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Have you ever gotten halfway through a recipe for the ideal apple crumble or Demerara shortbread biscuits and discovered you’re out of brown sugar?

Well, many people have! And that is NOT amusing.

When you reach a point of no return, you may be inclined to utilize whatever sugar at your disposal as quickly as possible.

Nevertheless, not all sugar can be substituted, which is why we have done the painstaking research and provide you only the finest demerara sugar replacements at your fingertips.

Light brown sugar, muscovado sugar, turbinado sugar, sanding sugar, coconut sugar, pure white sugar, white sugar with molasses, and white sugar with maple syrup are all excellent alternatives to demerara sugar.

Keep an eye out for a better alternative to your favorite demerara sugar.

What Is Demerara Sugar?

When it comes to the sugar community, one sugar that has made an impression is Demerara Sugar.

Demerara Sugar is a huge, dazzling golden crystal with a crisp feel that is made from sugarcane. This sugar is well-known, particularly among bakers, because of its crisp texture, which makes it an excellent topping for sweets.

Nowadays, the majority of demerara sugar originates from Mauritius in Africa. Yet, they are widely available in supermarkets.

You’ll like dusting, whether for drinks or to decorate crumbles, flapjacks, cheesecake bases, and biscuits. Besides from that, it lends a distinct taste to everything that requires sweetening.

If you don’t have these, some suitable substitutes include light brown sugar, turbinado sugar, and coconut sugar.

Nevertheless, there are a few practical substitutions for demerara sugar, many of which you may already have in your kitchen cupboard.

Best Demerara Sugar Substitutes

1. Light brown sugar

The difference between light brown sugar and Demerara sugar is subtle.

Yet I know that bakers are more interested about that additional crunch. That is why you should think about lighting brown sugar as your finest bet.

The sole difference is the presence of molasses.

Both light brown sugar and Demerara sugar include molasses, but only Demerara contains more than twice as much.

Demerara sugar is darker in color, contains somewhat more moisture and acidity, and has a noticeable caramel taste due to the higher molasses content.

Yet, both may be used interchangeably.

Switching demerara sugar for light sugar in a recipe can result in a deeper hue, more powerful flavor, and maybe a different texture, particularly if the recipe asks for a lot of sugar.

And you’re aware of how moisture and density affect baking cakes. The difference in sugars may alter how effectively the cake rises.

2. White sugar plus molasses

Demerara Sugar is the exotic counterpart of white sugar.

Less refined, bigger grains; greater flavor, yet white sugar may have all of that with a little adjustment. See what happens when you add some molasses to the flavor and look.

It will be like if you substituted brown sugar for white sugar. You may use it in a variety of baked items and savory recipes.

So how can you produce this combination? Curiosity takes over.

To produce your little brown sugar, combine 1 cup (200 grams) granulated white sugar and 1 tablespoon (15 mL) molasses. Then combine.

Increase the molasses to 2 tablespoons if you want a deeper hue like Demerara sugar (30 ml). And with that, you’ve created brown sugar.

3. Muscovado sugar

Muscovado sugar is another option you might explore. It has a toffee taste that goes well with all recipes. Also, it is less refined and contains more molasses than Demerara sugar, making it an excellent replacement.

Nonetheless, it has a high molasses content, which means it has more moisture, a caramel taste, and a darker color. Also, it is stickier, which may cause it to clump. Despite this, it may be used in virtually all recipes in place of demerara sugar.

Muscovado sugar pairs well with ice cream, any cake recipe, and plain Greek yogurt with almost any savory food.

To eliminate any clumps, sift it before adding it into your batter or dough for baked items. I’ve witnessed several professional chefs and household cooks enhance their recipe integration by utilizing an electric mixer.

It also helps.

This is a specialized sugar with a higher price tag, so use it with caution.

4. White sugar plus maple syrup

If you don’t have molasses on hand, plan B is to combine it with maple syrup.

