Rice vinegar (also called rice wine vinegar) is made by fermenting rice. It originates in East Asia and then spreads globally due to a little sweet and mild taste.
There are many types of rice vinegar, ranging from solid Chinese rice wine vinegar to a spicier Vietnamese one. Based on the cultural cuisine of each country, the ingredient’s color and flavor could be slightly changed to fit.
Nonetheless, no matter what kind of it, rice vinegar is popularly used to season and dress many dishes, such as sushi rolls and salads.
To substitute the condiment in a minute, you need to pick up some similar features. For example, they are apple cider vinegar, white wine vinegar, champagne vinegar, sherry vinegar, balsamic vinegar, lime or lemon juice, seasoned rice vinegar, and red wine vinegar.
8 Best Substitutes For Rice Vinegar
Apple Cider Vinegar
The first name is apple cider vinegar, a popular ingredient in several dishes with many health benefits. Besides, some Asian housemakers catch fruit flies by mixing them with dish soap.
The vinegar comes from apple cider. For this reason, besides the usual vinegar tang, you might taste the apple flavor in the condiment.
Despite the fruity savor, the product from apple can still replace rice vinegar well. That means use it in any recipe calling for the rice vinegar, and you could have the same result.
However, keep in mind that adding extra sugar and a 1:1 ratio for the rice vinegar sub is ideal.
White Wine Vinegar
White wine vinegar is the common ingredient in most pantries and markets. Besides the popularity, a similar taste with rice vinegar makes it the second-best sub.
You can ferment white wine in around one month to make the condiment. There is no alcoholic content included in the vinegar. Otherwise, it still offers a subtle fruity taste like wine. Do not forget the reasonably mild tang of acidity in the vinegar when combined with dishes.
With the same taste profile, one cup of white wine vinegar can replace one cup of rice one. However, this second one is not as sweet as the rice vinegar like the first sub.
For this reason, mixing around ¼ teaspoon of sugar with one cup of white wine vinegar would gain the recipe’s balance.
The ingredient is best for pickling, sauces, and cooking.
Which White Wine Vinegar is the Best?
Suppose you want a high-end, expansive, and fancier sub; the champagne could do well. It costs slightly higher than other ingredients, combined with a lighter taste dedicated to wine.
Produced from champagne, the vinegar has a similar mild flavor. That makes it suitable for seafood dishes, sauces, and salad dressings.
A 1:1 ratio for the sub can suit most dishes. Remember to use extra sweetener for the champagne vinegar tends to be drier than its peer.
Sherry vinegar has long been a popular ingredient in cooking, dressing, and making sauces for its mild and versatile taste.
The cooking liquid contains sherry as the main ingredient. The fortified red wine was first made in southwestern Spain. Winemakers use a particular solera system to create the product. That might be why it contains a more pungent wine taste than others.
Otherwise, that does not affect its mild flavor, which helps it replace the rice vinegar in many dishes.
On the other hand, the darker hue of sherry vinegar could change the sauces or pickled vegetables’ look slightly compared with its counterpart. If that is not your problem, using the sherry with a 1:1 ratio would be the best option.
Suppose you are an Italian food lover; you might be too familiar with this name, balsamic vinegar. Due to its striking dark color and robust taste, vinegar is nearly indispensable in some dishes like bread dips, salad dressings, and marinades.
Concerning its ingredient, the liquid is made by fermenting dark red grapes. That leads to a sweet and tangy flavor characterized as grapes.
While a strong taste makes it unique, that also has its demerits. Cause the rice vinegar has a milder flavor, you need to reduce the amount of balsamic liquid when using it. If not, it might overpower your dishes, particularly in delicate cuisines such as seafood.
Plus, do not cook the ingredient, or you would damage the meal’s flavor.
Lime or Lemon Juice
In the advent of rice vinegar sub, lime or lemon juice is also a great choice due to their similar acidic tang.
Plus, both are popular ingredients in supermarkets. You can even make them in a few minutes by juicing lime or lemon. While both come from sour citrus fruits with a tangy taste, the lemon juice may be a naturally sweeter taste than the lime one.
Moreover, compared with the rice wine vinegar, both citrus juices are sourer. Think about adding extra granulated sugar or honey to your salad dressings or sauces to solve the problem.
Seasoned Rice Vinegar
Like rice vinegar, seasoned rice vinegar has a similar fermented rice ingredient. However, have you noticed that they are seasoned?
That means the white vinegar also includes salt, sake, and sugar. That makes its taste sweeter and bolder than its peer.
Hence, when you use the sub, remember to adjust the amount of sugar and salt in your recipe not to get overpowered.
Red Wine Vinegar
Last but not least is the red wine vinegar. This vinegar might own the most potent flavor among other substitutes. For this reason, you rarely see it in cooking or light dishes like kinds of seafood and sushi. Instead, combining the vinegar with the steak marinade is more usual.
The red wine vinegar is created by red wine. Hence, it is inevitable to sense a dryer, more robust, and fruitier taste in the cooking liquid.
Therefore, I suggest you utilize a smaller amount of the rice vinegar sub not to overwhelm the meal’s flavor.
Best Substitutes for Rice Vinegar
FAQs About Rice Vinegar Substitutes
Is Shaoxing Wine Similar To Rice Wine Vinegar?
No, they are two different types of ingredients. The Shaoxing wine is a kind of rice wine, which contains alcoholic contents. It is similar to mirin or sake (Japanese rice wines)
On the other hand, rice wine vinegar (also called rice vinegar) is not alcoholic. To make it, people mix rice and sugar, leave them fermented into alcohol before into acid.
Can I Use Water To Replace Rice Vinegar?
Of course, a sole cup of water can not replace a flavorful cup of rice vinegar. Instead, it is better to mix water with white vinegar, and you would have a perfect substitute.
What is rice vinegar?
In conclusion, the above list is the 8 best substitutes for rice vinegar.
In my experience, you can think about white wine vinegar as the first option cause it is superbly common in cooking and offers the same taste as its counterpart.
Besides, suppose you want a healthier and multi-purpose choice, the apple cider would be ideal.