The 7 Best Apple Cider Vinegar of 2021, According to a Dietitian

Fermented apples for health

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Our Top Picks
"Raw, unfiltered, and unpasteurized, it yields higher concentrations of acetic acid and “good” bacteria."
"Use in salad dressings or over roasted vegetables to add depth of flavor and acidic balance."
"These gummies are infused with antioxidant-rich pomegranate and beetroot."
"In addition to being organic and non-GMO, these vitamins are third-party tested for potency, purity and safety."
"It contains cayenne and black pepper extract, which provide added antioxidant benefits and may enhance nutrient absorption."
"These come in four antioxidant packed flavors made with organic fruit, all blended with honey for a touch of sweetness."
"A single-serve shot packs a powerful punch of ACV and antioxidants."

Known for its tangy taste and potential health benefits, apple cider vinegar has become increasingly popular in cooking and as a supplement. Apple cider vinegar (ACV) is made through a fermentation process in which yeast digests the sugars from the apples, resulting in acetic acid. You may notice a floating substance in a bottle of apple cider vinegar that is unfiltered and unpasteurized—this what is referred to as “the mother,” which is the byproduct of the fermentation process that contains proteins, enzymes, and “good” bacteria. 

While there is limited research on the health benefits of ACV, some smaller studies have shown that consuming ACV may support weight loss, improve cholesterol levels and blood sugar control, and provide antimicrobial effects. ACV also contains polyphenols, which are antioxidants that can help to mitigate oxidative stress in the body. While ACV has been touted for alleviating symptoms of GERD (or acid reflux), the evidence is limited, and it may, in fact, exacerbate symptoms for some because it increases the acidic environment of the gastrointestinal tract.

When consuming ACV, it is important to consider potential negative side effects. High intakes of ACV may cause tooth enamel erosion, esophageal damage, and hypokalemia (low potassium levels). It may also interact with certain medications, so be sure to check with your physician before taking ACV. Additionally, unpasteurized food and beverages are not recommended for pregnant women or people with compromised immune systems.

Here, the best apple cider vinegar products:

Best Overall: Bragg Organic Apple Cider Vinegar

Bragg Organic Apple Cider Vinegar tops our list with its versatility and high “mother” content. This vinegar is raw, unfiltered, and unpasteurized, yielding higher concentrations of acetic acid and “good” bacteria that can help support a healthy gut microbiome

Braggs is a great pantry staple that can be used in a variety of ways. Mix it with extra virgin olive oil to make a smooth and tangy salad dressing or make a beverage by diluting two tablespoons of the vinegar in eight ounces of water.

Best Budget-Friendly: Lucy's Organic Apple Cider Vinegar

When it comes to affordability, buying in bulk is best. Once opened, apple cider vinegar has a shelf life of about two years, so this is a good product to buy in large quantities for better value. 

Try the one-gallon bottle of Lucy’s Organic Apple Cider Vinegar, which is raw, unfiltered, and unpasteurized. Use in salad dressings or over roasted vegetables to add depth of flavor and acidic balance. It can also be diluted in water for an ACV beverage.

Best Gummy: Goli Nutrition World's First Apple Cider Vinegar Gummy

Apple Cider Vinegar Gummy Vitamins by Goli Nutrition

If you are looking for an alternative way to get the potential health benefits of ACV, try Apple Cider Vinegar Gummy Vitamins by Goli Nutrition. In addition to containing “the mother,” these gummies are infused with antioxidant-rich pomegranate and beetroot and are enriched with vitamins B9 (folic acid) and B12. 

The recommended dosage is two to three gummies per day, with two gummies equating to the acetic acid levels of one shot of apple cider vinegar. Two gummies contain 100 percent of the recommended daily value of vitamins B9 and B12.

Best Capsule: Peak Purity Organic Raw Apple Cider Vinegar Capsules

If you are looking to incorporate ACV into your diet but can’t take the sour taste, try Peak Purity Organic Raw Apple Cider Vinegar Capsules. In addition to being organic and non-GMO, these vitamins are third-party tested for potency, purity, and safety. This product does not contain “the mother,” which may mean a lower concentration of the “good” bacteria. 

The recommended dosage is two capsules containing 1,000 milligrams of apple cider vinegar, which is equivalent to four liquid teaspoons of ACV.

