Apple cider vinegar is one of the most versatile ingredients ever found. Besides culinary uses, you can employ it in cleaning, preservation, and washing hair. So, what do you do when you run out of it?
Forget running to the supermarket at the last moment. Instead, use these fantastic substitutes for apple cider which might already be there in your kitchen cabinet.
A mixture of apples and yeast is fermented to produce apple cider vinegar. Its acidic, fruity flavor makes it a popular ingredient in baking and cooking. Apple cider works culinary magic as a fast pickling solution and polishes cooking liquids and salad dressings.
Here are some of the best substitutes for apple cider that you can use to add its freshness to any recipe.
11 Best Substitutes for Apple Cider
1. Red Wine Vinegar
Red wine vinegar has the characteristic fruity sweetness that makes it one of the best substitutes for apple cider vinegar. This vinegar works wonders in salads or as a dressing.
However, red wine vinegar has a strong flavor and must be added in small quantities. Similarly, it has a bright red color and might affect the color of your dish. So, be cautious when replacing it with apple cider vinegar.
How to substitute: Begin by adding half the amount of red wine vinegar mentioned in your recipe containing apple cider vinegar.
Further, you can add more according to your taste and desired color of your dish.
2. Apple Juice
Easily accessible, and the most delicious substitute for apple cider vinegar is apple juice. Prepared from fresh apples, it comes closest in its flavors to apple cider. Apple juice is starkly similar to apple cider except for the fact that it is non-fermented.
If you do not desire an excessively sweet taste in your dish, unsweetened apple juice will work best for you. In this case, you need not cut back on the sugar used in the recipe.
How to substitute: Half the quantity of apple juice can be used to replace apple cider vinegar in any recipe.
3. White Vinegar
With similar acidic levels, white vinegar is an ideal substitute for apple cider. This liquid, also called spirit vinegar, has a hidden reserve of uses in cleaning, cooking, and gardening.
Although white vinegar is harsh and lacks the fruitiness of apple juice, it works as a good fit. It can be satisfactorily used in stews, pickles, and sauces.
How to substitute: Use a 1:1 ratio to replace white vinegar for apple cider vinegar.
4. Lemon Juice
The acidity of lemon juice with a low pH can save your dish if you have run short of apple cider vinegar. With its similar taste and fruity undertones, lemon juice functions as a great substitute for apple cider.
A staple in many households, lemons work wonders when used in drinks, desserts, and dishes with fish and meat. However, lemon juice has strong chemicals, so be cautious of allergies. We strictly recommend not to use it if you have migraines.
How to substitute: An equal quantity of lemon juice can be used to replace apple cider vinegar.
5. Balsamic Vinegar
Popularly used in Italian cuisine, balsamic vinegar is another substitute that can be efficiently used to replace apple cider in any recipe.
Balsamic vinegar is a particularly tasteless, highly seasoned, and concentrated vinegar manufactured from grape must. Grape must is fresh grape juice that still contains grape seeds, skin, and stems.
You will love the flavor it gives to spaghetti, dipping bread, dressing, sauces, and salads.
How to substitute: One tablespoon of balsamic vinegar can be used to substitute for one tablespoon of apple cider vinegar.
6. Orange Juice
The refreshing flavor of orange juice with its citrusy undertones can be used to replace apple cider in a pinch. Although orange juice is a little sweeter than apple cider, it works well in recipes where its zesty flavor does not clash with other ingredients.
Orange juice is excellent for sauces, glazes, and marinades because of its acidic and sour flavor. You must cut back on any additional sugar when using orange juice as a substitute for apple cider to prevent your dish from being too sugary.
How to substitute: Use a 1:1 ratio to replace orange juice for apple cider vinegar. However, you can further add a little extra as per taste and requirement.
7. Rice Vinegar
Fortunately, if health issues are not a part of your family, you can blindly trust using rice vinegar as a substitute for apple cider. Though a perfect match in flavors, rice vinegar fails to keep up with the health benefits of apple cider.
Rice vinegar helps you bring out the acidic taste of the food they are added to, especially salads. For rice-based recipes, soups, and stir-frying vegetables, it works wonderfully as a substitute.
How to substitute: An equal quantity of rice vinegar can be used to replace apple cider vinegar.
8. Sour Milk
Very often, milk gets spoiled in the kitchen, and the entire volume of it has to be thrown away into the drain. What if I tell you that you can use sour milk as a substitute for apple cider vinegar?
Yes, sour milk has acidic properties that make it a great replacement for apple cider vinegar. Typically, milk undergoes fermentation, either by the use of an acid like lime juice or by bacterial growth, imparting a sour flavor to it.
Sour milk works well in bread and pastry recipes. However, you must remember that it is spoiled milk anyways, and hence its quantity must be accordingly adjusted.
How to substitute: Half the quantity of sour milk can be used to replace apple cider vinegar in any recipe
9. Sherry Vinegar
Although sherry vinegar has a different flavor when compared to apple cider, its citrusy taste makes it a fantastic replacement.
Sherry vinegar can be employed in making excellent sauteing sauces for pork and chicken. Additionally, it helps to bring out the inherent characteristics of the meat and can be used to soften it.
It even serves as a great alternative in making sugary, creamy, and savory sauces. The sweeter sauces like barbecue sauce go best with apple cider vinegar.
How to substitute: You can use a similar quantity of sherry vinegar as mentioned in your recipe containing apple cider vinegar.
10. Malt Vinegar
If you are looking for an apple cider substitute for fried food, malt vinegar might be your ideal choice. Although malt vinegar can be a little difficult to find, if you already have it on hand, do not hesitate to use it as a substitute.
Derived from fermented barley, the flavor of malt vinegar is yeasty in contrast to the fruity-like taste of most kinds of vinegar. It serves as a wonderful replacement in marinades, salads, and dressings.
How to substitute: Use a 1:1 ratio to replace malt vinegar for apple cider vinegar.
If you cannot get hold of any of the substitutes mentioned above, your last good choice can be a mild-flavored beer. However, you must be cautious of its strong flavors while using it as an apple cider substitute.
Beer can be efficiently used in baking, marinades, and sautéing veggies and meats. However, we do not suggest using it with mixed green salads.
How to substitute: Use a mild-flavored beer in a 3:1 ratio while replacing it with apple cider vinegar.
So the next time you are unsure about how to add the acidic and citrusy flavor of apple cider vinegar by not actually using it in your recipe, skim through this list, and we are sure it will not leave you disappointed.