Coconut Sugar

39 mins read

Coconut sugar (also referred to as coco sugar, coconut palm sugar, coco sap sugar or coconut bloom sugar) is a palm sugar produced from the sap of the flower bud stem of the coconut palm.

Other kinds of palm sugar are made from the kithul palm (caryota urens), palmyra palm, the date palm, the sugar date palm, the sago palm or the sugar palm.

Utilized as a sweetener in lots of countries, coconut sugar has no considerable dietary or health benefits over other sweeteners. [1]

Nutrition info

Coconut sugar retains many nutrients found in the coconut palm– mostly iron, zinc, calcium, and potassium. These nutrients can support the body in many ways, but coconut sugar does not include enough of them per serving to provide a quantifiable advantage. Coconut sugar also contains the soluble fiber inulin, which is linked to a lower threat of blood sugar spikes.

One teaspoon of coconut sugar includes:.

  • 18 calories
  • 0 grams of protein
  • 0 grams of fat
  • 5 grams of carbohydrates
  • 0 grams of fiber
  • 5 grams of sugar [2]

History of palm sugar

History of palm sugar is believed to be indigenous where it is currently distributed. It is thought to have actually originated in indonesia, but is now commonly dispersed through southeast asia, southern china, india, sri lanka, brand-new guinea, and guam. The predominant sources of palm sugar are the palmyra, date, nipa, sugar and coconut palms.

Palmyra palm is grown in africa, asia, and brand-new guinea. The tree has numerous uses, such as thatching, hatmaking, wood, use as a writing material, and in food products, whilst palm sugar is produced from sap from the flowers.

Date palm prevails in the mediterranean and middle east. Date palms are cultivated primarily for dates, whilst palm sugar is made from the tree’s sap.

Nipa palm is belonging to the shorelines and tropical areas of the indian and pacific oceans. It is the only palm tree that grows in a watery mangrove biome. Just its leaves and flowers grow above water. Palm sugar is made from the sugar-rich sap.

Sugar palm is belonging to the seaside and tropical areas of asia, primarily china, malaysia and indonesia. The sap used to produce palm sugar is understood in indonesia as gula aren.

Coconut palm grows in coastal areas of the indian and pacific oceans. Significant suppliers are thailand, indonesia, and the philippines. [3]

Health benefits of coconut sugar

There are numerous impressive health benefits of coconut sugar including its ability to manage diabetes, boost the immune system, strengthen bones, lower high blood pressure, help in weight-loss efforts, and enhance mood.

Decreases weight gain

With a lower level of fructose than typical table sugar, coconut sugar is less most likely to contribute to fat deposition. When the liver processes fructose, it launches triglycerides, which are a type of fat. The fructose you take in from the fruit is thought about healthy and suitable, however sugarcoated should have a lower level of fructose. In contrast to high-fructose corn syrup and other natural sugars, coconut sugar is lower in fructose content, indicating that it will lead to less weight gain and fat deposition.

Boosts blood circulation

The small level of iron found in coconut sugar will have an influence on your overall blood circulation, which can increase oxygenation and nutrient accessibility in the body. Iron is an essential component in red blood cells, and without appropriate levels in the body, you might suffer the signs of anemia, including muscle weakness, headaches, tiredness, and gastrointestinal problems.

Lowers bad cholesterol

The unique type of fiber discovered in coconut sugar, inulin, has been linked to decreasing overall cholesterol levels in the body. By lowering ldl cholesterol and raising hdl cholesterol, this sugar can assist reduce your cardiovascular risk and prevent signs of atherosclerosis and plaque deposition.

Prevents oxidative stress

Polyphenolic substances and phytonutrients in this sugar serve as antioxidants in the body. This will reduce the effect of complimentary radicals and avoid oxidative stress, which increases the danger of persistent diseases and persistent inflammation, to name a few.

Controls blood pressure

The quantity of potassium in this sugar might be minimal but it is enough to impact blood pressure. Potassium acts as a vasodilator in the body, easing stress in the capillary and arteries and preventing strain on the cardiovascular system, including reducing your threat for cardiac arrest and strokes.

