Have you planned to make pancakes for the morning breakfast and started its preparations and later realized that you are short of maple syrup? This happens with most of us, but don't worry; every food ingredient has its substitutes. Why not try some maple syrup substitute? These substitutes for maple syrup are readily available in your kitchen. But, before proceeding with the maple syrup substitute, let's take a look at some basic information related to maple syrup.
- What is Maple Syrup?
- Varieties of Maple Syrup
- Benefits and Nutrition of Maple Syrup
- Maple Syrup Nutrition Facts
- Uses of Maple Syrup
- How to Cook with Maple Syrup?
- Is Maple Syrup Vegan?
- Where to buy Maple Syrup?
- How to Store Maple syrup?
- Maple Syrup Substitute
- How to Make Maple Syrup Substitute at Home?
- How to Substitute Other Sweeteners for Maple Syrup?
What is Maple Syrup?
Maple Syrup is derived from the maple tree's sap and is used as a natural sweetener in various dishes. In the early spring season, the sap is collected from the maple trees and then cooked to make a rich flavorful syrup. Maple syrup is mostly enjoyed in Northern America and is also made in the other states of Northeastern US as well as the eastern region of Canada.
Maple syrup mostly goes well with the breakfast food items like the pancakes. It is a core ingredient in sweet dishes and also added while making sauces.
Varieties of Maple Syrup
Maple syrup is graded according to its color and the time when the sap was collected. The later the sap is collected in the season, the darker is the color of the syrup. In 2015, the USA revised the maple syrup's grading system to fit the Vermont and international standards. The new gradings are as follows.
- Grade A golden syrup has the lightest color and has a mild flavor that is good for the desserts and breakfast food items.
- Similarly, Grade A amber syrup has a rich flavor and is a good choice for the table syrup due to its classic maple flavor.
- Grade A dark color syrup is most flavorful and is the right choice for cooking.
- Processing Grade is very dark and is collected at the end of the spring season and is used for while making commercial products.
Benefits and Nutrition of Maple Syrup
Even though the maple syrup is made of sugar, it is one of the healthiest sweeteners you can find in the market. It is natural and more nutritious and tasteful than refined sugar. Maple syrup has 52 calories per tablespoon, whereas white sugar has 51.6 calories. It means that both are almost the same in terms of carbs, so maple syrup shouldn't be considered a low sugar sweetener. However, due to its sweet flavor, you don't have to add much maple syrup in the dishes. As compared to sugar, maple syrup has more nutrients like manganese, calcium, potassium, and magnesium. So, let's have a quick look at its benefits and nutrition in detail.
- Health benefits of maple syrup
Here are some of the health benefits of maple syrup that you might not be knowing
- Maple syrup is good for men's health
Maple syrup has lots of zinc in it as per the book 'Healing Foods' by DK publishing. Zinc has a lot of health benefits like it supports men's reproductive health and also protects against prostate enlargement. Also, its high level of manganese helps in the production of the sex hormones in both men and women.
- Maple syrup helps to boost energy
The manganese in the maple helps to boost energy production and the synthesis of fatty acids and cholesterol. You can consume 1/4th cup of maple syrup to fulfill 90-100% of daily manganese requirements of your body.
- Maple syrup protects the heart's health
Maple syrup doesn't cause harm to your health as compared to the other processed and varieties of sweeteners available in the market. It has a decent quantity of zinc, and also the minerals in it helps to protect the artery walls from radical damage and prevents the arteries from damaging. Also, the manganese in the maple syrup helps to boost good cholesterol levels in the blood.
- Maple syrup helps to regulate the blood sugar levels
Maple syrup helps to keep the blood sugar in control, and you can consider it as a healthier switch.
The antioxidant polyphenol, combined with the other plant hormones or abscisic acid, improves your body's sensitivity to the blood sugar by regulating the hormone insulin.
- Maple syrup has lots of antioxidants
Maple syrup is not only the best sugar alternative, but it is also a healthy food too, as it has 56 vital antioxidants. Several studies have also claimed that there are various health benefits of maple syrup and a good amount of antioxidants polyphenols, which have strong anti-cancer properties.
Maple Syrup Nutrition Facts
Maple syrup is the perfect toppings on pancakes, waffles, ice cream, and many other desserts. Let us explore the nutrients that you get while enjoying the real maple syrup.
- One tablespoon(20 g) of maple syrup contains the following nutrition.
