Healthier Alternatives To Alcohol

Healthier Alternatives To Alcohol

Wine is a popular beverage, which is alcoholic by nature. A process called fermentation done by using grapes is used to make it. More than the beverages, wine is a popular cooking ingredient for many recipes.

The reasons to use wine in cooking are that it enhances the flavor and color of what you are cooking. It makes the food moist, juicy and tenderizes meat for which it is added to many meat recipes.

When you don’t have access to the wine and have to cook something that uses wine, you can look for other options. Similarly, in other conditions when you are avoiding alcohol i.e. during pregnancy, it is better to use substitutes for wine.

What Can You Use In Place Of Alcohol?


Vinegar is another fermented product that is closely linked to wine. It is of different types and all of them are equally helpful. You can easily put vinegar in your recipe.

Use white vinegar for liquid-based recipes and salad dressings. Whereas for meat tenderizing, use red vinegar. You can use it on beef, pork, and all festive dishes. For casual meat meals i.e. chicken and fish, white vinegar would work too.

To your surprise, white vinegar is even more acidic than wine so it is better to dilute it before adding to the recipes. The best is to use vinegar and water in a 1:1 ratio.


Pomegranate Juice

Pomegranate juice is a natural fruit juice that is neither fermented nor processed. But it is fairly acidic and enhances the taste of food recipes. The flavor and aroma are so good that it is sometimes compared to the red wine.

All the recipes that use red wine, you can alternatively use pomegranate juice in it. As compared to wine, pomegranate juice is less acidic. If you want a stronger taste, try mixing it with vinegar and use it.


Pomegranate juice is the best to be used in sauces and salad dressing. It also tastes delicious when used as a glaze for vegetables. It is a healthy alternative to wine, which has no side effects at all.

Cranberry Juice

Cranberry juice another beverage, which is a substitute for red wine. It is even similar is taste and color to the red wine. It is equally acidic which brings up the flavor of any dish to which you add cranberry juice.

Like pomegranate juice, cranberry juice is a replacement of red wine. But due to the higher acidity, it is


better to dilute it before adding to the food directly. The concentration for dilution in water is the same 1:1.

Remember that cranberry juice itself is sweet. If you are adding it to a recipe, make sure that you have estimated the sugar levels before using it. Or else, the recipe will be a lot sweeter than your expectations.

If you are using it in a savory recipe, you can reduce the sweetness by adding vinegar in double dilution. Add it later to the recipe. Additionally, you can reduce the sweetness of cranberry juice by mixing it with a tablespoon or two of vinegar before adding it to recipes.

Grape Juice

Grapes juice is another substitute for wine, which is more or less similar to it. It is a non-alcoholic beverage, which has the same taste but no alcohol in it.

Wine and grape juice, both are made of grapes. That is why the taste and fragrance are so much identical. White grape juice tastes same like white wine and the red grape juice tastes like red wine.

Grape juice is sweet naturally. Mix vinegar and grape juice in 2:1 concentration before adding it to the recipe for reducing the sweetness.

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To your surprise, you can use chicken beef or even vegetable stock for the same effect as that of wine in food recipes. All these stock types are a base on which many food recipes are founded.

To tenderize the meat, using stock is exceptionally helpful. And it is a non-alcoholic substitute for the wine, it is healthier and safer. The broth has a strong color and flavor, which enhances the taste of the food even more.


As per your recipe, you can use chicken, beef or vegetable stock accordingly. If you want a strong flavor, try adding vinegar to the stock and mix it into the food recipe. It brings the best taste that you can ever think.

Apple Juice

Apple juice is a natural beverage, which is sweeter in taste. You may add it to a number of recipes without the fear of taste changing. Due to the flavor and taste, it is a replacement for the wine that you can use. Or you can combine apple juice and white wine in 1:1 ratio for the amazing taste.

It is important to know that apple juice only works well when your recipe requires only a little of the wine. For the recipes that require a large quantity of wine, apple juice cannot work any good. Only use apple juice when you want to use a little wine.

For extra effect, you can always mix it with vinegar for the extra flavor.

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Lemon Juice

Lemon juice is another thing that you can try as a replacement for wine. Now contrary to all the options before, lemon juice has a sour flavor. You may see lemon juice as a part of many recipes but many of you wouldn’t know that lemon juice can also replace wine in recipes.


Lemon juice has naturally enhanced flavor. It has a tangy acidic taste, which can give you a strong effect even without using vinegar into it. It is the best to be used in heavy festive recipes such as steaks and other meat recipes.

You can replace white wine or red wine both with lemon juice. Lemon juice is tart and it doesn’t accurately match wine by effects. Take special cause while adding lemon juice or else you will make your food recipe over flavored.

If you want only a little of the flavor, try adding lemon juice diluted in water. The best concentration is 1:1. Never mix vinegar and lemon juice to be added to a recipe. It will make the taste go bad, as both are strong food ingredients.

RELATED: Weight Loss with Lemon Water

Tomato Juice

An unusual addition to this list is tomato juice. Tomatoes are a part of many food recipes for the sour taste. It is acidic and an overdose of tomatoes makes your recipe sour. When used in an appropriate quantity, tomatoes can enhance the flavor to a good level.

Tomato juice is a good alternative to red wine. It is very much similar to acidity and color with wine. You can easily use tomato juice when you don’t have access to wine. Or if you just want a flavor enhancement, try using red wine and tomato juice at 1:1 ratio. It will make your recipes deliciously good.


For raw recipes like salads, you may like to add tomato juice to another fruit juice. Tomato juice doesn’t taste good in raw form to many of the people. Adding another fruit juice will sweeten up the recipe. The raw taste works best in marinating recipes for meat.




As a graduate of Public Health and Policy, Andrea developed an interest in disease development, food and safety and the latest advancements in health. She is a Freelance writer who had affiliations with multiple blogs. Andrea is now pursuing her post-doctorate in Behavioral Sciences.

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