Similar to our search for the perfect (and affordable) olive oil, grocery stores also offer a dizzying array of balsamic vinegars—just one glance down the dressing aisle will likely give you decision fatigue.
But considering the many health benefits of this cooking staple, the search is well worth your time; balsamic vinegar is filled with cancer-fighting antioxidants called polyphenols, as well as the calcium, iron, manganese, and potassium your body needs to maintain a healthy weight. Plus, it's a delicious, low-calorie dressing or marinade that you can drizzle over basically anything.
"Balsamic vinegar is like the PB+J of vinegars: You know it, you've had it, you can pretty much find it anywhere," writes Bon Appétit. "But, like most ubiquitous food products in the U.S., the quality can vary widely." Which is why senior food editor Chris Morocco always reaches for Acetaia Malpighi Balsamo of Modena ($20) when looking for an affordable, high-quality balsamic vinegar.
The food authority recently selected this brand as the overall best grocery store olive oil, mainly due to the fact that it has "a bit of bite, but with balance," explains Morocco. With the perfect amount of thickness and a tart, sweet taste, "this vinegar had the most roundness and body out of any vinegar we tasted."
Buy a bottle of Acetaia Malpighi Balsamo of Modena from Amazon below.
Chen H, Chen T, Giudici P, Chen F. Vinegar Functions on Health: Constituents, Sources, and Formation Mechanisms. Comp Rev Food Sci. 2016;15(6):1124-1138. doi:10.1111/1541-4337.12228