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Substitute for Wine In Cooking


One of the things I love sharing with you is kitchen tips that save you time and money. When I was cleaning out a drawer in my desk recently, I found a handwritten list of kitchen tips that I made last year to share here with you all. After looking over the list I realized that I only shared a couple tips from the list.

Somehow I forgot about the list and never got around to sharing most of them with you. When I realized this I knew that I had to fix that and needed to finish sharing them.

My goal is to start sharing kitchen tips, or one of my favorite kitchen tools, with you every Tuesday. Most Tuesdays it will be a tip, but sometimes I will share a favorite kitchen tool that I use and love. I figure that by doing this every Tuesday it will make sure that I finally finish the list I made.

I think we all want to save time and money in the kitchen and I hope you all look forward to this series each Tuesday.

This week we are starting with answering a question that I often get asked when I share a recipe the calls for wine as an ingredient. Many of you don’t keep wine on hand. Either you don’t drink it or it just is not a staple in your kitchen. I totally understand that and knew that I needed to start by sharing this tip with you all.

This is actually a tip I was sure I had already shared several years ago, but I could not find it in the archives, so I knew I needed to share this with you this week.

Substitute for Wine In Cooking

This is a tip I read years ago and have used many times. I usually keep wine or cooking wine on hand, but sometimes when I run out I use this tip for replacing it.

Wine usually does two things in cooking. It adds flavor and it tenderizes meat. You can use just broth in place of the wine, but a better solution is to add a little wine vinegar to the broth. The vinegar helps tenderize similar to how the wine does.

Now, it does not work and taste exactly the same, but it is the best substitute that I have found.

Wine also has some sweetness to it, so I like to also add a little sugar to the broth and vinegar. You can leave it out, but I find it helps the flavor to add just a little sugar.

The amounts below are for replacing 1 cup of wine, but you can easily adjust the amounts for the recipe you are making. And if I am replacing red wine I like to use beef broth and red wine vinegar. For white wine I like to use chicken broth and white wine vinegar.

And if you don’t have wine vinegar you can use regular vinegar, but the flavor will be a little different.

Have any of you tried this before? What are your thoughts on how it works?


Lynn's Kitchen Adventures


  1. Teresa Rouzer says:

    One thing I learned from watching Julia Child, always keep a bottle of vermouth in the pantry to use in recipes calling for white wine. Vermouth is a fortified wine, with herbs, roots, and other botanicals added for flavor. It keeps well in a dark, cool place. I use white wine in recipes more often than red wine, so I try to keep vermouth on hand. But, I like your tip for using broth and vinegar with a dash of sugar.

  2. Great tip! I don’t use wine so this will really be a tip I will use in the future! Thanks!!

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