Have you ever wanted to cook something to only find out that you are missing an important ingredient – red wine vinegar. Next time you come across such a problem, don’t hurry to change your plans. Instead, use one of the many red wine vinegar substitutes.
What are the best substitutes for red wine vinegar? To substitute red wine vinegar, we recommend aged white wine vinegar because it has a similar flavor and acidity, making it interchangeable in most recipes. Other options include apple cider vinegar, rice vinegar, balsamic vinegar, sherry wine vinegar, lemon juice, and tamarind paste.
Continue reading to learn which of these substitutes are good for dressings and sauces and which ones are suitable for marinating meat. If none of these substitutes speaks to you, try our homemade red wine vinegar substitute recipe.
The 7 Best Red Wine Vinegar Substitutes
If you are out of red wine vinegar but the recipe calls for it, there are many substitutes to choose from. If you are a somewhat avid cook, you will find at least one of them in your pantry.
One thing to consider before you replace red wine vinegar with something else is the function of the vinegar in the dish.
If the red wine taste is essential to the dish, it is better to use a mixture of vinegar and red wine.
If the taste of the wine is not of central importance and you need only a small amount to provide the acidity, the range of choices is much wider. You can freely use different kinds of vinegar.
The same goes for tenderizing meat. If red wine vinegar is used to marinate the meat to make it tender, replacing it with another ingredient that has high levels of acidity will work just fine.
Here are the top 7 red wine vinegar substitutes:
|1.||Colavita Aged White Wine Vinegar||Most similar to red wine vinegar with a more mild flavor|
|2.||Bragg Organic Apple Cider Vinegar||Fruity|
|3.||Colavita Aged Balsamic Vinegar of Modena||Mild, sweet|
|4.||Marukan Genuine Brewed Rice Vinegar||Tangy, mild|
|5.||L'Estornell Reserva Sherry Wine Vinegar||Balanced sweetness and acidity|
|6.||Realemon 100% Lemon Juice||Tart, acidic|
|7.||Rani Tamarind Paste||Slightly sour, acidic|
1. Colavita Aged White Wine Vinegar
White wine vinegar is one of the most popular substitutes for red wine vinegar. These two vinegar types may be used interchangeably in almost all recipes.
This has to do with the fact that not only the two have a similar flavor but are also the same or similar in the acidity percentage.
However, it should be noted that the taste of red wine vinegar is slightly more intense.
The Colavita white wine vinegar is a great substitute for red wine vinegar.
If you like balsamic vinegar, you will most probably like this one too. It has a mild flavor resembling that of the balsamic one.
You will not find the tartness specific to cider vinegar in this white wine vinegar.
What makes Colavita Aged White Wine Vinegar worth a purchase is that:
- It has 6% acidity, which makes the vinegar balance well in salad dressings, especially used along with other ingredients.
- It is aged in wooden barrels.
- There are no GMOs in this product.
How to Use: To substitute red wine vinegar with white wine vinegar you will need to use the exact same amount.
The ratio is one to one, which makes white wine vinegar the easiest alternative for red wine vinegar.
2. Bragg Organic Apple Cider Vinegar
Apple cider vinegar is one of the best substitutes for red wine vinegar to use in vinaigrettes.
Apple cider vinegar, as opposed to other vinegar varieties, has some fruity notes. Thus, it goes well with fresh salads.
If you are going to use apple cider vinegar as a substitute for red wine vinegar, the Bragg Organic apple cider vinegar is the way to go.
Here’s is what makes it so good:
- It is made from organically grown apples.
- It has a lot of healthy properties.
- This apple cider vinegar is great for salads.
- There are no GMOs in this apple cider vinegar.
How to Use: if you want to substitute red wine vinegar with apple cider vinegar, you can either use it as is or make a mixture with apple cider vinegar and red wine to best resemble the taste of red wine vinegar.
