We are overexposed to sugar, so the likelihood of cutting all sweets cold turkey is slim to none. Thankfully we have other options that deliver the sweet but require some recipe adjustments.
First, know what “sugar free” means. Food manufacturers can claim that a product is sugar free if it contains less than 1g of sugar per serving.
One gram of sugar is 1/4 teaspoon. At that small of an amount, your blood sugar will likely not be adversely effected, however, it’s still important to know.
Alternative Sugars & What To Avoid
Molasses, maple syrup, date sugar, beet sugar and honey all effect blood sugar the same (with slight variation). These should be avoided if possible.
Raw honey (preferably from local beekeeper) and coconut sugar are better options since they have about half of the effect (glycemic index) that table sugar has.
Agave is a personal favorite. It has one-fourth the effect (glycemic index) table sugar does, and two different tastes. The light syrup has a mild honey taste and the dark tastes similar to dark brown sugar. But since it’s a liquid, you can’t just substitute it for sugar when baking. (Sugar provides stability and structure in baked goods, and it absorbs moisture.)
Then there are sweeteners that have ZERO effect like Stevia, Erythritol, etc. These have distinct tastes so they don’t work with all recipes in terms of hiding the fact that sugar isn’t being used. Also, they don’t always substitute one-for-one. Most alternative sweeteners have conversion charts on their packaging. The baking isle has a few options like Truvia (in the tub), and health stores have more options and brands like Swerve.
This list is not all inclusive, but it’s the basics. Which sweeteners have you been using?