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Substitute For Lemon Juice In Apple Pie

Substitute For Lemon Juice In Apple Pie

If you are baking an apple pie but you’re all out of lemon juice, no need to worry! There are a number of substitutes you can use instead of lemon juice no matter what apple pie recipe you are making.

Lemon juice provides an important flavor note and the acid is an important part of the final flavor of your apple pie. So when making an apple pie without lemon juice, it’s important to use an ingredient that provides a similar flavor.

And fortunately there are a number of options you can go with to add flavor that pairs perfectly with apple pie.

So what are the best substitutes for lemon juice when baking apple pie?

The top lemon juice alternatives you can use in your apple pie recipe are apple cider vinegar, lime juice, grapefruit juice, white wine vinegar, and orange juice.

Make sure to read on to learn how to use each of these lemon juice replacements as well as some additional tips that will help you bake a delicious apple pie.

Lemon Juice Alternatives for Baking Apple Pie

top view of fresh baked apple pie on cutting board

Lemon juice is an acid that enhances the other flavors in your apple pie. That means by using an acid, you get a more enhanced final flavor.

The acid also helps to break down the fibers within your apples, aiding in the texture. So overall, lemon juice is called for in your recipe for very good reason.

Using the following substitutes will provide you with similar benefits, so it’s well worth taking the time to learn about each of them so you can bake a great apple pie without lemon juice.

Related: Nutmeg substitute for apple pie

Apple Cider Vinegar

bottle of apple cider vinegar on table

Apple cider vinegar is a versatile ingredient that makes a wonderful substitute for lemon juice in any apple pie recipe.

It provides a similar level of acidity meaning it is an excellent flavor enhancer. It will also provide similar texture benefits.

While it will not provide the citrus flavor of lemon juice, you can get that by adding lemon zest if you wish.


1 teaspoon of apple cider vinegar equals 1 teaspoon of lemon juice

Lime Juice

top view of bowl of limes

Lime juice provides a similar flavor and acidity level to lemon juice and can be subbed in any apple pie recipe.

It does have a slightly more bitter flavor, but most will not notice a difference. The flavor of lime juice pairs quite well with apple.


1 teaspoon of lime juice equals 1 teaspoon of lemon juice

Grapefruit Juice

whole and sliced grapefruit on table

Another substitute that provides a similar flavor profile that can be used in any apple recipe is grapefruit juice.

This tart option pairs wonderfully with apple and produces similar texture on top of a great flavor. No other recipe changes are needed when substituting with grapefruit juice.


1 teaspoon of grapefruit juice equals 1 teaspoon of lemon juice

White Wine Vinegar

bottle of white wine vinegar and grapes on table

White wine vinegar is another excellent substitute for lemon juice for those who are looking for a non citrus option.

The acidity level is similar to lemon juice, so it is a wonderful flavor enhances. It will provide a great finished texture and flavor and is ideal for those who do not like the taste of lemon in their apple pie.


1 teaspoon of white wine vinegar equals 1 teaspoon of lemon juice

Orange Juice

top view of whole and sliced oranges

While not my preferred substitute for lemon juice, orange juice can be used if no other alternatives are available.

The flavor works, but can overpower the other flavors in your pie. But the acidity level is similar and it does work fine enough.

It also happens to be a common ingredient for many people to keep stocked in the fridge making it a convenient option for many.

Related: How much juice from one orange


1 teaspoon of orange juice equals 1 teaspoon of lemon juice

Leave it out

classic apple pie top view

If you are all out of lemon juice, and you don’t have any of the substitutes on hand, you can simply omit it from your recipe.

While lemon juice does enhance the flavor and texture of your apple pie, it is not strictly required. You can still bake a great tasting apple pie without lemon juice or a substitute.

Simply leave it out and follow your recipe without any other changes.

Related: Lemon juice vs lemon zest

Bottom Line

Lemon juice provides a flavor and texture boost to apple pie and you will find it called for in many homemade apple pie recipes.

While you can skip it if you don’t have any on hand, there are a number of great substitutes for lemon juice you can use that produce great flavor and texture.