Diabetes management

For people coping with diabetes, coconut sugar is an alternative to regular sugar. While it could show to be more nutritional than routine sugar as it undergoes minimal processing, the calorie content is the same as routine sugar.

Improves bone health

There are a number of important minerals discovered in coconut sugar, including zinc, potassium, iron, calcium, and copper, which play an essential role in structure bone mineral density and lowering your danger of osteoporosis as you age.

Enhances digestion

Inulin, the customized form of fiber in coconut sugar, can promote the activity of bifidobacteria in the gut, a valuable probiotic, that can balance the bacteria levels in the stomach. This will enhance gastrointestinal effectiveness and nutrient uptake, while also promoting a healthy gut environment.

Minimizes stress and anxiety

Some studies have actually found that routine, moderate use of this sugar can aid in hormonal agent and neurotransmitter levels, which will minimize signs of anxiety and anxiety, and can cause more stable state of minds.

Increases energy levels

The raw materials for energy found in coconut sugar are somewhat various than traditional table sugar, and take longer for the body to process. This indicates more constant and long-term basal metabolism, so you will have reputable energy levels throughout the day, instead of the sugar rush and inescapable crash.

Reinforces immune system

With trace levels of vitamin c in this sugar, it does have a minimal impact on the immune system and can drive the production of leukocyte, which are the body’s first line of defense versus foreign substances and infectious pathogens. [4]

Coconut palm sugar

Coconuts like these are compromised when the sap from the tree is gotten rid of.

We are regularly asked about coconut palm sugar, and whether we prepare to carry coconut palm sugar, also referred to as coconut sugar, palm sugar, or coconut syrup, among others. Coconut palm sugar is the current coconut item to get appeal, and its place in the market is expanding quickly. And for good factor! Coconut palm sugar is being marketed as a healthy sugar; low in the glycemic index and filled with vitamins, minerals, and amino acids. It apparently tastes terrific as well!

This brand-new success for palm sugar is yielding a high revenue for both coconut farmers and retailers in the u.s., as “much healthier sugars” are among the new high-demand “health” foods. We are seeing story after story in the philippines of how coconut farmers are converting their coconut trees into coconut sugar production, gathering the sap from the tree to make this hot brand-new commodity. The procedure is extremely basic, permitting anybody with coconut palm trees on their land to easily convert their coconut palms into an immediate cash crop that gains excellent monetary benefits.

Coconuts or coconut sugar – a coconut tree can not produce both!

As merchants in the u.s. and somewhere else also cash in on this new demand, sadly, the other side of the story is not being told.

What no one is alerting consumers about is that coconut palm trees can not produce both coconuts and coconut palm sugar! When the sap utilized to make coconut palm sugar is gathered from the coconut palm tree, from the flower bud that will eventually form a coconut, that tree can no longer produce coconuts! Think of that for a minute. No coconuts = no coconut oil, no dried coconut, no coconut flour. Is coconut sugar worth quiting these other valued products that originate from the coconut??

Some claim that if a coconut palm tree is producing coconut sugar, which indicates that it can not produce coconuts at the same time, that it can still be converted back to producing coconuts at a later time. However, in marianita’s experience in maturing in a coconut producing neighborhood, she has actually never ever seen this take place, and we have not seen any studies that have been conducted published anywhere to back up this claim.

The cost of coconuts was just recently at an all time high in the philippines, and we have actually seen shortages worldwide in all the coconut producing countries at times. These rates and accessibility are cyclical, depending upon tropical storms, el niño, and other conditions that affect the supply of coconuts. Currently in 2013, coconut prices are down, and exports are up, as weather systems have been more steady with supply down. However global, there are far less coconut trees than there were 50 to 60 years back, when the anti-saturated fat campaign started with earnest in the u.s., and condemned coconut oil together with all other saturated fats. When coconut trees reached their maturity, lots of communities cut them down for lumber and never replanted the trees. Urban growth has actually likewise led to fewer coconut trees in current times.

