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Learn the best substitute for cooking Sherry. Cooking sherry is a type of wine that’s specifically used for cooking purposes. In this article, we are going to walk you through some cooking sherry substitutes. 

Bottle of cooking sherry.
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What is Cooking Sherry?

Cooking sherry is a fortified wine. It is typically used in cooking in order to enhance the flavor of various dishes. It is made by strengthening regular wine with brandy or a distilled spirit.

Sherry typically has a nutty, slightly sweet flavor along with a distinct acidity.

Bottle of cooking sherry.

Cooking sherry is different from regular drinking sherry. It often contains extra salt and other preservatives to extend its shelf life. It is typically available in the cooking or condiment section of grocery stores.

Cooking sherry can add depth and complexity to sauces, marinades, soups, and stews. There are substitutes for Sherry that you can use to achieve similar flavor profiles in your dishes. Where you use fermented rice wine, white wine, broth in the cupboard or other options, it will be delicious.

Bottle of cooking sherry.

Drinking Sherry vs. Cooking Sherry

Cooking Sherry and Drinking sherry are two different types of sherry with distinct characteristics and uses:

  • Drinking Sherry: This is sherry that is specifically made for consumption as a beverage. Just like other alcoholic drinks, drinking sherry comes in a range of styles, such as dry sherries, medium, and sweet sherry.

    Drinking sherry is not typically suitable for cooking.
  • Cooking Sherry: Cooking sherry is specifically made for culinary purposes. It is typically less expensive and has a longer shelf life compared to drinking sherry.

    Cooking sherry has a robust and concentrated flavor profile that can withstand the cooking process. Cooking sherry helps to enhance the flavor of sauces, marinades, soups, and stews.

Bottle of cooking sherry.

Drinking Sherry Substitutes

There are alternative ingredients you can use in cooking that will provide more flavor than just a cup of water.

Dry Vermouth

Dry vermouth can be a suitable substitute for cooking sherry in many recipes. When used in cooking, sweet vermouth has a similar flavor as cooking sherry in seafood dishes and more.

If you want to use dry vermouth as a substitute for cooking sherry, you can generally use a 1:1 ratio.

Dry White Wine

Dry white wine can be an excellent substitute for cooking sherry in many recipes. It can provide acidity, depth of flavor, and a similar cooking characteristic to sherry.

You can typically use a 1:1 ratio of dry white wine and cooking sherry in your recipes. However, keep in mind that the alcohol content in the dry white wine will not cook off completely.

If you’re trying to watch your alcohol consumption, you may want to explore non-alcoholic substitutes for cooking. Ideas include white grapes juice, orange juice, peach juice, apricot, broth, white wine vinegar, rice wine vinegar and red wine vinegar. Fruit juice is an excellent idea as is balsamic vinegar.

Chicken Stock and Lemon

Chicken stock and lemon can be a substitute for cooking sherry in recipes that include acidity and savory flavors.

  • Lemon Juice: Lemon juice adds acidity and brightness to the dish, and it can replicate the tanginess of cooking sherry. It pairs perfectly with herbs and other spices Asian cuisine.
  • Chicken Stock: Chicken stock can give a savory, rich flavor and depth found in cooking sherry. It is best to use a good-quality chicken broth to ensure the best results.

Dry Marsala

Dry Marsala can be an excellent substitute for cooking sherry in many recipes. Marsala is a fortified wine that has a complex flavor that is rich and slightly sweet.

Generally, when you’re using dry marsala when a recipe calls for cooking sherry, you use a 1:1 ratio. You can just adjust the amount according to your taste preferences and the specific flavors of the recipe.

Dry Marsala can be a particularly suitable substitute for recipes where the sweetness and richness of cooking sherry are desired. It pairs well with savory dishes, especially those that has mushrooms, meats, or cream-based sauces.


This can be a suitable substitute for cooking sherry in many recipes. Madeira is a fortified wine known for its rich, robust, and slightly sweet flavor profile. It is often used in cooking to enhance the flavors of sauces, gravies, and roasted meats.

You can follow the 1:1 ratio when using madiera as a substitute. It works well in recipes that benefit from its sweet and nutty notes, such as braised dishes, stews, and sauces.

White Wine, Apple Cider Vinegar, or Sherry Vinegar

Apple Cider Vinegar, White wine, and sherry vinegar can all be used as a substitute for sherry in cooking.

  • White Wine: White wine is a versatile substitute. It gives acidity and add depth of flavor to various dishes and balance of sweetness.
  • Apple Cider Vinegar. Apple cider vinegar can be a substitute as it has a tangy and slightly sweet flavor in the dish. Apple cider vinegar has a distinct apple flavor that can complement certain recipes. A cup of apple cider vinegar as a substitute for a cup of cooking Sherry works perfectly.

  • Sherry Vinegar: Just a small amount has a rich, nutty, and slightly sweet taste. Start with a tablespoon at a time in the pan.

Learn the best substitute for cooking Sherry. We are going to walk you through some cooking sherry substitutes in recipes that are easy. Sherry typically has a nutty, slightly sweet flavor along with a distinct acidity. #eatingonadime #cookingsherry #substitutesforcookingsherry

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