Need a good apple juice substitute? Here are 20 simple stand-ins for your favorite dishes, plus an easy recipe to make your own!
Apple juice is a common ingredient in many of our favorite dishes. But, we don’t always have it on hand when we need it.
So what do you do if you run out of apple juice in the middle of making a recipe?
Here are 20 easy apple juice substitutes that can come to the rescue! You’ll find simple apple juice replacements for sauces, marinades, dressings, baking, and more!
I also share an easy recipe to make homemade apple juice. This is a great apple juice substitute for those looking to cut down on sugar!
Apple Juice 101
Apple juice is the product of crushed and strained fresh apples. It’s easy to find in any grocery store or your local farmer’s market.
And there are a few different versions of apple juice to try.
You can enjoy it filtered or unfiltered, sweetened or unsweetened. And store-bought apple juice also goes through a pasteurization process to kill off harmful bacteria.
There are many health benefits of apple juice when enjoyed in moderation.
It’s a good source of vitamin c, boosts immune health, is rich in antioxidants, and reduces the risk for metabolic syndrome.
And while it’s great on its own as a beverage, it’s also perfect for recipes like marinated ribs, glazed sweet potatoes, smoothies, and more!
But, if you happen to run out, you can always use an apple juice substitute from the list below!
The Best Apple Juice Substitutes
1. Apple Cider
If you need a good apple juice substitute for pork, you can try apple cider. It’s more tart and sometimes has a bitter note. But it’s great for recipes that you prefer to be less sweet.
To counteract the stronger flavor and more acidic undertones, you can add a dash of sugar. And then use it as a 1-to-1 substitute.
RELATED: Salted Caramel Apple Cider
2. Apple Cider Vinegar
Apple cider vinegar has a strong, pungent flavor and sharp taste with hints of apple. It’s a good substitute for unsweetened apple juice.
And it’s a great base ingredient for marinades and dressings.
You can dilute the vinegar with a dash or two of water and add a pinch of sugar to offset the sharper flavor.
Use your dilated mixture as a 1-to-1 substitute.
3. Orange Juice
If you happen to have some fresh oranges or orange juice in the fridge, you can use it as an apple juice substitute.
This ingredient is great for salad dressings, marinades, sauces, and smoothies. And it’s the perfect apple juice substitute in bourbon chicken.
If your orange is on the tart side, you can add a dash of sugar before using it as a 1-to-1 substitute.
RELATED: 18 Brilliant Ways to Substitute for Orange Juice
4. Pear Juice
Pear juice is an excellent substitute for apple juice. And it has a very similar taste. You can use it as a 1-to-1 substitute anywhere you would apple juice.
And there’s no need to make any modifications!
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5. Pineapple Juice
Here’s another common fruit juice with a similar sweet taste and tart notes. Pineapple juice is the best substitute for apple juice in smoothies, cocktails, and marinades.
And you can use it as a 1-to-1 substitute with a dash of sugar if desired.
RELATED: 17 Awesome Ways to Substitute for Pineapple Juice
6. White Grape Juice
Sweet and slightly tart, white grape juice works well to replace apple juice in cocktails, smoothies, and dessert recipes.
It’s an easy 1-to-1 substitute for apple juice!
7. Lime Juice
The citric acid in lime juice makes it a great tenderizer for meats. So it’s the perfect apple juice substitute for marinades. And you can also use it for salad dressing, dips, and sauces.
However, it has a much more sour taste.
To counteract that, add 1 tablespoon of sugar to four tablespoons of lime juice. Then use a 1/2 tablespoon of the mixture to substitute for 1 tablespoon of apple juice.
RELATED: Rice Cooker Cafe Rio Rice (Cilantro Lime)
8. Lemon Juice
Lemon juice is very similar to lime juice. And you can use it as a substitute in the same kinds of recipes.
Before substituting, mix three tablespoons of lemon juice with a 1/2 tablespoon of sugar.
Use a 1/2 tablespoon of the mixture to replace a tablespoon of apple juice.
RELATED: Perfect Lemon Basil Pasta
9. Grapefruit Juice
Here’s another citrus juice that can substitute for apple juice. Grapefruit has a similar taste to lime juice with a bitter flavor.
