Some time ago we posted on how to spot hidden sugars  and in our last post we shared a recipe for honey and yogurt biscuits which uses honey instead of sugar. In this post we consider some of the basics of substituting honey for sugar.

Honey is made up of fructose, glucose, water and minerals such as iron, calcium, potassium and magnesium. Due to the high level of fructose, honey is sweeter than table sugar. Honey is a high carbohydrate food and has a GI value of 55 (moderate range). Honey has a lower GI value than sugar, meaning that it does not raise blood sugar levels as quickly. However, honey has more calories per teaspoon than sugar, so it’s wise to keep a close eye on your portion sizes. Raw honey contains more vitamins, enzymes, antioxidants and nutrients than white sugar.

There are other benefits to substituting honey for sugar, it provides a unique flavor to any dish, but it also balances and enhances the flavor profiles of other ingredients used in a recipe. Honey also acts as a binder and thickener for sauces, dressings, marinades and dips.

Tips for substituting honey for sugar

  • Honey and maple syrup are sweeter than sugar, so you will
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    want to use less if you are going to substitute for sugar. You will want to use about about 1/2 – 3/4 cup of honey or maple for each cup of sugar.
  • Maple syrup and honey are somewhat acidic, when baking, you will need to add 1/4 – 1/2 tsp of baking soda per cup of honey or maple syrup to your mixture to enable it to rise.
  • When substituting a liquid sweetner like honey for a granulated sweetener like white sugar you need to allow for the overall change in liquids. For every 1 cup of honey you substitute into a recipe, subtract 1/4 cup of liquid from the overall recipe. For every 1/4 cup of honey you substitute into a recipe subtract 1 Tbsp of liquid from the rest of the recipe.
  • The converse is also true. If you want to substitute a granulated sweetner for a liquid sweetener you also need to change the overall liquids in the recipe. For every 1 cup of granulated sweetener you substitute you will also need to add 1/4 cup of liquid to the recipe. For smaller recipe, for every 1/4 cup of granulated sugar you will need to add 1 Tbsp of liquid to the overall liquids in the recipe.

Mummy to three sweet little boys

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