General Question

zenvelo's avatar

In cooking, what's a good substitute for red wine?

Asked by zenvelo (30989points) January 5th, 2011

I like to cook, and one of my intentions for the new year is to cook more meals at home from scratch. A lot of recipes that sound good, such as stews and sauces, call for red wine. But I don’t keep alcohol of any sort in my house.

What’s a good alternative to red wine in a recipe?

Observing members: 0 Composing members: 0

18 Answers

Skaggfacemutt's avatar

Is cooking sherry something you don’t want in the house as well?

crisw's avatar

Tart red grape juice may work, depending on the recipe.

zenvelo's avatar

@Skaggfacemutt I am okay having cooking sherry in the house. But does it replace red wine?

@crisw I am thinking of stews in particular, and also a reduction sauce I was taught in a class.

Tropical_Willie's avatar

@Skaggfacemutt The alcohol is still in cooking sherry just has added salt.
@zenvelo Try some red wine vinegar or fruit juice with no added sugar. Also Balsamic vinegar.

Lightlyseared's avatar

So why can’t you buy a bottle of cheap red wine and call it “cooking wine”?

Skaggfacemutt's avatar

I have used cooking sherry instead of red wine, and it lends a great flavor, in my opinion.

zenvelo's avatar

@Lightlyseared (what a perfect name for a cooking question) I am a recovering alcoholic and do not want any wine in the house. (my former “expertise” in red wine was a particularly difficult issue).

zenvelo's avatar

a local store has varietal grape juice. will that work or is it too sweet?

crisw's avatar

Looks like this conversation had some good suggestions.

Lightlyseared's avatar

@zenvelo well in that case red grape juice with diluted red wine vinegar (the vinegar must be diluted or all you’ll taste is vinegar). Other alternatives are tomato juice or the liquid you get in a can of tinned mushrooms.

zenvelo's avatar

@crisw Thanks! didn’t see that, it will help.

marinelife's avatar

You can just substitute chicken or vegetable stock for the wine.

Kardamom's avatar

They make non-alcoholic red wine which you can see on this site and I’ve also seen it at Whole Foods.

And here is a site that lists all sorts of different substitutions for wine in recipes. But note that the flavor will be different (not bad, just different).

Another part of the same site has an alcohol burn-off chart so if you still want to use regular alcohol you can see that most of it is burned off in the cooking process.

Blueroses's avatar

Here’s a great list of substitutions for all sorts of alcohol in cooking.

partyparty's avatar

Quite often I use cranberry juice. It is particularly delicious with lamb.

downtide's avatar

I would try mixing red wine vinegar with red grape juice. It might take some experimenting to work out the perfect balance though. Or you could just get alcohol-free wine.

YARNLADY's avatar

There are a lot of good answers here. I just use apple juice.

zenvelo's avatar

thanks everyone! lots of stuff for me to try!

Answer this question




to answer.

This question is in the General Section. Responses must be helpful and on-topic.

Your answer will be saved while you login or join.

Have a question? Ask Fluther!

What do you know more about?
Knowledge Networking @ Fluther