Return to the Harvest Forum | Post a Follow-Up

White or Cider Vinegar - Can you use either?

Posted by seaglassgirl ( on
Thu, Sep 18, 08 at 8:41

Hi - Does it matter what kind of vinegar you use in a recipe? I love the taste of cider vinegar but a lot of the recipes I'd like to try call for white vinegar. Can I substitute cider vinegar safely? Or red wine vinegar?

Follow-Up Postings:

RE: White or Cider Vinegar - Can you use either?

Yes you can, as long as it is 5% (some wine vinegar aren't) but know that it will change the flavor and sometimes the color of the end product. White wine and rice vinegar are others but rice and the wine vinegars are more prone to bacterial growth over time so need to be fresher.


Here is a link that might be useful: NCHFP - Safe Use of Vinegars

RE: White or Cider Vinegar - Can you use either?

Sure. It's mostly taste and aesthetics. I use white vinegar in pickles, because I don't like the color of them when I use cider vinegar.

Make sure whatever kind you use is at least 5% acidity. Some, like rice wine vinegar, can be as low as 4%. The acidity is almost always listed on the label.

RE: White or Cider Vinegar - Can you use either?

Cider type vinegar works best in sweeter brines, compared to the white distilled. Salsa, likes cider vinegar as well as lime juice. White vinegar tends to mask the complex flavors in some delicate tasting products. Rice wine vinegar is sometimes sweetened, and is usualy less than 5% acidity. Its great for a marinade used for pickling julienne veggies used in making Japanese based California rolls.

RE: White or Cider Vinegar - Can you use either?

I bought white wine vinegar for Emeril's lemon-rosemary pickled green beans, and it turned out not to say the acidity on the bottle. So sad. I used white vinegar and they still taste great.

On a related note, you can substitute bottled lemon or lime juice for vinegar; they are more acidic. You cannot safely use vinegar in a recipe that calls for lemon or lime juice. You can swap lemon and lime juice for each other. Always use bottled juice in recipes where it's used for acidity such as pickles and tomatoes. You can use fresh lemon juice in high-acid products such as jam (except figs, which are low-acid and require bottled juice).

I know most of us know that already, but I thought it would be useful on this thread if anyone's searching for acidity info later on.


RE: White or Cider Vinegar - Can you use either?

Wine vinegar can vary from 2% to 7% acidity, and can even vary in batches blended for bottling. Its easier to just have the lable read Wine Vinegar, or red, vs. white. Even balsamic can have varied acidity, and some are quie low ddue to the long term to get to a sweet syrup. Of course, citric acid is also a good choice.

RE: White or Cider Vinegar - Can you use either?

I subbed cider vinegar for white vinegar in the Habanero Gold Jelly and think it adds to the fruitiness.

Melissa - I bought a couple of bottles of the store brand of red wine vinegar to use for the Chunky Basil Pasta Sauce. The only place on the bottle that showed the acidity was in the ingredients list - red wine vinegar diluted to 5% acidity.


 o Post a Follow-Up

Please Note: Only registered members are able to post messages to this forum.

    If you are a member, please log in.

    If you aren't yet a member, join now!

Return to the Harvest Forum

Information about Posting

  • You must be logged in to post a message. Once you are logged in, a posting window will appear at the bottom of the messages. If you are not a member, please register for an account.
  • Please review our Rules of Play before posting.
  • Posting is a two-step process. Once you have composed your message, you will be taken to the preview page. You will then have a chance to review your post, make changes and upload photos.
  • After posting your message, you may need to refresh the forum page in order to see it.
  • Before posting copyrighted material, please read about Copyright and Fair Use.
  • We have a strict no-advertising policy!
  • If you would like to practice posting or uploading photos, please visit our Test forum.
  • If you need assistance, please Contact Us and we will be happy to help.

Learn more about in-text links on this page here