7 Lime Juice Substitutes to Consider In The Kitchen

What can I substitute for lime juice? Although lime juice offers many health benefits, there are days you are simply going to out of it or get tired of the acidic taste and need a substitute that offers similar benefits. Lime juice is often found in many homes, it can be used as part of beverages and also used in giving a sour zesty taste to your dish.

Adding lime to water is known to help with digestion and it is one of those ingredients that can work in any capacity either for creating a savoury dinner or your cocktails.

Lime juice is a good source of antioxidants and it can be used as a natural cleansing agent as well. However, having a good substitute at hand can help you prepare for days you forgot to pick them at the grocery stores or simply run out of it.

Lime is considered similar to orange but the fruit is rarely eaten like orange. Not many people enjoy the taste of eating the fruit due to its sour taste which is why the juice is often squeezed out and used instead.

You don’t have to garnish your favourite drink before enjoying limes, it can also be used for its medicinal properties. The taste of lime juice is described as tart and slightly acidic with a hint of sweetness which is nothing compared to the sweet taste of orange.

If you are on the lookout for substitutes for lime juice, below are 10 great alternatives to consider.

7 Lime Juice Substitutes to Consider In The Kitchen

When you can’t get your hands on lime juice of fresh limes or your recipe simply calls for something similar to lime but not lime then you do need handy substitutes. Fortunately, there are lot’s of substitutes for lime in the kitchen, below are some of the best replacements and you just need to go through them and find which one works best for you.

1. Lemon Juice

Lemon juice is definitely the first alternative that comes to mind. This citrus fruit is more availably than fresh limes. It is a great substitute for lime and tastes quite similar as well. Lemon juice is a rich source of phytochemicals and other beneficial nutrients.

It can be used in similar ways to lime and although not as intense in flavour as lime but it gives the same distinct taste in your recipe.

The main difference between lime and lemon is the vitamin C content. Lemons are considered to have a higher concentration of vitamin C. But keep in mind that the nutritional benefits of lime and lemon are the same and both are sure to give you the intense flavour you want.

2. Vinegar

If you are going for the acidic taste from lime then another substitute worth considering is vinegar. Lime juice is more acidic than vinegar but it can be used just the same way as lime juice. Vinegar is known to give an extra zing to the flavour of marinades and sauces.

It can also be used for tenderising meats, seafood and vegetables. The best type of vinegar to go for is white wine vinegar, it is considered an excellent substitute for lime juice.

3. Black Lime

Black lime is another type of lime that is also called dried lime. It is an excellent replacement for lime in most dishes. Black lime has a smoky taste which is great for soups, stews and meat.

Black lime has a sour smoky acidic citrus flavour that makes it suitable for savoury dishes. Keep in mind that it does not have the sweet flavour you can get from lime and you have to use based on how sour you want the recipe to be.

4. Citrus Zest

Orange zest
Image: @elizabethpyle via Twenty20

If a citrus flavour is called for in a dish then the citrus zest is another acceptable substitute for lime juice. You can still enjoy the taste of lime juice in your baked goods and cocktails by using the rind of unwaxed citrus fruits such as lemon, citron, lime, orange or other citrus fruit.

5. Grapefruit Juice

Although grapefruit is not as sour as lime, it still makes an excellent substitute for lime. Grapefruit juice is rich in many antioxidants and nutrients. Freshly squeezed grapefruit can be drizzled over fruit salad to keep it fresh and it is also used to stop an apple from turning brown.

Keep in mind that a whole grapefruit is larger in size than a lime juice hence be careful with quantity when substituting in your recipe.

6. White Wine

White wine is another excellent way to get that sour-sweet taste in your recipe. Cooking with white wine is considered even better than using lime although it doesn’t contain as many acidic properties as lime juice it will do just fine.

If you can’t find citrus or vinegar to use in your recipe then white wine can be a great alternative. Experts advise going with a dry white wine unless your recipe says otherwise.

7. Tamarind

If you simply can’t get your hand on any citrus and vinegar then you might want to consider tamarind. This dry fruit is not just for making medicine but can also be used in foods and beverages.

Tamarind has bo fat content and its rich fibre which makes it a healthy substitute as well. It has its own distinct tangy flavour that makes it work in marinades dressings and drinks. For a recipe that requires lime substitute, dilute tamarind pulp with water to the desired level of sourness you want.

In Conclusion

Limes are actually an important staple in many recipes. But due to the combination of severe weather, scarcity of imported limes and it getting expensive as well, it is important to get familiar with different alternatives.

When looking for a lime substitute, you need to consider the main function of the lime in your recipe and although fresh lime juice can be hard to replace in your margarita, the substitutes listed above will do just fine.

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