Sugar Substitutes You May Have In Your Pantry

Have you found, during these days of stay-at-home orders, that your sugar supply in the pantry is all but depleted?  Not to worry, other substitutes can be used in a pinch, and they may very well be currently residing in your pantry.

Baking is a science, and as such, you would be highly advised not to go swapping substitutes willy nilly.  With that said, there are viable substitutes that, if you play them at there strengths, are great for backups.

Brown Sugar

Brown sugar is the cousin of white sugar and, as such, exhibits more personality.  Darker in color, this sweetener gets its coloring from the added molasses that, in turn, coats the sugar crystals.  The same ingredient that gives brown sugar its warm coloring is also what creates its caramelized flavor and moistness and compactibility.

Dark brown sugar has as much as twice the molasses as light brown sugar.  However, both dark and light brown sugar can prove as a viable stand-in for granulated sugar when baking.  The only difference is usually in the texture of the finished item.

When substituting, your ratio will be that of 1 cup of packed light or dark, brown sugar for every cup of granulated sugar.

Image: Lorraine Maita, MD

Liquid Sweeteners

It is possible to substitute a liquid sweetener for granulated sugar, but be fully prepared to refigure your recipe a bit. 

Both agave nectar as well as honey are both much sweeter than sugar and are also much wetter than their granulated counterpart.  When it comes to this type of sweeteners, it is prudent to remember that less is more. 

You will need to make sure to not only adjust your rations but your baking times and temperatures as well.

With honey, you will need to substitute at a ration of ½ cup of honey to 1 cup of granulated sugar.

With agave nectar, your substitution is 2/3 cup to 1 cup of granulate sugar.