Reduce Sugar Baking with Stevia

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Here’s an interesting fact I read about sugar: eating a large amount of sugar (think wedding cake) paralyzes your immune system for up to 5 hours. This is devastating news for a sweet-toothed germ-phoebe like me. Game-changing. I’ve since vowed never to eat sweets in public. Yes, it’s been a week, but I’ll have you know I’m doing very well.

The other knee-jerk reaction from this news was trying out Stevia. The bag states that you can substitute Stevia for regular sugar in a one-to-one ratio. For baking I found this claim to be false. No way.

I made brownies from scratch, using Stevia instead of sugar, and the words that come to mind are…epic fail! When I pulled the brownies from the oven they were boiling in the butter. I tried the tiniest bit of brownie and felt sick for the rest of the night.

I was pissed because I wasted a lot of perfectly good ingredients. I was also mad at myself for diving into the project without doing any research. So now I’m here to save you time, money, food waste and major disappointment.

My finding resulted in the truth about substitute sugars. The bad news is you cannot go total substitute; it has to be a mix. The best ratio I could come up with was 1 part cane sugar + 1 part Stevia (maybe a tad less) + one part Agave nectar.

So now I’ll share a great recipe, improvised with my sugar substitute ratio.

Eve’s Raspberry Muffins

1/2 cup butter

1/3 cup sugar

1/3 cup Stevia

1/3 cup Agave

2 eggs

8oz. sour cream

1 ts. vanilla extract

2 cups flour

1 ts. baking powder

1/2 ts. baking soda

Pinch of salt

1 cup raspberries

Using an electric mixer, beat the softened butter. Beat in all 3 sugars. Beat in the next 3 ingredients. Stir in the dry ingredients with a spoon until just combined. Fold in the berries, crushing them a bit. The batter will be thick – the consistency of greek yogurt.

Bake at 400 degrees for 18 – 20 minutes.

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