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How To Substitute Maple For Granulated Sugar

When posed with the question of substituting maple sugar for granulated sugar in baking recipes, we showed up with optimism, an oven, and an empty stomach. With King Arthur Baking’s Basic Drop Cookies recipe as our canvas, we tested how granulated maple sugar would cream versus granulated cane sugar. How would the cookies rise to the occasion? How would they taste? Would there be significant differences?

Maple syrup can be used as an alternative sweetener in baked goods, but it does add extra moisture. This means when you’re looking to swap granulated sugar for maple syrup, the recipe may need tweaking. Because maple sugar add no extra moisture, it can be substituted when sugar is called for 1:1. Which makes life easier in the kitchen, especially when those cookie cravings strike.

Partial Maple Sugar Substitution

We first substituted maple sugar for the entirety of the granulated sugar called for in the recipe (1/3 cup, plus a tablespoon). We creamed it along with the called for brown sugar (1/3 cup). Creaming was no challenge, Maple sugar creamed into the stick of butter seamlessly, churning into a fluffy base for the cake-y cookie with no noticeable differences compared to the original recipe.

We folded chocolate chips into the dough and the robust maple flavor made these chocolate chip basic drop cookies too-good-to-stop-at-one.

Upon baking, the cookies rose as well as the original recipe; upholding its cake-like crumb and maintaining a crunchy exterior. It didn’t hurt that the aroma wafting through the kitchen was reminiscent of Saturday morning breakfast.

Total Maple Sugar Substitution

Because we were curious to push the substitution further, we subbed maple sugar for both granulated and brown sugar.

We whipped 2/3 +1 tablespoon of maple sugar into the butter until it was as light and fluffy as the original recipe. Upon baking, the cookies expanded a fraction more than the original recipe, and the partial substitution, but still maintained its mound-like shape.

The most prominent change was tasted. The flavor profile became notably robust. Instead of simply being used to sweeten, maple sugar added an entire dimension to the recipe.

So if you’re seeking a true alternative to cane sugar in baking recipes, give maple sugar a try. Maple sugar’s versatility earns a permanent place in the baker’s pantry as both an ingredient and flavoring agent. Pound cakes, pie crusts, and cookies await!