It’s time to say goodbye to processed sugar
Here are a few tips to get you started:
Applesauce: Instead of a half-cup white sugar in a batch of oatmeal cookies, swap in an equal amount of applesauce! The natural sweetness from a Golden Delicious or Fuji apple is perfect in an after-dinner treat. Purchase the no-sugar-added kind, or make some at home.
Maple Syrup: is high in minerals like zinc and manganese and its familiar flavour becomes less pronounced when used in baking. There are two common grades of maple syrup that you will likely see on your grocery shelf; Grade A has a mild flavour and light colour, Grade B is darker in colour with a stronger maple flavour.
To use pure maple syrup in place of sugar in a baked recipe, use 3/4 cup pure maple syrup for 1 cup of granulated sugar and reduce the dominant liquid in the recipe by 3 tablespoons for each cup of maple syrup used. Using maple syrup in baked goods may cause them to brown more quickly, due to the high sugar content.
Honey: There are two common types of honey, pasteurized and raw, unpasteurized (thick, cloudy, granular consistency). Raw honey has not been processed/heated, leaving more of the antioxidants, vitamins and minerals intact. This is the honey you want to use! It is actually sweeter than white sugar but very versatile and great for baking.
To substitute honey for white sugar in baked goods use 3/4 cup honey for every 1 cup of sugar. Honey adds a lot of moisture to a recipe, so reduce other liquids in the recipe by ½ cup for every 1 cup of honey added. Also, decrease oven temperature by 25 degrees to ensure your baked goods don’t brown too much.
Puréed Banana: In the next loaf of banana bread or muffins, try using extra-ripe bananas and eliminating the sugar. The fruit naturally becomes sweeter as it ripens, so there’s no need for extra sugar
Molasses: In any recipe that would otherwise call for sugar as a sweetener, you can use 1 1/3 cups molasses for every 1 cup of sugar replaced. In addition, given the acidity of molasses, a 1/2 teaspoon of baking soda should be added for each cup of molasses used. You’ll also want to reduce the amount of liquid in the recipe by 5 tablespoons.
Given the bold taste that molasses will provide your recipe, it is advisable that only a portion of the required sugar in any recipe be replaced, as molasses can substantially change the taste of baked goods.