When it comes to substitutions in cooking I've never really had to worry about it because it comes naturally to me. I stop, think about what I want or need to substitute, an idea comes to me and it's done. Some of them are so second nature I don't even think about it (like souring milk with lemon juice or vinegar in place of buttermilk).
I don't like the taste of alcohol and I found out very early in our marriage that I didn't like the taste of cream sauces and similar food items that were cooked with it. Especially sherry and white wine in my cream sauces with chicken. I immediately figured out to just use chicken broth in the sauce. Once every few years I may play with a recipe or a sauce and use the dry white wine or whatever called for, but usually we like it better without. Not to mention, when you are cooking for a family, kids don't like the taste either.
So with 'substitutions' in mind I thought I should probably put a post up on An American Housewife... but before I could post one, I saw this list and realized; someone else already did it - and did a far more thorough and great job than I probably would have! Ha. So... without further adieu, a substitution list for when you can't or don't want to cook with alcohol.
Article originally published 2004 by What's Cooking America
- Amaretto – Non-Alcoholic almond extract. Substitute 1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon almond extract for 2 tablespoons Amaretto.
- Anisette – Anise Italian soda syrup or fennel. Also use the herbs anise or fennel.
- Beer or Ale – Chicken broth, beef broth, mushroom broth, white grape juice, or ginger ale.
- Bourbon – 1 1/2 to 2 teaspoons of non-alcoholic vanilla extract.
- Brandy – Water, white grape juice, apple cider or apple juice, diluted peach or apricot syrups. Substitute equal amounts of liquid.
- Champagne – Ginger ale, sparkling apple cider, sparkling cranberry juice, or sparkling white grape juice.
- Coffee Liqueur – To replace 2 tablespoons of liqueur, use 1/2 to 1 teaspoon of chocolate extract mixed with 1 teaspoon of Pero® or Postum® powder, which has been mixed in 2 tablespoons of water.
- Cognac – Juice from peaches, apricots, or pears.
- Cointreau – Orange juice or frozen orange juice concentrate.
- Creme de menthe – Spearmint extract or oil of spearmint diluted with a little water or grapefruit juice.
- Grand Marnier or Orange-Flavored Liqueur – Unsweetened orange juice concentrate or orange juice. Substitute 2 tablespoons unsweetened orange juice concentrate or 2 tablespoons orange juice and 1/2 teaspoon orange extract for 2 tablespoons Grand Marnier.
- Kahlua – Coffee or chocolate-flavored liqueur. Substitute 1/2 to 1 teaspoon chocolate extract or substitute 1/2 to 1 teaspoon Pero® or Postum® powder in 2 tablespoons water for 2 tablespoons Kahlua.
- Kirsch – Syrup or juices from cherries, raspberries, boysenberries, currants, or cider. Substitute equal amounts of liquid.
- Peppermint Schnapps – Non-alcoholic mint or peppermint extract, mint Italian soda syrup, or mint leaves.
- Port Wine, Sweet Sherry, or Fruit-Flavored Liqueur – Orange juice or apple juice. Substitute equal amount of liquid.
- Rum (light or dark) – Water, white grape juice, pineapple juice, apple juice or apple cider, or syrup flavored with almond extract. Substitute equal amounts of liquid.
- Sake – Rice vinegar.
- Sherry or Bourbon – Orange or pineapple juices, peach syrup, or non-alcoholic vanilla extract. Substitute equal amount of liquid 1 to 2 teaspoons vanilla extract.
- Southern Comfort – Peach flavored nectar combined with a small amount of cider vinegar.
- Tequila – Cactus juice or nectar.
- Triple Sec – Orange juice concentrate, orange juice, orange zest or orange marmalade.
- Vermouth, Dry – White grape juice, white wine vinegar, or non-alcoholic white wine.
- Vermouth, Sweet – Apple juice, grape juice, balsamic vinegar, non-alcoholic sweet wine, or water with lemon juice.
- Whiskey – If a small amount is called for, it can be eliminated.
- Vodka – White grape juice or apple cider combined with lime juice or use plain water in place of the vodka.
- Claret – Diluted grape juice or cherry cider syrup.
- Gewurztraminer – White grape juice combined with lemon juice.
- Grappa – Grape juice.
- Port Wine – Concord grape juice with some lime zest added, cranberry juice with some lemon juice added, or grape juice concentrate. Substitute orange juice or apple juice for lighter ports.
- Red Wine – Red grape juice, cranberry juice, chicken broth, beef broth, vegetable broth, clam juice, fruit juices, flavored vinegar. Substitute equal amount of liquid.
- White Wine – Water, chicken broth, vegetable broth, white grape juice, ginger ale, white grape juice.
- Sweet White Wine – White grape juice plus 1 tablespoons Karo corn syrup. Substitute equal amount of liquid.