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Substitutes for vermouth

Vermouth is actually a fortified wine that is especially used as dessert and appetizer prepared by herbs and spices. It provides a specific aroma and flavor. The spices and herbs that are mostly used include cinnamon, cloves, ginger, star anise, quinine, juniper barriers, chamomile, sage, basil, thyme, hops, gentian, and wormwood. Out of these, gentian and wormwood provide bitterness to vermouth.

Flavored wine (Vermouth) has been used in the times of Homer, Hippocrates, and Cicero. Cassia leaves, sweat flags, sesame oil, and wormwood were used to add flavors in wine in old Egypt and Babylon. Antonio Benedetto, who belonged to Italy, was the inventor of its recipe. In cases where there is no Vermouth, then users may need substitutes to get sustained aroma and flavor. Some of the various substitutes are highlighted here.

1. White wine:

For the replacement of dry vermouth, the best substitute is the white wine. White wine is prepared by the process of fermentation of colorless grapes. It is harnessed in the preparation of stews, risottos, seafood dishes, sauces, and especially for the tenderizing meat white wine. It is beneficial because it is easily accessible, and dishes can be cooked at less amount of alcohol. Below are some of the benefits of white wine:

  • It repairs endothelial cells
  • It offers protective benefits for the heart
  • It contains antioxidants


White wine is a perfect substitute for vermouth. It is easily accessible and has enormous health benefits.

2. Wine vinegar

Wine vinegar, prepared by the fermentation of acetic acid and ethanol in the presence of bacteria, is one of the best substitutes of vermouth. It is acidic, just like vermouth.

It is used in stews, marinades, and sauces. Red wine vinegar has the decolorizing ability, so it is not used in light-colored dishes as a substituent of dry vermouth. Its general use is for sweet vermouth. Balsamic vinegar is dark-brown color, and it has fruity-smell.

Health benefits of wine vinegar include:

  • It helps in the production of red blood cells
  • It stifles antibacterial activity
  • It prevents cardiovascular diseases.


The acidic properties of wine vinegar make it a perfect substitute for vermouth. Wine vinegar has numerous health benefits and is widely used in cookery.

3. Grape and Lemon juices:


Grape and lemon juices can be used as substituents of vermouth, but they are a bit sweeter than vermouth. White and normal grape juices are used as alternatives for the dry and sweet vermouth, respectively. Being acidic in nature, Lemon juice is used to provide acidity in the recipe. The amount used is per the flavor preference. However, several citrus fruits cannot be used as substitutes for vermouth because of their excessive flavor.

  • They are great immune boosters
  • They prevent infectious diseases
  • They have anti-aging benefits


Grapes and lemons can also be considered as substitutes for vermouth. They are acidic, and they are sweeter than vermouth.

White wine vinegar and white grape juices are the best substitutes for dry vermouth. Vermouth is mostly used in Europe and outside of Europe. Each substituent of vermouth has its characteristic; hence, they are used according to preferences.

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