Cooking with Wine – Tips and 60+ Recipes

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Give your meals an extra dose of flavor by learning how to cook with wine! There are many easy techniques for using wine in your favorite recipes. Fins some basic tips along with 60+ delicious recipes using wine!

Cooking with wine doesn’t need to be complex or intimidating. In fact, cooking with wine is a simple, easy way to add a dash of flavor to foods.

There are a few basic rules that you should follow, but other than that, feel free to get creative!

Basic Rules for Cooking with Wine

  • Always use a good-quality wine that is fairly fresh – if you wouldn’t drink it on its own, you shouldn’t add it to your food.
  • Think of wine as a spice, and use it accordingly: intense red wines will require longer cooking times than light, delicate white wines.
  • Don’t cook with expensive or rare wines. Though you want your wine to be good quality, it’s a waste of money to dump a fine bottle into a pot of stew.
  • Some alcohol will be left in the final dish. People who cannot have any alcohol at all should avoid cooking with wine.

Most Common Ways of Cooking with Wine

There are four common ways of using wine in cooking.

  • Using wine as a stock in soups or stews or for braising
  • Making a marinade with wine
  • Deglazing and making a quick wine sauce
  • Using wine in desserts

I’ll discuss each method in more detail below, and the recipes below include all four ways of using wine.

wine glasses with red and white wine

Wine in Stocks for Soups, Stews and Braising

Wine is frequently used as the base of stocks along with water or as a replacement for it. Follow the general rule: use red wine for red meat stock and white wine for poultry and fish stocks.

Sweeter, fortified wines are also used in stocks. For example sherry and Madeira work particularly well with chicken and turkey stock.

However be sure to use about half has much fortified wine as you would regular wine. These wines are thicker and more concentrated in flavor and alcohol.

Stocks are used for many dishes, mainly soups and stews, but also casseroles, risottos, lentil and bean dishes, and pasta dishes. They are also excellent for braising meats that have a long cooking time.

Using Wine in Marinades

Marinating with red wine is best done with red meats; similarly, you’ll want to stick to white wines with white meats like chicken and fish.

Vegetarians and vegans can marinate tofu, Portobello mushrooms and root vegetables in red or white wine. Generally these need a shorter marinade time than meat.

To use wine as a marinade, pour the wine over the meat, add spices, herbs and any other seasoning, and let it steep for several hours or overnight. The thicker the cut of meat, the longer it should marinade.

Even a short marinading time can make a huge difference in flavor of the final dish! Keep in mind, though, that red wine will turn food bluish-purple, so use it sparingly on light colored foods.

It’s best to stick to dry, full-bodied wines for marinades, such as Cabernet Sauvignon, Zinfandel, and Malbec for red wines, or Chardonnay, Sauvignon blanc, or dry Riesling for white wines.

pouring wine into a pot of clams

Making Sauces and Deglazing with Wine

Deglazing is simply the addition of a liquid to a pan in which something has been roasted or sautéed.

This liquid absorbs the remaining solid particles and flavors in the pan, and is usually brought to a boil and reduced to make a sauce that is added at the final stage of cooking.

You can pour straight wine into the pan, anywhere from 1/2 a cup to two cups’ worth, depending on the sauce.

Red wine should be reduced by about half, white wine by about a quarter. The longer a sauce is cooked, the bolder the wine used should be.

Fruity wines work very well for deglazing and sauces; try something like Chilean Merlot or Californian Pinot Noir. Good white wines to use include New Zealand Sauvignon blanc or Alsatian Pinot Gris. Avoid very tannic or oaky wines.

poach pears

Using Wine in Desserts

Adding a wine to a dessert is one of my favorite ways to be creative with wine! Sweet dessert wines like port, sherry, Sauternes, ice wine, and vin santo increase the complexity of a dessert’s flavor.

The good thing about using these wines in cooking is that you don’t need to add very much to get a rich taste – just add a small dash to icing, cake batter, brownies or cupcakes.

