• 'Saccharomyces' gives us 'ethanol' (i.e. alcohol).


  • 'acetobacter' makes 'acetic acid' (i.e. vinegar)

On the other hand,

  • 'lactobacillus' gives us 'lactic acid' (i.e. pickle brine)

My question is :

Can that lactic acid be used as vinegar?

  • 2
    What do you mean "used as vinegar?" You can drink pickle brine if you like the taste.
    – Juhasz
    Commented Jul 12, 2021 at 17:18
  • @Juhasz, so it's consumable but since you said "drink" I assume it cannot be used as vinegar? I meant that to use it in cooking or dressing the salads or as a substitute to vinegar in general.
    – Roo Tenshi
    Commented Jul 12, 2021 at 18:08
  • 1
    In what preparation or what role that vinegar ordinarily takes do you want to use it as a vinegar? For dressing, obviously if you can drink it you can toss it with slaw.
    – Damila
    Commented Jul 12, 2021 at 21:01
  • @Damila, sure I "can" toss it. but will the result be the same if the source (plant) for fermentation is the same? How will the taste be, the intensity, the chemical properties that might affect cooking, etc etc. I don't have a specific case or a particular question for the matter. But I thought that people would tell me "no you can't use it as a sub for vinegar because of this or that".
    – Roo Tenshi
    Commented Jul 12, 2021 at 22:47
  • 2
    Whether or not you can sub depends on what you want the item to do. You mentioned salad dressing. The salad will taste like pickles. To me that would be ambrosia. To many it would be vile. To a professional it would either be genius or blasphemous.
    – Damila
    Commented Jul 12, 2021 at 23:49

1 Answer 1


The answer to this depends on the brine in question. Both vinegar and a lactic brine solution are obviously acidic, but vinegar is sold at different concentrations. If you have a lot of leftover lactic brine, you don't know its concentration. So you'd have to take your best guess at that aspect.

The main thing however, is taste. Vinegars are generally made from fruit or grains, which have lots of sugar. Lacto fermentation usually uses vegetables or dairy... And salt. The flavor profile is going to be completely different, even if you don't care about saltiness.... Which saltiness would become more pronounced when cooking.

That difference in flavor is the only real problem I perceive.

  • 1
    This answer satisfies my not well-articulated question. Thanks again, @Kitukwfyer :)
    – Roo Tenshi
    Commented Jul 12, 2021 at 22:42

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