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Substitute For White Balsamic Vinegar: 5 Ideal Options

Substitute For White Balsamic Vinegar: 5 Ideal Options

Running out of white balsamic vinegar? There’s an ideal substitute for white balsamic vinegar in this guide, and you might have it in your kitchen right now. 

White balsamic vinegar, with its delicate flavor, has earned its place as a prized ingredient in the culinary world. This unique vinegar brings a touch of sweet flavor and mellow acidity to a wide range of dishes, from salads to marinades. But what if you don’t have it on hand, can’t find it, or need an alternative due to taste preferences? In this article, we will explore various substitutes for white balsamic vinegar that you can use in your culinary creations.

We recommend using any of these substitutes for white balsamic vinegar in your recipes

SubstituteRatio to White Balsamic Vinegar
White Wine Vinegar1:1
Rice Vinegar1:1 (with optional sweetener)
Apple Cider Vinegar1:1
Lemon Juice & White Wine Vinegar Mix1:1 (equal parts of each)
Champagne Vinegar1:1 (with optional sweetener)
A glass bottle of white balsamic vinegar with a cork lid sits on a wooden table next to pumpkins and cinnamon sticks.

Understanding White Balsamic Vinegar

White balsamic vinegar shares its origins with traditional balsamic vinegar, originating from Modena, Italy. However, it undergoes a distinct aging process, resulting in a lighter, sweeter, and milder flavor. This vinegar is known for its ability to enhance dishes without overwhelming their natural flavors.

White balsamic vinegar boasts a subtle taste with hints of honey and a smooth, syrupy texture. Its light, fruity notes make it the perfect accompaniment to salads, seafood, and even desserts. Others use the ingredient to marinate meats, vegetables, and fish, imparting a gentle, sweet taste and tang.

Why Substitute white Balsamic Vinegar?

While white balsamic vinegar is undoubtedly a culinary gem, there are various scenarios where finding a substitute becomes necessary. Here are some common reasons you might need an alternative:

  • Cost. High-quality white balsamic vinegar can be pricier than its counterparts or other vinegar types. Its production process, aging duration, and the type of grapes used can contribute to its premium price.
  • Availability. White balsamic vinegar may not always be readily available in your local grocery store or pantry.
  • Flavor preferences. While white balsamic is subtly sweet, some might want a sharper or milder flavor for their dish, especially if they’re aiming for a specific taste or pairing it with certain ingredients that require a different vinegar profile.
  • Cooking adjustments. A recipe might call for vinegar with a different acidity level or flavor profile to achieve a specific culinary result.

Top Substitutes for White Balsamic Vinegar

Now that we understand the need for substitutes, let’s explore different alternatives for white balsamic vinegar:

White Wine Vinegar

White wine vinegar has a tangy, slightly fruity taste and a mild acidity. It’s also less sweet than white balsamic vinegar but similarly mild. Great for dressings, marinades, and deglazing, this substitute is well-suited for dishes where a subtle vinegar flavor is desired. 

You can directly replace white balsamic vinegar with white wine vinegar in a 1:1 ratio.

Rice Vinegar

Made from fermented rice, rice vinegar is lighter and less intense than white balsamic vinegar, with a delicate, slightly sweet taste. Its gentle acidity makes it ideal for recipes that require a delicate touch. The vinegar variety is a star in many Asian-inspired dishes like sushi, pickled veggies, and stir-fries, as it enhances flavors without being overpowering. 

Chew tip: To imitate white balsamic’s flavor with rice vinegar, add a pinch of sugar or a drop of honey for a sweet touch. Adjust to your liking.

Replace white balsamic vinegar with rice vinegar in a 1:1 ratio.

Apple Cider Vinegar

Apple cider vinegar has a fruity, slightly sweet taste. It’s stronger than white balsamic vinegar but still gives dishes a nice tang. It’s great in dressings, barbecue sauces, and pickles. Its versatility allows it to be used in sweet recipes such as cakes, gummies, and more. 

Replace white balsamic vinegar with apple cider vinegar in a 1:1 ratio. Adjust based on your preference, as it can be more dominant in flavor.

Lemon Juice & White Wine Vinegar Mix

This combination offers a unique and zesty change to recipes. It mixes the zest of lemon juice with the mild tart of white wine vinegar for a bright, citrusy, tangy flavor. 

While it’s different from white balsamic vinegar, it’s a vibrant alternative. It works well in dressings, marinades, and dishes that benefit from a citrus touch. For a balanced blend, mix equal parts lemon juice and white wine vinegar. 

To substitute, start with this blend in a 1:1 ratio and adjust based on your preference for a more lemony or vinegary flavor. 

Champagne Vinegar

Derived from the same grapes as champagne, this vinegar offers a light and delicate flavor. It’s ideal for light vinaigrettes, seafood dishes, and recipes that need a subtle vinegar touch. 

While it’s similar to white balsamic, it tends to be less sweet. To bring it closer to the taste of white balsamic, add sugar or a drop of honey with champagne vinegar. 

Use champagne vinegar in a 1:1 ratio. Modify seasoning and quantities as needed to get the flavor you want.

a collage of bottles of white balsamic vinegar.

How to Use Substitutes in Recipes

Here are some detailed guidelines for effectively using these substitutes for white balsamic vinegar in your recipes:

  • Start with a 1:1 ratio. Most times, you can directly substitute white balsamic vinegar with the suggested alternative using an equal quantity. This ensures a seamless transition in your recipes.
  • Taste and adjust. Always taste your dish after adding the substitute. Adjust the quantity to achieve the desired level of acidity and sweet flavor. Remember, cooking is an art, and your taste buds are your best guide.
  • Consider adding sweeteners. If your recipe relies on the sweet taste of white balsamic vinegar, add a touch of honey, sugar, or another sweetener to achieve a similar flavor balance. This step is especially crucial when using apple cider vinegar, as it can be more tart.
  • Experiment and adapt. Don’t be afraid to experiment and adapt recipes to suit your palate. Cooking is an ever-evolving process, and making adjustments to suit your taste is an essential part of the culinary journey.

The bottom line

Flexibility is the key to creating dishes that resonate with your personal preferences. While white balsamic vinegar brings a unique flavor to your dishes, these substitutes offer a world of possibilities.

So, embrace the joy of cooking, try out these substitutes, and let your taste buds be your guide. After all, the beauty of the kitchen lies in your ability to tailor recipes to suit your unique palate. As you venture into the realm of culinary creativity, may your dishes always be full of flavor, excitement, and that unmistakable touch of your personal flair.

More About Balsamic Vinegar

5 Ideal Substitutes For White Balsamic Vinegar

5 Ideal Substitutes For White Balsamic Vinegar

Running out of white balsamic vinegar? There's an ideal substitute for white balsamic vinegar in this guide, and you might have it in your kitchen right now.


  • White Wine Vinegar
  • Rice Vinegar
  • Apple Cider Vinegar
  • Lemon Juice & White Wine Vinegar Mix
  • Champagne Vinegar


  1. Substitute using a 1:1 ratio in any dish that uses white balsamic vinegar.


Each substitute has its own distinct flavor and texture. To mimic white balsamic vinegar, keep in mind that you may need to add ingredients like honey or sugar.

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