Wine in Stocks

close up of Instant Pot Lamb shank
Instant Pot Lamb Shank
Make easy wine braised lamb shank for a delicious restaurant worthy dinner.
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overhead view of beef stew in a stock pot
Beef Stew with Shiitake Mushrooms and Baby Vegetables
Delicious beef stew with shiitake mushrooms and baby vegetables braised in wine tastes amazing!
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top view of Instant Pot beef stroganoff
Instant Pot Beef Stroganoff
This one pot dinner is features tender beef and mushrooms in a sour cream sauce with egg noodles.
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spaghetti topped with bolognese sauce on a blue and white plate
Bolognese Sauce with Spicy Sausage
Make this tasty Bolognese sauce for your pasta dinner.
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short ribs in a bowl with mashed potatoes
Wine Braised Short Ribs
Tender beef short ribs are braised in wine for a delicious comfort food dinner.
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Mussels in Spicy Tomato Sauce Recipe
Mussels in a spicy tomato and white wine sauce is elegant meal, perfect for holiday entertaining or a romantic meal at home.
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Italian Sausage and Peppers
Your favorite variety of Italian sausages, a blend of peppers, and lots of onion cook in just one pan with an ultra flavorful wine sauce.
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Rabbit Cacciatore
This simple and delicious rabbit cacciatore recipe features rabbit legs cooked in a cherry tomato and white wine sauce and is filling yet light.
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Chicken Cacciatore
This easy chicken cacciatore combines juicy chicken and earthy mushrooms in a rich, aromatic tomato sauce. It makes for an irresistible one pot dinner the whole family will love!
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Vietnamese Beef Stew Pho Noodle Soup (Pho Bo Sot Vang)
This noodle soup features tender beef, flavorful broth and amazing aroma from pho spices. You can cook it on stovetop, in a slow cooker or a pressure cooker like an Instant Pot.
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Lentil and Mushroom Stew over Potato-Parsnip Mash
Lentil and Mushroom Stew over Potato-Parsnip Mash is a hearty vegetarian meal the whole family will love. Fiber-rich and decadently delicious, this recipe will satisfy even the most devout meat lovers.
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Venison Meatballs with Cranberry Wine Sauce
Make this easy homemade venison meatballs recipe in just a few steps. Use fresh cranberries, cranberry jam, port and wine to make the tasty berry sauce.
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White Bean Soup
If you ever thought that beans are boring, this creamy flavor-packed white bean soup will blow your mind!
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Slow Cooker Beef and Noodles
Seared, seasoned and slow cooked beef teams up with a thick beef sauce, mushrooms, onion, and egg noodles to make this classic beef and noodles dish.
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Skillet Chicken Pot Pie
Fix this thick & hearty chicken pot pie in one skillet on the stovetop and while that's simmering away, bake a batch of quick & easy cheddar garlic drop biscuits to serve on top.
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Tomato Basil Tortellini Soup
This Creamy Tomato Basil Tortellini Soup is made with ground chicken, veggies, aromatics, fresh basil and mint leaves, and pillowy ricotta and spinach tortellini. Everything is simmered with wine in a velvety and rich tomato cream broth!
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Instant Pot Braised Brisket with Red Wine
This instant pot braised brisket can be made in under an hour – incredible!
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Cuban Picadillo
Perfect for a family dinner this traditional Cuban Picadillo Recipe is easy to make with only a handful of ingredients for the ultimate comfort food dish.
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Red Wine Pasta
This vegan Red Wine Pasta is perfect for wine lovers on a date night, and is ready start to finish in about 20 minutes.
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Clams and Chorizo
These littleneck clams steamed in white wine, surrounded by aromatics, and rich in umami from chorizo, will be the most flavorful clams you’ll eat.
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Spanish Ropa Vieja With Garbanzos
This Spanish ropa vieja with garbanzos is an authentic dish straight from the Canary Islands. Different from its Cuban counterpart, it’s made with chickpeas and shredded meat for a classic taste of the Canaries.
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Slow Cooker Chicken Merlot
Using a slow cooker to make Chicken Merlot is not only easy, but a great way to allow flavors to build gradually during the slow cooking process.
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Instant Pot Rosemary Chicken Noodle Soup
Chicken soup with white wine and rosemary along with immunity boosting ginger and garlic.
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Lemon Dijon Moules Marinieres
Lemon Dijon Steamed Mussels makes an incredible appetizer course or spectacular lunch.
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Using Wine in Marinades

White Wine & Red Wine Spiced Chicken
This marinated chicken makes for an easy, quick and scintillatingly succulent dinner.
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Best Chicken Marinade
This chicken marinade is easy to make at home and has simple ingredients, such as wine, olive oil, balsamic vinegar, brown sugar, prepared mustard, onion powder, salt, and pepper.
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Chicken Spiedini Recipe with Lemon Butter Sauce
This Grilled Chicken Spiedini Recipe with Lemon Butter Sauce is perfect to grill all summer long!
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Red Wine & Herb-Marinated Steak
Red wine and herb-marinated steak is a delicious steak marinade for any night of the week. Filled with flavor, this combo is perfect!
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Shrimp and Celery Stir Fry with Ginger and Scallions (Paleo, Keto, Gluten Free) • Oh Snap! Let’s Eat!
Shrimp is quickly marinated in wine and grilled along with ginger, scallions and celery for yummy flavor.
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Marinated Pork in red wine – Afelia
Afelia is a traditional Cypriot dish of small pieces of marinated pork meat cooked in red dry wine and coriander.
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Making Sauces and Deglazing with Wine

