The rise of artificial sweeteners and low-sugar diets has led to a drop in the number of people drinking sugar-sweetened beverages. This has been hailed as a victory for public health. But, it’s also left many lovers of coffee, tea and other sweet drinks worried about how they can continue to enjoy them.
This has led to an explosion in the availability of artificially-sweetened versions of these drinks. Aside from that, there are a few solutions involving natural sugars that are gentler on the body than sugar. Planning to transition away from standard sugar? Great, here are some ways you can sweeten your coffee without sugar.
Here’s how to sweeten coffee without sugar
Brown Rice Syrup
Brown rice syrup is made from brown rice, water and enzymes. It’s very high in nutrients and minerals, including manganese, iron and B vitamins. The syrup has a sticky texture, a medium sweetness and a neutral flavour. For this reason, it’s often used in food products that need an adhesive quality, like baked goods and sauces. Brown rice syrup is a great option for diabetics, athletes and those who can’t process sugar. I
t’s low on the glycemic index, so it won’t prompt a sudden spike in blood sugar levels like regular sugar does. However, it does have a fairly high glycemic load, so if you use it, be mindful about portion size. Brown rice syrup can be used to replace sugar in coffee, tea or any other hot or cold drinks. You can also use it to sweeten baked goods, sauces or any other food that requires a sticky or adhesive consistency.
Monk Fruit Extract
Monk fruit extract is a type of natural sweetener derived from a species of melon native to Southeast Asia. It has a very low glycemic index and is 300 times sweeter than sugar. This makes it an excellent sugar substitute for people who want to reduce their sugar intake but don’t want to lose the sweet taste. Monk fruit extract can be added to almost any food or drink. It has a very mild flavour that blends well with almost all ingredients you might use. It can be used to sweeten coffee, tea, baked goods, salad dressings and much more.
Evaporated Cane Juice
This is a fancy name for sugar cane juice that has been evaporated. It’s basically a more natural form of sugar that also happens to contain a higher amount of vitamins, minerals and antioxidants than standard cane or beet syrup. When compared to other alternative sweeteners, evaporated cane juice has the highest glycemic index of all. This means that it’s absorbed into the bloodstream more slowly than other sweeteners, like aspartame. This then raises your blood sugar levels. However, despite being a more natural sweetener, there’s a chance that evaporated cane juice may still cause gastrointestinal distress in some people. This is because it’s still a type of sugar. If you’re sensitive to sugar, you should be careful about consuming it.
Mix in your favourite sweeteners
You can replace all or some of the sugar in your coffee with half a spoon of regular sugar, a teaspoon of raw cane sugar, and a teaspoon of honey, or a teaspoon of agave nectar and a teaspoon of molasses. You can also use a mixture of cane sugar and turbinado sugar, which are both less processed forms of sugar with a less intense flavour. While these methods will impart a little bit of sweetness to your coffee, they’re not going to replace the full flavour of sugar. For this reason, many coffee lovers choose to mix in a sweeter alternative, like brown rice syrup or maple syrup, with traditional sugar.
Good old-fashioned sugar
While many of the alternatives discussed above are healthier options, they don’t come without a health risk of their own. This is especially the case with artificial sweeteners. While they’re calorie-free, they don’t provide any nutrients. Some studies have linked them to an increased risk of certain health conditions, like diabetes, heart disease and even death. Cane sugar also has a much lower glycemic index than evaporated cane juice or regular brown rice syrup. That makes it’s gentler on the body. However, like all sweeteners, it’s best to use it in moderation.
Whether you’re reducing your sugar intake for health reasons or just want to cut back on calories, there are plenty of ways to sweeten your coffee without sugar. Substitute sugar with natural sweeteners like evaporated cane juice and monk fruit extract to traditional toppings like molasses. There’s always a solution for every coffee lover that likes their coffee sweet.
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