White Vinegar vs Malt Vinegar: Difference and Comparison

There’s no gainsaying that vinegar has been and is a commercially and industrially useful product.


Food Quiz

Test your knowledge about topics related to food

1 / 10

What type of measuring unit is most commonly used in recipes?

2 / 10

What type of sweet dish is typically served after the main course of a meal to complete the dining experience?

3 / 10

What type of utensil is best for spreading frosting on a cake?

4 / 10

We are big red and watery from inside. Guarded with a hard shell. What are we?

5 / 10

We look like strawberry but we are not. What are we?

6 / 10

A person suffering from high blood pressure should avoid foods which are rich in

7 / 10

This food group is our body's best source of energy?

8 / 10

Which food group is mostly consumed by teens due to the large amount of calcium?

9 / 10

What type of oil is high in monounsaturated fat?

10 / 10

What type of soup is made with chicken stock, vegetables, and often contains noodles or rice?

Your score is


It also finds its use in many food items, medicines, cleaning purposes, laboratories, preservation, and much more. We often use vinegar to prepare food items like noodles, pickles, chutneys, desserts, dipping sauces, etc. 

Both white vinegar and malt vinegar contain acetic acid in themselves.

Both are used in household cleaning and cooking, but which is more widely used? Which one is easily available and cheaper? How are they prepared, and what are their contents?

Key Takeaways

  1. White vinegar is made from distilled grain alcohol; malt vinegar is produced from fermented malted barley.
  2. Malt vinegar has a darker color, stronger flavor, and thicker consistency than white vinegar.
  3. White vinegar is versatile and used for cleaning and cooking; malt vinegar is popular for culinary applications, such as fish and chips.

White Vinegar vs Malt Vinegar

The difference between white vinegar and malt vinegar is that white vinegar is clearer, colourless, more acidic, cheaper, easily available, and widely used in households. It takes less time to produce and is made by a simple fermentation method with acetic acid and water as its main ingredients. On the other hand, malt vinegar is darker, generally light brown, less acidic, and costlier than white vinegar and is rarely used. It takes more time to produce and is formed by a complex process, with malted barley being its characteristic ingredient.

White Vinegar vs Malt Vinegar

Comparison Table

Parameters of Comparison White Vinegar Malt Vinegar
Made fromWhite vinegar is made from acetic acid and water by the fermentation of alcohol and is a purified vinegar.The fermentation makes malt vinegar of malted barley or ale, an alcoholic beverage.
Also known as White vinegar is also a distilled, virgin, and purified vinegar.Malt vinegar is also known as legal.
Production timeWhite vinegar can be prepared by simple fermentation and takes less time than malt vinegar.Manufacturing malt vinegar is a complex process that takes longer to prepare than white vinegar.
TasteWhite vinegar is more acidic and sourer than malt vinegar.Malt vinegar has a characteristic malt flavour. It is milder and sweeter compared to white vinegar.
UsesIt is used for cleaning purposes, in pickles and chutneys, and is more widely used in households than the malt one.It is primarily used as a pickling item and can be used on chips or French fries. It is not as popular as white vinegar.
AppearanceWhite vinegar is clearer and colourless.Malt vinegar is mainly a light brown liquid though it can also be colourless or dark brown.
CostWhite vinegar is cheaper compared to malt vinegar.Malt vinegar is costlier than white vinegar.
AcidityWhite vinegar is more acidic than malt vinegar.Malt vinegar is comparatively less acidic than white vinegar.
Gluten Gluten is absent in white vinegar as it contains only acetic acid and water.Malt vinegar does have gluten in it.

What is White Vinegar?

White vinegar is also known as distilled, virgin, or purified vinegar. It is our household’s most commonly used vinegar, mainly for cleaning and cooking.

It’s cheap and is easily available in the market. It is a colourless clear liquid containing acetic acid and water and is acidic with a sour taste.

The fermentation of distilled alcohol prepares it.

It has a strong flavour and is widely used to prepare pickles and clean and disinfect households. It is a purified vinegar with medicinal properties, so it is also used as an antiseptic.

Its pH is around 2.5, and it is quite sour and acidic. White vinegar is the most preferred vinegar in everyday life.

We found the best deal(s) on Amazon for you

# Preview Product
1 Iberia All Natural Distilled... Iberia All Natural Distilled White Vinegar, 1 Gallon - 5% Acidity
2 Heinz All Natural Distilled... Heinz All Natural Distilled White Vinegar with 5% Acidity (32 fl oz Bottle)
white vinegar 1

What is Malt Vinegar?

The word malting implies sprouting. Malt vinegar is made by a complex process that takes time. First, the barley is malted, and the resulting disaccharide is formulated into ale.

The ale is then fermented to produce malt vinegar. It is nutty, toasty, and generally light brown-coloured liquid with a typical bare taste. 

Malt vinegar is also known as legal and was invented in Britain. Based on the sharpness of the taste and colour, malt vinegar can be classified into colourless, light brown, and dark brown malt vinegar.

It has a characteristic barley taste and contains gluten absent in white vinegar. 

We found the best deal(s) on Amazon for you

# Preview Product
1 London Pub Malt Vinegar 12.7... London Pub Malt Vinegar 12.7 OZ(Pack of 2)
2 Heinz Gourmet English Style... Heinz Gourmet English Style Malt Vinegar 128 oz (1 Gallon)
malt vinegar

Main Differences Between White Vinegar and Malt Vinegar

  1. White vinegar is clear and colourless, while malt vinegar may be colourless, dark brown, or light brown.
  2. Production of malt vinegar takes more time and is a more complex process than that of white vinegar, which takes less time than malt vinegar and is prepared simply by fermentation of alcohol.
  3. Malt vinegar contains gluten and thus is not suited for people with a gluten allergy, while white vinegar doesn’t contain gluten.
  4. White vinegar is more commonly used than malt vinegar in households for cleaning and cooking. White vinegar is often referred to as malt vinegar.
  5. White vinegar is cheaper than malt vinegar.
  6. White vinegar is more acidic and sourer than malt vinegar which is milder and sweeter.
Difference Between White Vinegar and Malt Vinegar
  1. https://www.osapublishing.org/abstract.cfm?uri=jnirs-12-4-207
  2. https://digitalcommons.lsu.edu/gradschool_theses/1225/
One request?

I’ve put so much effort writing this blog post to provide value to you. It’ll be very helpful for me, if you consider sharing it on social media or with your friends/family. SHARING IS ♥️

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Want to save this article for later? Click the heart in the bottom right corner to save to your own articles box!

Ads Blocker Image Powered by Code Help Pro

Ads Blocker Detected!!!

We have detected that you are using extensions to block ads. Please support us by disabling these ads blocker.