Coconut Sugar Substitutes

What is Coconut Sugar?

Coconut sugar is also known as coconut palm sugar or coconut crystals.

A  sugary fluid is circulating in the coconut plant and makes this natural sugar.

Coconut sugar posses granular texture and is not free-flowing like granulated sugar or sticky like brown sugar.

It is an excellent substitute for white sugar and is hard to process this sugar.

It is rich in minerals and vitamins like calcium, iron, potassium, and fibre inulin, which slow down glucose absorption and is a healthy option, but high in calories so go for moderate use and is an excellent choice for all sweetener purposes.

Locally it is hard to find then substitute coconut sugar with a suitable alternative available.

In this article, we will go through all the substitutes of coconut sugar. So let’s start

Is coconut sugar good for you? A comparison between White and Coconut sugar

(1 tablespoon) White sugar Coconut sugar
calories 48kCal 45KCal
Fat 0 g 0 g
Fiber 0 g 0 g
Carbs 12.6 g 12 g
Sugar 12.6 g 12 g


As depicted from the table, both white and coconut sugar have almost the same nutritional status.

If you want to lower your calorie count and carbs intake, then coconut sugar is not a good option.

As compared to white sugar, coconut sugar has a much lower GI, and coconut sugar is more nutritious and does not increase your blood sugar level like regular sugar.

It is suitable for weight loss and overall health.

Substitutes of coconut sugar

The substitutes of coconut sugar are readily available in the kitchen or market.

  • Light Brown Sugar
  • Maple syrup
  • Date Sugar
  • Stevia
  • Sucanat


1. Light Brown Sugar

Image result for Light Brown Sugar

Molasses present in it causes the brown colour of sugar. It is a viscous product that comes from refined sugarcane. The change in taste and color in white sugar is because of it.

The taste of brown sugar is because of caramel present in it; however, it is the best substitute for the coconut sugar as both are similar in colour, flavour and texture that dissolve quickly and entirely in drinks or recipes.

Difference between coconut and brown sugar

  • Coconut sugar enriched with nutrients and contains inulin, whereas brown sugar does not has this quality.
  • Be careful with the quantity as the light brown sugar is a bit sweeter than coconut sugar, so adjust accordingly.

Brown sugar is readily available in Western stores compared to coconut sugar, which is only found in Asian and health food section.

How to make it

  • Take 1 cup (200 grams) granulated white sugar and mix it with one tablespoon (15 ml) of molasses.
  • Increase the molasses to 2 tablespoons (30 ml) if you want dark brown sugar.
  • Use it in a 1:1 alternative for coconut sugar.

2. Maple syrup

Maple syrup
Maple syrup

The syrup is made from the sap of black maple, red maple, or sugar maple trees. It is the best substitute for coconut sugar in a recipe.

Maple syrup crystallizes and forms a syrup. Both share the same flavor profile.

Nutrients in maple syrup: The syrup is enriched with potassium, zinc, magnesium, and calcium. It is sweet. The maple syrup is also best suited in a recipe as it has a smoked caramel taste.

It is readily available in the market and is liked with pancakes. It has a liquid texture, so the recipe should be adjusted accordingly.

41% of your daily zinc requirement is fulfilled with a ¼ cup serving of maple syrup. For every cup of sugar required, use ¼ cup of maple syrup similar to honey.

  • It is also added in a 1:1 alternative for coconut sugar.

3. Date Sugar

Date Sugar
Date Sugar

Date sugar also an effective alternative to coconut sugar. It is also a sugar type made using dried dates. Compared to refined sugar, it is less processed; however, it adds richness and suitable sweetening in recipes.

Nutrients in Date Sugar: Date sugar is also enriched with minerals and vitamins like

  • Iron
  • Magnesium
  • Zinc
  • Phosphorus
  • Copper
  • Selenium
  • Manganese
  • Iron

According to studies, date sugar helps to aid heart circulation and can keep you full for a longer time.

As compared to coconut sugar, it has a higher level of GI.

It is a good alternative in baking items; however, you need to be more careful when adding beverages or drinks as sugar is difficult to dissolve.

It is readily available in supermarkets but mostly found in natural food stores.

The taste is the same and can be used in the same quantity.

4. Stevia


The stevia leaves are a good sugar substitute.

Stevia is plant-derived, unlike other sugar substitutes.

Stevia contains zero calories and can be used in equal quantities.

These alternatives are better as compared to regular sugar; however, they must be used moderately.

5. Sucanat


It is an organic variety of whole cane sugar or raw sugar. The sugar cane retains all its molasses and is thoroughly dried.

Unlike regular sugar, it does not go through the same processing and is raw sugar.

The white sugar is clarified and get filtered; however, scant process solids and forms crystals.

It is an excellent replacement as both have the same brown color and flavor.

The only thing we have to consider is the texture, as sucanat is a little more rigid and reliable and takes a long time to dissolve completely.

Use a food processor or blender if your recipe needs 100% dissolved sugar.

Where to Buy Coconut Sugar?

  • Organic coconut sugar is easily available in Whole Food’s markets or other health-food stores.
  • It is now very famous and readily available in large local marts.
  • You can also find it online from

Recipes using coconut sugar

After knowing everything about coconut sugar, let’s lookout for different recipes.

  • Apple Pie Spice Muffins
  • Apple Pie Oatmeal Bars
  • Lemon Pie Bars
  • Healthy Blueberry Muffins
  • Cherry Oatmeal Bars
  • Japanese Miso Eggplant
  • Double Chocolate Zucchini Bread


Coconut sugar is a healthier option as compared to refined sugar. In many recipes worldwide, coconut sugar is a part of many recipes. You can use many other alternatives mentioned above against coconut sugar if there is no coconut sugar available or you don’t want to use it. Apart from white sugar, all these options are better and should be used in the average ratio.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. Which is healthier, stevia or coconut sugar?

As compared, stevia is low in calories and good for type 2 diabetes patients, or any other problem is not caused by it like additional sugar. Coconut sugar contains inulin and has some health benefits. According to studies, stevia has 0 GI, while coconut sugar has 35 GI.

2. What is the healthiest natural sugar?

The four natural sweeteners that are healthy options are

  1. Erythritol (low- calorie sweetener)
  2. Stevia (popular low- calorie sweetener)
  3. Yacon syrup (unique sweetener)
  4. Xylitol (sugar alcohol with same sweetness of sugar)

3. Why was Stevia banned?

It is now available throughout the world; however, in 1991, in the US, it was banned as studies suggested that it is the cause of cancer.