Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Healthy Sweeteners

Think healthy sweeteners is an oxymoron? It doesn't have to be! There are plenty of nourishing, better-for-you sweeteners you can use to substitute for refined white sugar. One of my goals for this year has been getting rid of refined sugar from our diet. You don't have to go to even one of the best nursing schools to know that this stuff isn't good for you. I have not cooked with it in several months and have adapted most of my recipes to include Sucanat, rather than white sugar. This is pretty easy, since it substitutes cup for cup. I have also been using some real maple syrup. I haven't used much honey because I haven't found a great source for quality, reasonably priced honey. Suggestions?

I have posted several of recipes with sweeteners, and since this week's Ultimate Recipe Swap is themed "sweeteners", I've compiled all my healthy sweetened recipes here for your convenience. Enjoy!

::Chocolate Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting
::Healthified Carrot Cake

::Cranberry Apple Muffins
::Favorite Cornbread
::Super Delicious, Healthy Pumpkin Bread

::Apple Baked Oatmeal
::Hot Chocolate
::Whole Wheat Banana Pancakes

What are your favorite foods to make with sweeteners? Do you use natural sweeteners like honey, sucanat (or rapadura), molasses, and real maple syrup, or do you stick with white sugar?

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  1. Hey MJ! Instead of maple syrup, we use Agave Nectar for our pancakes and waffles. I use the "light" version because its consistency isn't so thick, but the flavor and the ingredients are still 100% organic. :D It's also good to drizzle over fruit as a snack, Daniella loves it! In terms of honey, I buy the "Leighton's Orange Blossom Honey." It comes from Oranges instead of bees but still super sweet. It's 100% organic, and reasonably priced (I think) I get 1lb for $2.99. :)

  2. I cook with Stevia ... It's a natural sweetner so it doesn't have side effects like artificial sweetners. I purchased a Stevia cookbook which has really helped me learn how to cook best with it.

  3. Hey, MJ! We just went to Webb's Honey near Christmas, FL last weekend for a homeschool field trip. She mentioned they sell their pure, unfiltered honey in bulk at a wholesale price. (I think it's 12 jars for $30 - I am not certain, but I bought a 24oz jar for $6 retail.) We bought the wildflower honey, which contains the local pollens. We are taking a spoonful every morning in hopes that we notice a difference in our allergies. :)

    All honey comes from bees - but whether it says "clover" or "orange blossom" or "tupelo" just indicates which type of flower the bees harvested the nectar from.

    Oh, and Stevia is okay to sweeten an occasional coffee or tea, but I wouldn't cook with it. FDA continually turns it down for approval because studies show some health problems