To kick off this week, we wanted to talk about coconut sugar.
For those who may be new to our site, we’ve been sharing posts entirely devoted to specific sugar alternative products we use in our recipes. We want to make sure these sweeteners seem accessible and not scary! We have covered a few natural sweeteners in the past that can be found in our Natural Sweetener Guide (the title of the sweetener covered will link to the post).
What is Coconut Sugar?
Coconut sugar is made from the flowers of the coconut tree. Coconut sugar can be called by two names, coconut sugar or coconut palm sugar. In addition to that, there is a product called Palm Sugar which is a very popular in Asian cuisine. Coconut palm sugar is the most common name used by US companies. We have used products that use both names of “coconut sugar” or “coconut palm sugar” in their titles and they both work wonderfully.
The first question you might have about coconut sugar is “does it taste like coconut?” The answer is no! Coconut sugar does not taste, smell or look like coconut at all! In the above picture, you might find it has a similar appearance to brown sugar, because of it’s rich brown color, can clump together and has a sweet scent. For this reason, coconut sugar has become a favorite! Especially for it’s nice sweet caramal-y flavor to baked goodies.
Why Coconut Sugar is Healthy
Coconut sugar is a whole, pure, unprocessed and completely natural sugar. It will not give you sugar high’s and low’s and won’t make you feel sluggish or bloated. It’s naturally full of vitamins and minerals like amino acids, potassium, magnesium, iron and zinc and is a completely safe as a diabetic sugar substitute. Coconut sugar has a low glycemic index (35), making it safe and convenient for any one concerned with blood sugar levels. Not all natural sweeteners are perfect for those who are concerned with this so coconut sugar is wonderful for those who are!
Why We Love Coconut Sugar
Aside from the health benefits, we love coconut sugar because it tastes good! Coconut sugar is a great sugar alternative for many reasons. It bakes very well and helps give an amazing texture to all our favorite dishes! It caramelizes well, like sugar, thus making great brownies or chewy cookies. It’s substituted for sugar 1 to 1 and it mimics the taste of brown sugar. This flavor combines so well with flavors like chocolate for healthy Nutella or almond for almond cookies. It’s sweet enough to replace regular white sugar in, but healthy enough to call it a “whole nutrient rich” food. Coconut sugar is so amazing, even Dr. Oz loves it!
How to Use Coconut Sugar
Coconut sugar is a wonderful natural sweetener that can be used in many ways!
Because of coconut sugar’s properties, it’s the perfect natural sweetener for baking and cooking. Here are some of our favorites:
Now coconut sugar is great for lots of different dishes, but it’s not perfect for everything. It’s color and flavor is not ideal for every dessert you make. We don’t use coconut sugar in white, light or delicate flavored treats like whipped cream or white frosting. So sometimes we combine coconut sugar with other sweeteners to achieve the look and taste we want!
Where to Buy Coconut Sugar
The best place to find coconut sugar is either at local health food stores (sometimes they go on sale for great deals) or online! We love buying coconut sugar through amazon.com. The products we often purchase are shown in our amazon products list on our blogs sidebar. You can always subscribe to items through amazon.com, helping to save a little money. You can also check out health food sections in any regular grocery store. We also just discovered that you can buy coconut sugar at Costco! If you would like to try out this natural sweetener but don’t want to commit to the cost, split it between you and a few friends. You won’t regret the price nor the delicious health benefits and you’ll be helping to share a healthy sugar substitute with your friends!
Questions: Have you tried coconut sugar before? What do you love about it?