Another danger to coconut palm trees reported recently is the plan to make mindanao a “palm-oil” hub for the world’s huge need for palm oil. A private research group has warned the government against turning mindanao into a center of palm-oil production, saying this would directly threaten existing coconut plantations, the island’s major farming export crop. “massive oil-palm plantations in mindanao may result to the ultimate death of the coconut industry where 3 million coconut farmers throughout the country count on and bulk are in mindanao,” the report specified. The report likewise exposed that worldwide need for coconut oil, although fluctuating at times, has actually stayed constant. In the case of the philippines, nevertheless, the group said coconut production has actually been decreasing for the past five years.

Before the coconut palm sugar market fad, there were currently coconut palm trees dedicated to the production of “tuba,” the toddy that originates from the sap of the blooming bud of the coconut palm tree. This tuba is used to make coconut vinegar, but primarily it is used for lambanog, an alcoholic beverage best described as “coconut vodka.” this is a recognized market in the philippines, and you can be sure that for the most part, these coconut palm trees that have actually been used to produce coconut vodka are not simply suddenly being transformed to coconut sugar production! No, coconut palms that were formerly producing coconuts are now being converted to coconut sugar production, because a farmer can often make more money from the easy coconut sugar production than they can from offering the coconuts to wholesale coconut product brokers.

As it stands now, coconut palm sugar is not a sustainable industry. High consumer demand for coconut palm sugar is taking on increased need for coconut oil and other coconut items. In 1993 the davao proving ground of the philippine coconut authority ran a 3 year trial comparing three types of coconut trees: 1. Coconut trees producing only coconuts, 2. Coconut trees producing just sap for the liquor/vinegar industry, and 3. Coconut trees that were changed every 3 months to produce very first coconut sap, and after that 3 months later coconuts. Keep in mind that a coconut tree can not produce both at the same time. What was their result? The trees that were alternating between coconut sap production and coconut production had a 50% lower nut yield when changing back from coconut sap production. Also note that this was in 1993, when there was no coconut sugar market yet. The research study did not look at trees that produce coconut sap for longer than six months (which is the case almost 100% of the time in the philippines), nor did it take a look at the result of the nutrition material of coconuts that are produced after the tree was tapped for coconut sap (they just took a look at the leaves).

There are also no published requirements for coconut palm sugar production that we know, and a lot of the nutrient claims might be unproven. We have actually just seen one research study to date that has actually been released relating to the expected low glycemic index, however that study was not in a peer-reviewed journal. Likewise, the quality of the coconut palm sugar will vary significantly depending on the type of tree the sap is collected from, the age of the tree, the time of year (rainy season or dry season), etc. Are there real research studies published taking into consideration all of these aspects? Exist published requirements anywhere on the production of coconut sugar from the philippines?

Where is the research on coconut sugar’s claims? Other sustainable palm sugars readily available

The american diabetes association has properly observed that claims to glycemic index (gi) are unidentified and untested for coconut sugar, and encourages: “it is alright for individuals with diabetes to utilize coconut palm sugar as a sweetener, however they need to not treat it any differently than regular sugar. It offers just as many calories and carbohydrates as regular sugar: about 15 calories and 4 grams of carbohydrate per teaspoon.” so up until there is more research to back up claims that coconut sugar is different from any other sugar in its impacts in raising blood glucose, one would be smart and safe to treat it the same as other sugars.

A search in pubmed for “coconut sugar” produces no outcomes for peer-reviewed literature on the subject, considering that this is a brand-new item, and not a traditional item. The traditional product for “palm sugar” is from a non-coconut bearing palm tree, arenga pinnata. The sap from this palm tree can be used to produce “palm sugar” without sacrificing coconuts, but this is not the sort of palm sugar making in-roads into the u.s. market.

Furthermore, there is research being done to make coconut xylose, which is similar to other xylitol sweeteners in the u.s. market, and can be made from the coconut husks, without sacrificing the coconut. One such business is beginning production.

