Muscovado sugar: Nutritional values and facts
Muscovado sugar is a type of brown sugar that has nothing to do with traditional brown sugar. In fact, among all the sugars that can be found in the market, muscovado is the most natural. One of the most outstanding characteristics, the one that stands out, is that this sugar has a much darker, wetter texture and it could even be said, sticky. Read on and learn a little more about the highlights and characteristics of this type of sugar.
Undoubtedly, one of the main characteristics that differentiate muscovado sugar from white and brown sugar is its appearance. They are much thicker, darker, and wetter, to the point of looking extremely sticky. This texture is because a muscovado is a crystallized sugar that is covered by a very thin layer of molasses.
The sugar traditional dark, which is much more easily in supermarkets, owes its color to a process that occurs after refinement. The most common is to dye the white sugar with a very soft layer of molasses or syrup.
Another of the most important aspects is related to the nutritional value of muscovado, which is much higher than that of refined sugar in its different presentations. In fact, the refining process means that white and brown sugar only provides sucrose, unlike muscovado, which provides numerous minerals such as potassium, magnesium, iron, and calcium, among others. Muscovado sugar
Of course, the taste is very different from the most commercialized sugar. In fact, some rejection of muscovado sugar may occur initially, as it is considerably stronger and bitter. The flavor is a mix between molasses, caramel, butter, and nut. Something complicated to describe and that requires some adaptation and custom, on the part of a palate accustomed to the most refined flavors.
Is Mascabo Sugar better?
The difference between muscovado sugar and plain sugar is the presence of other minerals and vitamins. Still, the difference is not too significant.
In white sugar, the sucrose concentration is 99%, while in brown sugar it is 96-98%, which only differs by 1-3% 1.
This percentage is occupied by mineral salts and other nutrients that are naturally present in the cane. But is it a significant amount? Does it have consequences in our bodies? Let’s analyze its nutritional value.
So is muscovado sugar better than white sugar?
Strictly speaking, the answer is yes. In a first observation of the table, we can see that this sugar contains more nutrients. Still, it is important that we assess the amount of them and whether or not they have an effect on our bodies.
The consumption of Calcium per day recommended by the WHO is 1200 mg per day. Note that if you consume 100g of sugar per day (WHO recommends a maximum of 50, so you would double the amount of sugar intake) you would get 80 mg of Calcium, which is less than 7% of the calcium necessary for your body.
Today we present 7 things you may not know about muscovado sugar.
1. Muscovado sugar is a type of whole cane sugar
There are different products obtained from sugar cane that is presented in dissimilar forms: raw sugar, refined sugar, syrup, or molasses. They differ between them in their more or less moist texture, the size of the crystals, and the proportion of sucrose.
2. There are many types of whole sugar
But they are all different from each other. Demerara, turbinado, panela , rapadura, jaggery . Although they may look similar, have some characteristics that differentiate them.
They come from the evaporation of the sugar cane and maintain a part of the molasses that does not evaporate completely. But the final amount of this changes in each variety. That is why they have variable textures and flavors.
3. The production process has different phases
Muscovado sugar is not obtained quickly, nor is it a waste. Production must complete certain phases, including the following:
- Obtaining the juice of the sugar cane.
- Clarification of the fluid and evaporation to obtain a first concentration of the solid parts.
- Cooling leading to sugar crystals.
- Maintenance of the molasses that appears during cooking to reach the final product, which is not refined.
4. It comes only from sugar cane
In general, sugar can be obtained from two raw materials: sugar beet or sugar cane. The process they undergo until obtaining the final product is always the same, regardless of the plant from which it is obtained.
The geographical region is decisive, especially due to the climate. Colder places, like Europe, predominate in sugar beet cultivation. On the contrary, in tropical climates, it is sugar cane.
5. Muscovado sugar has a pronounced taste
Muscovado sugar has a different type of taste from white sugar, honey, or sweetener syrups.
It can be reminiscent of licorice or toffee, with a slightly bitter undertone. Its texture is also different, being a more humid type of sugar.
6. It is used as a sweetener and in cooking
We can use muscovado sugar as a substitute for white sugar: in infusions, coffees, yogurts. But it also helps us to cook. In fact, it is highly appreciated in confectionery, as it gives products a stronger flavor and a more attractive color.
Although it works wonderfully in recipes for cookies, cakes, or puddings, it is not only valid for sweet dishes. It is also interesting in sauces, such as vinaigrette, or in marinades to marinate meat.
It works differently in the kitchen and it must be taken into account if we want to substitute one product for the other. At the end of cooking, the muscovado sugar gives it a more fruity and sweet taste and a more moist texture.
7. Has the same nutritional composition as refined sugar
Although some people consider it to be healthier than white sugar, muscovado sugar has practically the same nutritional composition. Both provide 4 calories per 1 gram of product and are made up of almost 100% of carbohydrates.
Although it is true that when conserving a part of the cane juice, muscovado sugar has traces of some minerals such as magnesium, potassium, or calcium, we cannot consider it as a valid source of these nutrients. They are best obtained from healthier foods, such as vegetables, nuts, and whole grains.
For the same reason, although it is less processed sugar, it is still an added sugar. So we must control its consumption and not exceed 25 grams a day, according to the recommendations.
Where to get muscovado sugar?
In markets and supermarkets, what is usually found are white and brown sugar and the different presentations of natural and artificial sweeteners. However, the muscovado will hardly be found. This type of sugar can be used in many preparations, especially in desserts and it is advisable to use the original and not brown sugar since the difference in the final result is significant.
This type of sugar is most easily found in health food stores. As well as in stores that sell gourmet products and in general, specialized stores. Although muscovado should be consumed in moderation because it also has sucrose, it is also true that it provides many more nutrients than its more popular peers. What do you think of this type of sugar? Have you tried it?
Therefore, we conclude that the differences between white sugar and muscovado at the nutritional level are so low that there is no difference for our body if we take one or the other sugar.
Even so, what does change is the taste. So you can try the different sugars out there to find out which one is your favorite.