You can use it as a substitute for apple juice in the same way and in the same kinds of recipes. However, you may want to add some extra sugar!
12. Balsamic Vinegar
Balsamic vinegar has a dark, concentrated flavor. And it’s a popular ingredient in marinades, dressings, and dips.
Due to its strong flavor, you can use half the amount of balsamic vinegar as you would apple juice in your favorite recipes.
RELATED: The Easiest One Pan Balsamic Chicken And Veggies
10. Red Wine Vinegar
Made from fermented red grapes, red wine vinegar is a great apple juice substitute for savory dishes, sauces, marinades, and dressings.
It has a bright and punchy flavor that you can tone down with a pinch of brown sugar.
Then you can use it as a 1-to-1 substitute.
11. White Wine Vinegar
White wine vinegar has a fairly sweet flavor with fruity tones. And it’s made from fermented grapes without the skin.
To substitute for apple juice, add a 1/2 tablespoon of sugar to 1 tablespoon of white wine vinegar then use as a 1-to-1 substitute.
This substitute is best used in sautéed recipes, marinades, and dressings.
13. White Vinegar
Here’s another type of vinegar that’s a decent substitute for apple juice in a pinch. White vinegar has a sharp flavor and consists of acetic acid and water.
It’s very strong, so you’ll need a lot less of it!
To substitute, create a mixture of 3 tablespoons of white vinegar and 1 tablespoon of sugar. Then substitute 1 tablespoon of apple juice with a 1/2 tablespoon of the mixture.
14. Rice Wine Vinegar
Rice wine vinegar has a similar sweet and acidic flavor compared to apple juice. And it’s popular in Asian sauces and marinades.
Add 1/4 tablespoon sugar to 1 tablespoon of the vinegar, if desired, and use it as a 1-to-1 substitute.
15. Sherry Vinegar
Made from Palomino grapes, sherry vinegar has a rich flavor with wood or hay notes. And it has a sweet aftertaste similar to apple juice.
To substitute, use 2 tablespoons of sherry vinegar plus a teaspoon of sugar. And then use 1 tablespoon of the sherry mixture to substitute for 1 tablespoon of apple juice
16. Sherry Wine
If you happen to have sherry wine on hand, it’s great for sauces and marinades. And it also has a similar flavor and sweetness to apple juice.
You can use it as a 1-to-1 substitute, but it’s not kid-friendly!
17. Champagne Vinegar
Champagne vinegar has a light and fruity flavor, and it’s great for stir-fries because the alcohol content cooks away.
To substitute, use 1 1/2 tablespoons of champagne vinegar per 1 tablespoon of apple juice in your recipe.
18. White Wine
This substitute is not kid-friendly, so beware. White wine is a good substitute for unsweetened apple juice. And it has a mildly fruity and sweet flavor.
It’s great for savory preparations like sauces and stir fries. But, be careful of flames.
Use 2 tablespoons of white wine for 1 tablespoon of apple juice.
Soda is a great apple juice substitute in baking. It’s an excellent leavening agent and it makes for light and fluffy cakes and breads.
Mild sodas like ginger ale and sprite are your best bet.
Just be sure to use slightly less ginger ale so it doesn’t overpower the dish.
Homemade Apple Juice
If you want a healthy substitute for apple juice from the store, you can make your own! Here’s an easy recipe with just two ingredients!
- 6 fresh apples
- 1/2 cup Water
- Cheese cloth/muslin cloth
Get the full recipe from Alpha Foodie.
RELATED: Chicken Salad with Grapes, Strawberries, and Apples
You can use apple cider vinegar to substitute for unsweetened apple juice in marinades and dressings. However, it has a much sharper and more pungent flavor. To counteract these differences, you can add sugar to taste or use a smaller amount.
Applesauce is much thicker than apple juice and is not a good substitute. It will change the texture and consistency of your dish.
No. To make apple juice you must discard the pulp and retain the liquid from the apple. On the other hand, applesauce has most of the liquid removed and a high amount of remaining pulp. So, applesauce is essentially the opposite of apple juice.
Recipes with Fruit Juice
Here are several easy and delicious recipes with fruit juice. They’re the perfect way to test out your favorite apple juice substitute from above!