How to Cook with Vermouth

Learn how to cook with vermouth, because it’s not just for martinis! Make savory and sweet dishes with this fortified wine. 

How to Cook with Vermouth, a comprehensive guide //

After you’re done making a big batch of martinis, you might be left with a little leftover vermouth. Vermouth can go bad after 2-3 months, so you’ll want to be sure to refrigerate it ASAP lest it turn to vinegar.

Luckily for you, vermouth can be used well beyond the martini. You can use it in lieu of wine in savory recipes, or you can use it to add a little flavor in soups, sauces and desserts.

In fact, because vermouth is a fortified wine, it is actually stronger than wine — like we talked about in my vermouth guide earlier this month.

It is infused with herbs, and thus is more flavorful than wine. It can add a lot of punch to your dishes, but you do have to be careful that it doesn’t overpower lighter ones.

I’ve got a few tips for cooking with vermouth for you, and I also rounded up a bunch of food recipes — savory and sweet — that contain vermouth too.

Whether you’re a vermouth fan or not, there’s something here for you! Cheers! // susannah

Click through to learn how to cook with vermouth!


Savory dishes: You’ll want to use dry vermouth in savory recipes. It pairs well with poultry, seafood and shellfish.

Sweet dishes: Surprise! Sweet vermouth will work better in sweet recipes. You can add it anywhere you would use red wine, such as in chocolate sauces or jams.

Vinegars: If your vermouth goes bad, you can use the vinegar in recipes!


In the fridge! For 2-3 months, tops.


Freezing it: Alcohol has a lower freezing point than water, which means it might not freeze properly. If you’re making a frozen dessert, too much vermouth might kill the ice.

Cooking with it: When you cook with any alcohol, the heat makes the majority of alcohol evaporate.

Depending on the cooking method and temperature, the alcohol won’t burn off entirely, but your dish won’t be as potent as drinking straight alcohol. In general, the longer you cook anything with alcohol, the more will evaporate.


I rounded up eight food recipes utilizing vermouth for you to try. There are sweet ones and savory ones alike. If you’re after a cocktail to pair with it, look here.

You could also try any of the rum cocktails I’ve written for the blog, including:

How to Cook with Vermouth, a comprehensive guide //

1. Lobster Spaghetti by Cooking for Keeps // 2. Manhattan Clam Chowder by Eat the Love // 3. Creamy Asparagus Soup by Simply Recipes // 4. Income Tax Cupcakes by Cupcake Project // 5. One Pot Chicken Risotto by Sweet C’s Designs // 6. Fig Jam with Rosemary + Vermouth by Set the Table // 7. Kale with Vermouth Raisins & Pine Nuts by No Recipes // 8. Ginger, Vanilla + Quince Upside-Down Gluten-Free Cake by The Bojon Gourmet

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  1. Erika says

    That is good to know that you can use the vinegar when vermouth goes bad! I think we have an old bottle in our fridge right now, actually.

  2. William Barrett says

    I attended a cooking party in Michigan 1973ish. We made a sauce with sliced onions, Vermouth and butter. We all made meat rolls that were raw thinly sliced beef salami provolone cheese and added to the sauce . I think it was served over pasta. I think it may be a Scandinavian. I’ve looked for a recipe many times with no luck. Any ideas?

    • Susannah says

      Hi William, that sounds really tasty! I don’t know of an exact recipe like that but I’m happy to try to help. You may need to cobble together a few recipes to make something similar. I found these steak rolls and this onion vermouth sauce that you could try serving over pasta. I asked a friend who knows Swedish cuisine and she wondered if this recipe for Swedish Sausage Stroganoff might be similar. It uses cognac not vermouth though. Hope one of these helps!

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