Homesteading In the Kitchen maple syrup

Ten Reasons This is the Best Sweetener You Could Ever Use

So what is the best sweetener? Can you imagine if there was one that not only made your food taste delicious but offered you a huge healthy boost too? A sweetener that made you smile with every bite while supporting your body’s immune system and heart health with every spoonful? Believe it or not, there is such a sweetener hidden away and flowing freely in maple trees near you! And, believe it or not, maple sugar is a well-loved, less-refined sugar substitute in kitchens around the world.

the best sweetener

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Okay, I know you’ve heard all about maple syrup, and you immediately know what to do with it when you’re handed a jar of it on a cool Saturday morning when there’s a stack of warm pancakes in front of you. But maple sugar? If you’re like most people, you don’t really know what to make of it. You’re not sure what you’d do with it. I mean you sure can’t pour a jar of it over your breakfast plate.

Today I’m not only going to fill you in on the amazingness of this all-natural granulated yumminess, and why I think it’s the best sweetener ever, but by the time you’ve scrolled to the end of this post you’ll know more than a dozen ideas of exactly what you want to do with maple sugar, you might not wanna wait another day to get your hands on some, you’ll be able to make your own (really!), and you’ll even find out how you can enter for a chance to WIN your own jar of maple sugar.

I take no responsibility for the obsession that results thereafter.

Ten reasons this is the best sweetener you could ever use

  1. Maple sugar creates an amazingly warm sweetness when used in baking.
  2. Maple sugar has less calories than white sugar! (Now that’s sweet!)
  3. Maple sugar has a low glycemic index, making it an ideal sweetener for those who suffer from diabetes.
  4. Maple sugar is loaded with antioxidants that support the body’s immune system.
  5. Maple sugar supports heart health.
  6. Maple sugar is loaded with beneficial vitamins and minerals.
  7. Maple sugar can lower inflammation.
  8. Maple sugar is as all-natural as it gets. It was first made by the Native Indians in the United States and Canada.
  9. Maple sugar is all the deliciousness of maple in easy-to-store granules. It was the Native Indians’ preferred product to make with maple sap because it’s the most practical product to store (since maple syrup requires canning and maple cream requires refrigeration).
  10. Maple sugar, when purchased from a small sugar farm, helps sustain a valuable growing process and support a farming family. (If we expand our sugar-making process here on the homestead the way we hope to next winter, you’ll even be able to purchase maple sugar here, on SoulyRested. But for now, you’ll have to settle with entering to win a FREE jar of our maple sugar, below.)

Note: I am not a dietician or medical professional; really not an official expert of anything, except making mistakes. Can one be a professional mistake maker? 🙂 Anyway, consider this to be that mumbo-jumbo legal language telling you I’m not making any official claims in this post, just sharing information that I’ve gleaned over the years.

Now that you’re hooked on maple sugar’s tasty benefits, you may want to consider harvesting it yourself. If you have a few maple trees, I can’t recommend DIY backyard syrup enough. Keep reading for links to all you wanna know about that.

how to make maple syrup

Take a second to save these resources for later.

To have a library of resources, PIN these posts:

PIN Part 1, about identifying and marking your trees in the fall and gathering some of your preliminary supplies

PIN Part 2, about when, where, and how to drill your taps. This post also covers how to know if you live where you can tap successfully and 7 questions you need to know the answers to before you tap your trees.

PIN Part 3, about a reverse osmosis filter–what it is, how to build one yourself, and how it can save you hundreds a year in your backyard syrup making process.

PIN Part 4, the step-by-step guide to boiling your sap. This posts walks you through every important detail you need to know when processing your syrup, from tree to pancake.

PIN Part 5, about how you know when it’s time to stop collecting sap and start removing your taps for the season.

Or, if you’d like to know how to make a very different kind of syrup–read my post How to Make Lilac Syrup–or PIN it for later too.

Consider these great resources.

If you’d just like to know more about the maple syrup process, I can’t recommend The Sugarmaker’s Companion, by Michael Farrell enough. (See my book review here.)

Would you like in-depth details of my own experiences with DIY backyard maple syrup–including all the things you’ll want to make sure NOT to do? Would you like to know exactly how to make your own maple sugar, even without taping one tree? Would you like lots of amazing recipes that use maple syrup and maple sugar? Keep an eye out for my upcoming book, Beautiful Sugar (how to make maple products and bake with them beautifully). Not only will it be the perfect guide for anyone who wants to try making backyard syrup, but no tree taping is required in order to fall in love with this book. It will include fascinating historical facts about maple syrup production, as well as details on how anyone can make maple sugar and maple cream (YUM!) right in their own kitchen, using real maple syrup that they can purchase in any store. Be sure to follow along here on SoulyRested (by typing your email into the box at the end of this post). Then you’ll be one of the first to know when my new book hits the press!

In the meantime, my FREE, in-depth PDF, chocked full of wonderful tips to follow (and failures to avoid) with backyard syrup making will be available soon. Don’t Miss This! Sign up to follow along here, and you’ll receive a notice the day it’s available to download, one day soon.

Put your maple sugar where your oven is.

Of course, the Native Indians had it right. Sugar is so much easier to store, and even use, than liquid syrup. In baking, it provides all the flavor of maple syrup, and you don’t have to deal with converting the liquids in the recipe.

My favorite thing to bake with maple sugar? Spread it on rolled out buttered bread dough, add chopped walnuts or pecans, roll up like you would cinnamon rolls, and make maple-flavored sticky buns. Y.U.M.

Here are some amazing recipes to consider trying with a little maple sugar:

Maple Apple Pie

Cranberry Maple Ginger Muffins

Cream Soaked Bread with Maple Sugar

Maple Sugar Ragamuffins

Or just shake it.

Enjoy some of these ideas, or experiment with your own. (And please share your favorites in the comments below!)

Replace white sugar with maple sugar in apple pie and apple crisp.

Use maple sugar in waffle and pancake recipes.

Sprinkle it on your warm, butter pancakes or waffles.

Shake some over your bowl of warm oatmeal.

Adorn cupcakes with maple sugar sprinkles.

Turn your next bowl of vanilla ice cream into a little bit of maple heaven.

Create a yummy maple sugar glaze, or a BBQ sauce, for ham or pork.

Shake some maple sugar, a touch of cinnamon, and some salt (over drizzled canola oil) over fresh-popped popcorn.

Use maple sugar to sweeten plain yogurt.

Sprinkle maple sugar on toast as you would cinnamon sugar.

Add a spoonful of maple sugar to your morning cup of tea.

Whether you make it or buy it, bake with it, shake it on, or stir it in, maple sugar is an amazingly delicious healthy sweetener that your family will truly love.

Did you catch that?

You can make your own maple sugar.

Keep an eye out for the release of that free printable as well–my FREE instructional printable of the steps to making your own maple sugar, to be released before the end of May 2017. Be sure to follow along, by adding your email in the box at the end of this post, and I’ll let you know as soon as it’s available.



When you have eaten and are satisfied, praise the LORD your God for the good land he has given you. Deut. 8:10

You’ll LOVE this giveaway, here on SoulyRested.com, this May 2017. The winner will love this amazing book, The Sugarmaker’s Companionmy book review is here–and a jar of maple sugar, made here in our own New England sugar bush.

Make sure you register (in the box at the very end of this post) so you don’t miss an announcement of how you can enter to win! Stay tuned! The giveaway will open in just a few days. You’ll find all details here on SoulyRested on Thursday, May 18th.



 

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