Molasses, the Natural Sweetener: Real Healthy
Do you have a bottle of molasses languishing in the back of your pantry — one that only comes out once or twice a year for that holiday gingerbread recipe or homemade baked beans? If so, it’s time to bring this neglected ingredient up to the front of the cupboard. Blackstrap molasses, which is a byproduct of sugar refining, is one of the most nutritious sweeteners available.
Okay, it doesn’t exactly measure up to broccoli or blueberries in the nutrition department. But compared with white sugar, which has virtually no nutritional value whatsover, molasses shines up pretty well. It’s lower in calories and offers decent amounts of several important minerals, including calcium, magnesium, potassium, and iron. One tablespoon of blackstrap molasses contains 20% of the daily recommended intake of iron, for example. But be sure to seek out the blackstrap variety; other types of molasses are far lower in minerals.
Of course we all know that too much sugar — even in natural forms like molasses — is bad for us. (See: Why is sugar bad?) But why not get the most out of your modest ration of sweets? Molasses has a strong flavor that marries with warm spices like ginger and cinnamon. Try swirling it into a bowl of oatmeal along with raisins and a pinch of ginger for a warming “gingerbread oatmeal.” Or try some of these recipes that play up its rich flavor.
With a taste that will remind you of bran muffins, this multigrain bread is ideal for sandwiches or just snacking.
The tart (from vinegar) taste here contrasts with the sweet taste of molasses for a terrific marinade.
This recipe provides the easiest way we know to jazz up ordinary potatoes and give them a totally new taste.
We all know cabbage is good for us, but this recipe also proves that the healthy green can be tasty, too.
Make the most of molasses with this great recipe for Molasses Baked Beans!