How to Replace Sugar in Baking

lump sugar in a glass sugar-basin image by Maria Brzostowska from

Many sugar substitutes are available for use in baking. You may want to use an alternative to sugar if you are looking for a low-calorie alternative or you may have a medical condition, such as diabetes, where your sugar consumption is severely limited. You can still make delicious desserts and dishes that taste just as good, if not better, than the originals using either natural alternatives or artificial sweeteners.

Determine which alternative you want to use for sugar. You can select from either natural sweeteners or artificial sweeteners. All sweeteners are not created equal. Some natural sweetener alternatives to sugar are honey, maple syrup, molasses or corn syrup. Artificial sweetener options are saccharine, aspartame, acesulfame potassium and sucralose.

Convert your alternative into its sugar equivalent. Honey is a natural sweetener that is sweeter than sugar and requires 3/4 cup for every cup of sugar in a recipe. Maple syrup has the same conversion. You can also use molasses, which is not as sweet as sugar and therefore requires 1 1/3 cup for every cup of sugar. You must also reduce other liquid ingredients by 2 tbsp. when using honey or maple syrup to compensate for using a liquid instead of dry sugar. Saccharine, which is 200 to 700 times sweeter than sugar, only requires 6 grams for every 1/4 cup of sugar. There are 201 grams in one cup. You can also use sucralose, which has an equal conversion rate to sugar.

Mix your ingredients together. If the texture seems awkward, you may need to add more sugar substitution or add other dry ingredients to thicken the mixture.

Do a taste test when you're done baking. You may want to try a different alternative if the taste doesn't compare to using traditional sugar.