Can Cleaning Vinegar Be Used For Cooking?

Can cleaning vinegar be used for cooking?

Vinegar is also known as white vinegar is one of the basic home products found in most homes. The product has become a cheap alternative to detergent due to its acidic nature and it is used as an ingredient in cooking.

Nowadays there are different kinds of vinegar in the market. This makes it difficult to differentiate the cleaning vinegar from the regular white vinegar if you don’t check the labels.

You may even use the cleaning vinegar as your cooking ingredients unknowingly. But, what if you can use it to cook just as you use your normal vinegar?. Read along to find the answer to that question.

Can Cleaning Vinegar Be Used For Cooking? 

 No, it can’t be used for cooking. Cleaning vinegar is made specifically for cleaning and not otherwise. The cleaning vinegar is known to have higher acid content (6%) than the white vinegar (5%).

The 1% difference makes cleaning vinegar 20% stronger than the regular white vinegar. You may damage your health when you consume lots of acetic acids. Also, some cleaning vinegar products are known to have scents or flavors that will not be suitable for cooking. 

In addition to this, manufacturers may have included some ingredients to make the vinegar more effective in cleaning. These ingredients may not be safe for consumption.

This is why they write precautions on its label to prevent people from consuming the product like the white vinegar.

To avoid any temptation, we advise you to store your cleaning vinegar, where you keep your laundry materials. You can keep the white vinegar in the kitchen. This way you will avoid poisoning your food with the cleaning vinegar. 

Different Between Cleaning Vinegar And Normal Vinegar? 

The normal white vinegar contains 5% acetic acid and 95% water while cleaning vinegar contains 6% acetic acid. The higher acetic acid in cleaning vinegar makes it more suitable for cleaning. The white vinegar too can also clean but would not be as effective as the cleaning vinegar. 

The cleaning vinegar is safe for everyone, young or old and it is environmentally friendly. This makes it the right choice when it comes to cleaning whereas, regular vinegar is best suited for cooking. Some vinegar like apple cider vinegar which has brown color is not recommended for laundry even though it can be used for cleaning 

These two types of vinegar should not be interchanged with industrial vinegar. Industrial vinegar has 20% acetic acid and it is used mainly for outdoor activities especially to kill weeds. It is very dangerous to health. You will need to wear protective gear while handling the vinegar. 

What You Can And Can’t Use Vinegar To Clean? 

Vinegar antiseptic nature makes it a very good cleaning agent for surfaces in a bathroom like the tiles, sink, and toilets. Also, you can use vinegar to remove stubborn odors in a fabric. You can even use vinegar to clean glass surfaces. 

Some things can’t be cleaned with vinegar. For instance, wooden surfaces can’t be cleaned by vinegar because its acidic nature can damage the wood. Metal surfaces, marble, and granite should not be cleaned with vinegar. The acidity level can remove the protective layer in granite. It can also eat away the protective coating on a metal surface. 

Surfaces stained with egg should not be cleaned with vinegar. The consistency of the egg changes when it reacts with acids and this can make removing the egg stain from the surface. 

How Vinegar Is Made? 

Vinegar is made by fermenting food containing alcohol e.g. wine. It can also be made by fermenting sugar which will then be processed into vinegar. The component of each vinegar product will determine what it will be used for. 

Where Can You Buy Cleaning Vinegar?

You can buy cleaning vinegar from many stores and online stores like amazon. Supermarkets do store cleaning vinegar in the chemical section while the white vinegar is kept in the food or groceries section. 


Not all vinegar products can be used for cooking, some are made specifically for cleaning while some others are meant for industrial use. Cooking with the wrong type of vinegar can damage your health and that of your household. 

So try to check the description on any vinegar you buy to know its specific use. Also, separate the cleaning vinegar from the regular vinegar.

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