Vinegar tends to be a very close friend of chefs and food advocates around the world. From apple cider vinegar to the standard industrial vinegar, we love the tangy acid it provides. But, not all vinegar is the same, so we’ll take a look at a very popular condiment to fish and chips: malt vinegar. Is it Paleo?
What is Malt Vinegar?
Malt is the term used for barley that has been germinated and dried. You probably know it as an ingredient in beer, “malt beverages,” and “malt liquors.” Malt vinegar is made by converting barley to malt, then malt to alcohol, and then allowing the alcohol to ferment into vinegar. The resulting vinegar is milder that traditional white vinegar, and is used as a condiment. The condiment is found on tables at nearly every pub in the UK, since it is a popular component to fish and chips.
Malt vinegar can also be found in salad dressings and marinades, and used to pickle vegetables. It is different from white vinegar due to the addition of malted barley, and it is not suitable for those with gluten sensitivities because barley contains gluten. Additionally, some companies dye their malt vinegar with caramel color to give the impression that it has been aged to reach a more complex flavor.
Is Malt Vinegar Paleo?
Nope. Sorry friends, but malt comes from barley, which is a gluten-filled grain. Although it goes through the fermentation process, gluten still remains. And it is a fact that grains were not a substantial part of the human diet before the agricultural revolution. As Mark at Mark’s Daily Apple states, grains are: “Unnecessary at best, but flat out unhealthy at worst.” Sure, there are certainly worse things (such as a bowl of pasta), but if you want the same vinegar tang, we suggest sticking with apple cider vinegar.