Love to bake, but don’t love eating processed sugar? If you’re trying to opt for healthier ingredients while still indulging in delicious treats from time to time, use these six natural sugar substitutes to eliminate processed ingredients from your favorite recipes.
- Date sugar. This sugar is made from dried, ground dates. It has all the vitamins, minerals, folic acid, and fiber of regular dates, plus a low glycemic index so you won’t see a blood sugar spike. It’s great as a brown sugar substitute in crisps, spice cakes, and dressings.
- Maple sugar. This maple sugar dehydrates into granular form. It’s higher in manganese, iron, and potassium than traditional sugar and is great in coffee or baked goods (although you may want to use less than usual as it has a quite strong flavor).
- Stevia. This classic sugar substitute comes from the leaves of a South American shrub. Although some dislike its aftertaste, it’s a good sweetener in coffee or oatmeal.
- Monk fruit. Similar to stevia, this sweetener also comes from an exotic plant. Monk fruit is grown in Southeast Asia and contains antioxidants called mogrosides. It’s great in frostings and other super sweet recipes.
- Coconut sugar. A popular substitute among bakers, this sugar has a similar consistency to brown sugar and can be replaced in a one-to-one ratio in any recipe.
- Yacon syrup. Sourced from the yacon plant, this sweet ingredient is great on pancakes and even contains gut-healthy prebiotics.