Have you ever tried apple cider vinegar (ACV)? If you have and are not a fan- I completely understand. It’s so sour and strong, but there are ways to improve the flavor to enjoy its benefits! Keep reading to learn how to make apple cider vinegar taste good.
There are many reasons to want to improve the taste of apple cider vinegar. Maybe you want to start including more of it in your daily diet but can’t get past the tart and sour aftertaste. Or, maybe you want to use it in your recipes and are looking for ways to soften the astringent properties.
No matter what, there is one thing we can agree on – apple cider vinegar is not good by itself. It’s extremely sour and makes your lips pucker. Thankfully, there are a few tried and tested ways to make it less harsh and easier to digest.
- What is apple cider vinegar?
- How to make apple cider vinegar taste good
- More kitchen resources
What is apple cider vinegar?
Before we learn how to make apple cider vinegar taste good, what even is this light brown liquid?
Apple cider vinegar is a fermented liquid made from apples. Manufacturers add yeast to crushed apples to ferment the natural sugars, which then turn into alcohol. Vinegar isn’t liquor, though, because manufacturers add bacteria to the mixture, turning it from alcohol to acetic acid.
Acetic acid is the primary ingredient in any type of vinegar. It is what gives vinegar the iconic sour smell and flavor it’s known for. Apple cider vinegar contains 5-6% acetic acid.
There is one more component of apple cider vinegar that sets it apart from other kinds of vinegar – the mother. This is usually found in organic, unfiltered apple cider vinegar. The mother has strands of proteins, enzymes, and friendly bacteria in it. The mother also has a murky appearance and often settles at the bottom of the jar.
How to make apple cider vinegar taste good
Now that you know more about what apple cider vinegar is let’s look at some of the easiest ways to make it taste better. These are good things to know if you are hoping to include it in your diet on a more regular basis.
Dilute with water
You can often cut down on the sourness by diluting the ACV with some clean, filtered water. To do this, mix 1-2 tablespoons of ACV with one cup of water.
Then, just drink your water like normal. If it is still too strong, add some ice. The frigid cold temperatures of the ice water will often make it easier to drink.
ACV is so strong and harsh that you should always dilute it with water or some other food or liquid.
Make it sweeter
Mary Poppins said it best, “a spoonful of sugar makes the medicine go down, in the most delightful way!” Whenever you dilute your ACV, mix in your favorite type of sweetener or sugar. Liquid sweetener will dissolve easier, but granulated sweetener works just as well.
Start out with just a few drops of liquid sweetener or a teaspoon of white sugar, and then add more if it still isn’t sweet enough.
Many people like to sweeten ACV with local honey because honey has lots of health benefits too. Local, raw honey has healing properties and might even help you deal with (or even prevent) seasonal allergies. It’s also a natural antiseptic and could reduce the lifespan of the common cold.
Turn it into a salad dressing
ACV can also boost the nutrition benefits of homemade salad dressing. Combine it with some extra virgin olive oil, sea salt, black pepper, and your favorite herbs.
Add some dijon mustard to make the salad dressing extra creamy. Sweeten it naturally with local honey. Store your homemade dressing in a mason jar with a lid. It will naturally separate over time, so you just need to give it a quick shake to mix it back together again.
Sprinkle this on your favorite mixture of lettuce and raw veggies. Not only are you able to enjoy the ACV benefits, but you are also eating more raw veggies at the same time. It’s a double health win!
Make gummy candies out of it
Have you heard of Goli vitamins? They are well-known for producing high-quality and safe gummies that contain ACV.
You could buy the gummies and enjoy them, or make your own gummies at home. This recipe is easy to follow. Just make sure you don’t boil the water because if you do, you might kill the good bacteria in the ACV.
Gummy candies are a fun way to take ACV vitamins, boost your immune system, and support your overall health.
Blend it into a smoothie
Take all of your favorite fruits and make a deliciously sweet smoothie. Then, just add a few tablespoons of ACV to it and make sure it’s well blended. You won’t even be able to taste the ACV. The sweet flavors from the fruits cover it up perfectly.
To really cover up the ACV tastes, use the sweetest fruits you can. Strawberries and bananas are great choices, and so are citrus fruits like oranges, pineapples, and kiwi.
If you still taste a bit of the ACV, just add a drizzle of honey or maple syrup to the smoothie. This will cover that flavor up, so you don’t even taste it. It’s a magical drink!
Homemade refrigerator pickles are some of the tastiest and healthiest things you can make with ACV. Slice some cucumbers into round slices or spears and store them in a mason jar with the following ingredients:
- Garlic Cloves
- Sea Salt
- Dill Seeds
- Fennel Seeds
- Filtered Water
Use fresh herbs and spices whenever possible! The best part is that these pickles will stay fresh in your refrigerator for up to 3 weeks.
Add cabbage for sauerkraut
Making authentic sauerkraut is a lengthy process that takes weeks. You basically combine all the ingredients with the cabbage in a mason jar while it ferments.
