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If you’re looking for a white sugar alternative, you’re in luck—there’s never been a better time to dive into the world of natural sweeteners. You’re probably familiar with honey and agave syrup (which tend to get most of the attention), but you can also make room for coconut sugar, coconut nectar, monk fruit syrup, and more. In general, moderation is the key when it comes to using sweeteners. Even natural sugars like honey and maple syrup can spike blood sugar when eaten in excess, but less processed options are definitely great go-to options if you’re looking to make the switch. And even if you’re sticking with white or brown sugar, you can opt for organic brands made from higher quality ingredients. The only question is, which recipe should you make first?
Popular Sugar Alternatives
Here’s our guide to some of the most popular sugar alternatives out there.
- Honey: This nectar melts beautifully into hot beverages, adds sweetness to baked goods, and can be added to salad dressings to help balance acidity.
- Coconut sugar: Also known as coconut palm sugar, this natural sweetener comes from the sap of coconut trees and has a similar texture and flavor to brown sugar.
- Coconut nectar: Coconut nectar is another sweetener that comes from coconut trees. It has a thick syrupy consistency and earthy taste.
- Agave: Agave is made from the juice of the agave succulent, and is a popular vegan alternative to honey.
- Stevia: This sugar-free and low-glycemic sweetener is great for anyone monitoring calories—stevia doesn’t have any! Formulated for the perfectly sweet flavor, it can sub into lots of baked goods, iced tea, or anywhere you normally use regular sugar.
Top Sweetener Brands
Check out these popular alternative sweetener brands:
Lakanto brings monkfruit to the masses through its line of liquid and powdered sweeteners. This ancient fruit is free of calories and is made without additives. Its sweet taste is remarkably close to regular sugar, but with a zero glycemic index.
Swerve markets itself as the ultimate sugar replacement, and it might be onto something. The company starts with non-GMO raw materials and is a zero-calorie, non-glycemic alternative to table sugar that’s safe for those with diabetes.
For all your sugar needs, Wholesome is a one-stop-shop offering cane sugar, brown sugar, agave, molasses, turbinado sugar, and more. The sweeteners have been around since 2001 and are non-GMO, Certified USDA Organic, and fair trade certified.
Best Honey and Sweeteners
Our members are all about these three sweeteners.
Bloom Orange Blossom Pure Raw Honey
This raw honey has a sweet citrus flavor that’ll make you think you’re in a California citrus grove. It’s perfect for drizzling on toast with your favorite nut butter, stirring into tea, or using as the base of a DIY face mask.
Thrive Market Organic Maple Syrup, Grade A
At 32-ounces, our largest jug will see you through pancake breakfasts, granola and muffin baking, BBQ sauces, and more. This organic and gluten-free product is made from syrup harvested in Vermont
Lakanto Classic Monkfruit Sweetener
Now you don’t have to feel like skipping dessert is your only option to avoid sugar. This zero-calorie sugar sub is made by naturally fermenting non-GMO corn and young monkfruit. The result will make you do a double take—it’s similar enough to table sugar to make this a star ingredient, especially for diabetics.
Keep things sweet while avoiding genetically modified organisms (GMOs).
Swerve Brown Sugar Replacement
This zero-calorie and non-glycemic sweetener measures cup-for-cup like traditional brown sugar so it’s easy to recreate your favorite desserts without having to do lots of complicated math.
Coconut Secret Organic Coconut Nectar
Coconut nectar comes from the sap of coconut trees and delivers 17 amino acids to boot. Its low glycemic index score makes this sweetener a great option for diabetics or anyone looking to eat a bit more healthfully while still enjoying a treat now and then.
Thrive Market Organic Cane Sugar
This organic sugar isn’t refined or bleached with harsh chemicals (which happens with some conventional sugars). This bag is ethically sourced from fair trade farms and can be used in all your favorite baking recipes.
Best Liquid Sweeteners
Granulated sugar isn’t the only show in town. From sweetening your favorite drinks to boosting your waffle batter, reach for one of these top picks.
Wholesome Organic Blue Agave
Fair trade and organic, this agave is perfect for all kinds of baking but is especially wonderful for drinks like smoothies, cocktails, or iced teas as it dissolves quickly into cold beverages.
The Ginger People Organic Ginger Syrup
Organic ginger and organic cane sugar are the only two ingredients in this delicious sweetener. Use it in baking, drinks, or even as a glaze for vegetables.
Wholesome Organic Molasses
This gluten-free molasses has a robust flavor that’s unmistakable in cookies, sauces, and bran muffins. It may be sweet, but each spoonful delivers calcium and iron, too.
Tips for Cooking and Baking With Sweeteners
Before you start your ovens, read up on our best tips for choosing the right sweetener for the job.
Differences Between Maple Syrup and Honey
These two liquid sweeteners are often interchangeable in recipes, but find out what makes each option unique.
Health Benefits of Sugar Alternatives
Are sugar alternatives healthier? This post looks at 10 popular sugar alternatives to see how they stack up.
The Benefits of Raw Honey
You might already be sweet on honey, but do you know all the ways it can benefit you? Have a read.