The grocery store is packed with ingredients that support our health – and in many cases, our favourite ingredients can have multiple uses. While there are a ton of versatile ingredients, few are as functional as apple cider vinegar (ACV). There are so many uses for apple cider vinegar, from culinary to beauty care to home cleaning.
Apple cider vinegar is a fermented food made from apples and we like to buy unpasteurized and organic ACV to reap the full spectrum of benefits. Grab yourself a bottle (or two) and start using apple vinegar in a myriad of ways!
20 Uses for Apple Cider Vinegar
1. As a digestive aid.
ACV helps to boost our ability to produce stomach acid, an important part of the digestive process. Start off with 1 tsp, either on its own or in a bit of water, and add more as needed.
2. For pickling vegetables.
We love our fermented foods and apple cider vinegar is a good one to use to add some fermented goodness to quick pickles, or for flavour at the end of fermentation (don’t use it as a base for lactic acid fermentation – like for fermented veggies such as kimchi or sauerkraut – as this will disrupt the fermenting process).
3. For salad dressings and marinades.
ACV adds great flavour to your favourite salad dressing recipes and marinades.
4. As a tooth whitener.
Mix some ACV with baking soda and water and the foaming action will help to whiten your teeth. Watch how to do it here.
5. To combat bad breath.
Mouth feeling a little funky? Apple cider vinegar can help. The acetic acid in ACV can fight bacteria, so try an ACV gargle or rinse with 1 Tbsp of ACV in warm or room temperature water.
6. As a shampoo rinse.
One of the many uses for apple cider vinegar is for healthy hair. ACV revitalizes the scalp, detangles and adds shine (especially if you’re on the no-shampoo train). Start off with 2 Tbsp of ACV mixed with 8 ounces of water. You’ll probably need to experiment with this ratio, as everyone’s hair is different, so adjust as needed.
7. As a skin toner.
Apple cider vinegar can help remove oil and rebalance skin pH, plus its anti-bacterial properties can improve acne. Grab a recipe for apple cider vinegar toner here.
8. As a candida treatment.
Apple cider vinegar’s anti-fungal properties may benefit those with candida, particularly candida in the mouth.
9. To fight foot + toenail fungus.
Soak your feet in apple cider vinegar and water (or apply topically) to address foot and toenail fungus.
10. In home cleaning products.
Home cleaners are one of our favourite uses for apple cider vinegar! Grab some ACV and baking soda from your pantry and mix it with water and some essential oils. You can use this all-purpose cleaner everywhere. Find more non-toxic home cleaning ideas and a free checklist here.
11. To prevent fruit flies.
Mix some apple cider vinegar, dish soap and water in a small bowl and leave it in your kitchen to keep fruit flies away. Sounds odd, but it works!
12. To make vegan buttermilk.
Mix 1 tsp of apple cider vinegar in your plant-based milk of choice and let it sit for 5 minutes. Then use as you would buttermilk in your gluten-free baking recipes.
13. Add it to a sitz bath
Hemorrhoid suffers can find some relief by sitting in a sitz bath with 1/4 cup ACV and warm or cold water. This especially helpful for women who have pregnancy-related hemorrhoids!
14. Add it to hot water before poaching eggs.
Love poached eggs, but find it challenging to make them at home? Adding a splash of apple cider vinegar to the water helps the egg whites firm up more quickly, so you won’t end up with a mess.
15. To help balance blood sugar.
Research indicates that apple cider vinegar (and other vinegars too) can improve insulin sensitivity.
16. To improve metabolic disorders.
17. Add it to your braising liquid.
If you love braised vegetables and meat, add 2 Tbsp of apple cider vinegar to the pan for an extra tangy flavour.
18. Use it in bone broth.
Pour a tbsp or two of apple cider vinegar into the pot or slow cooker with the bones when making bone broth. This helps to pull the nutrients and minerals from the bones into the water.
19. As a natural weed-repellent.
Put apple cider vinegar and water into a spray bottle and spritz on weeds in your garden for a pesticide-free and herbicide-free weed killer.
20. To get rid of pet fleas.
Doggie lovers rejoice: use 1 part ACV and 1 part water and apply to your dog’s fur to repel fleas. It’s a good idea to do a small test spot first to see if your dog has a reaction to it before doing his/her whole body.