Tropical traditions has actually looked into the possibility of offering coconut sugar to our customers, and there are just a lot of unanswered questions relating to the short term sustainability of coconut palm sugar products, the quality of coconut palm sugar production, and the effect of materials of coconut items such as coconut oil, coconut flour, dried coconut, and other coconut products which have actually currently seen record costs in current times. Individuals in the coconut palm sugar company have accused us of being financially motivated on this problem to just secure the items we sell, however they stop working to realize that with our network of hundreds of small-scale family producers, that we are quite potentially in the best position to go into the coconut palm sugar market and revenue even more from it than the existing providers. So this is not a financial position for us at all.

The philippine coconut authority in the philippines is carefully suggesting individuals to plant coconut trees especially for coconut sugar production, especially the “dwarf” breeds that are shorter and can grow faster (average of 5 years instead of ten years.) But as long as consumers continue to require coconut palm sugar at today time, it is not likely that growers and harvesters in the philippines will not wait many years to allow the supply to catch up when they can make a higher revenue now. If present trends continue, coconuts might quickly be so limited and the rate of coconut oil will be so high that only the rich and well-known will have the ability to manage it.

This is specifically true throughout years where the weather condition ruins coconut crops in one location of the nation, and the restricted resources from the untouched locations presses costs up as materials are restricted.

There is a reason the coconut palm sugar is so healthy. It feeds the coconut flower that becomes a wonderful coconut, from which we get such healthy items like coconut oil! Coconut oil is distinct in nature because of its fat structure. Only human breast milk contains similar quantities of medium chain fats. Healthy sugars, on the other hand, abound in nature. The philippines has a few of the best sugar cane worldwide, and numerous farmers are turning to sustainable and organic methods with products like “muscovado” natural walking cane sugar. And as was pointed out above, there are non-coconut bearing palm trees that can produce coconut sugar, and xylitol can be produced from the coconut husk. So for these reasons, tropical customs has actually decided not to enter into the coconut palm sugar market at this time. If at such a time the health claims for coconut sugar can be shown, and it can be revealed that coconut sugar production will not impact the harvest of coconuts, we could alter our position. But for now, there are lots of sources of healthier sugars that do not threaten the supply of coconuts. [5]

5 wonderful ways to utilize coconut sugar

Among the things i enjoy about explore natural sugars is the ability to magnify the flavors in your dish. For instance, since coconut sugar has a darker practically earthy taste, it’s wonderful in baking dishes utilizing chocolate or warm spices. It’s also dazzling stirred into coffee or tea, sprayed on top of pancakes or waffles, or utilized to cheer up savory recipes like curries, chicken or fish. Here are a couple of inspired ways to utilize coconut sugar in your kitchen area this season:.

  1. Coconut soup with bok choy– rawmazing. This nourishing soup is brilliant and fresh while likewise being soothing and gratifying. Boasting baby bok choy, marinaded mushrooms and warm spices, a little coconut sugar is used in addition to coconut milk to include a subtle sweetness.
  2. Red velour cupcakes– keepin it kind. Whole grain flour, coconut sugar and beets integrate to make these healthy vegan cupcakes.
  3. Flourless brownies– homemade mommy. With simply a handful of active ingredients, these decadent chocolate brownies are the perfect simple dessert and are likewise a fantastic afternoon reward with tea or coffee.
  4. Coconut milk masala chai– keeping healthy getting stylish. Making your own chai mix in your home is a favorite in our home because you can entirely personalize which spices you ‘d like to feature. Mixing it up with a little coconut milk and coconut sugar amplifies the darker tastes and makes for a relaxing, gratifying break to the day.
  5. Rum-kissed coconut granola– bojon premium. There are all kinds of ways to sweeten granola. Some individuals utilize honey while others choose maple syrup. If you’re wanting to try something new, coconut sugar includes a layer of caramelly, nutty taste that works wonderfully in many granola and muesli recipes. [6]

Finest overall replacement

There is one noteworthy alternative that works finest for matching the color, consistency, and taste of coconut sugar.

Brown sugar

For the best end result that the majority of resembles coconut sugar, usage brown sugar rather. It’s extremely common and simple to get, and there’s a likelihood that you currently have some on hand.

