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    Apple Cider Substitute: Top 13 Alternatives You Might Know!

    Apple cider is a more flavorful and refreshing beverage filled with the sweetness of apples. Sadly, it is not easily available at local stores. You might need an apple cider substitute, and there are plenty of options that you will find. 

    Some of the best and easy substitutes are apple juice, rice vinegar, white vinegar, orange juice, lemon juice, and many more that we will discuss in this post. 

    People often confuse apple cider with apple cider vinegar, but they are different in some circumstances. The vinegar is a bit sour and zesty, containing alcohol, whereas apple cider is less acidic and sweeter than apple juice. 

    Furthermore, apple cider is less acidic for those who like sweet beverages with no sourness. However, sometimes you may not have it available for your recipe. 

    Do not worry! This post will cover some amazing substitutes from which you can choose one and make a suitable apple cider replacement for your recipe. 

    Let’s get started!

    Substitutes for Apple Cider – Best Alternatives!

    It is normal to run out of apple cider because it is not readily available most of the time. You can use other easy-to-find replacements to boost your recipe when you do not have it.

    Go through each substitute and select the one that aligns with your liking!

    1. Apple Juice

    Apple Juice as a apple cider substitute
    Image: Freepik

    Apple juice is one of the closest substitutes for apple cider because both beverages contain the sweetness of fresh apples. But keep in mind that apple juice is sweeter than apple cider.

    If you do not like sweetness too much, add a little juice to your recipe, so it does not become overly sweet, according to your preference. 

    Also, if you do not want your recipe filled with extra sweetness, then you can also try unsweetened apple juice; by adding this, you will not have to reduce the amount of sugar. It will work great! 

    2. Rice Vinegar 

    Rice vinegar is also a good apple cider replacement which will work perfectly in your recipes. It may not benefit your health like apple cider, but it will deliver the expected flavor. 

    It also adds a glimpse of acidity and fills your meal with wholesome flavors. Remember that it is a bit more sour and tangy than apple cider, so add sugar to balance the taste.

    Rice vinegar works great in soups, veggies, and all rice-based meals. Also, sprinkle this vinegar open-handedly on chicken kale salad to highlight the supreme flavors of every ingredient. 

    3. White Vinegar

    White vinegar can also work in your recipes when unavailable apple cider is. Although it is completely different in color, white vinegar consists of acetic acid and filtered water. 

    This vinegar does not provide a sweet and fruity taste, but it works great in marinades, savory dishes, pickles, soups, and stews. Your meal will look delicious and flavorful, so it is still a great substitute. 

    Most importantly, it is very common and easy to find at any local store because people often use white vinegar in some things other than cooking.

    4. Orange Juice

    orange juice
    Image: Freepik

    Orange juice is a bit sweeter compared to apple cider, but it is still a good substitute in various recipes. Its flavor does not contradict the flavors of your meal. 

    Its tart and acidic flavor will work well in glazes, marinades, and sauces. Remember to avoid any extra usage of sugar. If your recipe is still overly sweet, try adding vinegar to balance sweet and sour flavors. 

    5. Lemon Juice

    Lemon juice as a apple cider substitute
    Image: Freepik

    Lemon juice is undoubtedly a great alternative to apple cider because of its extremely acidic flavor. It provides a light, vinegary taste, enhancing your baked dishes and other desserts. 

    You can also use it for salad flavoring because lemon juice is loaded with vitamins and other nutrients, making your meal tasty and healthy.

    6. Malt Vinegar 

    Malt vinegar will work great as an apple cider substitute in various recipes. This sweet, acidic, and mild flavor will excellently heighten your meaty dishes and stir-fries.

    This alternative is super easy to find at any nearby stores. To be safe, add malt vinegar as the same amount of apple cider because it is naturally sweet. So, there is no need to add extra or other sweeteners.

    When substituting, you will notice that malt vinegar has delivered the perfect balanced flavor.

    7. Balsamic Vinegar

    Balsamic vinegar is not common, but if you have it available in your kitchen, you have a perfect apple cider replacement. This vinegar has everything you need: rich, sweet, nutty, and surprisingly chocolatey flavor. 

    Balsamic vinegar will work like magic if you make a meaty dish, salad, or stir-fries. You do not have to add extra sugar or other sweeteners when using this vinegar. 

    Note that the flavor may vary, so use half a tbsp of balsamic vinegar for one tbsp of apple cider. 

    8. Honey Cider

    Honey cider
    Image: Freepik

    Honey cider is an easy substitute available everywhere and matches the taste of apple cider. It combines honey, lemon, and yeast, making it extremely flavorful and sour with a touch of sweetness. 

    It is great in taste and beneficial for your health; it helps boost the immune system and improves heart health. You can replace it with a 1:1 ratio of apple cider.

    The honey effect creates the same sweetness as apple cider, enhancing your recipe, including meats and fish. The dressing of salads can also be an excellent option when substituting honey cider. 

    9. Lime Juice

    Lime juice
    Image: Freepik

    Lime juice is another great substitute for apple cider. The flavor is not the same as lemon juice, so do not confuse both juices. Lime juice is not sweet; it delivers a specific acidic taste. 

    When replacing lime juice, you will have to add on sugar or other sweeteners to insert the touch of sweetness which makes your recipe mouth-watering. 

    Well, because of its taste, people prefer using it in seafood or meat dishes. If you like baked fish in tomato sauce, you can also top it with lime juice to make it extra savory. 

    10. White Wine Vinegar

    White wine vinegar is a mixture of grapes high in acetic acid. If you add this vinegar to your recipe, ensure that you add some extra sweeteners since its acidity might be overwhelming. 

    Mostly, this substitute is common for meat recipes–for instance, some firecracker meatballs will be a good option! 

    11. Red Wine Vinegar

    Red wine vinegar can also be a good substitute for apple cider. But you have to be attentive to the usage of this vinegar because its flavor is strong and overpowering. 

    When you are using this alternative, try to start with less quantity. Later on, add more if needed. Since it is red wine vinegar, it might change the color of your overall meal. 

    If you do not want any color difference, add white wine vinegar as it is clear and uncolored. 

    12. Sherry Vinegar

    Sherry vinegar has a bold and distinctive taste that does not match apple cider, but the acidic flavor makes it a substitute. 

    It depends on you; if you like its flavor, you should replace it in your recipe. Ensure you add the right amount: 1:1 ratio. 

    13. Pear Juice

    Pear juice
    Image: Freepik

    Pear juice is a common sweet beverage used in jam and jelly. Avoid using additional sugar or sweeteners when substituting because it will make your dish extra strong. 

    Pears are easily available. You can even make the juice at home or buy it canned or dried. Ensure that you add the same apple cider to keep the flavor balanced.  


    The substitutes stated above are useful and easy to find, except for a few. But apple juice, lemon juice, and orange juice are the easiest perfect alternatives to apple cider. 

    If you find the other substitutes helpful, you must try them in your recipe. Do not forget to read the instructions before using any replacement and add it according to the required quantity so that your meal turns out perfectly!

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    Areena is a talented writer at The Foodnom, where she enthralls readers with her captivating food-related content.

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