Spending time in the kitchen is a part of the daily routine for many people. While some people enjoy cooking more than others, everyone has to eat and knows the flavors that they enjoy most.
Anyone with a sweet tooth knows the struggle of trying to balance a diet. When all you want is sweets, it can prove to be a challenge to get in enough healthy foods!
Pure cane sugar is not the only way to satisfy those sweet cravings. There are so many sweeteners that can brighten up any meal, from breakfast to snack time!
Having a pantry stocked with multi-purpose ingredients is a great way to work toward a balanced, diverse diet. The hard part is finding the right ingredients that can be used for more than just one recipe.
To mix up the meals you eat and make some changes to those ultra-sweet snacks, these five versatile sweeteners can make a huge difference.
If you love pancakes and waffles, there is a good chance you’ve had a run-in with maple syrup. This sugary sweet topping is tasty and can be used for so much more than breakfast food.
Maple syrup can take the place of cane sugar in many recipes, making it an awesome versatile ingredient to keep stocked in the pantry.
It makes a great addition to baked beans and can make sweet potatoes even more delicious.
Maple syrup can be mixed into dips, drizzled on ice cream, used as a glaze for meats. It works as a substitute for sugar in many different recipes.
There is some variation in maple syrup. Some syrups are pure, some are dark, some are light, some are sweet, and some are bold.
If you don’t have a preference in the flavor, try having a few different types in the pantry and use a different kind for every recipe. You never know what you might love the best!
Commonly called agave nectar, agave syrup is sweeter than sugar and absolutely wonderful to use in many recipes.
Like maple syrup, agave syrup comes in light, dark and amber variances that have their own flavor profiles.
For a milder flavor, you might opt for light agave syrup. These work best to sweeten drinks or liven up an appetizer.
Amber agave syrup is commonly used to create a stronger flavor. It has a taste similar to a lighter caramel.
Dark agave syrup might be the most versatile because it makes for unique meat flavoring and works perfectly as a drizzle on any pastry.
It contains Vitamins C and B though it is mostly known as a carbohydrate. While it is nearly the same as cane sugar nutritionally, it tends to be sweeter so you will likely use less of it.
Agave syrup is a great staple in any pantry because of how many uses it has.
Stevia is a member of the sugar substitute family, though differs from many of its counterparts because it is derived from a plant. Many of the other substitutes tend to be highly processed, making stevia the preferred ingredient for many.
People love using stevia because it is known to not add any calories to the food it is poured in. It makes coffee sweet and cakes a little more guilt-free than before.
The stevia plant was found in the 1800s, but it wasn’t until much more recently that it has grown into such a popular pantry addition. People used to chew on the leaves of the plant for a sweet treat, but that is no longer considered safe according to the FDA.
What is safe is the high-purity steviol glycosides that come from the stevia plant. These are accessible and can be the sweetener you need to enhance your sweet treats.
It tastes quite a bit sweeter than table sugar, so a little bit definitely goes a long way. It can easily be added to seafood, vegetables, candies, and sauces as a replacement for cane sugar.
It never hurts to try something new, especially when it is calorie-free!
An oldie but a goodie, honey has been a pantry staple in every kitchen for a long time. Honey is a great ingredient to have on hand at all times because it is so versatile.
According to Gift Wits, honey can be added to more than just tea when you have a sore throat. It tastes delicious on toast and can sweeten up coffee more than you might think!
While it is most well known for helping in the kitchen, honey can even be spread on the skin to help with burns because it prevents infection.
It makes for delicious marinades and dressings, adds a little something to an ice cream sundae, and can make oatmeal or breakfast cereal a hit.
If you are looking to add honey as a sweetener into your daily cooking routine, it is important to know that there are many types of honey that serve different purposes.
Some are sweeter than others, and some are even spicy, so make sure to choose one that matches the flavor profile you are looking for.
Many popular food stores sell a variety of honey options. All of them tend to offer better nutritional value than the standard cane sugar.
Honey is full of antioxidants and can boost the digestive system. It is worth trying to use honey more often to boost the health of your household!
If you have ever eaten at a restaurant, there is a good chance you’ve seen these brightly colored packets on the table. Splenda is a sugar substitute that many people enjoy to sweeten up their diets.
It is sweeter than cane sugar and contains very few calories, making it an option people lean toward when looking to lose some weight.
Splenda is commonly used in foods and drinks labeled as diet. It doesn’t lose its sweetness when it is heated as many other sugar substitutes do, so it is the perfect addition to coffee, tea, and other recipes.
This is an easy replacement for sugar and can be added to anything you might need to sweeten up a bit.
Finding new ways to add sweetness into recipes has never been easier with such delicious options available. Use any of these five versatile sweeteners as a staple in your pantry!