Substitutes for Shakkar

by Sanjeev Kapoor

Cutting down on sugar has never been easy and even if one tries to, there is always an occasion or festival comes up and bang! You end up cheating on your diet! Fair enough, because we Indians do not care about anything but indulging on our favourite treats on a festive day. So, we thought we will do that bit for you. Weight watchers and health freaks, here are 5 perfect substitutes to refined sugar!

Take a look!

Say yes to Shehed:

Happiness in honey!


Honey is the most natural form of a sweetener because it is raw and unprocessed. Sugar can be best replaced with shehed and there is no question about that. It can do wonders when it comes to weight loss or good hair and skin. Also, our moms have been using it to cure our cough and colds since childhood and even now it works best when it comes to comforting a sore throat. Drizzling honey on pancakes or adding a full spoon to your beverage is something most people already do but sweetening your mithais with it is something you should definitely try this festive season.


Gud is too good:

Gud naal sab kuch meetha!


Jaggery is another popular ingredient which has been a part of our kitchen shelves for long. It is added to curries and dals in the southern states of India. A dash of jaggery when added to vegetables like bitter gourd and brinjal reduces their bitterness to a great extent. The Gujaratis use it to enhance the taste in a lot of their savoury recipes. While jaggery is useful in cooking, it is also an ancient part of Ayurvedic medicine and has spiritual significance in India too. Clearly jaggery is already a blessing, why not add some gud to your mithais as well and make it even more useful!


A delightful date:

Iss tyohar ki mithai mein zaroor add some khajoor!


Dates are one of the most popular sweeteners in Middle East and it also carries a holy significance for the Muslims because Mohammed used to break his fast by eating dates. They carry an array of health benefits, one of the most popular being an excellent source of energy and iron. Packed with vitamins and nutrients, this ingredient is a star when it comes to using it as a sweetener! They are also said to provide a nice chocolaty colour and texture to the cakes and of course brilliant taste too. Have a date? Make some sweets then!


Hi-Fi to Figs:

Figs are fantastic!


Figs or Anjeer are a perfect alternative to refined sugar. Dried figs are eaten quite often and are a popular dry fruit in Indian homes. Apart from being a natural sweetener, figs are also a powerhouse of health benefits- loaded with vitamins, calcium and is said to help in digestion too. They are also used to keep diabetes and blood sugar levels in control. Try making some sweets with them like an Anjeer Halwa or Barfi or Fig cookies. We are sure it’s going to turn out amazing for you!


Khubaani ki khaasiyat!

Khubaani in mithaai, Kyu nahi!


Apricots are a native to India, mostly enjoyed as a dry-fruit. An excellent source of Vitamin A and carotene, and filled with antioxidant properties, apricots can be a very nice alternative to sugar. It is 100% preservative free and natural, also easily available. It can be used to prepare Indian dry fruit based mithais without necessarily adding any sugar.


Kyoki tyohaar mein mithai toh must hai and now that you have substitutes for sugar, you can look for mithai recipes on our website and get going to your kitchen.

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MasterChef Sanjeev Kapoor

Chef Sanjeev Kapoor is the most celebrated face of Indian cuisine. He is Chef extraordinaire, runs a successful TV Channel FoodFood, hosted Khana Khazana cookery show on television for more than 17 years, author of 150+ best selling cookbooks, restaurateur and winner of several culinary awards. He is living his dream of making Indian cuisine the number one in the world and empowering women through power of cooking to become self sufficient. His recipe portal is a complete cookery manual with a compendium of more than 10,000 tried & tested recipes, videos, articles, tips & trivia and a wealth of information on the art and craft of cooking in both English and Hindi.