Do use light brown sugar, as the higher molasses content in dark brown sugar will change your taste.

In a pinch, if you have no other sugar options available, even granulated sugar will work as a replacement for coconut sugar.

In general, you can utilize light brown sugar, dark brown sugar, and granulated sugar in equivalent quantities as coconut sugar. Nevertheless, you do not require to load your brown sugar for determining.

Considering that other sugars are a bit sweeter than coconut sugar, you might want to minimize the sugar amount. Usage 2/3 cup of light brown sugar (or sugar, or dark brown sugar) for each 1 cup of coconut sugar required in a recipe.

Best natural alternatives

If you’re looking for a terrific coconut sugar substitution that is still a much healthier alternative than table sugar or brown sugar, you can use among these excellent choices!


Sucanat is raw walking cane sugar that undergoes just a couple of processing actions. The larger crystals and light golden color look like coconut sugar very much! In addition, the natural molasses content of sucanat implies that the taste also has slight hints of caramel.

The coarse texture of sucanat suggests that it will not dissolve as rapidly as finer sugars. Utilize the coarse granules to leading baked goods, or run the sugar through a food mill to reach table sugar or caster sugar consistency (superfine sugar ).

Sucanat can be utilized in a 1:1 ratio in any recipe requiring coconut sugar.

Raw honey

Or honey, however i do suggest raw honey. What is raw honey? Raw honey is honey as you would discover it in the beehive or honeycomb. It is gotten rid of, strained, and packaged for that reason retaining a bevy of wonderful nutrients.

As soon as raw honey has undergone industrial processing, which includes heating, cooling, skimming, it is generally not as healthy as raw honey.

Additionally, in some cases commercially processed honey has actually been processed to the point that it holds extremely little of its real honey taste. Ingredients like corn syrup and sweeteners can likewise change the honey taste, consistency, and nutritional values.

Back to raw honey! Use raw honey in a 1:4 ratio as coconut sugar when substituting. For every single 1 cup of coconut sugar, usage 1/4 cup of honey. * when using liquid replacements, you may require to adjust other liquids in your recipes.

Maple syrup

Maple syrup is the sap that has actually been gathered from maple trees. The maple sap is boiled till it reaches syrup consistency, then bottled and cost all of us to take pleasure in!

Like honey, maple syrup is a fast and simple coconut sugar alternative! The flavor is more maple, certainly! Nevertheless, it does add its own notes of sweetness that work rather suitably in any recipe.

Do go with pure maple syrup for any replacement as most business brands have lots of other components!

Usage maple syrup in a 1:4 ratio, or 1/4 cup of maple syrup for every single 1 cup of coconut sugar. * when using liquid substitutes, you may require to change other liquids in your recipes.

Agave syrup

Agave syrup, also called agave nectar or maguey syrup, is a syrup made from the agave plant. The sap is collected from the plant and after that processed with heat and enzymes.

This commercial process changes the standard mexican syrup, miel de agave, into a highly-processed syrup. The resulting syrup has lost most, if not all, of its dietary advantages.

Nevertheless, the gi index of agave syrup is lower due to the fructans of the agave sap being transformed to fructose in the heating and/or enzyme process.

Agave syrup is 1 1/2 times sweeter than sugar! Like other liquid coconut sugar substitutes, use 1/4 cup agave syrup for each 1 cup of coconut sugar required. * when utilizing liquid substitutes, you might need to adjust other liquids in your recipes.

Maple sugar

Maple sugar is precisely what it seems like it is! The ‘sugar’ is the dehydrated maple sap that has been reduced to granule kind.

The coarse granules look a lot like coconut sugar, but like maple syrup, they have a more maple flavor. It’s still a very pleasant taste, it simply does not quite match up to the light caramel taste of coconut sugar.

Bonus – you can make maple sugar in the house! You require the actual maple sap from a sugar maple tree. Boil the sap up until it reaches 270ºf (132ºc ). The sugar granules will form at this temperature, simply continue stirring till the granules have actually completely formed.