You can use one part of apple cider vinegar for 2 parts of red wine vinegar. However, if it is your first time using apple cider vinegar for salads, start with a smaller amount and add more (if needed) after you have tasted it.
If the recipe calls for 4 tablespoons of red wine vinegar, you can mix 3 tablespoons of apple cider vinegar with 1 tablespoon of red wine to get a mixture with similar taste and acidity.
3. Colavita Aged Balsamic Vinegar of Modena
Even if you don’t have red wine vinegar at hand, the chances that you have balsamic vinegar in your pantry are high. It is a popular ingredient drizzled over salads, pasta, meat, etc.
The taste of the balsamic vinegar is not similar to the taste of red wine vinegar.
Balsamic has a milder taste and is well-loved for the sweetness it gives to the food.
Colavita Aged Balsamic Vinegar is a top-rated product worth a try. It has many qualities that make it exceptionally good.
- It is aged for 3 years in cherry, oak, and walnut barrels.
- It has a rich taste and is quite intense.
- Colavita balsamic vinegar has 6% acidity.
How to Use: Being mild and sweet, balsamic vinegar may not be a good substitute for red wine vinegar in recipes where the latter is used for its red wine taste.
However, due to its acidic qualities, balsamic vinegar can replace red wine vinegar in terms of acidity.
Balsamic vinegar is a good substitute for red wine vinegar in salad dressing recipes.
Because balsamic vinegar is sweet, try to avoid using products in the salad that will further boost the sweetness.
Start by using a small amount of balsamic vinegar and add more if you feel like the recipe needs it.
4. Marukan Genuine Brewed Rice Vinegar
Rice vinegar has a tangy flavor. However, its tanginess is less intense than that of the red wine vinegar.
By using rice vinegar instead of red wine vinegar, you will end up with an overall milder flavor of a dish.
Rice vinegar is a great alternative for red wine vinegar in vinaigrettes and meat marinade recipes.
You can also use it to make a sauce for stir-fries.
Marukan Genuine Brewed Rice Vinegar is one of the best options if you choose to use it instead of red wine vinegar. It is claimed to be a substitute for any vinegar in any recipe.
There are multiple reasons why this product is so good:
- It is made of all-natural ingredients.
- It has 4.3% acidity and is suitable to be used for cooking various dishes, salad dressings, stir-fries, etc.
- It is vegan-friendly.
- There are no carbohydrates in this rice vinegar.
How to Use: To substitute red wine vinegar with rice vinegar, use one part of rice vinegar instead of one part of red wine vinegar.
Because rice vinegar is not as intense, you may add more of it to achieve the desired result. However, make sure to add little by little so that you don’t affect the taste of the dish.
5. L’Estornell Reserva Sherry Wine Vinegar
Sherry vinegar is made of, you guessed it, sherry wine. Some people consider that it has similarities with balsamic vinegar. It is also comparable to apple cider vinegar as far as the sweetness goes.
Widely used in Spanish cuisine, sherry vinegar is a great alternative for red wine vinegar.
L’Estornell Reserva Sherry vinegar is a great option.
- It has balanced sweetness, tanginess, and acidity.
- The acidity is high – 9.3%.
- It can be used in salad dressings and sauces instead of red wine vinegar.
How to Use: To use sherry vinegar in cooking instead of red wine vinegar, you will need to use the same amount.
Although sherry vinegar is milder in taste than red wine vinegar, there is no need to overuse it. If the recipe calls for 1 tablespoon of red wine vinegar, use 1 tablespoon of sherry wine instead.
Sherry vinegar will work better as a red wine vinegar substitute if you try to maintain its acidity. To do so, try to reduce the number of ingredients in a dish that has a sweet flavor.
6. Realemon 100% Lemon Juice
Lemon juice is a versatile ingredient. No wonder it is one of the best substitutes for red wine vinegar and any type of vinegar in general.
It can be used as a tenderizer as well as in salad dressings as an alternative to different kinds of vinegar.
Lemon juice can be used as a substitute for red wine vinegar if the specific dish you are making does not require the taste of red wine.
