Substitutes for Alcohol in Baking

Using alcohol in baking is widely done in many types of desserts, but there is a wonderful array of very good quality substitutes that are alcohol-free. For general substitutes, refer to the chart below. A PDF version is available at the end of this post.

Halal Substitutes in Baking- JPEG

PDF Version Available Here

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    1. Ya would like to know the answer to substitute of white wine when making dijon mustard! Do reply to this thread please thanks a bunch!

    1. I have found that using tamarind paste mixed with water, is an excellent substitution for red wine when making thiings like stews and sauces. It adds a rich, tart flavor that is very similar to red wine.

    1. @Anoud- no, not all. Actually most of the synthetic products do not contain alcohol. I personally try to avoid those because I prefer something natural AND without the alcohol.

    2. Be wary of all those imitation vanillas. Some are from wood, but others (worse) are derived from beavers! I use a small concentrate from India that has a vegetarian symbol and “Free from alcohol” label. Best is vanilla bean/powder/paste. Aside from vanilla, Bickford has a lot of good extracts free from animal/alcohol. Their almond is amazing!

  1. Peace Be Upon You. Alhamdulillah for sharing us with a useful info of halal recipes. May I know what kind of most dishes are you recommending in this blog. I am a Thai-Muslim and have a few knowledge about foods and cooking but honestly I am interested in learning to cook general local dishes. I can only cook some of simple menu and especially keen to learn how to cook an Italian foods, Meditoreninan meals and European foods. In addition, most of ingredients demonstrated here are hardly found here in Thailand, the humid and rainy country zone. Any suggesstions?

    Thank you for ur kind advice. May Allah reward u in return.

    Mohd.Sukree, soutern unrest zone of Thailand

    1. @Nayyer- Technically yes, beef is a halal animal so beef gelatin shouldn’t necessarily be an issue, however, I prefer to only have beef gelatin (or a product with it) if the animal has also been raised and processed (i.e. slaughtered) according to the humane practices in accordance with Islamic standards. In other words, that the beef is “dhabiha” or “dhabiha halal”.

      1. Any bovine gelatine is not halaah. we use only the non bovine gelatine unless specified on the container that the product is halaal. we must be careful as the gelatine can actually be made from the pig. so in such cases i use china grass which is the better option.

  2. If you use wine or any product containing alcohol, just boil the product and the alcohol will evaporate leaving behind only the flavor. You can also take wine or any product containing alcohol, put in a pan, boil on stove for 10 to 20 minutes and the alcohol will evaporate, leaving behind only the flavor, pour condensed liquid into a small bottle and add what is needed to whatever you are cooking when needed for its flavor This condensed now alcohol free flavour liquid is great to mix with oil in cold salads as a salad dressing.

    We always kept a bottle of condensed whiskey ready for use in a mixed drink for guests who had too much to drink and used it for their drinks when they already had too much to drink. They couldn’t tell the difference and it as safer for them when they drove the car if I couldn’t find someone to drive them who didn’t drink. I don’t drink but cook with wines, red wine for red meat and white wine for white meat. White wine can be used for fish but I prefer lemon juice.

    Saffron is expensive and one can use half and half of paprika and turmeric as a substitute, mix in spice jar and use as you would saffron, I sometimes will add a small amount of real saffron to the spice jar.

    1. Hi Mary Sue,

      Alcohol does not completely evaporate in cooking. I’ll be talking about that in more depth soon on the blog and elsewhere, but in the meantime you can look at the US Dept. of Agriculture’s website as they have more info. on the scientific data to support this.

    2. From what I know anything that contains -or used to contain – alcohol is not halal. So are products that required alcohol in producing them, or the byproducts of alcohol making, such as cream of tartar. Wallahu a’lam bishshawaab. Salaam.

  3. From the list above does it mean we can use any emulsion for substitute any extract for baking? And my other question is can we use the emulsion for making milkshake or homemade ice cream?

  4. Assalamualaikum Sis

    Can you tell me what is the best substitute for any kind of wine (eg. 100ml of red wine) in baking.

    Thank you & Syukran.


    1. Red wine= grape juice
      White wine= white grape Juice
      Try buying a low sugar or no sugar added
      After all, wine derives from fruit so let say you want to heat wine
      to remove and evaporate alcohol,
      You will be left with the juice. So why not start with the Islamic mentality
      And use the juice to begin with.

        1. Yvonne Maffei,
          Wine is fermented fruit which has been smash to extract their juice and stored till it turns into alcohol…”fermentation process”
          When using any type of alcohol when cooking, you need to cooked it for 20 to 30 seconds at least. Google it as how alcohol evaporate.

  5. Salam. I have seen on some flights (e.g Qantas) that flies muslims offer food in-flight with white wine. I had been told by the crew that it is halal but i have also noticed other alcoholic drinks being served on flights from Australia to other places. I find it doubtful so would appreciate if there would be any kind of clarifications here, insha allah.

    1. Wsalaam- hmmm…it doesn’t sound likely that ‘white wine’ would be halal unless they’re use a non-alcoholic substitute that they’re not telling you about and simply using that name. I have not flown with that specific airline so I don’t know but I just might inquire about that. Thanks for bringing it to my attention.

  6. a cake recipe calls for a cup of white wine but we don’t have alcohol in the house. what else can i use? thank you in advance!

    1. Substituting wine in dessert can be acomplish by using good fruit juices with above 80% or higher-fruit content. As an alternative White grape juice for example is a good subtittude for white wine you can also find it sparkling non alcoholic personaly I use some ginger to lift up the flavor as an extra lift in the flavor. Ginger extract is a great substitute for alcohol flavor.

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