Best Powder: Pure Co. Organic Apple Cider VInegar Powder

Apple cider vinegar has a strong taste, making it difficult to mask when blending into smoothies. Try Pure Co. Organic Apple Cider Vinegar Powder for a mild-flavored alternative that can also be stirred and dissolved in water.

In addition to apple cider vinegar, Pure Co. Organic Apple Cider Vinegar Powder contains cayenne and black pepper extract, which provides added antioxidant benefits.

Best Beverage: Vermont Village Organic Apple Cider Vinegar Variety Pack

Vermont Village Organic Apple Cider Vinegar provides a more palatable alternative to pure ACV. These beverages contain raw, unfiltered ACV with the “mother” and come in four antioxidant-packed flavors made with organic fruit, including Cranberry, Blueberry, Ginger, and Turmeric, all blended with honey for a touch of sweetness.

One serving size (1 fluid ounce) contains 25 calories and 6 grams of sugar, and each bottle contains eight servings. Enjoy this beverage as shot or dilute in water for a tasty, sippable ACV beverage.

Best Shot: The Twisted Shot Organic Apple Cider Vinegar Shots

For a two-ounce shot with a powerful punch of ACV and antioxidants, try The Twisted Shot Organic Apple Cider Vinegar Shots. These single-serve shots contain raw, unfiltered ACV with the “mother” blended with honey, ginger, turmeric, and cayenne. 

Each shot contains 1.5 tablespoons of ACV with 25 calories and 5 grams of sugar. 

Final Verdict

For a versatile, raw, unfiltered, and unpasteurized ACV, try Bragg Organic Apple Cider Vinegar (view at Amazon). Hate the taste of ACV? Try Apple Cider Vinegar Gummy Vitamins by Goli Nutrition (view at Amazon) for an ACV dose with “the mother” and added folic acid and B12 vitamins.

What to Look for in an Apple Cider Vinegar

The “Mother”:

Many of the potential health benefits of ACV are associated with the “mother,” or the byproduct of the fermentation process that contains proteins, enzymes, and “good” bacteria. Products that are raw, unfiltered, and unpasteurized will have a higher content of the “mother.” When you hold up a bottle of ACV, you should be able to see murky strains floating in the vinegar. 

Type:

Less is known about the potential benefits of ACV when isolated in pill form versus liquid form, as most research on ACV is associated with the raw, unfiltered, and unpasteurized liquid form. If you can tolerate the taste, go for a liquid form with the “mother."

FAQs

What is the best time to take apple cider vinegar?

There is no current, substantiated research on the best time of day to consume apple cider vinegar. Incorporate ACV at a time that works best with your schedule. Whether in liquid, powder, gummy, or capsule form, apple cider is best consumed as part of a balanced diet consisting of fruits, vegetables, healthy fats, whole grains, and lean proteins. 

What is the best way to take apple cider vinegar?

The best way to take apple cider vinegar is largely dependent on your taste buds and preference. If you’re using a pure ACV, try it whisked into a dressing with extra virgin olive oil or diluted in water as a beverage. Experiment with powdered ACV in smoothies, or try flavored ACV shots for a morning boost. Can’t take the pungent taste? Try a gummy or capsule. 

Recommended dosage of ACV varies depending on the manufacturer and the potential health benefits you are looking to achieve. In general, the recommended intake range is about one to four tablespoons per day. Start with one tablespoon and increase based on tolerance. Be sure to consider the potential negative side effects when assessing your ACV intake. 

What Experts Say

"Apple cider vinegar has many purported benefits, but it's always recommended to see what works for your individual body. For an immunity and digestion boost, I recommend mixing one tablespoon of apple cider vinegar and the juice of half a lemon to eight ounces of water."–Eliza Savage, MS, RD, CDN

Why Trust Verywell Fit?

As a Registered Dietitian, Anne Carroll uses her clinical expertise to cut through marketing claims and get down to the science. These are all products that she has researched and vetted and would recommend to her clients in private practice and incorporate into her own diet.

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Article Sources
Verywell Fit uses only high-quality sources, including peer-reviewed studies, to support the facts within our articles. Read our editorial process to learn more about how we fact-check and keep our content accurate, reliable, and trustworthy.
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