Lemon juice has acidic properties that work well to perform the tasks of the vinegar.
If you like having lemon juice at hand at all times and don’t like the hustle that comes with squeezing fresh lemons every time, then the Realemon lemon juice is your best bet.
- It has the juice from 2 lemons.
- It is as strong and efficient as freshly squeezed lemon juice.
How to Use: When using lemon juice as an alternative to red wine vinegar, keep in mind that you ill not achieve the same flavor profile.
Lemon juice is good to use in recipes where the flavor of red wine vinegar does not play a central role. It is suitable to be used in recipes that don’t call for large amounts of red wine vinegar but only a little to provide some acidity.
To use lemon juice in a recipe where red wine is required, use less than you would with the vinegar, as lemon certainly tastes sour and is rather powerful to be used in large amounts.
Lime juice is another alternative if you don’t have any lemons or store-bought lemon juice at hand.
7. Rani Tamarind Paste
Tamarind paste is quite an unusual ingredient to use as a red wine vinegar substitute. But it works!
If you are not into Asian or Middle Eastern cuisine, you may not be familiar with tamarind paste.
It is a paste derived from the tamarind fruit. The slight sourness and acidity this paste has makes it a good alternative for red wine vinegar.
It contains tartaric acid which assists in the meat marinating properties of the paste.
Tamarind is also anti-inflammatory and contains antioxidants, which may be a winning point for many.
Rani Tamarind Paste is one of the best options in the market. Here is why:
- It contains calcium and vitamin B.
- It is 100% natural made with tamarind pulp.
- There is no added sugar in this paste.
- It is gluten-free and vegan-friendly.
- There are no GMOs and preservatives used in Rani Paste.
How to Use: Red wine vinegar is often used in meat marinades. It helps tenderize the meat.
Tamarind paste, having an acidic quality, also acts as a great meat tenderizer. Thus, it can be a good alternative for red wine vinegar in meat marinades as well as marinades for seafood.
If you are using tamarind paste instead of red wine vinegar, start with a small amount. Tamarind paste is a quite strong ingredient and may overshadow other tastes in the marinade.
Bonus: Homemade Red Wine Vinegar Substitute
If the recipe calls for red wine vinegar but you don’t have some in your pantry, don’t hurry to the nearby supermarket or look for another dish to cook. Instead, make a homemade DIY substitute for red wine vinegar.
Red wine vinegar provides the taste of the red wine and the acidity of the vinegar. If both qualities of wine vinegar are needed in the dish, you can make an easy concoction to substitute it.
To make an easy red wine vinegar substitute, you will need cider vinegar and red wine. The former provides the acidity, while the latter is responsible for the wine flavor. Vinegar also performs the function of an emulsifier in salad dressings due to its acidic properties.
Mix 3 parts of cider vinegar with 1 part of red wine, and there you have a perfect substitute for red wine vinegar.
You can substitute cider vinegar with white vinegar. In this case, however, the proportions need to be altered.
1 tablespoon of red wine mixed with 1.5 tablespoons of white vinegar can be used to substitute 1 tablespoon of red wine vinegar.
Can You Replace Red Wine Vinegar with Red Wine?
You can replace red wine vinegar with red wine. However, there are certain things to be taken into consideration.
Red wine is not as acidic as red wine vinegar. Thus, if you choose to substitute red wine vinegar for plain red wine, don’t expect the dish to have much acidity.
Red wine is a good substitute for the vinegar if the dish requires not the acidity but the taste of the red wine.
One advantage that red wine has over red wine vinegar is the rich taste. Thus, if you need the red wine taste in your dish but don’t have red wine vinegar at hand, using the alcoholic beverage will do the trick.
Another factor that makes red wine a good substitute for the vinegar is the consistency and color. They are almost identical in these two properties.
So, you can use red wine as a substitute for red wine vinegar. However, do not expect to get the same result with wine as you would get with vinegar.
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