will do the trick!
It will lend your ingredients a fruity aroma and a sour taste but it works great in a 1:1 ratio. Add it in chutneys, stews, salads, dips and dressings, marinades.
3. Lemon Juice
Just a pinch of lemon juice can replace white wine vinegar. Any vinegar, for that matter. Its acidic, tangy taste will remind you of vinegar.
It will, however, have a lemony aroma. Use it in salads, sure, but don’t attempt to make your pickles with it. A 1:1 ratio, perhaps 1 ½ the amount of lemon juice for white wine vinegar will do.
4. Champagne Vinegar
Ladies and gents, this might just be the poshest version for a white wine vinegar replacement. Made from fermenting champagne (the audacity!), this vinegar is mild, light, elegant, and delicate.
It will not have the intensity of white wine vinegar but you can definitely add it to your food. Works great in chicken and fish marinades, and vinaigrettes. About 1 ½ tablespoon of champagne vinegar will come close to 1 tablespoon of white wine vinegar.
5. Red Wine Vinegar
If you’re looking for a white wine sub, look into your cupboard first. You might have this one around! Red wine vinegar is easy to find and quite similar to its white brother from another mother.
The only difference: red wine vinegar packs more flavor. Ah, yes, and it will alter the color profile of your dish with a delicate, pink hue. You can still use it in a 1:1 ratio.
6. Sherry Vinegar
If chances are you have it around, drizzle some of it! Sherry vinegar is one of the best white wine vinegar substitutes you could choose.
It’s medium-bodied with a slight sweetness to it and a boost of flavor. Its nutty aftertaste and hints of caramel will make it a more nuanced, distinctive ingredient, compared to white wine vinegar. But this Spanish cuisine staple will be one of your faves!
We recommend you go for a young, light Sherry vinegar. A 1:1 ratio will do.
7. White Vinegar (Distilled White Vinegar)
Is white wine vinegar the same as white vinegar? Well, yes, but not quite. White wine vinegar can be a good distilled white vinegar substitute, but the other way around can be tricky!
White vinegar is more acidic and pungent. We could say it has a bite to it. It also has a faint bouquet in terms of aroma. So, while this vinegar may be better for pickles, it will not be adding the same robust, delicious aroma any other vinegar has to give. Use about ¾ of a tablespoon of white vinegar to substitute 1 tablespoon of white wine vinegar. If you add a drop of water and a sprinkle of sugar you may come even closer.
What can you replace white wine vinegar with, in just a pinch?
So, the first seven alternatives for white wine vinegar were our top choices. They can easily take center stage and make you forget about white vine vinegar. Some of the following may do the trick as well. But we’d say they are rather “in case of emergency” solutions.
8. Balsamic Vinegar
We wouldn’t say balsamic makes one of the most similar substitutes for white wine vinegar. It’s concentrated, robust, with a rich, intense flavor, a fruity touch, and a glaze-like texture. It also packs some caramel aroma and an intense sweetness for a type of vinegar.
If there’s nothing else around, sure, dare to use it instead of white wine vinegar, but restrict it only to salad dressings.
It can be used in marinades and sauces too, but it will change the aspect, consistency, and flavor of the dish. Not for the worst, but for the… different. Extra info: it will never work in pickles, just FYI.
9. White Wine
Is white wine vinegar the same as white cooking wine? No and no. White wine doesn’t have any acidity (and if it’s just as acidic as vinegar, don’t drink it, don’t cook with it!). It doesn’t have that sharp flavor you’re associating vinegar with.
White wine is the predecessor of vinegar, so it will lack that tanginess associated with the fermentation process. But it can be a good choice in cooked dishes, such as sauces, marinades, glazes. And it will bring some alcohol to the table, so that’s always nice!
10. Fruit Vinegar
Any type of fruit vinegar can make a fine choice as a white wine vinegar alternative. Fruit kinds of vinegar usually have a more subdued aroma.
They pack some tartness and have a sweet, fragrant touch. They also have a balanced acidity and can be used in a 1:1 ratio. We recommend you sprinkle some in your chicken recipes, dressings, sauces, salad vinaigrettes.
11. Malt Vinegar
While malt vinegar is a staple condiment for the famous fish and chips and has a certain snap to it, it’s a good alternative. It’s rather tasty and rich in flavor, and it will work wonders in pickles, meat marinades, and chutneys. How to substitute white wine vinegar with malt vinegar? A 1:1 ratio should be fine.
We don’t want to make things complicated. If anything, we strive to make it easier. It’s tough enough you started cooking and discovered you lack some ingredients on the way. The one thing to keep in mind when trying to find white wine vinegar substitutes: the final dish. Do you need a sweet, rich aroma? Do you need some tanginess? What can the recipe handle? The differences in acidity, consistency, and color as well to be taken into consideration.