Balsamic vinegar is a versatile ingredient that can be used with meat, pasta, vegetables, fruit, pizza, appetizers, or in sauces. You can use balsamic vinegar as part of the cooking process, or you can use it by drizzling it to finish off a dish.
Pasta or Gnocchi
- Use balsamic vinegar by creating a sauce with it. Melt 1/3 cup – 1/2 cup of butter over medium heat in a frying pan. Add a little (1 tbsp) of balsamic vinegar to the butter. Let it combine with the butter. Cook for a couple of minutes. Add your cooked pasta (ravioli or gnocci) to the sauce. Add any extras you like at this point (peas, sundried tomatoes, chili flakes, cherry tomatoes, etc.). Add shavings of parmesan cheese to the pasta mixture and mix together. Serve with warm bread.
- Mash or slice ripe avocado. Add a little salt and pepper to the avocado. Toast bread. Slice garlic clove in half and rub garlic onto the toast. Add avocado to the toast. Top with any of the following: fresh basil, cilantro, dill, parsley, cherry tomatoes, sliced onions, chili flakes, chopped jalapeno, or green onions. Drizzle balsamic over the avocado toast.
- Add balsamic vinegar to tomato sauce around the end of cooking to add a punch of flavor. Add only about 1 tsp-1 tbsp to the sauce as a finisher.
- Add balsamic vinegar during the thickening time when making gravy. Balsamic vinegar gives gravy a touch of extra flavor that will impress even yourself.
- Balsamic vinegar can be used as a base in salads. You can add 1:1 or 1:2 ratio of balsamic vinegar to olive oil to create a salad dressing. Add honey, Dijon mustard, minced garlic, and salt and pepper to taste to create a balsamic vinaigrette dressing.
Root vegetables go well with balsamic vinegar. Toss together any of the following: chopped butternut squash, carrots, red onions, sweet potatoes, yams, or parsnips.
- Drizzle olive oil all of the vegetables. Add 1tsp-1tbsp of each: dried sage, thyme, and/or rosemary. Mix together until all of the oil and spices coat the vegetables. Drizzle 1-2 tbsp of balsamic vinegar over the vegetables and bake until fork-tender.
- Combine the 3 tbsp olive oil, 3 tbsp balsamic vinegar, 2 tbsp brown sugar, 2 tbsp soy sauce (optional, more of a bitter taste), 1tsp Dijon mustard, 1/2 tsp dried basil, salt and pepper to taste. Coat vegetables in the sauce and roast vegetables until fork-tender.
- Make a garlic butter sauce to begin. Melt 1/4 cup – 1/2 cup of butter of medium heat in a saucepan. Add 2 minced garlic cloves and cook until fragrant. Add 1 tsp of both dried rosemary and thyme. Add salt and pepper to taste. Cook until the spices have infused the butter. Remove the butter mixture from the heat source and coat the potatoes. Bake the potatoes until they are tender and crispy. Recoat the potatoes half way through cooking by gently mixing them. Once the potatoes are finished cooking, drizzle 1-2 tbsp of balsamic vinegar over the potatoes and serve.
- Mix equal parts of balsamic vinegar and dry red wine. Add salt and pepper to steaks. Cook the steaks. If you’re cooking on a stovetop, add the sauce to the frying pan and let the sauce be soaked into the steak. Gently coat the top of the steak with the sauce by using a brush as needed. If you’re cooking the steak on a BBQ, brush the steaks with the sauce as it cooks. To serve, spoon 1 tbsp of the balsamic vinegar and red wine mixture over the steak.
- Create a marinade for your chicken by combining 1/2 cup balsamic vinegar, 2 tbsp honey, 1 1/2 tbsp whole grain mustard, 3 cloves of minced garlic, and salt and pepper to taste. Marinade your chicken for least an hour. Place chicken in a roasting pan. Top with a bit of dried rosemary and thyme. Roast the chicken in the oven and serve with a bit of the pan drippings.
- Over medium heat in a small saucepan, combine 1/2 cup balsamic vinegar, 1/4 cup white wine or chicken broth, 2 tbsp honey, 1 tbsp Dijon mustard, 1 tsp of dried rosemary or 1 fresh rosemary sprig, and a minced garlic clove. Cook for about 10-15 minutes until it reduces by 1/3 in volume. Strain the mixture and set aside. Cook fish by baking in the oven, over the BBQ, or on the stovetop. Drizzle the balsamic vinegar sauce over the fish to serve.
- Balsamic vinegar goes well with pizza after it has been baked. Drizzle a little balsamic vinegar over a freshly baked pizza to finish off the pizza. Balsamic vinegar can be used to top many different pizzas including: margarita pizza, prosciutto pizza, caprese pizza, goat cheese and arugula pizza, balsamic glazed chicken pizza.
Balsamic vinegar is used with appetizers as a finishing ingredient. Drizzle the top of the appetizer with balsamic vinegar. Some appetizers that go well with balsamic vinegar topping include:
- caprese skewers
- baguette topped with fig jam, fresh basil leaves, sliced apple, prosciutto. See the recipe here.
- crostini topped with ricotta and sliced strawberries
- crostini topped with goat cheese, grilled nectarines, and strips of fresh basil.
Another option for using balsamic vinegar as an appetizer is by dipping fresh French bread, sourdough, or focaccia bread in a mixture of olive oil and balsamic vinegar.
- Fresh fruit and be drizzled with a bit of balsamic vinegar. Fresh fruits that go well with balsamic vinegar include: strawberries, watermelon, blueberries, nectarines, peaches, kiwi, pears, and grapes.
- Grilled fruit over the BBQ can be drizzled with a bit of balsamic vinegar to serve it with. Grilled fruits that go well with drizzled balsamic vinegar include: nectarines, peaches, and pineapples.