You may already know that it’s easy to make powdered sugar at home, using crystallized cane sugar. This trick works equally well with sucanat and coconut palm sugar!
Very occasionally, I make something that requires powdered sugar – a frosting or a glaze. I use it so rarely that the sugar pictured above is going on 2 years old! Fresh and powdery like the day it was born (in my blender).
So here is how you do it.
- Place 1-2 cups of sucanat or coconut palm sugar in the blender (you can also do this with granulated sugar)
- Add one tablespoon of arrowroot powder or organic corn starch per cup of sugar (you can omit this if you don’t need the added “stickiness” for a recipe)
- Blend until powdered!
Why ditch the crystallized sugar?
The main reason we stepped away from the crystallized cane sugar (“raw” sugar included) is that it lacks complexity, both in taste and nutrition. Stripped of the molasses, it is a more concentrated version of itself with no mineral-rich buffer. We opt instead for grade-B maple syrup, raw local honey, sucanat (cane sugar w/ the molasses still intact) and coconut palm sugar.
All of these can by purchased at a health food store and even some standard grocery chains. (I bought coconut palm sugar at publix the other day.)
Here is a good excerpt comparing “Sugar in the Raw” (turbinado) to sucanat from a Time article about natural sweeteners:
The “raw” name is somewhat misleading, however, since Sugar in the Raw isn’t actually raw, as in totally unrefined. Turbinado sugar is what’s left over after raw sugar cane juice has been stripped of its natural molasses and impurities, as well as its vitamins, minerals and other trace elements. For a less-processed alternative with small amounts of nutrients in it as well, look for sucanat, which is simply dehydrated sugar cane juice. Sucanat (an abbreviation for sugar-cane-natural) has a stronger molasses flavor than refined white sugar and retains all of the nutrients found in natural sugar cane juice, including iron, calcium, vitamin B6 and potassium.
Of course, ALL sweeteners should be moderated. In fact, I’ve heard that we should really only be consuming between 10-15 grams daily of added sweeteners – and even this small amount is optional, of course. This low number can be overwhelming if you have a sweet tooth (like I do) but over time it is possible to wean down.
My favorite unrefined sugar
Coconut palm sugar, made from the sap of coconut palm trees, is my favorite. It is so lively and rich and complex in flavor – almost like a light gingerbread taste. I have offered people a baby spoonful so that they can see how it tastes – even straight out of the bag it’s delightful!
When we make these Whole Wheat Chocolate Chip Cookies, we use coconut palm sugar (in it’s un-powdered form) and they are AMAZING. The kids rave about them even more than when we used regular brown sugar in the past.
Another plus – people who are sensitive to cane sugar, often do better with coconut palm sugar.
I hope this comes in handy for you!
- 2 cups sugar (sucanat, coconut palm, or regular cane sugar)
- 2 tablespoons arrowroot powder or organic corn starch (optional, if you need a binding agent for a particular recipe)
- Place ingredients in the blender and blend until it becomes a powder. Store in an airtight container.