Why A Splash Of Vinegar Will Change Your Soup Forever

Vinegar is every kitchen's secret weapon. It can be used to clean and sanitize your floors and countertops, per NW Maids. And when you aren't using it as a cleaning solution, chances are you are using a bottle of flavored vinegar to make a salad dressing, pickling your favorite veggies, or balancing the sweetness of a dessert, according to Cooking Light. It can be the perfect addition to break down starch and make your rice fluffier (via Sweet Peas and Saffron). And when mixed with milk, it can also serve as a substitute for buttermilk, per Tastes Better from Scratch.

There are many vinegar cooking hacks out there, but one you might want to try using involves everyone's favorite cold-weather comfort food: soup. While these are typically simple to make, finding the right balance of flavor where it's not too bland or too spicy can come into play. According to the Chicago Tribune, vinegar is the magic elixir you should reach for when your soup tastes a little off. Here's why.

A dash of vinegar enhances flavor

The Chicago Tribune spoke to cookbook author James Peterson who revealed vinegar could help unite all those competing flavors in your soup, resulting in a bowl of a slurp-worthy meal. Peterson said, "When you're tasting and it appears that the flavors in a recipe are refusing to focus, a little vinegar will often do the trick."

The Kitchn concurs that vinegar is a "one ingredient" fix when your soup does not meet your taste bud's expectations. But don't overdo it. A little vinegar goes a long way. The Kitchn suggests just "half a teaspoon or more" of vinegar can punch up the flavor of your broth. David Lebovitz, a professional chef who wrote "My Paris Kitchen," seconded this sentiment in his comments to the Chicago Tribune, saying a teaspoon is best since "you don't really want to taste it in things." 

Additionally, if you want to make bone broth as a homemade cold remedy, Endeavour College of Natural Health recommends adding vinegar to extract the flavor and minerals from the bones. Apple cider vinegar is the most common one to have on hand, but red wine vinegar is an excellent alternative if you are making beef or lamb bone broth-based soup.