Home Articles 7 Red Wine Vinegar Substitutes (+ Best Replacements)

7 Red Wine Vinegar Substitutes (+ Best Replacements)

Are you a fan of the tangy and slightly sweet flavors in your dishes? Then check out these red wine vinegar substitutes to add some zing to your cooking!

Red wine vinegar is a staple ingredient across different cuisines for its amazing flavors.

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It has a tart, acidic bite with hints of sweetness that can add complexity to dishes. 

Red Wine Vinegar in a Jug with Fresh Grapes

But red wine vinegar can be expensive and hard to find. Luckily, several options will work well in most dishes. 

In this roundup, I share fantastic red wine vinegar substitutes and show you how to use them. Let’s get started!

Best Red Wine Vinegar Substitutes

If you’re a fan of red wine vinegar, you know what a great ingredient it is.

It’s made from fermented red wine mixed with starter culture and acidic bacteria until it’s sour.

Red wine vinegar is great for marinades, salad dressings, and sauces. Plus, it pairs well with fresh veggies and savory meat.

But what would happen if you ran out? Or maybe you’re experimenting with new flavors and want to try something new?

You might be looking for a substitute for red wine vinegar.

Each of these substitutes will give your dish a slightly different flavor. So you can try these options until you find the one you like best.

White Wine Vinegar Poured in a Measuring Spoon

1. White Wine Vinegar 

White wine vinegar can be a great substitute for red wine vinegar. It has a similar flavor, but it’s less acidic and more mellow.

The ratio for this alternative is still 1:1, but the flavor is less intense.

It works well in place of red wine vinegar to add the same satisfying taste.

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White wine vinegar has a lighter flavor than red wine vinegar, so it’s less likely to overpower your dish.

Sherry Vinegar Poured in a Glass Dish

2. Sherry Vinegar 

If you’re a fan of tangy dishes, sherry vinegar is a perfect red wine vinegar replacement.

It adds the same sour, acidic punch to your meals with a slightly sweet, fruity taste.

This substitute has a similar flavor profile but leans on the sweeter side.

It generally follows a 1:1 ratio, or you can add more if you want a deeper flavor.

It has a rich, deep flavor perfect for everything from salad dressings to marinades and vinaigrettes.

Balsamic Vinegar in a Glass Bottle

3. Balsamic Vinegar

Balsamic vinegar is a fantastic ingredient that can be used in many different ways.

But did you know it’s also a great substitute for red wine vinegar?

That’s right—this pantry staple recreates the flavors of red wine vinegar with a simple 1:1 ratio.

It has a sweeter taste, but you can make it more acidic with lemon juice.

The best part? It’s a cheaper alternative if you’re on a budget!

Grains of Rice and Rice Vinegar in a Glass Cup

4. Rice Vinegar

If you’re looking for an alternative to red wine vinegar, rice vinegar is a great choice.

It’s made from fermented rice starches and has a milder flavor than other vinegar.

This Asian cuisine staple has a similar acidic flavor, making it an ideal alternative.

Plus, it’s amazing with marinades and pickled veggies.

To use this for your recipes, you can follow a 1:1 ratio for red wine vinegar substitution.

Feel free to throw in more rice vinegar if you want a richer, bolder taste.

Fresh Apples and Apple Cider Vinegar in a Glass Bottle

5. Apple Cider Vinegar

Apple cider vinegar is a staple in many kitchens, and for a good reason.

It’s super cheap and has a rich flavor that complements a variety of dishes.

One of the best ways to use it is as an alternative to red wine vinegar.

It’s a budget-friendly alternative that will give your dishes a rich color and depth of flavor.

To use this substitute, mix three parts apple cider vinegar with one part red wine.

Once you try this alternative, you’ll be surprised how much money you can save!

Freshly Squeezed Lime Juice

6. Lemon/Lime Juice 

How do you get that tangy flavor without having to buy a bottle of red wine vinegar? With lemon or lime juice!

It has a naturally acidic base that adds a kick of tang and zestiness. However, this substitute might change the flavors of your dish entirely.

But one thing’s for sure, it will brighten any dish.

So if you’re out of red wine vinegar, grab some lemons or limes and give this a try!

Red Wine Poured on a Glass

7. Red Wine + White Wine Vinegar 

Looking for a way to add a top-notch vinegar kick to your recipes?

Nothing beats red wine and white wine vinegar combo as a substitute for red wine vinegar.

It’s the closest alternative that captures the fancy flavors without spending too much.

The white wine vinegar packs acidity, while the red wine adds a deep hue and sweetness.

This combo uses one equal part of both liquids mixed for a perfect copycat.

Throw this into your marinades, salad dressings, and rich reductions for an elegant meal.

7 Best Red Wine Substitutes

These red wine vinegar substitutes work well when you don’t have any on hand. From other types of vinegar to citrus juices, each of these replacements will get the job done.


  • White Wine Vinegar

  • Sherry Vinegar

  • Balsamic Vinegar

  • Rice Vinegar

  • Apple Cider Vinegar

  • Lemon/Lime Juice

  • Red Wine + White Wine Vinegar


  • Choose your favorite red wine vinegar substitute.
  • Use in all your favorite recipes.
Red Wine Vinegar Substitutes

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Hey there! I'm Kim. I love running, cooking, and curling up with a good book! I share recipes for people who LOVE good food, but want to keep things simple :)

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