I know. I know. I know. Brown sugar is usually created by combining molasses with granulated white sugar. Yet, you aren’t accomplishing anything by utilizing maple syrup, since it has practically little effect on your end product.

Just combine a cup (200 grams) of granulated white sugar with one tablespoon (15 mL) of pure maple syrup and well combine.

Tah-dah! You have a brown sugar replacement that can fool even the most seasoned cook. Create a brown sugar alternative that will trick even the most discerning palate.

5. Turbinado

Turbinado sugar is another excellent demerara sugar replacement since it is less refined and contains more molasses.

Nevertheless, the flavor and appearance of cane sugar change somewhat.

Demerara sugar has a molasses-like flavor, whilst turbinado sugar has a more delicate caramel flavor.

Turbinado sugars do not have a sticky consistency since they are not wet. Demerara sugar, on the other hand, does.

Despite this, the non-sticky texture of Turbinado sugar makes it a good alternative for demerara, particularly for sprinkling.

As a result, it will work well in baked items, sweet drinks, and savory foods.

6. Coconut sugar

You can taste the coconut flavor since it is made from the sap of coconut plants. But if you dislike coconut tastes, it is a perfect alternative for dark brown sugar.

They appear and taste identical, but are somewhat darker than demerara; in a recipe, you won’t notice the difference. Coconut sugar is a better alternative since it includes fiber, vitamins, and minerals that other sugars do not.

A 1:1 ratio switch is simple to do. But, keep in mind that coconut sugar might make some baked dishes thicker or dryer than usual.

As a result, most people choose to add additional fat to the dish, such as butter or oil, to assist boost the moisture content. Some people heat the coconut sugar before using it in a recipe.

Either option is appropriate.

7. Sanding Sugar

Sand sugar is an excellent demerara sugar replacement, particularly for decorating cakes, biscuits, muffins, candies, and other delicacies.

It features the form of huge Demerara sugar crystals, which is ideal for aesthetic appeal and crunch.

Additionally, the sanding comes in a variety of colors and glitter, so you may select what works best for your recipes.

They are an excellent addition to your kitchen pantry arsenal since they can be used to embellish and garnish pastries and delights such as cakes and many others.

Apart from that, you may need it for other purposes.

More significantly, despite the fact that this is a speciality sugar, it will not cost you anything to get.

Most supermarket shops sell these in the baking aisle at a reasonable price.

8. Plain white sugar

When faced with a difficult decision, let’s face it: white is the most sensible alternative. When everything else fails, reverting to granulated white sugar will cost you nothing.

Don’t be concerned about the color or flavor. You are aware that white sugar is not brown like the other replacements, yet use it since it is all you have.

They will not taint your recipe. Moreover, it is inexpensive, widely accessible in stores, and provides the same sweetness as Demerara sugar.

Regrettably, YES, some taste notes and texture will alter. Demerara may impact the final outcome because to its bigger grains, deeper hue, and molasses taste.

Demerara sugar, for example, imparts a rich chewiness to most baked items. But, when white sugar is substituted, it becomes somewhat sharper.

Nonetheless, most people are doubtful of how unhealthy white sugar may be. It is, nevertheless, not considerably less healthful than your first choice. Both contain sugar and, when ingested in excess, offer the same health hazards.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is brown sugar and Demerara sugar the same?

They are not the same thing, despite being quite similar, which is why they may be used interchangeably. Regular brown sugar is moist and dark, and it is used in any recipe that calls for molasses. Demerara sugar, on the other hand, is darker, has larger crystals that give it a crunchy feel, and is stickier.

What is Demerara sugar called in America?

Have you ever come across the expression “dark brown sugar”? They’re talking about demerara sugar. They both mean the same thing, but dark brown sugar is what Americans call it.

Which is healthier, ordinary sugar or demerara sugar? Demerara sugar is considered a healthier alternative to normal sugar since it is less processed.

As a result, it preserves a substantial number of vitamins and minerals. Despite though, both varieties include sucrose, have the same number of calories, and have identical effects on your blood sugar levels.