However, there is a quicker way to make it that uses apple cider vinegar. It isn’t an authentic German recipe, but it’s still really good for you and tastes tangy and delicious.
- Combine thinly sliced cabbage with sliced onion, apple cider vinegar, apple cider, caraway seeds, and kosher salt in a microwave-safe container.
- Mix it up and microwave it for about 5 minutes.
- Cover the container with plastic wrap and let it set for 15 minutes.
This is a tasty way to enjoy the health benefits of ACV and cabbage without taking weeks to make homemade sauerkraut.
Stir it into your coffee or tea
This is a controversial way to make apple cider vinegar taste better, but it works for some people. There is some debate about whether you should add ACV to hot drinks because it might kill the beneficial bacteria in the mother strands.
It’s still worth sharing this tip since some people enjoy it, and there aren’t any studies proving that heating up ACV makes it less beneficial.
Stir a few tablespoons of ACV into your coffee, latte, or hot tea. If you don’t like how it makes your hot drink taste, add more sweetener or milk.
The best way to keep the good bacteria in ACV intact is to add it to iced coffee or iced sweet tea.
Mix it with lemon juice, salt, and liquid stevia
Many people claim that lemon juice takes away the adverse aftertaste of apple cider vinegar. To do this, add a tablespoon of ACV with the juice from one lemon and add this to a cup of ice water. Then, top it with a few drops of Stevia. It’s a sugar-free way to enjoy the health benefits of ACV without the pungent odor or strong taste.
Try it with pink Himalayan sea salt instead of kosher table salt! The pink Himalayan sea salt has a stronger taste and does a fantastic job of cutting the sourness of ACV down.
Mix with tonic water
It’s so much better for you if you dilute the ACV before taking it. Filtered water will give you the purest drink, but it is often so mild that the vinegar’s sourness is still too overpowering.
Instead of flat water, use tonic or seltzer water. Carbonated water has bubbles in it that distract your tastebuds from the strong tart flavors of the vinegar. A version of this trick trended on TikTok when people combined sparkling water with balsamic vinegar to make a “healthy Coke” drink.
When you combine apple cider vinegar with sparkling or seltzer water, you will make a drink that tastes a lot like sparkling cider. To really make it taste better, garnish with a few slices of fresh apples and eat them right after you finish the drink.
Now that you know more about how to make apple cider vinegar taste good, here are some questions people often ask about this potent liquid.
Are apple cider vinegar shots healthy?
No, you should not pour a shot of apple cider vinegar and drink it undiluted. There are many health reasons for this. Since ACV is so acidic, it could damage or burn the membranes in your taste buds. The acid in ACV could also eat away at your tooth enamel, making your teeth weaker.
If you want to increase your consumption of ACV, always dilute it with some type of water or other mild liquid. Some people recommend eating food or drinking sparkling water after eating anything with ACV in it.
Do not brush your teeth until at least 30 minutes after consuming ACV. This will protect your teeth’s enamel.
What are apple cider vinegar mother strands?
Mother strands are found in organic, unfiltered apple cider vinegar. The mother strand is what many people claim contains the elements that are so beneficial for your health. It contains probiotics, protein, enzymes, and beneficial bacteria.
If you want to consume the healthiest ACV with the best mother strands, look for organic, unfiltered bottles from renowned manufacturers. Bragg’s is one of the most well-known and trusted brands!
Can I heat up apple cider vinegar?
It is safe to consume ACV after heating it or boiling it, but many people don’t recommend it. They say that heating ACV to a high temperature (like boiling) kills the good bacteria in it. That is why they warn against adding ACV to hot tea, coffee, or hot soup.
If you are consuming ACV for health benefits, you should only drink or eat it while it is cool or at room temperature.
What are the health benefits of apple cider vinegar?
There are a lot of health benefits that people claim ACV can contribute to – most of them due to either the acetic acid or the mother strand.
Apple cider vinegar contains 5-6% acetic acid. This is one of the highest concentrations compared to other types of vinegar. Since it is so concentrated, it is effective in killing bacteria and pathogens that might enter your system.
Other people take ACV because there are studies showing it could help lower blood sugar and help people more easily manage their diabetes. This is because consuming ACV might make your body more sensitive to insulin. One study found that insulin sensitivity increased 19-34% after taking ACV supplements.
There was a small study in 2010 that found ACV could help decrease overall blood sugar by 31.4% even after consuming 50 grams of white bread (which is a huge source of sugar).
There are also claims that ACV helps with weight loss, but there aren’t any studies confirming this, just lots of stories. People try to say that ACV decreases their appetites which helps them eat less.
Other health claims of ACV include:
- Promotes digestive health – it’s a natural laxative
- Lowers cholesterol
- Lowers blood pressure
- Improves hair health
- Helps reduce acne
- Reduces heartburn
- Has anti-aging properties
Before using ACV for health benefits, I suggest checking with your doctor to get reliable and trustworthy advice.
More kitchen resources
If you enjoyed learning how to make apple cider vinegar taste good, here are some more helpful kitchen resources you might enjoy next.