- Calories 52. Calories from Fat 0.1 (0.2%)
- Saturated fat 0g
- Monounsaturated fat 0g
- Polyunsaturated fat 0g
- Sodium 2.4mg
- Potassium 42.4mg
- Carbohydrates 13.4g
- Net carbs 13.4g
- Sugar 12.1g
- Fiber 0g
- Glucose 0.3g
- Fructose 0.1g
- Sucrose 11.7g
- Protein 0g
- Vitamin A 0μg
- Vitamin A IU 0IU -
- Pyridoxine or Vitamin B6 0mg
- Vitamin B12 0μg
- Vitamin C 0mg
- Calcium 20.4mg
- Vitamin D 0μg
- Vitamin D IU 0IU
- Iron 0mg
- Vitamin E 0mg
- Vitamin K 0μg
- Caffeine 0mg -
- Magnesium 4.2mg
- Phosphorus 0.4mg
- Zinc 0.3mg
- Copper 0mg
- Manganese 0.6mg
- Selenium 0.1μg
- Retinol 0μg
- Lycopene 0μg
- Thiamine 0mg
- Riboflavin 0.3mg
- Niacin 0mg
- Folate 0μg
- Choline 0.3mg
- Water 6.5g
- Fatty acids
- Amino acids
These are the maple syrup nutrition facts that you need to know if you are health conscious.
Uses of Maple Syrup
Most people use maple syrup as a topping for pancakes, waffles, and also in sweets. Apart from this, you may also use it in making the following dishes.
- Barbecue Sauce
- Roasted Vegetables
- Pumpkin Soups
- Snacks Mix
- Bread Pudding
- Olive Oil And Maple Granola
- Maple Syrup-Soaked Doughnut Holes
- Fennel And Maple Breakfast Sausage
- Maple Cinnamon Applesauce
- Blueberry Maple Breakfast Bake
- Mini Chocolate Chip Maple Pancake Cupcakes
- Maple And Mustard Glazed Salmon Recipe
- Chipotle Maple Barbecue Brisket Tacos
- Glazed Sweet Potatoes with Maple Gastrique
How to Cook with Maple Syrup?
For making most of the dishes, maple doesn't need much preparation. It can be used as it is on the top of the desserts., vegetables, breakfast food, yogurt and can be stirred into salad dressings, ice cream, or beverages. You can also add it in the frosting and whipped or sour cream.
Maple syrup can be boiled or cooked for little time with the other ingredients. If it is added in little butter, then it becomes the maple cream, and it can add sweetness in the simmered barbecue sauce. It can also be added into a glaze for meats and vegetables. If you want to use maple syrup in baking food items, then you can add it directly in the batter or dough. Many recipes will indicate which grade of maple syrup can be used in the recipe, so you can use it according to it to bring that level of sweetness in the recipe.
Is Maple Syrup Vegan?
This question must have popped in several minds and maybe you are curious to know its answer. You will be glad to know that the maple syrup is completely vegan. However, commercially advertised maple syrup may contain added artificial flavors that you cannot consider to be vegan.
The sap is derived from the maple trees, which is completely vegan, but it depends on how the final maple syrup is made. After collecting the maple sap, it is taken to the sugar house for the boiling process, which evaporates the water and caramelizes the sugar, which leaves the mixture thick. Later, to reduce the foam that is built on the syrup, the conventional producers might make use of an ingredient that is not vegan friendly.
Sometimes, the producers use animal fats while producing maple syrup to defoam the syrup after boiling them. Also, you can notice that these nonvegan ingredients are not mentioned on the product labels.
I hope this information has answered your query 'is maple syrup vegan?' and gave you a clear picture of how your favorite maple syrup is actually made.
Where to buy Maple Syrup?
You can find maple syrup in any of the grocery stores, but if you look closer, then you can find some bottles of real maple syrup as well. You can purchase it online as well as buy from the online stores. Maple syrup is available in the glass bottles or plastic jug. If you are interested in pure maple syrup, then it will cost you more as it is made up of high quality without making use of any additional non vegan products. If you are living in the region where there are plenty of maple trees, then you can collect some of the sap from trees and make it on your own. Maple syrup is available in any quantity, so you can buy it in ounces, pints, quarts, and gallons.
How to Store Maple syrup?
You may store pure maple syrup in a cool and dark place till 2 years in a sealed container. Once you have opened it, you can refrigerate it to last for 1 year. Pure maple syrup usually doesn't freeze if made properly, so the freezer is a good place to store the maple syrup. If you do not store the maple properly, harmful toxins start infesting on it, and ultimately you will have to throw that whole syrup.
