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The Naturally Sweet Side of Food

Sugar and sugar substitutes are causing an over abundance of healthy problems. It’s no wonder people are looking for alternatives when it comes to sweetening foods and beverages. Natural sweeteners are making their way to our kitchens in leaps and bounds. Let’s take a look at some natural ways to add a bit of the sweet to our taste buds.

The Naturally Sweet Side of Food

• Maple syrup contains sucrose and glucose. Maple syrup is made from the sap of maple trees and is widely used as a sugar substitute. While it may not be as sweet as sugar, use only ¾ cup of maple syrup per cup of granulated sugar specified. As with concentrated apple juice, the maple syrup will liquefy the final product so be sure to decrease any liquids in the recipe by 3 tablespoons.

• Molasses is a natural sweetener; however, it is not as sweet as sugar. When replacing sugar with molasses, use 1 1/3 cup of molasses per cup of granulated sugar. Molasses will impart strong flavor and dark color into your recipe.

• Honey is one of the widest used natural sweeteners. Honey is made by bees and is sweeter than sugar, so reduce the amount of honey used in any recipes as a sugar substitute. Honey can be used in beverages, food and as a topping.

• Concentrated apple juice is a great sweetener and can replace sugar in baking recipes and cooking. To replace sugar with concentrated apple juice, use ¾ cup for every cup of white sugar. Also reduce any liquid in a recipe, such as water, by 3 tablespoons as concentrated apple juice is liquid in form. Other concentrated juices can be used as well; just keep in mind that different flavors will affect the taste in your recipes.

• Figs, in addition to being natural laxatives, are also great for sweetening foods. Figs are better cooked rather than raw.

Natural sweeteners are a great way to put sugar and sugar substitutes to the way side. These are just a few that can be found in the vast amounts available in supermarkets today. Try different types of natural sweeteners in your favorite recipes until you find the right one to sweeten the family’s taste buds.

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