Citric Acid Substitutes

Citric Acid Substitutes

This article provides an overview of citric acid, what it tastes like, its availability, alternative names, and of course what other ingredients make citric acid substitutes.

What is Citric Acid?

Citric acid is an organic, colorless, weak compound with the chemical formula HOC(CO2H)(CH2CO2H)2. It is a naturally occurring acid in fruit and is involved in the metabolism of all aerobic organisms. It is widely used in food and drinks as a flavoring and preservative.

Citric acid can be used in caramels to prevent sucrose crystallization and in ice cream as an emulsifying agent, to keep fats from separating.

What does Citric Acid taste like?

Citric acid is most well known for giving citrus fruits like lemons and limes their signature tarty and sour taste. It is often used to boost acidity and therefore enhance flavors.

Citric acid can also be described as bitter and is used to give candies their sour flavor.

Is Citric Acid readily available in Supermarkets?

Citric acid should be available in major supermarkets, often found in the baking aisle or next to the salt or kosher section.

What are some alternative names for Citric Acid?

Citric acid may also be referred to as sour salt.

What is a good substitute for Citric Acid in recipes?

Luckily, there are a number of great substitutes for citric acid. These include:

  • The best substitute for citric acid would be lemon juice, as it shares a similar sour flavor
  • Other options include tartaric acid, white distilled vinegar, or even crushed vitamin C tablets.