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Gourmet Hacks: 5 BEST Substitutes for Tarragon Vinegar

Alright, so you’ve decided to whip up something fancy and realized you’re out of tarragon vinegar. We’ve been there, and it’s annoying, huh? Not to stress, we’ve got your back with some top-notch swaps that will save your dish without a hitch.

Cooking is all about making do with what you have and still pulling off a meal that makes everyone ask for seconds. “The best dishes come from the heart, not just the pantry,” as we like to say. It’s all about creativity and not letting a missing ingredient throw you off your game.

In this guide, we’ll walk you through five fantastic substitutes for tarragon vinegar that you probably already have lying around. Each substitute we’ve picked not only does the job but brings its own unique twist to your dishes.

The 5 Best Substitutes for Tarragon Vinegar

There are many substitutes for tarragon vinegar.

While these will provide a different flavor than the real thing, they are excellent for marinades or mixed dressings that do not call for an overwhelming amount of vinegar.

Some may even be preferred by those who cannot eat tarragon due to food allergies or personal preference.

SubstituteKey CharacteristicsProper Ratio
Apple Cider VinegarSlightly sweet and tangy flavor1:1 substitution
Balsamic VinegarRich, sweet, and complex flavor1:1 substitution
Distilled White VinegarClear and sharp taste with high acidity1:1 substitution
Red Wine VinegarTangy and slightly fruity flavor1:1 substitution
Rice VinegarMild and slightly sweet with delicate flavor1:1 substitution

Now let’s explore each substitute in more detail:

1 – Apple Cider Vinegar

apple cider vinegar

Apple cider vinegar is a traditional ingredient that many use in salad dressings and marinades.

For those who love the flavor of tarragon, apple cider vinegar can be used as a substitute for this particular type of vinegar.

However, it does not contain the same sweetness due to its stronger flavor profile.

It is important to use a lighter oil such as olive or canola oil.

Since most tarragon vinegar also contains sugar, this will help cut the acidity of apple cider vinegar.

Apple cider vinegar is a good substitute for those who do not have access to tarragon vinegar due to allergies or personal preference.

It is also possible to make your version of tarragon vinegar by using apple cider vinegar and adding a few drops of dried or fresh tarragon.

To get the most out of this, add the dried herb to the sun tea for a few weeks before straining.

2 – Balsamic Vinegar

balsamic vinegar

Balsamic vinegar is made from grapes and crafted from a reduction process.

It is dark and has a much stronger flavor than regular vinegar since it contains grape juice, which can be used as a sweetener for dressing or marinade recipes.

This type of vinegar works better with lighter oils such as sunflower oil or grapeseed oil rather than extra virgin olive oil, but this is personal preference.

Balsamic vinegar is a great substitute for tarragon vinegar because it has a stronger taste, which works well in dressings or marinades that contain strong ingredients such as apples or cranberries.

It also makes a good addition to gravies when combined with fresh parsley and garlic powder.

3 – Distilled White Vinegar

distilled white vinegar

Distilled white vinegar is a popular ingredient in both salad dressings and marinades.

It works well with both lighter oils such as canola or grapeseed oil and stronger tasting oils like extra virgin olive oil.

This type of vinegar doesn’t provide much sweetness due to its low acidity, so it is important to use the same amount as tarragon vinegar.

Distilled white vinegar works best as a substitute for those who do not have access to tarragon vinegar because of allergies or personal preference.

It can also be used in apple cider vinegar since it has a similar acidity and flavor profile.

Be cautious, however, if the recipe also calls for sugar.

Unless the amount is minuscule, distilled white vinegar does not contain enough sweetness to balance out the flavor of sugar.

4 – Red Wine Vinegar

red wine vinegar

Red wine vinegar is a popular ingredient in salad dressings and marinades due to its strong flavor.

This vinegar also works well with lighter oils such as canola oil or grapeseed oil.

Still, it does not have the same sweetness as apple cider vinegar, limiting its use compared to tarragon vinegar.

Red wine vinegar is a good substitute for those who do not have access to tarragon vinegar.

It also works well as a substitute for apple cider vinegar, especially in dressings and marinades that contain strong ingredients such as apples or cranberries.

5 – Rice Vinegar

rice vinegar

A common ingredient in Asian cuisine, rice vinegar comes from fermenting rice wine made from sticky rice.

It has a milder flavor than other vinegars and works well with lighter oils such as canola oil or grapeseed oil.

This type of vinegar does not have a high acidity level, making it a poor substitute for tarragon vinegar.

Rice vinegar is not suited for use in recipes that call for tarragon vinegar.

It does not contain enough acidity to balance sugar or apple cider vinegar flavors.

This vinegar is also best when used sparingly but can overpower lighter dressings and marinades since its flavor profile is mild.

The 5 Best Substitutes for Tarragon Vinegar

Looking to substitute tarragon vinegar in your recipes? Your search ends here! We've compiled a list of the 5 best alternatives that will seamlessly replace tarragon vinegar, ensuring your dishes maintain that distinctive flavor profile.
5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Course Substitutes
Servings 4 Servings


  • Apple Cider Vinegar
  • Balsamic Vinegar
  • Distilled White Vinegar
  • Red Wine Vinegar
  • Rice 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 tarragon vinegar
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5 from 1 vote (1 rating without comment)

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