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Enhance Recipes: 5 BEST Substitutes for Dry Sherry

Ever been in the middle of cooking and realized you’re fresh out of dry sherry?

Yup, we’ve been there too. It’s not just you.

It happens to the best of chefs and home cooks alike.

Luckily, the kitchen is like a playground if you know how to use it.

We’ve got some killer swaps that’ll save your dish without a trip to the store.

Think of it as a fun twist in your cooking routine, not a roadblock.

From apple cider vinegar to vanilla extract, we’re about to unveil some top-secret ingredients that’ll keep your flavors on point.

Ready to turn a cooking hiccup into a flavor win? Let’s get into it.

The 5 Best Substitutes for Dry Sherry

If you are looking for an alternative to dry sherry, there are plenty of different options available.

From fortified wines like Marsala and Madeira to fruit-infused syrups and even vermouths, you can find a substitute that works for almost any recipe.

Here are the top five best substitutes for dry sherry:

1 – Dry White Wine

Dry white wine is an incredibly versatile and flavourful drink that can be enjoyed on its own or with a meal.

Ranging from oaky and acidic to sweet and delicate, there is something for everyone – making it a popular choice amongst those who like to explore different wines.

Due to its light flavor, dry white wine has a pleasant taste that is not overpowering the palate but still gives off some subtle notes of citrus and minerals; the texture is typically crisp and often refreshing.

As a substitution for dry sherry, dry white wine can be used in place of any recipes calling for Sherry; this makes it an easy way to create interesting dishes with familiar flavors.

2 – Dry Vermouth

Dry Vermouth is an aromatized, fortified wine that has an alcoholic content of around 15-18%, making it a great alternative to drinking hard liquor.

This light-bodied wine usually has a light earthen color and a taste that ranges from slightly sweet to lightly bitter.

Its texture is crisp and refreshing due to the presence of botanical flavors, herbs, and spices like star anise, orange peel, cardamom, or herbs.

Dry Vermouth can be used as a substitute for dry sherry in many recipes if you’re looking for something with lower alcohol content or don’t have any sherry on hand.

The subtle but distinct flavor will enhance whatever dish you choose to make.

3 – Madeira Wine

Madeira wine is an interesting and complex fortified wine that originates from the Portuguese islands of Madeira.

It has a unique production process, with wine aging in a high temperature and humidity environment, whereas traditional oaked wines are aged in a controlled, cool environment.

The resulting product has an array of tastes, with notes of caramel and burnt sugar due to the long oxidation process.

In terms of texture, this beverage is quite robust: it is quite viscous and has a syrupy yet tannic feel to it.

Madeira works well as a substitute for dry sherry: it can pair nicely with grilled dishes and light game such as sausages, veal, beef, or pork dishes.

For those who prefer to indulge their sweet tooth without sacrificing their nutritional needs, Madeira is also very suitable for fruit desserts.

4 – Sherry Vinegar

Sherry vinegar is a unique and versatile flavoring agent.

It is created in the Spanish region of Jerez and uses naturally aged sherry wines as its base.

The sherry is aged in oak barrels for at least six months, resulting in an acidic liquid with a tangy flavor and an aroma that hints of oaky sweetness.

It has a milder taste than regular vinegar but still packs bold flavors due to its maturity process.

To substitute dry sherry, simply use an equal amount of sherry vinegar in any recipe calling for dry sherry.

Sherry vinegar is incredibly useful when seasoning dishes such as seafood, pork dishes, sauces, and dressings.

Its rich flavor makes it perfect as a finishing touch to salads or even desserts such as ice cream sundaes.

With just a few drops of this profound vinegar, some simple ingredients can become transformed into something truly special.

5 – White Wine Vinegar

White Wine Vinegar is an exact substitute for dry sherry in many recipes, yet it has its own unique flavor profile.

Its vinegar-y scent and slightly acidic taste make it perfect for dressing salads and sauces.

When heated, it imparts a subtle smell of crisp fruit without overpowering the other flavors and ingredients.

White wine vinegar is milder than other varieties of vinegar which makes it ideal to use in desserts, braises, and marinades.

This versatile ingredient can be used alongside bold-flavored substances to add complexity while balancing out boldness.

For those who want a more mellow taste than that of sherry, white wine vinegar is the perfect alternative.

The 5 Best Substitutes for Dry Sherry

Need a stand-in for dry sherry in your recipe? Explore our selection of 5 substitutes that can mimic its nutty and subtly sweet notes, ensuring your dish remains rich and flavorful.
5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 20 minutes
Course Substitutes
Servings 1 Serving


  • Dry White Wine
  • Dry Vermouth
  • Madeira Wine
  • Sherry Vinegar
  • White Wine Vinegar


  • Pick your favorite substitute from the list above.
  • Follow cooking directions for your selected substitute with the proper ratio of ingredients.
Keyword Substitutes for Dry Sherry
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