closeup view of sous vide turkey breast
Sous Vide Turkey Breast with Cranberry Wine Sauce
A delicious cranberry wine pan sauce tops off this tasty turkey breast.
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Chicken Marsala
This Easy Chicken Marsala with Mushrooms will knock your socks off!
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lamb chops on plate
Sous Vide Lamb Chops with Wine Sauce
Sous vide lamb chops are cooked tender and flavorful every time, and topped off with an easy wine sauce.
Red Wine Barbecue Pork Ribs
Grilled pork ribs are brushed with a red wine barbecue sauce for a delicious and different taste.
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Merlot Meatball Appetizers
Italian meatballs tossed in a tangy, Merlot glaze are sure to disappear fast
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Dijon Chicken with Shallots and Wine
A simple yet outstanding recipe for braised chicken thighs with shallots and Dijon mustard wine sauce.
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Chicken Piccata Pasta with Green Beans
This easy recipe for chicken piccata pasta is smothered and a lemony buttery wine sauce and packed with healthy green beans for an easy, delicious, and inexpensive meal.
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Steak Mushroom Sauce with Wine and Bacon
This wine and bacon sauce is perfect for making a less expensive cut of steak more delicious.
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White Wine Tomato Skillet Chicken
Wine is the secret ingredeint in this easy skillet chicken dinner.
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Filet Mignon Steak with Red Wine Sauce
Delicious pan seared filet mignon steak with red wine sauce for a classic steakhouse dinner at home.
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Easy White Wine Butter Scallops
White Wine Butter Scallops is a delicious, easy, and quick scallops recipe the entire family will love!
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Chicken with Garlic Mushroom Sauce
Tender and juicy chicken breasts smothered in garlic mushroom sauce is quick and easy comfort food.
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Pressure Cooker Seitan with Red Wine Mushroom Sauce
A hearty seitan roast topped with a red wine mushroom sauce, done quickly in a pressure cooker! Perfect for your next holiday meal.
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Pan Seared Scallops Recipe in Wine Sauce
Enjoy a restaurant-quality Pan Seared Scallops Recipe, in the comfort of your home.
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Easy Red Wine Jus
Easy Red Wine Jus is a delicious sauce useful to enhance meat based dishes.
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Scallop Shrimp Pasta with Burst Cherry Tomatoes
This scallop shrimp pasta with burst cherry tomatoes is perfect for not only quick and simple weeknight meals but also fancy date night dinners.
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Using Wine in Desserts

Strawberry Rose Cupcakes
These Strawberry Rosé Cupcakes are a dense vanilla sponge cake spiked with rosé. These cupcakes are filled with a fresh strawberry compote and topped with a whipped vanilla buttercream.
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Vegan Red Wine and Mocha Tart Recipe
This luxurious red wine & mocha tart recipe is perfect for a vegan Valentine’s day treat. Dairy-free, vegan, refined sugar free – yet sinfully delicious!
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Raspberry Syllabub with Chardonnay Vanilla Biscuits – Summer in a Glass
Whipped cream with Chardonnay and vanilla sugar layered with crushed raspberries and more wine make for a delicious if decedent summer dessert. Crisp buttery vanilla biscuits made with Chardonnay wine are the perfect pairing.
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White Wine Bread Pudding | BAKED
The combination of almonds, citrus, and white wine really elevates this bread pudding and makes it more sophisticated than your standard bread pudding.
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Champagne Vanilla Bean Cake
This Champagne Vanilla Bean Layer Cake is perfect to celebrate the holidays or any birthday! Perfect bakery-like layers of Champagne and Vanilla Bean Cake with a Champagne and Vanilla Bean Buttercream.
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Blushing Apricot Sorbet
Fresh, sun-ripened apricots and crisp, dry rosé pair up with fragrant Thai basil in this light and refreshing Blushing Apricot Sorbet With Fresh Thai Basil.
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Austrian Mulled Stewed Plums
This sauce is a boozy, spiced prune plum compote. This plum sauce is traditionally served with fluffy pancakes but Iit is also delicious as a topping for cheesecake or ice cream!
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Strawberry & Rose Wine Macarons
Strawberry & Rosé Wine Macarons are as delicious as they are pretty.
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Watermelon Sangria Popsicles
These popsicles are easy and delicious when you need a refreshing ice cold treat for adults.
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Red Wine Cupcakes
These Red Wine Cupcakes are deliciously chocolate-y and moist with a subtle red wine flavor, topped off with a sweet cream cheese frosting.
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Red Wine Hibiscus Sangria Sorbet
Red Wine Hibiscus Sangria Sorbet is a refreshing summer dessert!
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Wine Soaked Chocolate Covered Cherries
Wine Soaked Chocolate Covered Cherries are a super easy, yet elegant way to end a meal.
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Red Wine Chocolate Raspberry Cake
Chocolate cake with red wine, raspberry mascarpone filling and chocolate buttercream is so delicious you won’t be able to resist another slice!
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Pinot Noir Chocolate Chip Brownies Recipe
These Chocolate Chip Brownies with a hint of Pinot Noir are decadent desserts perfect for serving at parties or as everyday baked treats!
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Red Wine Poached Pears
A simple yet decadent and elegant dessert – these Red Wine Poached Pears enhance the natural sweetness of the fruit with delicious red wine and beautiful spices.
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Sangria Slushie
This ice cold summer drink makes a cool and refreshing summer treat for grown ups!
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collage of food cooked with wine with a text overlay

Hi, I’m Anne!

I love to cook and I want to share my recipes with you. I believe cooking should be approachable and fun, not a chore. I want to make simple recipes using everyday ingredients that you can make again and again, whether it is for a busy weeknight, a summer cookout or a special dessert. Read more...

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