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About Everything Wiki » Food » How to replace rice vinegar in rolls and other dishes

How to replace rice vinegar in rolls and other dishes

04 Jun 2023, 00:04, parser
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Rice vinegar is obtained from fermented rice and is used in Japanese, Chinese, Korean, Vietnamese and other Asian cuisines. It has a delicate taste with a slight sweetness, a mild aroma and relatively weak acidity. These qualities make the additive universal: able to balance the dish, but not to interrupt other ingredients.

There are three types of rice vinegar.

  • White. Most often found in stores. Usually it is transparent or light golden, with the mildest taste of all kinds. White rice vinegar is primarily useful for Japanese dishes: rolls, sushi, vegetable snacks and marinades.
  • Red. It is made from rice already fermented with a special kind of red mold. Hence the bright crimson‑red color, fruity notes in the taste and brighter acidity than white. This vinegar is a common ingredient in South Chinese cuisine. It is added to vegetable salads, seafood dishes and poultry.
  • Black. Another kind of rice vinegar popular in China. It is made from black glutinous rice with the addition of millet, wheat and other cereals. The additive has a deeper and richer taste with smoked notes. Black vinegar is good in bright sauces for Chinese dumplings and fried noodles, in stewed meat and fish and cold appetizers.

All three varieties can be found in stores with Asian products or ordered on marketplaces. But if you forgot to buy rice vinegar, try replacing it with more affordable products that will definitely be found in the kitchen.

How to replace rice vinegar in rolls and sushi

Image: Cath Smith / Shutterstock

Boiled rice for rolls and sushi is seasoned with a mixture of white rice vinegar, sugar and salt. This sauce helps to glue the rice and gives them a balanced taste that sets off fresh fish and seafood well.

If you do not have rice vinegar at hand, you should not completely abandon the dressing: the dish will come out very bland and expressionless. Instead, cook it according to one of the recipes below. The amount of ingredients is calculated for 500-600 g of dry rice.

Dressing with apple cider vinegar

This variant has a noticeable fruity taste. It will be more appropriate in rolls without greasy and spicy filling.



Mix all the ingredients in a saucepan or saucepan. Heat, stirring, until the sugar dissolves. Remove from heat and cool to room temperature.

Dressing with lemon juice

Firstly, do not show the Japanese this recipe. Secondly, remember that the dressing will turn out bright, citrus, with a sharper acidity. It is not suitable for fresh fish and seafood with a delicate taste.


  • 5 tablespoons lemon juice;
  • 1 tablespoon of honey;
  • 1 tablespoon of sugar;
  • 1 ½ teaspoons of salt.


Combine all the ingredients in a bowl and mix thoroughly with a whisk until the salt and sugar dissolve.

Ginger marinade dressing

It is customary to serve pickled ginger petals to rolls and sushi . If you like its refreshing taste and aroma, use the liquid from the can for refueling.


  • 70 ml of liquid from pickled ginger;
  • ½ tablespoon of sugar;
  • 1 ½ teaspoons of salt;
  • white wine vinegar — to taste.


Strain the ginger brine through a fine sieve. Mix with sugar and salt. If the liquid is not acidic enough, pour in a little white wine vinegar.

How to replace rice vinegar in other dishes

More alternatives are available for salad dressings, marinades and main courses.

  • White wine vinegar. Of all the types of vinegar, this one, with a mild taste and a subtle fruity aroma, is most similar to white rice. The main difference is the lack of sweetness. Therefore, put exactly the same amount of white wine vinegar in the dish, but add a pinch of sugar for each tablespoon.
  • Apple cider vinegar. It is unsweetened and more sour, with a bright fruity taste. It will well replace white and red rice vinegar in salad dressings and marinades. Change it in recipes in a 1 : 1 ratio and also add sugar or other sweetener to the dish for balance.
  • Lemon juice. This is an affordable, but not the closest option in taste and aroma. Use it only with products that are suitable for citrus freshness. It can be chicken, turkey, fish and green vegetables. Lemon juice will need half as much as vinegar.
  • Dry white wine. Replace vinegar with them only in dishes that are subjected to heat treatment. Otherwise, you will get a sharp aroma of alcohol and an unpleasant bitterness. It is better to choose varieties with pronounced acidity, such as pinot grigio or sauvignon blanc.
  • Balsamic vinegar. Italian vinegar from grape must is suitable only as a substitute for black rice. It has the same rich color and complex taste with hints of fruit.
  • Table vinegar. We warn you right away: this is the most unfortunate replacement. The usual 9% alcohol vinegar with a pungent smell and taste has nothing to do with rice. But if there are no other options, dilute it with ordinary water in a ratio of 1 : 1 and add it to the dish along with a small amount of sugar.
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