Honey is often referred to as nature’s golden healer, because it’s a base ingredient in so many home remedies and recipes. We’re often told to sip hot honey and lemon to help a sore throat. And so many baking recipes contain honey, but is honey low FODMAP? Unfortunately, it isn’t low FODMAP. It’s high in fructose, and should be avoided.
Can Honey Be Replaced?
If you have a recipe that calls for honey, you can replace it with a low FODMAP sweetener instead. The ratio may change depending on what you replace it with.
Pure Maple Syrup
Pure maple syrup is low FODMAP, so you can use it as a substitute for honey. It’s a 1:1 replacement, so whatever measurement said to use for the honey, you simply use the same amount of maple syrup. You should check the packaging to make sure that it is pure maple syrup, without additives. Up to 2 tablespoons is low FODMAP.
Golden syrup is a honey coloured, thick syrup made from sugar cane or sugar beet juice. It’s widely used as a honey replacement, especially for vegan cooking and baking. It’s also a 1:1 replacement, however, golden syrup is only a low FODMAP food in half tablespoon serving. A full tablespoon is high FODMAP, so you do need to be careful if you choose this substitute. You’ll also need to be careful about the branding you use, as some brands mix two different syrups to make a product that is like golden syrup, but these products may not be low FODMAP.
Brown Rice Syrup
Brown rice syrup is also known as rice malt syrup, and is a low FODMAP sweetener. It’s made by fermenting brown rice with enzymes that will disintegrate the starches. It’s then strained, and reduced to a syrup. You can replace honey with brown rice syrup on a 1:1 ratio. Up to 1.5 tablespoon is low FODMAP.
Brown sugar can be used as a low FODMAP honey replacement. Brown sugar gets its colour from the manufacturing process. It can be made by adding molasses to white sugar, or by leaving the molasses intact during the refining process. When you’re replacing honey with brown sugar, you need to remember that honey is a liquid, but brown sugar isn’t. You can replace it on a 1:1 ratio, but you’ll need to add a quarter measurement of liquid as well. One tablespoon (13g) is low FODMAP.