Maple sugar works splendidly in a 1:1 ratio as a coconut sugar alternative!

Date sugar

This sweet powdered sugar is not a ‘sugar’ in the strictest sense. It is made from carefully ground, dehydrated dates that can be utilized as a sweetener. And it loads a punch of fiber and minerals for some terrific nutritional benefits!

Perk – you can make date sugar in your home! I like medjool dates for my date sugar. Cut each of your dates in half, get rid of the pits and dispose of.

Utilizing a dehydrator or a preheated oven at 425ºf (218ºc) location your dates on a parchment paper-lined flat pan. Leave spacing between the dates so that they get heated up uniformly.

Bake for about 15 minutes, or until the dates feel exceptionally firm when squeezed. Literally, there need to be no genuine provide to them!

Once they’re dried, you will need a food mill that can deal with a heavy-duty job! Process the dates a couple of at a time up until complete, working in about 1 teaspoon of cornstarch per 1 pound of dates. Shop the date sugar in an airtight container.

Date sugar has a mild, sweet taste that can be utilized in a 1:1 ratio when changing coconut sugar. Nevertheless, i prefer to use 1/2 cup for each cup of coconut sugar or brown sugar and 2/3 cup for each 1 cup of granulated sugar. * simply note that date sugar will not liquify like other sugars!

Demerara sugar and turbinado sugar

These two sugars are in some cases described interchangeably, and likewise called ‘raw sugar’. Here in the states, you are much more likely to discover this sugar sold as ‘turbinado’. Over the pond in britain, you are most likely to find ‘demerara’ sugar.

However, if you do take place to discover both at a shop you would observe that the demerara sugar is normally lighter in color with a golden blonde appearance. The taste of demerara is likewise a bit milder than turbinado sugar.

Both of these sugars are terrific options to coconut sugar and can be used in the exact same amount as the coconut sugar required in a recipe.


Stevia is a plant-based sugar alternative from the leaves of the stevia plant, which is an herb from the asteraceae household. This sugar-free sweetener is offered in powdered or liquid type, with individual packages available for ease of use.

I’ve seen it kept in mind in lots of places that stevia can be utilized as a 1:1 replacement for sugars of all types. Nevertheless, stevia is two times as sweet as sugar and i do not utilize it in anywhere near the exact same proportions!

If you recognize with using stevia, you might already know your preferred ratio for replacements. If you are new to using stevia, taste and adjust as you go. Experiment till you find your ‘ideal’ taste.


  • Monk fruit
  • Piloncillo or panela (mexican brown sugar)
  • Erythritol
  • Tagatose
  • Xylitol [7]

Threats and negative effects

Why is coconut sugar bad to consume in large amounts, according to some professionals? The bottom line is that it has the same calories as regular sugar, so consuming it in moderation is key.

There appears to be little information regarding other preventative measures. This sweetener is normally well-tolerated, but bear in mind that having too much sugar of any kind can contribute to weight gain and high blood glucose levels.

A high-sugar diet might likewise aggravate swelling and increase the danger of issues like metabolic syndrome, heart disease, and elevated high blood pressure, triglycerides and ldl cholesterol levels.

In addition, the american diabetes association mentions that lots of items on the shelf add routine sugar to coconut sugar, so it is very important to keep a watchful eye on labeling. Opt for organic coconut sugar which contains no additional sugar, and utilize it in small amounts. [8]


Coconut sugar ought to remain entirely dry and in a sealed container. You can store it at space temperature level in a cool, dry location for as much as a year. If the coconut sugar is in block type, keep it in a cool part of the pantry in an air-tight container so it does not dry out. [9]

The bottom line

At the end of the day, coconut sugar is no miracle food.

It’s extremely comparable to routine table sugar, although it’s not as processed and consists of small amounts of nutrients. If you’re going to utilize coconut sugar, utilize it sparingly.

Coconut sugar belongs in the exact same boat as many sugar options. It’s much healthier than refined sugar but certainly even worse than no sugar at all. [10]


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