Halfway Healthy – Homemade Red Wine Vinegar

Recipe created by Sarah Holtz

I know it doesn’t look like much, but a few splashes really wake up flavors!


3 tablespoons organic apple cider vinegar with the mother

Up to 1 bottle of room temperature red* wine


In a large glass or plastic bowl dump in the red wine. Metal bowls and utensils will react with the vinegar. Add the apple cider vinegar. Use a plastic spatula and gently stir the two ingredients together. Cover the dish loosely with cheesecloth or a tea towel. The covering is to prevent pests while allowing for an oxygen exchange. Place the entire glass bowl in a room temperature place so the little microbes can work their magic.

(I usually put my bowl on top of the refrigerator.)

This works best at room temperatures of 15-20 degrees Celsius (60-70 degrees Fahrenheit). Cooler temperatures will slow down the vinegar making while warmer temperatures will speed it up. I usually let my vinegar ferment for two weeks before starting to check it. If it is happy a cloudy bacterial colony (the mother) will build a home on the top of the wine. After two weeks taste a spoonful. It should be tangy and taste like vinegar. Once it is as tangy as you would like, scoop off the mother. You can compost her, toss her, or reuse her. I make vinegar often and will put her in a glass dish in the fridge with some of the vinegar, so she stays wet. She will wait quietly sleeping in the cold until I make vinegar again.

After you scoop off the mother, pour the vinegar into a bottle. Store your homemade vinegar in a cool, dark place.

*I have made this vinegar from Rose and White wines as well. It works just as well. The lighter wine vinegars are nice changes for salad dressings or to drizzle on top some of poached pears.