What to use in place of honey?
I am encountering a lot of recipes that look really good but they are calling for honey. Here's my dilemma, in order of importance:
1. I don't want the carbs/sugars from honey.
2. I don't want the flavor of honey in most foods I eat.
3. I don't want to spend the money to buy honey.
What should I use to replace the honey, and what quantity? I'm willing to use stevia but am worried about a bad aftertaste.
I often make my own when I can't find it at my Walmart. Here's my tweak of Birgit Kerr's recipe (from Birgit's Daily Bytes):
1 tsp. honey
¼ c. erythritol
2 T. imitation honey make with xylitol (I use Nature's Hollow from Netrition)
1 pkt. stevia
Boil the above for 2-3 minutes in small saucepan. Remove from heat, cool and store in airtight container. It thickens up as it cools. If it crystalizes in your pantry over time, just warm open jar on DEFROST in your microwave to resoften or run warm water over the jar for a bit. I made up a larger batch and it has kept well, but it DID crystallize on me and I have to soften it when needed in a recipe.
Makes about 1/3 c. or 5 T. Each tablespoon has 12.6 calories, 1.24 carbs, .5 fiber and .74 net carbs
You can get sugar free honey (obviously its not real honey, its honey flavored syrup with sugar alcohols) at many stores, I've seen it at Walgreens and Walmart. Its only about 3 dollars for a typical "honey bear" sized thing.
What recipes do you want to make? If you are just looking to sweeten things, there are many artificial sweetners available. If you need some of the syrupy properties of honey, you may need to use erythritol or some substitutes... if you want to ask us about specific recipes we might be able to help you better.
I love Birgett Kerr's recipe, too. Basically, you can melt down some combination of xylitol and erythritol until it is syrupy and golden and add a wee bit of real honey to the resulting syrup. I keep this in a jar on the counter at all times and use it for anything calling for honey. Doesn't need to be flavored or doctored, this works really well just as is.
I somtimes use sf sugar and water for honey in recipes. Here's what I go by. I usually use xylitol or erythritol or a mixture of them both and some Splenda or stevia. You could also use a homemade simple syrup, sf Da Vinci or Torani simple syrup.
Substituting Sugar for Honey
Step 1 of 4
The ratio of honey to sugar is 1 to 1.25. Therefore, 1 cup of honey in a recipe would need to be substituted for 1 and 1/4 cups of sugar.
Step 2 of 4
Along with the sugar, extra moisture would need to be added. For every cup of honey called for in a recipe, when substituting with sugar, an extra 1/4 cup of liquids should be added.
Step 3 of 4
Take the recipe and see how much honey is called for. Measure out the correct ratio of sugar to honey. See what liquids are being used, such as milk or water. Add the correct ratio of extra liquid to the recipe.
Step 4 of 4
Taste the mixture and see if it is sweet enough. If not, add more sugar and a touch more liquid. These ratios are just guidelines; your own taste buds will determine if the substitution is correct or not.
Tips & Warnings
Eliminate the baking soda in the recipe that calls for honey. Baking soda is used to take away the slight acidity form the honey and is unnecessary with the use of sugar.
This is very helpful, Gina. Thanks.
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