Before serving the maple syrup, it's important to bring it at the room temperature. You can also warm the maple syrup in the microwave. You can heat half a cup of maple syrup for 30 to 60 seconds in the microwave, or you can even require more time if the maple syrup is much colder.
Maple Syrup Substitute
Many of you might prefer maple syrup due to its taste and color. But, if you don't have it in your kitchen, then you can use other ingredients that are similar in taste and color. Let us have a look at substitutes for maple syrup.
Honey is the best substitute for maple syrup if you want to use syrup on your pancakes. It has a similar consistency as the maple syrup, and also it has a familiar sweet flavor as well as the brown color. You won't be disappointed to use it as a replacement ingredient while baking, especially if it has the same texture. You may use honey in the same amount as the maple syrup in the recipes. But if you are using it as a topping on the pancakes, you can use it as per your preference.
Brown Sugar Syrup
Another great substitute for maple syrup is the brown sugar syrup, which is very easy and quick to make. All you have to do is add brown sugar in a quarter cup of water and add a half teaspoon of vanilla extract. Adding it will give your golden maple syrup its signature mild vanilla taste.
Now, heat the mixture on medium flame and stir it until the brown sugar dissolves completely. Make sure that it doesn't simmer as it can give different texture and taste to the syrup.
Molasses is also another replacement for maple syrup. Similar to the brown sugar syrup, it has a brown color and a sweet flavor. Molasses is the byproduct of the sugar-making process. When the sugarcane juice is extracted, the sugar crystals are separated from that juice. The thick dark liquid left after the extraction of the juice is called molasses. You may use it as a flavoring agent, as it has a sweet and caramel flavor similar to the maple syrup.
If you prefer maple syrup for its color, keep in mind that molasses have an extremely dark brown color. But, if you prefer using maple syrup for its taste, then molasses is the perfect choice for your recipe.
Even though corn syrup lacks sweetness, it is an inexpensive alternative for maple syrup. It is also the secondary ingredient in the maple syrup that you will easily find in the supermarket. Although it is completely colorless, it has a similar texture as the maple syrup, which makes it a perfect maple syrup substitute.
How to Make Maple Syrup Substitute at Home?
Even if the substitutes for maple syrup sweeten your meal, it might still lack some intense flavor. Here is the simple recipe for maple syrup substitute that you may make at home easily by just adding two of its substitutes with the other ingredients.
Ingredients required for making the recipe
- Half cup of White Sugar
- A cup of Brown Sugar
- 1 teaspoon butter
- 1 cup of water
- Half teaspoon of vanilla extract
Steps for making maple syrup substitute
1. The first step for making the substitute for maple syrup is caramelizing the white sugar.
2. Keep the water for boiling in a separate saucepan.
3. After boiling the water, add brown sugar to it and stir it till the sugar completely dissolves in it.
4. Mix the melted brown sugar and the caramelized white sugar and stir it thoroughly.
5. Now, to bring the sweetness in the mixture, add the vanilla extract and butter in that mixture and stir it well till you get the thick texture and the desired consistency of the mixture.
6. Cool the mixture till it reaches the room temperature.
Do try this recipe, as it will not make you feel the absence of maple syrup in the dishes.
How to Substitute Other Sweeteners for Maple Syrup?
If you look into a recipe that requires maple syrup, and if you don't like the flavor of maple much, then you can substitute it with other affordable ingredients as it is easy to make a switch. You can replace maple syrup with other liquid sweeteners like honey, corn syrup, agave, and molasses.
To swap the granulated sweetener like white sugar and brown sugar, you can add 1 cup of sugar in place of 2/3 cup of maple syrup. Then you may add 1/4 cup of liquid to the recipe and increase the baking temperature by 25 F. Also, note that replacing the maple syrup with other liquid sweeteners can change the flavor of the recipe and can also have little impact on the texture. You can tweak some spices and add to it or even add a flavoring extract to make up for any loss of flavor.
These maple syrup substitutes go well with waffles and pancakes along with the other recipes. You must have maple syrup at home if you have a sweet tooth. But if you run out of it, do not forget to try out these maple syrup substitutes. While you can draw out the honey and other readymade maple syrup substitute from the corner of your pantry, you may also try the recommended homemade solutions.
If you have tried any delicious recipes with these products, then do share your experience with the other readers in the comment section below.