To find a suitable substitute for white wine, it helps to have a sense of what role it plays in the recipe you’re using. According to Wine Enthusiast, vino can wear many hats when it comes to cooking. For example, when used in cream-based sauces, wine “adds depth and cuts the richness.” In many dishes, white wine also functions as a “supplement to citrus” given its fruit-driven, high-acid character. Of course, just a splash of the stuff also does a bang-up job of deglazing a pan, so you can scrape up the good stuff (aka fond) after browning meat.
The bottom line: If the meal you have in mind calls for white wine, you definitely don’t want to just omit the ingredient and move to the next step. Instead, refer to the list below for pinch-hitters to serve whatever purpose the wine was meant for in your meal.