Easy Balsamic Reduction with Variations and Ideas

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A question we often hear is, "How do I make a Balsamic Vinegar reduction?" Here's the answer with some ideas for using one and room for your own creativity. BHL

Yield: ¾ cup

Ingredients with Variations*:

1 ½ cups Flying Olive 18 Yr Balsamic Vinegar

Some people like to add a little sweetener such as honey or brown sugar—it depends on how sweet you'd like your reduction to become.


Place the Flying Olive 18 Yr. Traditional Balsamic Vinegar in a small saucepan over med-high heat.  Heat for about 3-5 minutes.  Occasionally whisk or stir to keep it from burning.(Voice of Experience: burned balsamic does not taste good!)

Lower the heat to simmer and continue stirring or whisking until it reduces by about a half.  I usually check to see if it coats the back of a spoon to be sure I have simmered it long enough.

Take it off the heat and let it cool a bit.  It will get more syrupy as it cools. Pour it into a glass container and store it in the refrigerator up to a week.  If it becomes too thick, add a few drops of water and stir it until it is the consistency you prefer.

*Variations and Ideas:

Use ½ Flying Olive Balsamic and ½ Red or White wine:  Use red wine with dark balsamics, white for white balsamics, but there aren't really any rules!

Use the Flying Olive Balsamic Vinegar of your choice.  I've had good success with either dark or white balsamic vinegars.  Great on anything from ice cream to roasted chicken! Drizzle on avocados, tomatoes, a caprese salad, cheese—be creative!  Use Espresso Balsamic for pork chops or ice cream.  Try Lemongrass Mint for a watermelon salad!

Add some fresh herbs or seasonings when you heat the Balsamic: rosemary, thyme, garlic, black and/or chili pepper, a cinnamon stick, 1-2 cloves, a bay leaf, an orange rind...there are so many ideas and uses. Be sure to strain out these additions before using.  I especially like to add to soups, spaghetti sauces, chili, and stews to add flavor and brightness.

Have fun experimenting!

Submitted by Barb L.