Feed Me Friday: How do you sweeten things?

It’s a new world when it comes to the concept of “sweet.” Growing up, my mother used Sugar in the Raw, and we stayed far away from Sweet ‘n’ Low.

As a parent, I gravitate toward agave nectar, but have wondered about the glycemic index impact. I also like stevia in my tea, but find that it’s bitter in coffee. I love the way my son’s teacher makes birthday cakes with maple syrup and yogurt. It’s so good!


Recently I’ve been experimenting with Susta. It’s a new natural sweetener that contains fructose, fiber, and even probiotics. It has a really low glycemic index, and is recommended for people with diabetes (including gestational diabetes). I also like the way it tastes in homemade baked goods. Here’s a recipe for brownies made with Susta. Yum.


Homemade Brownies

2 sticks butter (softened) or

1 cup Smart Balance

4 eggs

1 tsp vanilla

1cup flour (all purpose)

½ cup cocoa (Hersheys type)

1 tsp baking powder


1 cup granulated sugar

(chopped nuts are optional)

Use an electric mixer or Kitchen Aid mixer: Whip butter until fluffy, add eggs, one at a time, then add vanilla and mix on high speed for 5 minutes or until smooth. In a separate bowl, mix together, flour, cocoa, baking powder, SustaBowl and sugar. Slowly add dry ingredients into mixer and mix for 2 minutes until uniform.

Spead batter into 9 x 9 inch or 9 x 13 inch pan that has been well greased and dusted with cocoa. Batter will be thick and creamy.

Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes if using the 9 x 9 inch pan and 25 minutes if using the 9 x 13 inch pan or until toothpick comes out clean.

Yield: 16-20 brownies


If you have any questions about Susta, leave them in the comments section and I’ll do my best to get them answered.

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on Thursday, February 24th, 2011 at 7:22 pm and is filed under Feed Me Friday.
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4 thoughts on “Feed Me Friday: How do you sweeten things?”

  1. My first choice is organic Rapadura followed by maple syrup and honey.I will not use any of the sugar alcohols like xylitol, nor will I use granular fructose. Occasionally I will use apple juice concentrate.

  2. We use evaporated cane juice, stevia, honey, maple syrup, blackstrap molasses, and palm sugar, depending on mood or what seems appropriate to what we’re making. Lately, the two most used have been honey and stevia. I use stevia in iced tea, and sometimes in oatmeal. And I keep packets of it in my purse for iced tea at restaurants. Often, if you get a bitter taste from stevia, you have simply used too much–try backing off a bit! BTW: stevia-sweetened lemonade is delicious! Tastier than sugar lemonade, if anything.

  3. My understanding is that Agave Nectar is very low on the glycemic index; I think it is by far the lowest of the refined sweetners. Don’t know how Stevia ranks, but I know it is substantially different in composition from the others.

    I have found it fine to simply use applesauce in baking. Years ago I felt I had to stay strictly away from all sweeteners, but just had to have some baked goods. Substituting applesauce, although not as sweet, seemed good.

    Now I just don’t like those overly sweet things. Pop, for instance, just tastes terrible to me. Know, a lot of times now, I find things are great without added sweeteners. I can tast the real taste — and that is better than the commercial … cardboard slathered up with exciting toxins.

    Apples are happier. And I’m sweeter. 🙂

  4. gosh, I use what’s available. Right now that’s plain old white sugar. While I know there are better options out there I found myself with a tight budget and a huge bag of this stuff ended up in our cabinet over the holidays. So, until it’s gone that’s the choice for now. Susta sounds neat. At some point I’d like to try it. Sometimes though I feel we get so caught up in the concept of health and being healthy for ourselves and our children that we impose rather harsh restrictions on living and enjoying our lives. Spending a lot of time worrying about the fact that white sugar devoid of any real nutrition is grand for some people, but I find that it’s one of those things that I can compromise on quite easliy versus insuring my family eats a balanced diet with lots of real fruits and vegetables. I know some people will blast me for this opinion, but in my job we meet peple where they are and try to make changes from there.

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