What Is Rock Sugar Used For?

by Lexa W. Lee ; Updated August 31, 2017

Rock sugar or rock candy, which consists of large crystals, has some different uses than table sugar or sucrose. Rock sugar is used in some beverages, liquors and soups, as a glaze or eaten as candy.


The large crystals of rock sugar grow in a concentrated sugar solution, according to Chow.com. They can be clear, white or caramel-colored. Sometimes the crystals are formed on strings. Rock sugar is not as sweet as table sugar.

Chinese Dishes

Rock sugar is an ingredient in some savory Chinese dishes. It is added to some braised meat dishes to give them a mellow flavor and a translucent appearance. Chinese cooks also use rock candy to flavor sweet soups, chrysanthemum tea and some liquors, according to MamaHerb.com.

Other Facts

Other countries also use rock sugar. Mexicans use it to make skulls in celebrations for the Day of the Dead or Día de los Muertos. The candy is later eaten. In India rock candy is offered with aniseed to freshen the mouth after meals.

Our Everyday Video

Brought to you by LEAFtv
Brought to you by LEAFtv

About the Author

Lexa W. Lee is a New Orleans-based writer with more than 20 years of experience. She has contributed to "Central Nervous System News" and the "Journal of Naturopathic Medicine," as well as several online publications. Lee holds a Bachelor of Science in biology from Reed College, a naturopathic medical degree from the National College of Naturopathic Medicine and served as a postdoctoral researcher in immunology.