What happens if you take excessive sugar?

Excess sugar consumption is harmful to the heart, despite the fact that it is the healthiest sugar available. Because the additional insulin in the circulation causes the arteries’ walls to inflame, thicken, and stiffen.

This puts strain on your heart, which may lead to cardiac illnesses such as heart attacks, heart failure, or strokes in the long term.


So there you have it: the 8 best demerara sugar replacements, most of which are all-natural, comparable in color and taste, and used for similar reasons. As a result, any of these substitutes will work in place of demerara sugar.

If you’re too fascinated with dark brown sugar and can’t get enough of it, try Turbinado, light brown, and Muscovado (in a pinch). They all have a crispy texture that is ideal for baking and hints of molasses taste.

But, if you like a lighter brown sugar, you may try making your own. You just need white sugar and maple syrup.

Related Articles:

  • The Top 8 Palm Sugar Substitutes
  • Coconut Sugar vs. Palm Sugar
  • Cane Sugar vs. Palm Sugar
  • Jaggery vs. Palm Sugar


What can I replace demerara sugar with?

Demerara sugar may be substituted in equal parts with any sort of brown sugar, notably light brown sugar, turbinado sugar, or muscovado sugar. (Dark brown sugars will offer a more pronounced molasses taste.) Granulated sugar may also be used, however the taste and texture will change.

Is turbinado sugar same as demerara?

Turbinado sugar is derived from the initial pressing of sugar cane and contains more molasses than demerara sugar. Turbinado sugar has a more pronounced molasses taste than demerara sugar. Demerara sugar has somewhat less molasses and hence has a toffee-caramel taste.

What is the difference between best brown sugar and demerara sugar?

Demerara sugar is coarser and less processed.

The key distinction is that demerara sugar has a gritty and crunchy texture as well as a relatively big crystal size, while soft brown sugar has a soft texture and tiny caster-size crystal.

Which is better demerara or turbinado sugar?

In most recipes, turbinado sugar may be used in lieu of granulated white sugar, although demerara sugar is often used as a topping on baked products. Since Demerara sugar crystals are bigger than turbinado sugar crystals, it does not dissolve well in batters or doughs. Brown sugar or maple syrup may be substituted for turbinado.

What is the American equivalent of demerara sugar?

Substitutes for Demerara Sugar: Turbinado or Light Brown Sugar

If you don’t have demerara sugar on hand, turbinado sugar is a good substitute since it has a coarser texture that matches the texture of demerara sugar.

What is demerara sugar called in America?

Demerara sugar is sometimes known as turbinado sugar in the United States. Sugar in the Raw is a well-known turbinado sugar. Brown sugar is not an acceptable alternative for Demerara due to its high moisture content. Use granulated brown sugar or normal white sugar instead.

Why is it called demerara sugar?

The name “Demerara” is derived from an Arawak term, “Immenary” or “Dumaruni,” which means “river of the letter wood” (wood of Brosimum guianense tree). Demerara sugar got its name because it originated in sugarcane fields in the colony of Demerara.

What kind of sugar is demerara?

Demerara sugar is a coarse grain cane sugar with a light tan tint. It’s used for sweetening coffee, tea, and other liquids, as well as as a garnishing sugar in baking to impart crunch to the tops of baked items.

Can you substitute raw sugar for demerara?

Demerara sugar is a semi-refined sugar with a straw-like color and a little butterscotch fragrance. It has the appearance of raw sugar but has bigger crystals that are useful for sprinkling on baked items for crunch. If light brown sugar or raw sugar are unavailable, replace them.

What is special about demerara sugar?

Demerara sugar contains trace levels of vitamins and minerals and is less processed than conventional white sugar. Despite this, both varieties are sucrose-based, contain the same number of calories, and have a comparable impact on blood sugar levels. Despite the fact that demerara sugar is significantly healthier, it should still be used sparingly.

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