Are white vinegar and white wine vinegar the same?

In this article, we will answer the question “Are white vinegar and white wine vinegar the same”? and discuss is there any substitute for white wine vinegar? 

 Are white vinegar and white wine vinegar the same?

No, white vinegar and white wine vinegar are not the same. The clearest difference between White vinegar and white wine vinegar is that white wine vinegar is made by the process of fermentation while white vinegar is created from acetic acid and distilled water. Distilled water is used for the dilution of acetic acid for making white vinegar or distilled vinegar.

White wine vinegar is made from fruit that is converted into alcohol like beer or cider. Then acetic acid bacteria are added to break down the alcohol and this process is known as fermentation. When this process is complete there is no alcohol left and the acidity is more than 5%.

White vinegar is made from acetic acid and the distilled water simply by adding water into the acid that is why it has a more pungent smell compared to white wine vinegar.

What are the uses of the different types of vinegar?

Every vinegar has specific characteristics like smell and taste. You can’t use white vinegar instead of red wine vinegar. Let’s discuss the use of different types of vinegar in food.

White vinegar may be used in salad dressing, chicken and fish, marinades and pickling. You can use red wine salad dressing, beef and pork and vegetables.

Champagne is used for sauces, salad dressing, deglazing of the pan and dipping with olive oil for bread. Sherry is used for the glaze on chicken or duck, sweetener for soups and vinaigrette. Rice wine can be Asian dishes and salad dressing. You can use apple cider in the buttermilk, marinades and pickling.

Is there any difference between pasteurized and unpasteurized vinegar?

Simply we can say that if the vinegar heated and ‘mother’, that is the bacterium at the bottom of a vinegar bottle, killed this process is known as the pasteurized vinegar and if it is not head and ‘mother’ is present at the bottom of the jar than it is known as unpasteurized vinegar. 

The mother makes the vinegar unclear. Pasteurized vinegar is free from mother, clear and has a clean taste compared to unpasteurized vinegar.

Can you substitute apple cider vinegar instead of other types?

Yes, you can use apple cider vinegar for any other vinegar.  If your recipe calls for white wine vinegar and you don’t have this in your kitchen then you can substitute white wine vinegar with apple cider. Yes, this is possible for you to replace one vinegar with apple cider because apple cider is versatile.

As apple cider is made from apples by the process of fermentation so if you don’t like apples don’t use apple vinegar in your recipe.

Other FAQs about Vinegar which you may be interested in.

What happens when adding vinegar to bread dough?

How do you make malt vinegar?

Is there any substitute for the white wine vinegar?

White wine vinegar is not too sour or too sweet, instead, they have a proper flavour compared to white vinegar and red wine vinegar. Substitution depends on the recipe.

  • You can use lemon juice. It will provide tanginess but citric acid is less pungent than acetic acid in white vinegar.
  • You can use rice vinegar as a substitute for white wine vinegar as it has a mild taste.
  • Red wine and sherry vinegar can be the right choice but these have a stronger flavour.

Uses of white wine vinegar

  • You can use white wine vinegar in brining. It is the best choice for pickling fruit and vegetables. For an ideal flavour, you can add white vinegar.
  • You can use white wine vinegar in salad dressing to brighten the texture and bring flavour to it. Simply add white wine vinegar in the oil, add some seasoning like salt and pepper, you can add shallot and mustard.
  • You can use white wine vinegar for brightening the recipe and for braising chicken breasts.

How to tell if wine vinegar goes bad?

You should ensure that the flavour and taste of vinegar don’t go bad. Use vinegar before the expiry date. Everything in the kitchen has an expiration date. You should use them before the best date.

If you use expired vinegar you didn’t experience the same taste as the fresh vinegar has. Store the vinegar in a cool and dry place and ensure that they are always tightly sealed. You can store vinegar in the fridge if you want to store it for a longer time.


In this article, we answered the question “Are white vinegar and white wine vinegar the same”? and discussed is there any substitute for white wine vinegar? 

If you have any questions and comments please let us know. 


Hi, I am Charlotte, I love cooking and in my previous life, I was a chef. I bring some of my experience to the recipes on this hub and answer your food questions.